Why the Nissan Leaf, may in fact, be the worst production model electric car ever made.

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trucklover32 said:
Now, let’s assume that in January 2017, the month ends and I still have 10 bars. My chance of getting the battery replaced under warranty will be gone.

Not at all. Look at all the examples on this forum where people have gone through the BBB and were successful in getting a new battery. Granted, it's a bit more work on your part, but it sure beats paying for a new battery on your own. And the success rate appears to be quite high. You can even recycle all the material already used by others who went to the BBB first.


I wasn't aware that people had been successful through BBB. I will give that a shot if it comes to that.

As far as the Tesla thing, you can't back up your point with positive claims from the maker of the car you're talking about. Especially when the term "simulated" is part of the statement. You'd really need to see everything that they factored in to that simulation, and see if the simulation was even reasonable. For all you know, they didn't even factor in time or heat cycles. And even if they did, it's only as good as the simulation itself. And the tricky part about something like this is that, depending on what other historical technical data they have accumulated, the simulation quality can be very limited. As well as "tweeked" to get more favorable results. And for that matter, you could take half the price difference between the Leaf and the Tesla, and do battery upgrades for years (maybe decades) to come.

EM does a lot of talking, and a lot of it is marketing. Not holding it against him, but also not taking it as the written gospel either. As soon as you get above the first level managers in a company, you start to get marketing spin on everything they say. And if the statements are going external to the company, it can become complete BS. Some times it's true, but many times it's far from it.

The Volt is also difficult to compare. It does a lot of background operations that happen even if you aren't aware, like running the ICE occasionally to keep it operating. Which doesn't necessarily disprove your claims about it being a superior design, but makes it a little tricky to do a direct comparison with a full electric car. But when i was shopping for a car recently, about a month ago, I determined that the price difference between the 2015 Volt ($17,000) and the 2015 Leaf ($12000) would pretty much cover an eventual battery replacement in the Leaf, so I went with a leaf because I wanted full electric only and no exposure to gasoline for the new (used) vehicle. I want gasoline out of my house, out of my garage, and as much out of my life as I can get it.

And remember, you are projecting the impact of a progressive loss of range that is still a few years out. So the camel's back hasn't been broken yet, as far as your case is concerned. By the time it actually happens, we'll need to take a look at what we've ended up with, as far as newer battery technology and pricing. It's not so much about the Leaf being a good or bad car, it will be more about how Nissan follows through on newer technology and backwards compatibility. That being said, I've heard that they 30kwh pack is not compatible with any of the earlier cars, so that's a bad start. At least the newer 24kwh lizzard packs can be adapted to the older cars.

Also, since you purchased your used vehicle so recently, why didn't you do the research and see that this could be an enevitable issue for you? I just purchased a 2015 leaf about 3 weeks ago and I scanned it with Leaf Pro to see where it was. But I only have a 12 mile round trip to work each day. I figure I'll be using it as a work car for another 7-10 years. Well I could be anyway. I'm 56 years old so it really only has to get me to work and back for another 4-6 years. Maybe less if I get fed up with working for a living. And my retirement location is only 5 miles from town, so there's that. I'll be living on the farm and only needing to go to town once or twice a week. Heck, by that time, maybe I'll upgrade the battery pack and it will be enough to get me to my non-driving years. :cool:

In conclusion, I'd like to do a reality check here. Let's get real here, we can go out and buy a freakin (virtually) brand new electric car for $12,000. I just did. Only 5-6 years ago, people on this board would have laughed you out of a thread for claiming that. Well many would. A few would have said, "Wow, I can only dream of that." I bought a Vectrix VX-1 back in 2008 for $8,000, and thought it was one of the coolest things ever. And it was just a maxi scooter. The company has gone out of business and the typical value on that bike is about $500-$1,000. But I'm ok with it. I took a gamble and it sort of paid off, not great though. Now, having a full car with all the ammentities is just insane.
well when you consider the still high favorable ratings of the LEAF, it simply boils down to your word verses anyone elses. Now a title "the worst car "I" ever had" I think would be accurate. Or "the best car to lease" might work... but yeah, I could simply submit a dozen different things I have bought into your title and be just as right as you. Just about every first gen electronic device qualifies. Remember Windows 1? sadly, I do...

But the LEAF won't be the first or the last to go from "worst to first" or vice versa so one bad year does not a bad car make or is one year going to compensate for a bad year.

But your post seems to concentrate more on value than anything else and comparing it to a COMPLETELY different product; a gasser.

so saying "who would pay $6000 to repair a gas car after a few years?" well I would have to say I don't know but then again, if I saved way more than half that in fuel savings (actually would save that much in a few years. took me 5 years, 87 days...approximately to do it...:) ) I might be more inclined to do so but then again, I didn't buy the LEAF because imm, I don't see it as a worthy purchase yet.

