Tesla Model S P85 Battery Degradation After 1 Year, 100,000 Kilometers – Bjorn Nyland Video

2 years ago by Mark Kane 63


Bjorn Nyland is covering extraordinary mileage in his Tesla Model S, which has provide him with the opportunity to test battery capacity degradation.

His P85 version of the Model S already has over 188,000 km (117,000 miles) on the odometer, but the battery pack was replaced at 86,000 km due to some problem with power switching (not related to batteries itself, according to Nyland).

That means that this test concerns battery degradation only for the last ~100,000 km (over 60,000 miles) and about one year.

The result of the range test at full charge is about a 4% capacity drop compared to his car when new, but remember that this is just user estimation.

“I test and find out that there’s approx 4 % degradation after one year and 100k km/60k mi. That’s not too bad considering that I drive 4-5 times more than most pepole. If the annual driving distance is 20-25k km, I assume that even after 8-10 years, the capacity should still be over 80 %.”

Tesla Model S P85 battery degradation after 1year/100k km/60k mi

Tesla Model S P85 battery degradation after 1year/100k km/60k mi

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63 responses to "Tesla Model S P85 Battery Degradation After 1 Year, 100,000 Kilometers – Bjorn Nyland Video"

  1. IQ130 says:

    In the following link an extensive overview for a big number of Tesla’s:

    https://steinbuch.wordpress.com/2015/01/24/tesla-model-s-battery-degradation-data/

    1. heisenberght-neu says:

      Thanks for the link, nice to see that data Points. However, I wonder what the heck he did with that “trend lines” ??? Really??? Seriously??? The funniest Thing is this

      1. heisenberght-neu says:

        And btw I hope that trendline will hold true, would be nice if the batteries will have >150% range once they are old enough 😉

        1. heisenberght-neu says:

          Oh, and just one question to the staff People. Am I (heisenbergth) banned or something? Or is this just some issue with my browser…

          1. heisenberght says:

            Solved. Browser. -sorry-

            1. Jay Cole says:

              …I was just going to say you are cool with us, (=

        2. IQ130 says:

          That would be nice. I think it has to do with the small number of cars more than 560 days old so this part is less reliable. Maybe some seasonal influences.

          The author already said: “Do not put too much attention to the automatically generated polynomial fit (red line).”

          1. Pushmi-Pullyu says:

            “Do not put too much attention to the automatically generated polynomial fit (red line).”

            LOL! What, Tesla hasn’t invented batteries that get better with age? Darn it, how disappointing. 😉

            1. V. Bowman says:

              I don’t know about you.. but I always decant my batteries. 🙂

      2. ModernMarvelFan says:

        Interesting chart.

        I think the trend line is aiming for 90% at 980 days…

      3. Nix says:

        It looks like the trend line was calculated correctly based upon the data provided.

        But the accuracy of the trend line to predict the future appears very low due to the small number of data-points for high mileage vehicles.

        What this trend line is actually indicating is that among high mileage vehicles, that mileage alone is a poor predictor of how much range a vehicle will have. Other factors besides distance driven are having an impact on range that the graph isn’t capturing.

      4. Jonathan says:

        This graph should also list the month of the year so that we can cross reference season/temperature. I know that with my Leaf, the winters will often see a few percentage of total capacity loss, but it bumps back up once it warms up.

      5. IQ130 says:

        OK I dived into the data and found out that there are 4 American Tesla’s from 828, 864, 892 and 934 days old with pretty low mileages between 30-50 thousand miles and a very healthy battery percentage around 95%. So this is causing the optimistic future prediction with respect to the age of the battery.

        In other words don’t drive too much if you want your battery stay healthy.

  2. Get Real says:

    Yeah, you should read IQ130’s link sven, you might actually learn something useful.

  3. sven says:

    Is there any long term reviewer that hasn’t had their battery or motor swapped once or multiple times? The long list includes Bjorn Nyland, Edmunds, Consumer Reports, Motor Trend, KmanAuto, Green Car Reports’ David Noland, etc. There is Car and Driver, but they’ve only had their Model S for 6 months and 12,000 miles.

