[Oeva-list] Nissan Leaf

patrick0101 at gmail.com patrick0101 at gmail.com
Thu Dec 17 21:58:35 PST 2009


We had many OEVA members at the Nissan Leaf event tonight. It was a good
turn out and Nissan even gave out free t-shirts if you signed up for their
mailing list.

We asked a lot of good questions of Mark Perry, the Leaf program manager.
Here are the Q&As that I recall. These are not verbatim:
Nissan Leaf Questions
To Mark Perry of Nissan
Question: Much has been said about leasing the batteries, will buying be an
option?
Answer: Nissan will encourage customers to lease the vehicle and batteries
together. Buying the vehicle and separately leasing the batteries may not be
allowed in the US for legal reasons. There is no decision regarding outright
buying the vehicle. Lease with an option to buy is a possibility.

Q: How is the range impacted by extreme weather?
A: The batteries are not impacted unless the temperature get to -20 degrees.
However, if you run the AC or heater this can impact the range. When
possible you should pre-condition the cab environment while the vehicle is
plugged-in. You can do this via a smart phone app.

Q: What charging levels are supported? Are there any plans for fast charging
in the Portland area?
A: Level 1, 2, & 3 are supported. Fast charging stations will be installed
along the I-5 from Eugene OR to Vancouver, BC. Also, Oregon will have 2500
charging stations installed.

Q: Darryl Siry, of Wired, criticized the method used to compute the range.
What method was used, the Japanese 10-15 cycle or another?
A: The actual range anyone gets depends on how and where they drive. The
method used to compute the range was city mostly city driving, with lower
speeds and use of the regenerative brakes. Most people will have a range in
the 80 to 120 miles area.

Q: Are there any plans for a range-extender trailer? (generator or battery)
A: NO.

Q: Does Nissan have partnerships with any car rental companies for Leaf
owners, if they occationally need a gas car?
A: Yes. Zip Car is a partner. The details of the relationship are not yet
finalized.

Q: When battery improvements are made, will they be available to all year
models, or would one need to buy a new Leaf to get the longer range?
A: Battery upgrades will be available for the the first year model. This is
one of the reasons that Nissan is encouraging leasing rather than buying.
This way an customer is not stuck with outdated technology 3-5 years from
now.

Q: How does the Battery R&D budget compare to the Fuel Cell budget at
Nissan?
A: Nissan is investing in both technologies. However, fuel cells are a
research project with products 10-15 years out. Batteries are ready now,
Nissan has been researching lithium batteries for over 15 years and
batteries are getting significantly more attention from
our development team.

I am sure I missed some, feel free to add or correct the above if you were
there tonight.

I'll post pictures and videos soon.

Regards,
Pat
With Great Power, Comes Great Current and High Voltage   =D~
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