lencap
Posts: 22
Joined: Sat May 04, 2013 4:15 pm
Delivery Date: 04 May 2013
Leaf Number: 406995
Location: Raleigh NC

Seriously considering a 2013 Model S - What Should I Know?

Mon Mar 06, 2017 5:34 pm

Greetings -

I leased a 2013 Leaf years ago and returned it after the 2 year lease expired. At the time I had the quick charge option, which was useful. I didn't have any significant issues with the car I did have some minor issues (charging problems - electronics), all covered under warranty, but more frequent that I expected.

After the lease ended I leased a 2014 BMW i3 ReX, an EV with an onboard generator fueled by a 2 gallon gas tank. The BMW was a more enjoyable car to drive (sorry, not meaning to be offensive), but it suffered from several electrical and other issues, especially poor range in cold weather.

When that lease expired I realized that my car needs changed and I bought a larger sized ICE. I really miss the EV driving experience and I'm looking at buying a used 2013 Leaf S - base car with the 3.3KW charger and only standard equipment. I plan to use the leaf as my "city car" - which will likely get limited use as I'm retired and no longer commute to work.

My thought is that having the Leaf will allow me to use the ClipperCreek EV charging station (40amp) that is installed in my garage, and serve me pretty well for around town driving.

The question is based on learning more about the 2013 since I've not owned one for nearly 3 years. What do I need to be aware of before buying the car? Has the battery held up for most owners (I've read that the 2014 and subsequent batteries were upgraded versus the 2013)? I also prefer the faster 6.6KW charger, but it isn't a real problem to charge it overnight since I won't have to charge it during the day most of the time.

I also would like to use the hatchback to carry my bicycles to the local parks, etc.
I've found a one owner car model S with 15K miles from a non-Nissan dealer for $8,500 or so, and the Nissan dealer is a bit higher - closer to $10,500.

I'm not too concerned about further depreciation, but without a warranty I am concerned about battery and other issues. Any comments are appreciated.

Thank you in advance.

LeftieBiker
Moderator
Posts: 14643
Joined: Wed May 22, 2013 3:17 am
Delivery Date: 30 Apr 2018
Location: Upstate New York, US

Re: Seriously considering a 2013 Model S - What Should I Know?

Mon Mar 06, 2017 5:41 pm

Make sure the car was built no earlier than April of 2013 - older 2013 builds have the old battery chemistry. The 3.3kw onboard charger should be fine if you plan to charge overnight at home. The resistance heater in the S will work fine for short distance travel, but you would be able to remotely access the climate control if you got an un-optioned SV instead, which would also give you the larger charger. These 'stripper' SVs go for almost as little as the S with Charge package. You also get cruise control which the S lacked in 2013. The same build date issue applies to all models in 2013.

I know the S should be fine for you. I'm just making sure you understand your choices.
Scarlet Ember 2018 Leaf SL W/ Pro Pilot
2009 Vectrix VX-1 W/18 Leaf modules, & 3 EZIP E-bicycles.
BAFX OBDII Dongle
PLEASE don't PM me with Leaf questions. Just post in the topic that seems most appropriate.

bongo2
Posts: 34
Joined: Mon Jan 23, 2017 9:15 am
Delivery Date: 23 Jan 2017

Re: Seriously considering a 2013 Model S - What Should I Know?

Mon Mar 06, 2017 7:15 pm

I've been happy with my model S so far. My impression is that very little has changed from 2011 to 2015. They took away charging to 80%, which is a pain, but the batteries are better after 4/2013. If you aren't driving it very far and in your mild climate you might be fine even with a pretty degraded battery and you could get a good deal on it used. As for being out of warranty, if you buy a used one that is still under factory warranty then you can buy the extended warranty before the 3/36 runs out. Otherwise, the reliability statistics are good, but it's always a gamble. Good luck.
Minneapolis, MN
2015 S; 25k miles; Mfd 12-2014; 12 bars
Dostar Duosida EVSE

cwerdna
Posts: 10401
Joined: Fri Jun 03, 2011 4:31 pm
Delivery Date: 28 Jul 2013
Location: SF Bay Area, CA

Re: Seriously considering a 2013 Model S - What Should I Know?

