Nissan To Improve 2012, 2013 LEAFs

Unless they are kept in warm climates, leaves tend to wither in the cold. Although this is a truism in nature, it took a cold season in America for Nissan to quietly show it has learned this lesson applies also to its electric car known as the LEAF.

Specifically, Nissan recently announced changes to its pending 2012 as well as 2013 LEAF models that will include more heat for the occupants, and perhaps more importantly, for the battery.

All 2012 LEAFs will come standard with a thermal management package to help warm the battery for cold weather driving.

Last winter reports were that ambient cold in snow belt states was ebbing the life from possible driving range for LEAFs by as much as 30 miles. Lithium-ion batteries do not like extreme temperatures, and prefer moderate climates.

For that matter, the same is true of people. As such, Nissan also announced it will equip every 2012 LEAF with heated front and rear seats, a heated steering wheel, and heated external rear-view mirrors.

The 2012s will also be equipped with a rear heating and air conditioning duct and all these changes are an effort to put an end to driver complaints about the car’s ability to function acceptably in cold weather (or warm weather in the case of the A/C duct).

The LEAF is the first-mass produced electric car from a major manufacturer, so these kinds of learning curve experiences are not unexpected.

And Nissan has otherwise been very positive about its all-electric future. Its CEO Carlos Ghosn has gone on record as the most bullish of major auto execs predicting the highest percentages of future EV proliferation, estimating they will comprise 10 percent of all vehicles on the road by 2020.

As such, the forward-thinking company has also confirmed 2013 LEAFs will get an upgrade to their on-board 240-volt chargers from 3.3 kW to 6.6 kW. This should help significantly with recharge times.

The charger upgrades may happen about the same time LEAFs are being produced in the U.S. at the company’s Smyrna, Tenn. assembly plant. Thus far, all LEAFs are imported from Japan.

Still details are trickling in, so while we are talking about future models, we can only report that pricing for the new LEAFs has not been announced.

The MSRP for 2012s is rumored to be close to announcement, perhaps within a week. Rumors also are 2013s may even see some form of a price cut, but this is pure speculation, not something we would bank on.

What is certain is Nissan will soon have competition to contend with. Mitsubishi is due to release its i all-electric model later this year, as is the case with Ford and its Focus EV.

We contacted Ford lately with a bunch of basic questions, and were told it was not ready to divulge certain answers, but we were told we are on the list to find out when Ford is ready.

Also, we reported the Mitsubishi i minicar is due in November, and at $27,990 before incentives, it will be the new price leader. It is a smaller, slower, more limited range car, however, better suited for around town driving even more so than the LEAF.

In the mean time the Nissan LEAF is the only car in its class, and kudos to it for being willing to improve its product as needed. Now let’s just hope that price can be further whittled away.

And this said, it is believed all of these cars are being internally subsidized to some extent by their major market manufacturers in an effort to make sticker shock as minimal as possible.

Source: GreenCarReports


  • MrEnergyCzar

    So with the changes the range will drop from an EPA of 73 miles to what? 50 miles?

    MrEnergyCzar

  • James Davis

    If anyone could do it, I knew Nissan could. They are quickly climbing up the ladder to being the world’s greatest electric car manufacturer. I like that heated steering wheel idea. My hands get really cold while I’m scraping off the snow and ice on the windshield and it takes them forever to warm up.

    I wonder if Nissan is going to put those new solar panels on the Leaf, and have them come out of the trunk like the roofs use to decline into to to help charge the battery and help with the heating and cooling system while we sit out in those sun soaked parking lots. That would be really great to see a solar panel coming up out of the trunk to help keep us cool while we wait on the wife to do her shopping, or the kids to get out of school.

  • Anonymous

    The actual change we are waiting for is the shift to their NMC battery which will provide 186 mile range as compared with its current 100 mile range. So if you ratio the claims with the performance, the NMC will provide a real world range around 125 miles with the AC operating. Even more when heat is the order of the day.

