A couple of things first. I haven't had a car payment since 1989 choosing instead to buy good cars outright and run them and ultimately trade them for work from folks that need them. Right now, I've got four - did have six - ICE cars in the stable until my wife's car was totaled by a couple of kids who stole a pickup and turned in front of her ... which puts me in the market for a used leaf. I like the idea and recognize the value of the Leaf EV and would like to put gasoline costs in the same category as the car payment.
I've been doing some shopping in the Atlanta area. I've come across a couple of 2013 leaf's of interest. The first is a base S with out QC, 11 bars and 53,000 miles for $6300 less what cash discount I could muster. The other is a nicer 2013 SL, obviously loaded with a level 2 charger added to the deal that I can get for probably $9 grand, maybe a little less (actual car cost $8500). The SL has the nissan battery warranty (called) in effect until April of next year which, considering it is down to 9 bars with roughly 30,000 miles means that it could qualify for a new battery. It is nice and sharp in all other respect with QC, the heat pump heater, leather, navigation, etc. Tires and other attributes are generally equal between the cars.
In a worse case scenario my wife, who is the one burning up the miles, will change jobs to a place 50 miles away with significant freeway travel which would require twice-daily charging/quick charging. I don't think the S, which doesn't have the QC, would be up to the task of that commute, even with 11 bars and only marginal with a new battery, so it doesn't fit that bill. Still, it does provide a tool to make a price comparison as the SL's value is by definition at least $2000 higher.
I.e. a new battery for the S, which might be necessary down the road IF my wife changes jobs, would definitely require a new battery to be reliable for the 100 mile daily commute - in fact it would be problematic to not assume that every other used leaf, save the 2018, would need at least a battery in tip-top condition if not a new replacement. That said, neither using the current commute of 20 miles one-way with charging options at both locales, would absolutely need a battery replacement.
The choice is the $6000 2013 leaf S vs. the SL with its lower capacity battery (and obvious chance it might go to 8 bars by April) ... and the convenience of the upgraded accessories, etc., quick charge and 6/3kw charging capacity being a near $2,000 option alone. The all-around camera, navigation and leather seating options adding more to the value.
As an additional comparison, the SL model is relative rare and the only comparable I saw only three. One was a 2015 SL with 26,000 miles an asking price of $14,000 ... which obviously would not have a new battery. Another was $15988 with 22,000mi and the third was $14,000 with 32,000. The 2013 I'm looking at has 29,900 miles.
The battery warranty on the 2013 SL with nine bars runs out in April ... and mileage is obviously not a factor ... or in just over five full months. It is obviously a gamble whether the car would drop that last bar between now and then. I've order the ELM 327 bluetooth OBD reader (I think it is version 2.1 so that may be a problem) and have not made direct assessments of the battery. The issue was great enough that the owner got a battery report from Nissan showing the nine-bar status and said 'all is well in late August 17).
Still, I've heard that Nissan does consider partial replacements; aka: discounts on replacement batteries which begs the question what factors are helpful in getting that kind of factory support. For instance my wife is a nurse working for the government (psych ward at jail currently and the new job she's seeking 50 miles away is to a hospital for the mentally disabled).
But again, considering a worse case situation of $5,500 for a new battery, the 2013 at an adjusted price of $14,000 is close to breaking even at the dog track.
Or do I have it all wrong and I need to get a buddy in the car business to go to the auctions and get me a 2015 like that listed at auction for $5 grand
because the prices being pitched are ridiculous.