Mon Mar 06, 2017 7:50 pm

lencap wrote: After the lease ended I leased a 2014 BMW i3 ReX, an EV with an onboard generator fueled by a 2 gallon gas tank. The BMW was a more enjoyable car to drive (sorry, not meaning to be offensive), but it suffered from several electrical and other issues, especially poor range in cold weather.
I'm not surprised about your i3 issues. The i3 REx is a POS from a reliability POV. I cannot recommend anyone lease or buy one. And, I'd tell anyone to dump it once the warranty expires, unless they're willing to pay for an extended warranty. When that ends, dump it. Keeping it means the possibility of it being a money pit.

I'd wager you suffered from at least a check engine light, drivetrain malfunction and possibly even a breakdown that required a tow/flatbed truck. And, if you were unlucky, a restraint system malfunction and a faulty charging handle lock mechanism.
lencap wrote: Has the battery held up for most owners (I've read that the 2014 and subsequent batteries were upgraded versus the 2013)? I also prefer the faster 6.6KW charger, but it isn't a real problem to charge it overnight since I won't have to charge it during the day most of the time.
Yep, as others mentioned, '13 Leafs built on/after 4/2013 seem to have better batteries from a degradation POV.

6.6 kW OBC is nice. Lets me pick up more juice quickly from free public L2 charging as well as charge more quickly at work, tie up a handle for less time and plug in much later (when there are definitely open plugs).
lencap wrote: I've found a one owner car model S with 15K miles from a non-Nissan dealer for $8,500 or so, and the Nissan dealer is a bit higher - closer to $10,500.
As you've noticed, Nissan franchise dealers have a big markup. Have you checked Craigslist? Know of any non-Nissan franchise dealers in your area that pick them up from Manheim auctions (http://press.manheim.com/2010-07-27-Man ... into-sales)?

Definitely use Leaf Spy on it and run a Carfax and/or Autocheck to see where it resided before. Assuming you don't want to go w/the battery "lottery" result, you want one that resided in a cooler climate.

'19 Bolt Premier
'13 Leaf SV w/premium package (owned)
'13 Leaf SV w/QC + LED & premium packages (lease over, car returned)

Please don't PM me with Leaf questions. Just post in the topic that seems most appropriate.

LeftieBiker
Moderator
Posts: 14643
Joined: Wed May 22, 2013 3:17 am
Delivery Date: 30 Apr 2018
Location: Upstate New York, US

Re: Seriously considering a 2013 Model S - What Should I Know?

Mon Mar 06, 2017 10:52 pm

They took away charging to 80%, which is a pain, but the batteries are better after 4/2013.
Leafs built in April of 2013 are fine. The old chemistry was used from January through March of 2013.
Scarlet Ember 2018 Leaf SL W/ Pro Pilot
2009 Vectrix VX-1 W/18 Leaf modules, & 3 EZIP E-bicycles.
BAFX OBDII Dongle
PLEASE don't PM me with Leaf questions. Just post in the topic that seems most appropriate.

arnis
Posts: 1000
Joined: Sat Jan 23, 2016 3:21 pm
Delivery Date: 23 Jul 2014
Leaf Number: 015896
Location: Estonia, Europe

Re: Seriously considering a 2013 Model S - What Should I Know?

Tue Mar 07, 2017 4:49 pm

You don't actually need 6.6kW charger, especially if you have another vehicle available.
In time, it will have less and less value as DC-stations will be more and more common.
Don't pay too much for that feature.

You definitely need to have the new furnace with air PTC element.
Look for HEAT button on climate control panel. That should be available on 2013 models and newer.
Some sell 2013 Leafs that were manufactured in 2012. Be absolutely sure you get the newer model
no matter what. No hump in the boot, HEAT button, D/B driving modes available.
Check for battery degradation. Capacity bars, instrument cluster.
Short range EVs <30kWh -- Medium range: 30-60kWh -- Long range: >60kWh
Charging: Trickle <3kW -- Normal 3-22kW -- Fast 50-100kW -- Supercharging >100kW

LeftieBiker
Moderator
Posts: 14643
Joined: Wed May 22, 2013 3:17 am
Delivery Date: 30 Apr 2018
Location: Upstate New York, US

Re: Seriously considering a 2013 Model S - What Should I Know?

