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mikeEmike
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Re: Phila. Auto Show - Leaf range

Tue Jan 22, 2013 12:00 pm

Shaka wrote:From what I understand, many of the people that work at car shows as "reps" are not actual employees of the company. They are hired from an advertisement agency / marketing company. They are not permanent employees, although they might actually travel the USA to various car shows and represent the same company for the entire auto show "tour" that occurs. However, as these folks are just usually getting data from "bullet point lists" provided by the mfg, they are clueless.
The rep at the LA Auto Show was quite well informed of the issues with the LEAF. She had the Nissan-approved answer for anything I mentioned that was negative (e.g. range < 100 miles, effects of hot weather on battery capacity, lack of DC charging infrastructure). I have to commend her for that because my impression from the salespeople at the dealerships (back when I was car shopping) was that they were not well-informed about the LEAF, to the point where I just stopped asking questions about the car because I was embarrassed for them. Still, it bothers me that Nissan is still forcing the car show reps (and salespeople) to continue this spin.
TomT wrote:Actually, when I visited Tesla last week they were very upfront and honest about the range, giving what the EPA numbers are and explaining that you might get more, or considerably less, depending on a number of factors, which they then explained in fairly good detail. It was refreshing after constantly hearing the Nissan 100 mile mantral.
I found the Tesla salespeople to be better informed about the LEAF than Nissan's, at least in my limited experience with both. I spoke with a Tesla salesperson, and he had a lot of good things and some not-so-good things to say about the LEAF, but he was correct, unbiased, fair, and very well-informed.

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Stanton
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Re: Phila. Auto Show - Leaf range

Tue Jan 22, 2013 12:02 pm

It's simple: it's part of the marketing message. If sales (or anyone in a customer facing sales & marketing role) doesn't follow the marketing messages, they get their hands slapped. It happens in every business; it happens where I work. Now that doesn't mean we have to perpetuate the message, but that also doesn't mean we should bad mouth the car because we don't like the marketing. I tell people you may get UP TO 100 miles DEPENDING ON DRIVING CONDITIONS, ETC., but I don't speak negatively about the car just because marketing chooses NOT to change their message.
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mikeEmike
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Re: Phila. Auto Show - Leaf range

Tue Jan 22, 2013 12:13 pm

adric22 wrote:I don't mind if somebody uses the 100-mile figure as long as they put it into context.
The problem is that it is almost never put into context, at least not by someone trying to sell you the car.

bonaire
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Re: Phila. Auto Show - Leaf range

Tue Jan 22, 2013 12:14 pm

it's a funky place to be in that marketing arm. When the window sticker says EPA of 99 MPGe and they then equate that to 100 miles of range. The window sticker clearly says 73 miles of range per charge on it. Why can't they just say "about 73 miles per charge" like the window sticker says?

My Chevy Volt's window sticker says 35 miles per charge. My best day was 49 miles on a charge. Shouldn't I tell friends and potential buyers that my Chevy Volt gets 49 miles electric range? (ah, forget that as most people think the Volt is an all-electric car anyway and don't understand it) The best someone did on gm-volt.com was a member hitting just about 80 miles on a charge driving 35 mph. So, should Chevy reps say the Volt gets 50 miles per charge? 80 miles? No, they have stayed with the EPA numbers and start from a realistic 35 miles, even though most drivers beat that handily.

We've heard the stories about people writing blogs and complaint forum posts about the Leaf that they got which gave them 50 miles of range on a cold winter day after an 80% charge when the dealer sold them the 100-mile per charge angle. Nissan just perpetuates this by selling the 100-mile story and when Leaf owners speak to others about their un-satisfied expectations, it helps to keep others from buying it. While Volt owners are speaking of surpassed expectations on mileage. Like I said in the OP, I would love to lease a Leaf and would have my own expectations about it. But for others who are not yet informed, I think Nissan is hurting themselves and that turns into mudslinging by the general public who keeps saying "EVs are not ready for prime time - just look at Joe, he was supposed to be getting 100 miles per charge and he barely gets 75 and it's a new car!" That wording of supposed-to has a lot of weight in our culture. Forget "Saving Face", Nissan - let's just work with facts.