Now leasing is a different story and not one I entered into lightly simply because before the LEAF, I had never really leased before in my life (I did share a car that was leased by someone else several decades ago...) and was very hesitant as to how it would go but then again, the thought of paying $30,000 for unproven technology was more than enough to make my decision.

But in reality, if gas had not gone down, would you still feel the same? Would you have rather paid that $100-200 a month for fuel instead? smell the fumes, etc?

so there is a lot more on the table you did not mention but that is how "my post is not intended to be negative" posts go.

but I feel ya, man. it obviously is not going to work out for you and you do have much more options to choose from now and you woke up this morning so as bad as you might think it is, there many many many who would gladly trade places with you
My question would be, Other than the early traction battery durability issues which seem to be addressed in later models, what other things would qualify the current LEAFs to be named "worst production electric car ever"?

Could it be:
General vehicle reliability?
Probably not, LEAFs have some of the highest reliability of any passenger vehicle, and certainly exceed the reliability of other EVs, some of which cost several times as much.

Probably not, any vehicle that has large out-the-door discounts from subsidies, rebates or marketing incentives or is a 1st generation of a new model or incorporates new technology that is rapidly advancing, will have a high depreciation level.

What else could justify that label?

I would question the premise that new technology teething problems 5~6 years ago should tar the current state of the vehicle.

Nissan must be doing something right as their LEAF is still the best selling EV in recorded history.
Back to topic. Agree w the OP. The Leaf's warranty is a joke and causes owner anxiety when cutting it close. Nissan should offer a prorated 9bar warranty up to 100k.

I'm also surprised the newer batteries aren't holding up as expected. See my sig. on my 2013, during 2016, my AHr dropped from 63 to 53 between 33k and 38k miles.

Leaf is a great vehicle, to lease.
Agreed, and the reason why I will never again own an EV that does not have a TMS until there is a dramatic change in battery chemistry that makes the point moot.

trucklover32 said:
No...air vs liquid cooling isn't an open question. Physics do not lie. Liquids remove heat faster and more efficiently than gas (aka "air"). As for the Focus Electric and the Honda Fit EV......neither of those companies have settled class-action lawsuits regarding battery degradation. So what is my point? Nissan didn't deliver on their "premier" electric vehicle and as a result the consumer lost.
DarthPuppy said:
Let me get this straight. You ask for respectful feedback on your essay. It is correctly pointed out to you that comparing the Leaf directly vs. the Tesla is problematic. And you respond by saying basically anyone with 'stronger intelligence' wouldn't see that as an issue? Why are you here asking for respectful feedback if you are going to insult people who actually take the time to point out errors in your analysis? Starting to smell like a troll.

Yes, it does. It's a thread that goes nowhere fast!
Without re-hashing arguments about battery chemistry, management and cooling that have been on-going for years, I would simply posit that the LEAF has been as good as it had to be. It's the first widely-available and reasonably affordable pure EV. To this point it really has not had any true competition in that niche. When it does encounter real competition, then Nissan will step up their game. But not before. Seems to me they lost their taste for being the pioneer.
trucklover32 said:
I have a 2012 Leaf, with 44K miles
I purchased my Nissan Leaf in January 2015 for $13,000 and it had 26,000 miles on it (and 11 capacity bars).
Look at this another way.

You bought a 3 year old used car and got it for about 1/3 of it's original MSRP. There was a reason for that huge discount (aka loss for the previous owner).
The other contenders are:

1) The Detroit Electric. Sure, primitive by today's standard. But was very popular around 1910.

2) The Telsa Model S. Expensive and unreliable. Amazing driving experience.

3) The Mitsubishi iMiev. Ugly, under powered, short range. Still, the lowest priced car (counting fuel and maintenance) in America today.

The Leaf is a great commuting car, with range enough for the majority of commutes. Battery life is poor in hot areas, but very acceptable in more moderate locations.
trucklover32 said:
Note that the Volt has reserve capacity it can tap to adjust for loss as the battery so its capacity loss comparison is not objective.

Totally forgot about that point! Glad you brought it up. Even considering that, I think that the liquid cooling in the Volt battery bodes well for its overall longevity.

James D.

If they were otherwise identical, I would agree.
They aren't though.

Liquid cooling adds its own issues.
So far, the liquid cooling battery packs are fairing better.
But that could primarily be a result of engineering of the pack, maximum and minimum allowed SOC, even the software controlled rate of charge.

Also, your position is founded on one thing, the battery lasting through the warrantee, dropping capacity immediately after and Nissan not stepping up to the plate.

You could be right, but then again, you could be wrong.
I know of people driving 4 year old Leafs with no regrets. They certainly wouldn't describe it as the worst car ever made.
DaveinOlyWA said:
Stoaty said:
Why this thread, may in fact, be the worst one on mynissan leaf ever made.

your post is a prime example of why a "Like" button need to be added on this site...
Yes, and in this case that button would need to be capable of displaying a minimum of 3 digits. ;)