Nissan Talks About Leaf Battery Woes in Arizona
September 25, 2012 8:53 AM
comment(s) - last by
Nissan also sat up an independent global advisory board
Nissan has a handful of not so happy Leaf electric vehicle owners in the state of Arizona. The hotter the environment, the less drive time an electric vehicle's batteries can offer. Nissan has been catching significant flak over allegations that the battery packs in some of its Leaf EV's in the state of Arizona are having issues.
In July of 2012, Nissan dealerships in the state of Arizona started
taking $5,000 off
the sticker price of the electric Leaf vehicle to sell the cars. Several Leaf owners in Arizona began complaining that the electric vehicles were losing significant battery capacity due to the hot environment.
Leaf owner Scott Yarosh said, "When I first purchased the vehicle, I could drive to and from work on a single charge, approximately 90 miles round trip. [Now] I can drive approximately 44 miles on this without having to stop and charge."
I Nissan's Carla Bailo, senior VP of research and development, stepped up and addressed Leaf owners in an open letter posted to the Leaf community at the MyNissanLeaf discussion forum. According to the open letter, several Leaf EVs were inspected in Arizona and were determined to be operating to specification and the battery capacity loss over time is consistent with their usage and the operating environment. Nissan declared no defects are found in these vehicles.
The letter also states, "A small number of Nissan Leaf owners in Arizona are experiencing a greater than average battery capacity loss due to their unique usage cycle, which includes operating mileages that are higher than average in a high-temperature environment over a short period of time."
It sounds like what Nissan is saying is that losing significant driving range is normal. Most owners of the Leaf EV are going to have a hard time stomaching that claim.
Nissan has also promised more open communication with owners of the Leaf EV. The company created an independent global advisory board, headed by EV advocate Chelsea Sexton to help with customer communications and advise Nissan on strategy.
Nissan has promised that the
will have a longer driving range.
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RE: More reason -
9/25/2012 11:40:57 AM
I find it funny that people just don't comprehend that extreme heat and cold damage lithium ion batteries. (These same stupid people frequently leave their laptops in their car and complain when the battery fails.) The only way the heat of Arizona isn't going to hurt the batteries is if they use nickel hydride batteries, which have a lower capacity and other challenges.
Simply put, electric vehicles and hybrids are going to have higher battery failures in Arizona and other high heat areas, along with extreme cold areas like Minnesota and North Dakota. There's no way around that. If you live there, don't get an electric vehicle or hybrid.
no, extra battery cooling while running isn't going to help. In order for it to avoid damage to the batteries, the ambient air must be below 100F. (Lithium ion batteries start degrading significantly faster at temps above 90F.) Arizona sees a lot of days above that. no matter how many fans you put in, it won't get cooler than the ambient air.
In order to cool the batteries under those conditions, they would have to use phase change or peltier cooling, which would waste significant amounts of power and totally destroy the usefulness of electric vehicles. Hybrids might be able to handle that part, but installing such things would be quite expensive.
RE: More reason -
9/26/2012 2:22:45 AM
One more option they could take is use two stage evaporative cooling.
Basically what two phase evaporative cooling does, is take the incoming charge of air, and pass it through a water soaked filter. This cools the incoming air. Then that air is used to cool the air intake for the second stage. The second stage uses the cooled air and passes it through a second medium. This can result in a temperature drop of over 30F, and isn't nearly as energy intensive as phase change cooling. Simply use the air to cool the battery compartment directly.
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