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surfingslovak
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Re: Phila. Auto Show - Leaf range

Tue Jan 22, 2013 12:52 pm

Edmunds did an interesting real-world side-by-side comparison of several EVs. It was published a few days ago. The effective range for the LEAF was estimated at 83 miles in this particular scenario.

ImageImage

Click to open (source: Edmunds)
Last edited by surfingslovak on Tue Jan 22, 2013 4:30 pm, edited 1 time in total.

midelectric
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Re: Phila. Auto Show - Leaf range

Tue Jan 22, 2013 1:17 pm

surfingslovak wrote:Edmunds did an interesting real-world side-by-side comparison of several EVs. It was published a few days ago. The effective range for the LEAF was 83 miles to turtle in this particular scenario.

ImageImage

Click to open (source: Edmunds)
That Edmunds article is good reading, thanks for linking.

I wonder if the Leaf was hamstrung in this test by not being able to use the capacity under the bars. I don't know if there would be enough juice to match the 10 mile longer range of the Golf that ranked just ahead of it but it could have done better.

bonaire
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Re: Phila. Auto Show - Leaf range

Tue Jan 22, 2013 1:57 pm

The Focus BEV was a little more efficient than the Leaf in this test.

The Focus was a nice car - saw one at the Phila Auto Show not too far away from the Leaf. the Chevy Volts were way off on the side, hard to find. The Ford's were center in the room at the convention center and had a little bit of traffic.

I just didn't see the love for EVs at the Auto show. Not sure if it is the recent stabilizing of gas prices or peoples' lack of interest in driving smoothly, quietly and with high-torque. Jeep had a display where they drove the jeeps over rough "simulated" bumps and a big metal hill (bigger than a car-carrier truck in size). Big interest in Camaros, Corvettes, Porches and anything foreign.

The "year of the EV" appears to be years out from here. I keep telling people - once businesses put in 120V and 240V plugs at work for EV owners and potential future EV owners, we will see a growth spike. Without participation by the end-point of the commute, the truly only viable EV is the EREV at this point unless your commute is a manageable 20-30 miles max each way and then a Leaf would work great as a gas-saving commuter car. I still think 2013 should double the plug-in sales of 2012 which itself tripled the plug-in sales of 2011. But that's still the early part of the future growth curve.

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Re: Phila. Auto Show - Leaf range

Tue Jan 22, 2013 2:08 pm

At first, from the title, I thought I was going to hear what the '13 Leaf's official EPA rating is... :/
bonaire wrote:Why are the Nissan reps at the Philadelphia Auto Show (and perhaps others, dealerships, etc.) still telling potential buyers that the Leaf range is 100 miles when they ask them?

This raises their up-front expectations right away and then you have people who buy Leafs becoming irritated that they were misled...
I'm dismayed to still hear that going on. I've griped about it before as the Tony Williams and I have both heard it at auto shows in our respective areas late last year. I even posted a poll at http://www.mynissanleaf.com/viewtopic.php?f=31&t=11201" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false; and NOBODY thought they should be telling people 100 miles.

Agree, it sets expectations way too high and sets people up for disappointment.

Nissan needs to stop this 100-mile messaging and have them say a more realistic number (e.g. EPA rated range of 73 miles or whatever the '13 will be rated at) AND state the caveats.

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Re: Phila. Auto Show - Leaf range

Tue Jan 22, 2013 2:19 pm

adric22 wrote: So, numbers are good only when explained with real-life scenarios. I too am irritated that Nissan would throw out that 100 miles range without explaining to people that this would be a best-case scenario.
I noticed in the BMW i3 article I read today that they wisely call the range "60-90" on electricity, and some number over 200 miles with the 2 cylinder motorcycle engine option.

bonaire
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Re: Phila. Auto Show - Leaf range

Tue Jan 22, 2013 2:22 pm

I'd take a corporate message of "between 60 and 80". EVs are simply "between". Unlike gas engines which deliver roughly the same mpg no matter what the weather, EVs are touchy due to climate and how heavy you are with the pedal.

The Volt message is something like "between 30 and 45 miles per charge". Depending who you talk to.

There were a lot of people at the Philly Auto Show who literally couldn't fit into a Leaf, Volt or Focus EV. (yeah, I know, it's Philly - home of the cheesesteak) Come on car companies - we need CUV and SUV EREV and BEV models to move this electric automotive thing along.

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