2018 Nissan Leaf e-Pedal
Armen Hareyan's picture

Nissan Leaf Owners Discuss More Cons Than Pros About e-Pedal

Yesterday, when I covered the news about the 2018 Nissan Leaf having a special feature called e-Pedal I shared the story in few social groups for discussion. Not everyone is enthused about the Leaf e-Pedal and they raise these questions.
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The Pros of Nissan Leaf e-Pedal

I discussed the pros of the 2018 Nissan Leaf e-Pedal in my yesterday's story. "e-Pedal is especially beneficial during city driving and where there is heavy traffic. During these conditions drivers have to constantly shift from one pedal to the other. e-Pedal will eliminate this need. As a result your Nissan Leaf will be more fun to drive and it will be simpler to drive," I wrote in the story. But regard the Cons, more questions are surfacing. Here are several concerns.

The Cons of Nissan Leaf e-Pedal

Generally the current Leaf owners say they are glad that the e-Pedal is optional. The reasoning is that it will take some getting used to. What if some people stomp on the go pedal trying to stop the car? Since there no brake pedal, people's feet may automatically go the acceleration pedal. Current Leaf owners are afraid of potential accidents and subsequent lawsuits because of this transitional period. I am sure Nissan has though about this too and the company probably has solution for this. I would love to hear from Nissan more about these concern and see how the automaker is addressing them.

"I am happy to have full control of my accelerating and my braking with two pedals. I'm happy to give the e-pedal a try, but think it's not going to be for me in the end," writes a current Leaf owner.

When we stop our car we decelerate gradually, not immediately. So people ask how will you change from stopping normally at a stop sign? Sometimes you need to slam on the brake to keep you from hitting a smartphone-reader pedestrian who just popped out in front of you.

Overall, there has to be a brake pedal too even when the e-Pedal is activated. Perhaps there is a mode for this too.

"As the video shows, the one pedal operation will slow you to a stop (once engaged by the driver). The brake pedal will be there in case you actually need to use the friction brakes. Perhaps it will use a progressively more aggressive regenerative as the accelerator is released to slow you to a stop. The brake pedal will be there in case you need to use the brakes to come to a more abrupt stop. I already do this anyway, to regenerate as much as possible. I like the idea," responded to my yesterday's story a Facebook user named Henry.

Brake Light. The software needs to also apply the red brake light when a driver slows down his Leaf to a stop. I am not sure, but apparently BMW i3's regen-braking already does something similar to it.

One Pedal Solution Developed 15 Years ago

One of the members in the discussion wrote that he preferred the one-pedal solution that was developed about 15years ago. "You use the accelerator as normal (flexing your ankle) and activate the brake by extending your whole leg. It would be much more instinctive," he wrote. Asked to elaborate more he added this. "You flex your ankle to accelerate (predominantly a movement by your calf muscle). To brake you push the whole pedal assemble away from your body, predominantly a quad muscle movement. At the time the theory was it made braking distances shorter as people did not need to move from one pedal to the other, it would work well with an EV though, and allow cars to truly coast."

Let's say you get used it, will this though still create danger of another getting used to when you switch from your new Nissan Leaf to an ICE car? Many people still own an ICE car for long distance driving. I mean that the transition back to a 2 or 3 pedal car.


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Comments

The 2018 Leaf WILL have a brake pedal. The e-pedal has regenerative braking, but the traditional brake pedal will, in fact still be there for emergency braking. This is an option. For those who do not want the deceleration of the e-pedal, a traditional "gas" and "brake" pedal is available.