    The question is will the NMC battery upgrade be introduced in late 2013 as the 2014 model. That is what we want to know.

  • automotorplus

    Nice post, I like your information on your site. It’s update dailly!

  • pickupdoctor

    NO, they will stay the same or they will actually go up.

    Did you read the article?

  • Scott Z

    Am I the only one hearing “Well DUH!” in my head? While I love the Leaf and I give big kudos to Nissan for make the biggest auto move since the industries birth I am perplex they did not know this going in. The people here in this forum have know the need for heating (or cooling) the battery in certain zones. Tesla knew. How did Nissan not. I guess Nissan just wanted to get it on the road then make improvements as new model years come down the line.

  • Blogger

    It seems Nissan deleted the thermal system so the car can be offered at a lower cost to help sales. But that will the early adopters do that don’t have better heating and live in cold climates? And what about the hot climates, heat has the same negative impact on the battery that cold does. So expect another price increase for 2013 when the heat issue is addressed and the 6.6 KW charger is added.

    Next when it’s sold in colder climates, there will be a heater that thaws the snow and ice from the giant upright front charging door, or risk scratching the paint trying to remove snow/ice to charge the car. Or something to melt the snow/ice that fell in over the 8 hours while charging overnight due to it’s upright position.

    Ford has already stated that the Focus EV has both integrated thermal heat/cold technology to keep the batteries at the right temperature for the best charging and longest range, along with the 6.6 KW charger.

    I think Ford has the better idea of making their own batteries, and hybrid/ev transmissions, and offering several vehicles using the same hybrid tech, using the same car platform to spread the development costs between 3 or 4 C-platform cars(Focus EV/C-Max Hybrid/Energi/ and hopefully the Focus 5-Door Plugin Hybrid.

    And then the Focus/Mondeo and MKZ sharing the same platform and hybrid tech, instead of trying to recoup the hybrid/ev development costs on the sale of one vehicle like the Leaf.

  • Anonymous

    Have hybridcars.com been morphed into EV.com? :)

  • dhybrids

    Way to go Nissan!!..Kudos to you guys for being willing to improve your product as needed. I love how Nissan will also be equipped their 2012 LEAF with a rear heating and air conditioning duct. I read on some 2012 car reviews, few drivers had complaints about the car’s ability to function acceptably in cold weather. Now I don’t have to be worried when driving my LEAF in cold weather. Let’s just hope that the 2013 LEAF’s price can be further higher away.

  • Shelby Marks

    This was really a cool and fun article to read. I have really enjoyed all if this great and helpful information. I really do appreciate everything so very much. This was a great treat for me. I work for a solar PV installers London company and I really have enjoyed this.

  • ESK

    Nice car…

  • FTMU

    Looks like a really good car.

    FTMU

  • RC

    Looks like a very good car.

    RBDB

  • Melissa Morris

    This is really so very interesting and fun to read. I have really enjoyed reading all of this great and fun information. Thanks – Pool Shop

  • Brooke Clark

    This was really a very splendid and helpful article in my opinion. I really have enjoyed this so very much. I think these will be some great improvements. Led gas price signs Experts

  • jeffhre

    Heat and cold may have similar effects on range. Yet, in cold weather the range will improve once the Li Ion battery cells warm up. In conditions of significant heat however, the reverse is not true. Hot weather can permanently damage Li Ion cells, permanently lowering the battery packs potential range.

  • HF

    Excellent car, looks like a good purchase.

    Hybrid Flowers
    HF

  • RC

    Fantastic potential car…

    RC

  • FIJ

    Nice car :-)

    FIJ

  • FC

    Nice car :-)

    FCSD

  • Julia Martin

    This was really a great and fun article for me to read. I have really enjoyed this information so much. This was very interesting. Thanks – Conveyancing in Birmingham Experts.

  • LS PV

    Good car if price is right…

    LS

    PV

  • MLY

    Great car, simple style.

    ML

    MLY

    MUL

  • RKD

    Great car.