Tue Mar 07, 2017 6:12 pm

No hump in the boot, HEAT button, D/B driving modes available.
The 2013 S doesn't have B mode. I was reminded of this recently myself. No cruise control, no B mode. Backup camera was optional on all 2013 models, not standard.
Scarlet Ember 2018 Leaf SL W/ Pro Pilot
2009 Vectrix VX-1 W/18 Leaf modules, & 3 EZIP E-bicycles.
BAFX OBDII Dongle
PLEASE don't PM me with Leaf questions. Just post in the topic that seems most appropriate.

cwerdna
Posts: 10401
Joined: Fri Jun 03, 2011 4:31 pm
Delivery Date: 28 Jul 2013
Location: SF Bay Area, CA

Re: Seriously considering a 2013 Model S - What Should I Know?

Tue Mar 07, 2017 7:45 pm

arnis wrote:You don't actually need 6.6kW charger, especially if you have another vehicle available.
In time, it will have less and less value as DC-stations will be more and more common.
Don't pay too much for that feature.
Need? Hmmm... nobody really needs it, but the 6.6 kW OBC helps a lot. See http://www.mynissanleaf.com/viewtopic.p ... er#p487347.

As for the bolded part, I disagree and say, don't pay too much for a CHAdeMO inlet.

See http://www.mynissanleaf.com/viewtopic.p ... us#p451274, which I've posted over and over (e.g. http://www.mynissanleaf.com/viewtopic.p ... 10#p445110 about costs). I have no DC FC at work. I have no free DC FCing anywhere near/on the way home from work. I'm not keen on paying $1K to $1.5K extra (back when I was in the market) for a vehicle w/an CHAdeMO inlet of marginal utility where it is so expensive so charge with that I can fuel my Prius for less.

On my former leased Leaf, I used its CHAdeMO inlet about 16 times over a 2 year period. I didn't really need to any of those times. All 3 of the free DC FCs I used back then are no longer free.

$1000 at $4/gal buys 250 gallons of gas. If I only got 40 mpg on my Prius, that 250 gallons propels it 10,000 miles.

'19 Bolt Premier
'13 Leaf SV w/premium package (owned)
'13 Leaf SV w/QC + LED & premium packages (lease over, car returned)

Please don't PM me with Leaf questions. Just post in the topic that seems most appropriate.

Randy993
Posts: 8
Joined: Thu Jan 12, 2017 5:40 am
Delivery Date: 12 Jan 2017
Leaf Number: 413398

Re: Seriously considering a 2013 Model S - What Should I Know?

Tue Mar 07, 2017 8:02 pm

Sent you a PM

arnis
Posts: 1000
Joined: Sat Jan 23, 2016 3:21 pm
Delivery Date: 23 Jul 2014
Leaf Number: 015896
Location: Estonia, Europe

Re: Seriously considering a 2013 Model S - What Should I Know?

Wed Mar 08, 2017 2:51 am

I have 3.3kW charger and drive 20 000 miles per year. All I need is 4-5 hours of DC charging per year.
Absolutely no need for 6.6kW charger if you can charge at 30-45kW rate.
As far as I've heard, A LOT OF EV owners in US are extremely happy on Level1, which is 3x slower than on
normal 3,3kW charger.

6.6kW charger would eliminate about 5% of my DC needs and would reduce my ICE car usage from 1000 miles
per year to maybe 800 miles per year.

Like I said, I drive 20 000 miles per year.

I can buy 3160kWh at DC station with the money I would waste on 6.6kW charger.
This is 18500km in terms of mileage , or 11 thousand miles. And DC is still much faster than 6.6kW EVSE.
Short range EVs <30kWh -- Medium range: 30-60kWh -- Long range: >60kWh
Charging: Trickle <3kW -- Normal 3-22kW -- Fast 50-100kW -- Supercharging >100kW

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