DaveinOlyWA
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Re: Update on Battery Warranty Enhancement for 2011 & 2012 L

Mon Aug 26, 2013 9:11 pm

surfingslovak wrote:
TRONZ wrote:In many ways the revised pack does not provide much for us in the middle of the temp bell curve but really helps the outliers a lot!
ImageMy expectation is that the improved chemistry should perform better in all conditions, even though the primary focus were hot climates.
+1 on that. Remember the batteries cant tell the difference between a Phoenix Summer or a road trip in the Pacific Northwest with a handful of QC's
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Re: Update on Battery Warranty Enhancement for 2011 & 2012 L

Mon Aug 26, 2013 9:12 pm

This "hot battery" is probably the one we were supposed to get from the very beginning.
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surfingslovak
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Re: Update on Battery Warranty Enhancement for 2011 & 2012 L

Mon Aug 26, 2013 9:32 pm

DaveinOlyWA wrote:Remember the batteries cant tell the difference between a Phoenix Summer or a road trip in the Pacific Northwest with a handful of QC's
Yes, that's a fair comparison. The Arrhenius equation can be a bit unintuitive.

What helped me to understand it is the fact that it's also used to calculate the shelf life of food items depending on their storage temperature. There are chemical processes at work in a bottle of wine that's aging in a cellar somewhere or in a plain pack of sliced bread sitting on a shelf. If you store the latter at 100 F, it likely won't last very long. That's why warehouses typically target lower temperatures for storage. If a preservative is added, it can help extend the shelf life of the item in both hot and cold conditions.

It's somewhat similar with batteries, especially when it comes to storage. Since EVs are sitting parked somewhere for the vast majority of their lives, this is definitely a concern. Battery cycling, through charging and discharging, is a concern also, and although it's not the same scenario like with storage, there is a relationship between the two. My apologies for the inadequate metaphors, I simply couldn't think of something better.
smkettner wrote:This "hot battery" is probably the one we were supposed to get from the very beginning.
To be honest with you, I'm a bit surprised how the 2011/2012 battery chemistry has done in the field over the past two years. I don't have access to the type of data that's at Nissan's disposal, but judging from the anecdotal reports here and elsewhere, it's difficult to say if they knew about this leading up to the launch of the LEAF in 2010. While it's possible that it was a calculated gamble based on the assumption that battery tech is improving rapidly, it's also conceivable that something was lost in translation between departments. As we probably all realize, communication can be difficult in a large organization. Be it as it may, it's good to see this announcement. Hopefully, the new battery will live up to expectations.

shrink
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Re: Update on Battery Warranty Enhancement for 2011 & 2012 L

Mon Aug 26, 2013 10:05 pm

DaveinOlyWA wrote:+1 on that. Remember the batteries cant tell the difference between a Phoenix Summer or a road trip in the Pacific Northwest with a handful of QC's
Except that one lasts from about mid-May to mid-October.
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Re: Update on Battery Warranty Enhancement for 2011 & 2012 L

Mon Aug 26, 2013 10:47 pm

A few other notes (in no particular order) that I'm not sure have been mentioned previously:

1. Andy mentioned the values of each capacity bar and stated the first one does indeed represent 15% capacity loss, with each subsequent one representing about 6% (I can't remember the exact number from that old service manual, but it is correct).

2. Testing of the new chemistry was said to be about 80% complete. Not only does it involve keeping the temperature at 45C (Andy made a distinction that this was battery temperature and not necessarily ambient temperature) and a lot of quick charging. There was a side comment (from Billy I think) that quick charging is not that harmful to the battery, although this recent study/article suggests otherwise.

3. There was a claim that a car "Better than the Model S" was in development.

4. Another local Phoenix member suggested I ask how are we to consider the LEAF an eco-friendly car if the battery, whose manufacturing emissions has been heavily criticized recently, needs to be replaced so soon. Andy basically said such criticisms are "BS" and that the old batteries are being recycled. They are also in negotiations with different companies to sell the battery for use in energy storage.

