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2013 Nissan Leaf to see up to a 25-mile range boost in cold weather

Since the Chevrolet Volt has been getting the bulk of the attention -- and criticism -- in recent months, it's rather easy to overlook the Nissan Leaf. The Leaf, unlike the Volt, is a pure electric vehicle and doesn't have a gasoline engine/generator to fall back on once its battery pack is depleted.
The Leaf currently has an EPA rating of 99 miles per gallon equivalent (MPGe) and an EPA driving range of 73 miles, although Nissan still says that the Leaf can travel up to 100 miles depending on the driving conditions. The company is now reporting that the observed range of the 2013 Leaf will increase in at least one environmental condition that traditionally saps power from electric vehicles: cold weather.

Nissan Leaf
Nissan says that 2013 model year Leafs will have a more efficient heating system that will reduce energy consumption. As a result, drivers will see cold-weather driving range increase by 20 to 25 miles according to The Detroit News.  Mark Perry, Nissans' director of product and advanced planning, says that it's currently unclear if the EPA ratings for the Leaf will change as a result, but the mileage boost drivers would see will be there nonetheless.
Nissan sold 9,674 Leafs for all of 2011 compared to just 7,671 for the Chevrolet Volt. However, Toyota recently kicked sand in both GM and Nissan's face. Toyota reported that it sold more of its fresh Prius C hybrids (1,201 units) in three days than the number of Volts or Leafs sold for the entire month of February.
The Nissan Leaf will face some more “pure electric” competition this fall from the Ford Focus Electric.

Sources: The Detroit News, Toyota

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Wintertime blues
By drycrust3 on 3/20/2012 4:48:05 PM , Rating: 2
Nissan says that 2013 model year Leafs will have a more efficient heating system that will reduce energy consumption.

Many people want the air temperature in their car (or house) in the winter time to be something akin to summertime, i.e. above 20 deg C.
My current belief is this is unnecessary if you wear proper winter clothing, but there are two essential factors that you need to consider.
The first is that you try and keep the air temperature above the temperature that the nasal passages can get damaged by cold air. My best guess is this damage occurs when the air temperature drops below about 12 deg C, i.e. if you dress warm and as long as the air temperature in the vehicle is above the temperature where your nose is affected by the cold, then your health is also unaffected.
The other essential factor when driving in the winter time (or when it is raining and people with wet raincoats or umbrellas get into the vehicle) is condensation on the windscreen and windows, and in some ways this is the more important aspect of keeping the interior of a vehicle warm: to control the humidity so as to keep the windscreen and windows clear.
I think to get an extra 25 miles from the car is quite a feat, but I also think drivers of current electric cars should be able to get close to this by choosing the right dress attire and air ventilation settings, or that Nissan's extra 25 miles could be wasted by using the wrong attire and ventilation settings.
The point being that in an electric vehicle the air ventilation controls aren't just something to play with, every choice of setting has a greater impact on a vehicles' range than it does in an equivalent internal combustion engine vehicle, so they have to be used wisely.

RE: Wintertime blues
By Busboy2 on 3/20/2012 7:47:32 PM , Rating: 2
My best guess is this damage occurs when the air temperature drops below about 12 deg C

Umm I live in Canada and I don't even put on a hat unless its below -10 deg C... Don't think I'm getting any nasal damage either.

RE: Wintertime blues
By drycrust3 on 3/20/2012 9:22:12 PM , Rating: 2
My thanks for the advice.
The 12 degrees C was more of a starting point. Things like how fast a person inhales obviously affects the chances of damage to the nose. Obviously I need to do more work.

RE: Wintertime blues
By mindless1 on 3/20/2012 10:10:08 PM , Rating: 2
Regardless, there have been plenty of cases of Frostbite around that temperature level so it's not just about nasal passages, people aren't going to cover up their nose, ears, and always wear gloves just to eek out a few more miles, unless they're nuts or it's an emergency situation.

It's a bit crazy, yeah let's sacrifice everything for the sake of driving further. Heck, let's just not put heaters in homes either, we can wear more clothing and cuddle together in a small tin foil lined box.

No. I won't. be. cold. I'd build a friggin' wood stove where the passenger seat usually is before I'd dress for even 12C weather just to drive somewhere (though I do keep winter attire in the vehicle in case of a breakdown or other reason to leave the vehicle for any extended length of time).

RE: Wintertime blues
By Manch on 3/21/2012 10:41:54 AM , Rating: 2
Thre is no equivalent ICE vehicle. They're all better than these battery powered rip offs. 12c = 53.6f If this is the danger threshold then mainland europe needs to watch out! The Vikings will be fleeing there lands shortly to escpe the terror of nose bleeds....

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