    1. Pushmi-Pullyu says:

      And yet, in Consumer Reports’ latest reliability survey, they upgraded the “Drive System” reliability to “excellent” even while giving the car an overall reliability downgrade (link below).

      http://i.kinja-img.com/gawker-media/image/upload/s–NohESnZI–/c_scale,fl_progressive,q_80,w_800/1492754891195676563.jpg

      Perhaps instead of asking what’s wrong with the Model S’s powertrain, we should be asking just what those car review magazines are doing to the Model S that causes the powertrain to need replacing so frequently! I think it’s safe to say that, in general, they’re using it (and abusing it) harder than the average driver does.

      1. Three Electrics says:

        That’s a bit of a stretch, Elon. There is no evidence that reviewers are pushing their Model Ss beyond normal consumers. I’m curious to know what you think they could be doing to their cars such that the battery or motor would need to be swapped so early. The control software is rather sophisticated and should prevent shenanigans short of a crowbar.

        1. Pushmi-Pullyu says:

          “I’m curious to know what you think they could be doing to their cars such that the battery or motor would need to be swapped so early.”

          Well, unlike you, I actually did read the entire series about the year-long test drive of the Model S at Edmunds.com. If you had read that, you’d know that Edmunds.com actually admitted they pushed their car a lot harder than normal drivers would, in various test drives.

          …Oh wait, even if you read that, you’d still be a Tesla basher who posts anti-EV FUD and ignores anything positive about Tesla.

      2. Tesla does aggressive advertise performance at any chance and then is’t the customers fault, when they just use the advertised functions.

        1. Anon says:

          Do you work for GM? Or are you just trolling and spewing FUD for free?

          1. Get Real says:

            Who knows, all w know is he likes to pop up on all the Tesla threads to tell us how horrible Tesla is. Come to think of it so does sven and several other serial Tesla/Musk haters. Makes me wonder what their real agenda is???

            1. sven says:

              Don’t get your panties in bunch. I actually like Tesla, but the reliability of their cars could improve. However, it’s interesting that you couldn’t answer my question and name a long term reviewer that didn’t have to swap out their battery or motor, and felt the need to attack me to deflect attention away from my question. 😀

              Anyways, with all the service that Tesla’s require, service centers have become very crowded, with a wait of one week, two weeks, or even a month for an open slot to get repair work done.

              http://www.greencarreports.com/news/1100824_life-with-tesla-model-s-service-centers-get-crowded-cost-more

              With all your serial gushing and fawning over Elon/Tesla, I wonder what your real agenda is?

              1. Get Real says:

                I’m not buying your lame “I like Tesla” BS sven. You are always highly critical of Tesla here.
                As far as the servicing issues they are growing pains of a highly successful and rapidly growing company and that is a good problem to have.
                But since you are a glass half full kind of guy I’m sure you don’t see it that way.

                1. Get Real says:

                  Correction, meant to say glass half empty and the computer auto-corrected it to half full.

              2. Pushmi-Pullyu says:

                sven said:

                “Don’t get your panties in bunch. I actually like Tesla…”

                That’s odd, since about 98% of your posts about Tesla are negative. It’s quite surprising when you make a Tesla-related post which is not negative.

                “I wonder what your real agenda is?”

                Maybe you should look back at the posts you’ve written in response to Tesla-related articles here at InsideEVs.com over the past few months, and consider how the sum total comes across to those who read it. For someone who claims to actually like Tesla, you’re astoundingly negative.

                Maybe you don’t have a hidden anti-Tesla agenda, sven. But your posts certainly read like you do.

                1. Boris says:

                  Get Real and PP,

                  I don’t get how you guys think Sven is anti-Tesla. My feel is he’s actually a fan of Tesla but that doesn’t block him from critical thinking and using common sense and he still (as I do) questions some of Elon’s statements. Let’s not make Tesla or Elon a religion, it will just go downhill from there, Elon himself asks for negative feedback as that’s what can take his companies to the next level…

                  1. Get Real says:

                    No religion here, I simply support the cause of a positive future and saving the planet for our descendants sakes.

                    My enthusiasm for Tesla/Musk is because they make the only compelling long-range BEVs and traveling refueling options suitable as an only car. This represents a trajectory of a potential bright future versus the inertia and regressives of the past.