5. The Nissan crew arrived at the hotel in LEAF's.

6. Someone mentioned quickcharging and the accessibility issues at different dealerships. There seemed to be some agreement that ideally each dealership would have 24/7 access for owners, but there was also acknowledgment of the logistical challenges. Andy himself faced a quick charging accessibility issue in Japan. No solutions, but they did hear the concerns.

7. They do listen to our feedback. I believe the 2013 LEAF requires Carwings acceptance every 30 days? That was the direct result of feedback from the previous meeting.

I think ongoing discussions, feedback, and suggestions about the battery rental program will be heard and will help the evolution of it in the end. You still might not like the final product, but they're listening.

Several of these execs, including Andy, drive LEAF's and they have their choice of any in the product line (GT-R, anybody?) My impression was that Nissan was not only firmly committed to EV's, but also prioritizing making EV's accessible by keeping the price down. While I don't fully agree, I think I understand the position that they don't want to sell a $30,000 car and tell everybody, BTW - replacing the battery will cost you $17,000. Instead, they seem to by saying, if the capacity reaches a point where it is seriously affecting your usage, we have some programs in place to support you. Again, you don't have to agree or even like that approach, but I think Nissan knows a little more about marketing than all of us.
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DaveEV
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Re: Update on Battery Warranty Enhancement for 2011 & 2012 L

Mon Aug 26, 2013 10:59 pm

BBrockman wrote:Sorry for the delay. As you can imagine, with several folks in the room, different voices weighed in on the post. Add to that a late evening and travel schedules, and this took a bit longer than we'd have preferred.
Completely understandable, and thanks for posting here!
BBrockman wrote:To date, there have been a very small number of battery replacements related to capacity loss, and all of them have involved scenarios that included prolonged exposure to extreme heat. These have been very localized, but we are taking them very seriously.
While extreme capacity loss as seen in Phoenix is not all that common, even southern California LEAFs in moderate temperatures are losing capacity at a rate faster than what most everyone expected according to Nissan documentation, so I think it does other warm climate customers a disservice to say that only extremely hot climates have been affected by this issue.
BBrockman wrote:Currently, we have almost completed testing of a new battery chemistry intended to substantially slow capacity loss in extreme heat. During constant testing at battery temperatures of 45 C/113 F, the new battery chemistry is performing similar to the manner that the current battery performs in temperate areas like San Francisco or Seattle.
That is very good news - if a battery subjected to constant 45C temperature holds up as well as a San Francisco or Seattle battery, that's really more like a 3-4X improvement (if not more as even Phoenix is not a constant 45C) in calendar life than only twice as good.

This would put a worst case 4-bar loss (70% capacity reminaing) for Phoenix around 8 years instead of 2 - in other words even worst case a battery should last about as long as the current battery warranty booklet states - 80% after 5 years and 70% after 8 years.

Everywhere else with lower temperatures would truly not have to worry about battery temperatures and premature capacity loss!

This would be very welcome news for future LEAF battery owners.
BBrockman wrote:Finally, we are very proud of LEAF, and are committed to supporting you, our customers. We take your feedback seriously.
Thank you again. One question that has come up is how will customers who fall somewhere in between Phoenix and San Francisco in terms of battery durability have their battery capacity concerns addressed? For example, my southern California car is not likely to trigger the 4-bar 70% capacity remaining trigger in 5-years 60k miles that would trigger a warranty replacement. But it is likely to be close given that it is currently around 15% down on capacity after only 2 years. Others have suggested some sort of pro-rated replacement program. Nissan might suggest that the $100/mo would be suitable alternative, but I am not a big fan of renting/leasing which is why I bought my LEAF. At least the option to buy would allow one to make a rational decision between the two.

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Re: Update on Battery Warranty Enhancement for 2011 & 2012 L

Mon Aug 26, 2013 11:02 pm

shrink wrote: 3. There was a claim that a car "Better than the Model S" was in development.

