Posts: 1
Joined: Mon Jun 19, 2017 7:08 am
Delivery Date: 12 Apr 2015
Leaf Number: 8320

Re: Moving a Leaf to Europe...

Mon Jun 19, 2017 7:23 am

I'm in a similar boat, moving to either Belgium or France (somewhere in that border area) in about 2 months and wondering whether it's worth bringing my Leaf. The energy efficiency is very appealing with gas at 5-6$ a gallon there.

- I saw a reference to the 230 volt electricity there - does that mean I could use the basic US 3 prong wall charger plugged into a standard $10 US/EU outlet adapter? This sounds dangerous, but I don't understand the first thing about electricity. Could I just buy a European Leaf-to-wall cord? I have a big Siemens 240 volt deal in my garage now but I understand that would be useless in Europe?

- Other than Carwings and nav (neither one a big deal to me), any other major issues I should be thinking about?


Posts: 3039
Joined: Sat Jan 12, 2013 3:46 am
Delivery Date: 11 Jan 2013
Leaf Number: 027089
Location: SoCal

Re: Moving a Leaf to Europe...

Mon Jun 19, 2017 7:26 pm

In order to register the car there, some equipment will need to be changed to make it compliant with EU standards. For example, you will need to add a rear-facing fog lamp; on European Leafs it's an add on light below the middle of the rear bumper.


Other lighting modifications will need to be made such as disabling the amber side marker lights, and if you have the halogen headlight setup you will need to add a white-only parking light; steady amber to the front is not allowed in the EU. If you have a 2013 or later model, you will also need to add turn signal repeaters to the front fenders as found on the 2011-2012 models.

Unless the OEM 120 volt EVSE has been properly upgraded to accept higher voltage, DO NOT plug it into anything but a 120 volt source! You will fry the EVSE.

In Europe, it's BYOCC (bring your own charging cord) at public charging stations and you will need to buy one of those cords to use a public EVSE over there. Europe uses the "Mennekes" charging standard which has a different pin configuration than the J1772 used here, but adapters are available. Europe is 230 volt, 50 Hz which is different from the 240 volt 60 Hz electricity in the US so unless it's rated to do so, an electrical appliance from the US won't work properly in Europe even with adapters. As Siemens is a German company it possibly will work in Europe but I would contact them to see if that is the case. If in doubt just buy a EU-spec "wallbox."

European radio stations are closer together on the dial than in the US and you won't be able to pick up those "in-between" frequencies with a US radio.
Blue Ocean 2012 Leaf SV, lost that 1st bar at 34 months/26,435 miles. Lease returned 2 months later. Final LeafStat figures: 225 Gids, 17.44 kWH, SOC 91.89%, SOH 82.36%, 69.49% HX, 54.57 Ahr, battery temp 61.8 F.
Now driving a 2015 VW eGolf SEL.

Posts: 1412
Joined: Wed Oct 21, 2015 10:24 am
Delivery Date: 06 Dec 2014
Location: Long Island, NY

Re: Moving a Leaf to Europe...

Wed Jun 21, 2017 8:52 am

I have never found it a good idea to take anything large or cumbersome with me on a long distance move, ESPECIALLY internationally.

Even smaller things like furniture, tons of clothes, or housewares are not a good deal. There is nothing that you own (like the Leaf), that is so important that you need to drag with you. My feeling of moving, "when in Rome, become an Italian", I think is the best, and the most "liberating".

Heck, you may find that their stuff is even better than the U.S. products.. I have often found that in international travel...

Posts: 3
Joined: Fri Feb 20, 2015 11:15 am
Delivery Date: 08 Aug 2014
Leaf Number: 305467

Re: Moving a Leaf to Europe...

Fri Jun 23, 2017 1:21 am

Hey all,

It has been 2+ years since my original post-- just wanted to let everyone know what happened.

I did indeed move my 2015 Leaf over to Germany with me. Finding charging stations has not been a problem. Our town has a free one downtown (about two blocks from my home). It is underutilized and very convenient.

However, getting the car registered was a royal pain in the ___. I live in Bavaria and had to go through TUV. TUV is a private company endowed with the authority to define which features of a motor vehicle are safe on German roads. They are very strict.

The changes required for registration included
-a new set of tires of a type that had been approved by TUV,
-adding a rear light (a TUV-approved light bolted on below the bumper worked fine), and
-getting the US headlight fixture approved for registration in Germany.

It was the headlights that proved to be the biggest headache. The US headlamps were not approved by TUV and TUV-approved headlamps are not compatible with the US Leaf.

After spending some time and effort figuring this out, I ended up paying a testing company to get TUV approval. It was a 6 week process and cost ~1200 Euros. Apparently, the test results are available at TUV for anyone else who needs them. If you find yourself in the same boat and can't find them at TUV, let me know and I'll help you get them. No need for this racket to get more money from another poor sucker...

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