                    I would contrast my enthusiasm with those regressives that are making flagrant political opportunists like Ben Carson or “The Donald” a religion!

        2. Big Solar says:

          English (grammar) please. I have no friggin idea what you said counterstrike cat.

      3. Craig Capurso says:

        Elon forgot to pay off the right people.

    2. mo says:

      There are a ton of people who haven’t had batteries and motor replaced with a lot of mileage. Just goto Tesla forums.

      1. nwdiver says:

        Yep; >75k on mine… original everything 😀

    3. Sondre says:

      As far as know, the problem in Norway was that Tesla Norway for a while did not have the competence to open the batteries. So if the main switch had to be replaced, they had to replace the whole battery.

    4. Bill Howland says:

      Yeah Sven you deserve some support here.. I’m on my 3rd electric car so I have somewhat of a feel for them by now. What you said is just ‘dirty laundry’ that apparently no Tesla investor wants advertised, and this ongoing saga of repeated replacements by the vast majority of popular reviewers is disheartening.

      I installed 2 – Nema 14-50’s in my garage, thinking I’d eventually own TWO Teslas at the same time. But I now own zero Teslas since their reliability, and the company’s service center’s reaction to it (at least the one I had to deal with) has made me avoid them, at least for now.

      My Volt and ELR have an old EVSE plugged into the first Tesla outlet, and I’m currently using a home-made 220 volt Snow BLower plugged into the second Tesla outlet, so I’m actually getting good functionality out of them.

      I admit I was brainwashed into thinking that EV’s should be much more reliable than plain old cars, since there is ‘nothing to go wrong’. Oh Boy, that may be true, but all the stuff that never breaks in other cars broke in my Tesla, and it seems to be happening in all these other reviewer’s cars also, sans Car and Driver.

      1. Anon says:

        Sorry for your bad case of Early Adopter Syndrome.

        I hope you recover soon…

        1. SparkEV says:

          If it’s early adopter problem, you’d think Nissan Leaf would have just as much problems in non-EV related parts as it sounds like those are the problem Bill was having. Even cursory glance at Tesla S complaints seem to be things like door handle. This is not early adopter EV issue, but new car company not doing it right issue.

          If Cadillac made headlines with fancy door handle issues, I’d mock them, too. Actually, I mock all Cadillac except for ELR, but you know what I mean.

          1. Bill Howland says:

            Actually, all the ELR’s doors with the exception of the hood (Bonnet for those in the UK) are trunk lid style electrics, with very Heavy Shrouded Pad actuators (to keep them working during a bad snow and Ice storm), along with substantial solenoids to open the doors. They will get the acid test this winter, but they have a reassuring positive clunk that seems like they’ve been designed for other than mediterranean weather.

            Has been noted by others, the VOlt is quite substantial also. But everything about the ELR exudes quality, which visitors to it immediately notice in the interior materials, and exterior styling. While the volt OEM tires are cheapies, they are FIRST RATE (Japanese) Bridgestones, which can seal for several days even with ablossidewallsidewall

            1. Bill Howland says:

              I agree with our german friend: too many ads or else disqus won’t allow typing during some parts of the day. Didn’t even think I got posted since it froze up so much. Bottom line: no problem with the Caddy ELR so far, it just works.

              Difficult to estimate on the Tesla, but I have the feeling my experience with it has been in the average range. People who live close to their service centers seem to have done better overall, that’s why I like the old-fashioned dealer model. You get priority fixes when you don’t leave until they fix the car.

  4. Priusmaniac says:

    So, you kind of buy an S90 after five years sell it as an S85 which end up five years later as an S80. Better to account for this when you are short in range on a winter time destination that could become unreacheable with the same car some 5 or 10 years later.

    1. Samwise says:

      Pretty sure that in 10 years they will have built at least 1 charging station on the way to just about any destination. If infrastructure continues at it’s current rate or accelerates you will probably be able to get by with much less than you can now.

      1. Priusmaniac says:

        Well the good thing is that ten years from now with a yearly 5% improvement we will be able to put a new battery of 145 KWh and drive away with a Model S145. Well, at some cost though, but a 10 year Model S in Aluminum should still be in very good condition overall.

