2016 Nissan LEAF
Douglas Stansfield's picture

Current Leaf Owners Long for One Thing Maybe Nissan will Deliver

Every Nissan LEAF driver has likely experienced a common, typical challenge from time to time, but will Nissan be there with a remedy soon? Every LEAF owner has probably forgotten to plug in the car and experienced that "oh no" feeling of, "I am in trouble now." I can’t remember ever forgetting to plug in my Nissan LEAF, but my wife has. So I do know the feeling.
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News has leaked out of Japan and a picture surfaced that shows what the next Nissan Leaf might look like. The Nissan team has hinted previously that there would be an increase in range in Nissan LEAF v2.0.

What will the new range of the new Nissan LEAF be? Will they stick with the same battery chemistry? Will the styling change help with the range? All these things are potentially up for grabs as Nissan now has published competition from GM with the Chevy Bolt and likely Tesla III. Things are starting to heat up and I doubt if Nissan wants to give up their sizable lead in the new EV car segment.

The news was reported that there will be changes made to the cathode material in the battery so that the form factor will remain the same and range will be increased from the current range of 230km to over 400km. The Nissan Leaf Japan battery is a 230km battery now which translates into a 142 mile pack. If the increased range goes up to 400km that translates into a 248 mile range battery pack! I’ve seen USA based range as high as 132 miles on 2015 Nissan Leafs on the cars GOM (guess of meter, which is a slang term Nissan Leaf drivers have nick named the cars range indicator.).

As for the styling change the picture shown here was taken from a Japanese Website. The styling details are excellent as the hood shape has taken the queue from the current Head Light to redirect airflow around the mirrors. Looks like the hood will do this now and the lights are more subdued.

All in all, a positive change and makes me, as a current Leaf Driver, look forward to staying in the franchise going forward.

Also See:
How Can Nissan LEAF get 2X The Range Without a New Battery
What Determines The Residual Value of Nissan LEAF
The Catastrophic Error Nissan is Making with LEAF


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Comments

What is the energy capacity of the Japanese 230 km 2015 Leaf? This is a significant jump from 160 km in the US. If we could only get the 230 km Leaf sooner rather than later. Chemistry alone will not let you increase range from 230 to 400. At most it will give you a 10 - 20% improvement. To get to 400, the energy capacity of the battery pack would have to increase significantly.
Forgetting to plug-in your Leaf??? Did you set up the feature that sends email and/or a text to your phone when you forget to plug-in at locations set-up in the car?? Maybe it's a CarWings feature that not everyone has, but I have it and use it.
Unfortunately when I got my Nissan Leaf the Carwings app was an Add on that I didn't feel like paying for and shortly there after, Nissan started to include it for free. Oh well. I have the LeafSpy and LeafLogger App and I'm going to do some research with it and publish more stories on that as well. Keep on reading. Thanks!
No one talks about the Chevy Spark, probably because Jerry Brown mandated that it be built, (like the others) except that Chevrolet didn't and apparently still doesn't, want anything to do with it. Statistically, my two year old Spark EV is as good as or better than anything yet for sale, including the BMW i3. The Spark is for purists, because it was mandated as a ZEV, which is what they all should be. Zero Emission Vehicles can use any material, drive, mechanism or fuel source. The Volt is a mechanical compromise that spews out pollution when it's not running on it's battery, which under normal conditions is most of the time. Just what the 'Bolt' is, I'm not sure. Here in Palm Springs it's well over 100F for six weeks or more. One reason I chose the Spark, was the water jacket around the battery. We're going into our second summer with it now, it works. No other cars under $50k worried about battery temperature except the Leaf, which has a heater for northern climes. Only two things wrong with the Spark in our view: Very poor rear view, (which is easily modified) and the shifter should have a gate between D and L, because it's too easy to upshift from L, and pass right through D, into N. Hopefully you stop at N and go back down to D, because it you keep going up the next detente is R. Not good in any car. This sounds trivial but the "L" mode does more than half of the re-generative braking if you use it. You can see it re-charging on different screens as it's used. (be a passenger if you want to play with the screens) It's why the friction brakes last over 100,000 miles, you only need them to come to a 'complete' stop, the "L" mode leaves you creeping forward. Being one of the fastest cars off the line period, (0-60 mph in under 7 seconds) re-couping over 90% of the energy used to out accelerate everyone is a nice feature. Using the "L" downshift as you approach the next light which is now just turning yellow as you hit 45 mph, becomes reflexive. Now you watch as you approach the intersection in re-charge/decelerate mode. When it's clear and the light is green again, you upshift to D and shut them all down again if so desired. Collectively, the mostly giant SUV's around here will follow your lead like sheep, costing their owners about $1 per traffic light in lost energy, and costing the planet and anyone standing next to one, in lost atmosphere and noise pollution. None the less, Chevrolet in it's infinitely narrowed and greedy view, hasn't polled (to my knowledge) any of the few thousand Spark EV drivers that exist. Every time I deal with Chevrolet I shake my head to think that they are a competitive entity in the Auto game. And GWB gave them how many billions of dollars, after they reneged on pension obligations to life time employees through bankruptcy court? Read the story about the owner of the horse that won the triple crown yesterday. They must have all gone to the same business school.
Well if the rendering supplied with the article is anything like what we might actually expect to see then I would say yes to improved looks. More range is always welcome and is expected if they expect to compete with the Chevy Bolt. Would it be asking too much for Nissan engineers to get their heads out of their a... and give the car a range meter that actually works.
Robert, you have been heard! EVs rock and I haven't written about the Spark EV but maybe I should. Only problem I have is that GM isn't selling them in NJ yet so I haven't had any experience in one as I have with most other EVs that I write about! Keep EVangelizing!