    RKD

    KIT

    DES

  • ESK

    Great car.

    EU

    SL

  • GAC

    Looks like a very good car for those on a budget.

    About GAC

    GAC

    How GAC Works

  • Geezer

    Your post was very interesting. I’ll be taking delivery of a 2012 Leaf in about 6 months, and am wondering if it’ll be possible to eventually upgrade the batteries of my 2012 Leaf to those of the 2014+ Leaf. Any thoughts on this?

  • Melanie Wasoo

    I really have enjoyed this great and fun article in my opinion. This was really so very special and fun for me to read. Thanks – Budget Van Insurance

  • Anonymous

    this car is gay

  • Jacky Grant

    I really have enjoyed this car. I think it serves many different types of peoples. I really do appreciate this awesome and fun article. landlord insurance

  • Isabella Wilson

    This was a fantastic and helpful article to read. I really do think that this was really great. Thanks – Bullion

  • shorey hinal

    This is such a great resource that you are providing and you give it away for free. I enjoy seeing websites that understand the value of providing a prime resource for free. I truly loved reading your post. cell phone spy software

  • james haltio

    This is the perfect blog if you want to be informed on this topic…… It’s full of truly information…… Your internet site is handy…… I admire the valuable advice you earn easily obtainable in your expertly subject matter…… I wish to i appreciate you for this informative read;….. I must say i appreciate sharing this brilliant…… cell phone listening

  • KL Contracts
  • sports cars

    what do you mean about improve?

  • Scrap Car Ipswich

    what a beautiful car, i wish i can get this kind of model. everyone dreams of having a luxury car. and when i need to do something on it, i’ll go and check it in whipstreet.co.uk ;)

  • John Gregson

    I like these Nissan Leafs, I particularly like the metallic silver finish on these Hybrids.

  • tapra1

    Although this is a truism in nature, it took a cold season in America for Nissan to quietly show it has learned this lesson applies also to its electric car known as the LEAF.Web Hosting Reviews

  • Merlinpestcontrol
  • karmexe

    Thanks for making such a cool post which is genuinely very well penned. Will be referring a lot of friends regarding this.Quite well put. I visit lots of blogs to know new points constantly. Here I found your blog to be very worthwhile. Tom and Jerry Games

  • Artesanos

    Theme of blog is excellent there is almost everything to read, Brilliant post..!!

  • Osbornes

    Nice car, looks good.

    OEA

    Osbornesestateagents

  • Massacre Sounds

    Nice site, keep up the good work…

    MS

  • Karen

    “El deseo de proporcionar información y asesoramiento de fácil lectura, son actos que creo que debería ser felicitado. La impecable ejecución del artículo y la experiencia de los autores es realmente maravilloso
    Feria de artesanos de Lomas de Zamora

  • joe jack

    Amazing. Thanks for configuration such a poise post which is web hosting genuinely very well penned. Will be referring a yards of pal regarding this.Quite well put. I visit many of blogs to know new points constantly. Here I found your blog to buy domain be very worthwhile.

  • JAKE

    Great Article
    This way great.
    Thanks

  • shena aplan

    Nice post. I was checking constantly this blog and I’m inspired! Very helpful information specifically the remaining part :) I maintain such info a lot. I was looking for this certain information for a very lengthy time. Thanks and best of luck… free cell phone spy software

  • yamira kamal

    I had lost all motivation until I found your website. I love the information here and will be bookmarking it to come back again. I am also going to let my friends know about your site. :) clubmz e-spy

  • lasmee tolan

    Nissan also announced it will equip every 2012 LEAF with heated front and rear seats, a heated steering wheel, and heated external rear-view mirrors. spy text messages

  • kaprin rizen

    Last winter reports were that ambient cold in snow belt states was ebbing the life from possible driving range for LEAFs by as much as 30 miles. clubmz e-spy

  • herry

    The view in this location is outstanding. I want to see more images from your side. Renaissance Artist – Donatello