7. They do listen to our feedback. I believe the 2013 LEAF requires Carwings acceptance every 30 days? That was the direct result of feedback from the previous meeting.
A few other thoughts to add:
- #3 Above: Andy said he was heading to the test track on Sunday to try this car out. Not clear how early this testing is in their development cycle.
- #7 Above: I thought I'd ask Brian about the OK/Cancel button, to see if we can get that pushed back into the 2011/12 Leafs. He wouldn't commit to that, but did explain that the head unit was different in the 2013, so the software didn't easily port to the older Leafs.
- Battery Development cycle: Andy and I were talking about Battery development. He made a comment that their battery development typically takes two years. I would assume this would be from 'initial specs' to testing to 'commercial availability'. So, I would suspect that would be a primary factor in how often they can deliver battery chemistry improvements.
Last edited by phxsmiley on Mon Aug 26, 2013 11:04 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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surfingslovak
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Re: Update on Battery Warranty Enhancement for 2011 & 2012 L

Mon Aug 26, 2013 11:04 pm

shrink wrote:There was a side comment (from Billy I think) that quick charging is not that harmful to the battery, although this recent study/article suggests otherwise.
That's an interesting comment. While I certainly have a lot of respect for the American Chemical Society, some of the statements in that article were sourced from the Atomic Energy Commission. This forum has enjoyed quite a bit of interest from this institution last summer. It's intriguing to see that they are interested in batteries and life projections. That said, I didn't see much newsworthy material in that article. In fact some of the statements seem to echo material picked up elsewhere. Personally, I was a bit surprised how little support the LEAF community has received from the experts in this field last year, and it's even more surprising that some of them would come out, and restate what seems to be pretty well accepted now. Personally, I don't believe that 1C or 2C rate charging will have a big impact on battery life, if the effects of heat buildup can be excluded. I could be wrong, but it would appear that the pack could benefit from a fan or some form of convection when quick charging.

Thank you so much for your report, this is very helpful information. Same goes to everyone else who has attended and shared some of the information they learned there.
Last edited by surfingslovak on Wed Aug 28, 2013 9:01 am, edited 1 time in total.

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DaveEV
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Re: Update on Battery Warranty Enhancement for 2011 & 2012 L

Mon Aug 26, 2013 11:16 pm

phxsmiley wrote:Battery Development cycle: Andy and I were talking about Battery development. He made a comment that their battery development typically takes two years. I would assume this would be from 'initial specs' to testing to 'commercial availability'. So, I would suspect that would be a primary factor in how often they can deliver battery chemistry improvements.
I could see a 2-year cycle from final testing to production batteries once a battery specification is finalized, but there's no way there would be any significant tweaks going on during those last two years since those tweaks would require the testing/validation process to be restarted and a lot of those tests (like the accelerated aging tests) take time.
surfingslovak wrote:Personally, I don't believe that 1C or 2C rate charging will have a big impact on battery life, if the effects of heat buildup can be excluded. I could be wrong, but it would appear that the pack could benefit from a fan or some form of convection when quick charging.
IIRC, Mitsubishi said something similar a while back - something like only charging to "80%" even if that meant more frequent QC sessions was easier on the battery than charging to 100%. Of course, the iMiEV has air-cooled batteries.
phxsmiley wrote:Andy said he was heading to the test track on Sunday to try this car out. Not clear how early this testing is in their development cycle.
I wonder if this is the Infiniti EV that was delayed? I have to wonder if the "hot battery" development played in to the decision to delay the launch of the Infiniti EV. And that it's also possible that they have their next generation of battery with more energy density somewhere in the last 2 years of development as well... Combine the two and you might have a Model S fighter, though you're going to need something faster than 50 kW CHAdeMO to compete...

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Re: Update on Battery Warranty Enhancement for 2011 & 2012 L

Tue Aug 27, 2013 2:35 am

drees wrote:While extreme capacity loss as seen in Phoenix is not all that common, even southern California LEAFs in moderate temperatures are losing capacity at a rate faster than what most everyone expected according to Nissan documentation, so I think it does other warm climate customers a disservice to say that only extremely hot climates have been affected by this issue.
Indeed. I think Nissan should consider themselves HUGELY fortunate that climate change seems to be making Southern California's climate noticably more moderate. Had there been the long stretches of 100 degree summer days we've traditionally had in the years prior to the LEAF's launch, I'm sure there would be throngs of CA customers in almost the same place now as AZ owners were last summer.
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