  5. SparkEV says:

    It’s hard to say how this translates to real world. Batteries degrade just by sitting there, especially at high SoC% and high temperature. But even if Tesla degrade by 50% after 10 years, they’d still have close to/over 100 miles per charge range. That’s something very usable.

    Now the big question will be, is reduced range the only problem with the batteries or will there be other issues that prevent them from being used and must be replaced?

    1. Pushmi-Pullyu says:

      SparkEV said:

      “It’s hard to say how this translates to real world. Batteries degrade just by sitting there…”

      Yes, li-ion batteries have a shelf life. Everybody talks about how batteries lose capacity by repeated cycling, but almost nobody is talking about the problem with batteries losing capacity just by getting older.

      The good news, as pointed out in some posts above, is that a long-term study of Tesla Roadster batteries show they’re holding up surprisingly well over time. However, Tesla is using battery cells with a different chemistry in the Model S, so that doesn’t necessary apply to the Model S. Fortunately, all the studies I’ve seen of the Model S, although they have limited data, seem to point to even less loss of capacity as the cars get older.

      Of course, part of that is simply that a larger battery pack doesn’t get cycled as often, so all other things being equal, can be expected to last longer. But even taking that into account, I think Tesla has done a surprisingly good job of “babying” its cars’ battery cells to preserve long life.

      I was expecting more battery degradation that we’re actually seeing in Tesla’s cars, so kudos to Tesla for superior engineering.

      1. SparkEV says:

        As I said, decreased range isn’t as much a concern, though it’s nice to know it’s not so bad.

        Far more important is what kind of failure modes do they get? At 5 years, it’s too early to tell. If it’s only range, that’ll be great, but I doubt that’s the case. Heck, I can even live with 35 miles range as there’s DCFC 25 miles away.

  6. Murrysville EV says:

    My former 12 Leaf lost 15% of its capacity in 3 years and 27k miles, which works out to 5.3% annually, or 5.8% per 10k miles.

    Bjorn is driving 165 miles/day, while I drove only 25 miles/day. He consumes about 70% of his battery’s capacity daily, and I was consuming only about 40% daily. But in the winter, I was consuming about 70% on average, and more on some days.

    My experience has left me dubious of EV makers’ range claims, except for Tesla. The Nissan’s gas gauge was always wrong, so answering people’s questions about range was never simple.

    So while I loved the EV experience overall and the Leaf in general, my next EV will probably not be a Nissan. They lost my trust in the first go.

    1. Djoni says:

      That’s bad.
      Luckily for me it didn’t went so bad.
      I have a 2012 Leaf MY with 93 000 km and 85% SOH.
      I often drive it close to turtle and charge every time, everywhere.

      I wish I had more range, but that was from the beginning.

      Will I buy another Nissan BEV?
      It’s not out of the equation, but not a certainty.

    2. Nix says:

      Murry – I’m not a big fan of the Leaf, but hopefully you will be willing to give Nissan some slack for being the first BEV builder to really put their EV’s out there for consumers to buy.

      It certainly can be argued that Nissan went to market ahead of everybody else a bit premature, before every wrinkle was ironed out of their first EV’s, like your 2012 Leaf. But I personally wouldn’t hold that against any future vehicles they may build.

      Nissan shouldn’t pay a penalty for leading the way into a brand new market. I don’t think that would be fair.

      Now if we hear the same story from 2016 Leaf owners 3 years from now, then I’d be the first to join you in your comments.

    3. Mister G says:

      35,374 miles on 12 Leaf with 3 bars lost, good thing lease ends December 17, 2015, but I will lease a 2016 without any hesitation because I really do believe in man made global warming.

      1. Murrysville EV says:

        @Mister G:

        I believe that since my Leaf battery was at 85% SOH when I traded it, I was about to lose my first bar.
        Interestingly, it was so bad last winter that I had Nissan check the battery, and they said it was A-OK. They even told me I should trust the guess-o-meter, so I verified with them that the car still had roadside assistance.

    4. Pushmi-Pullyu says:

      Murrysville EV wrote:

      “My experience has left me dubious of EV makers’ range claims, except for Tesla. The Nissan’s gas gauge was always wrong, so answering people’s questions about range was never simple.”

      Reading a lot of posts about this issue has given me the impression that Nissan designed their range estimator, dubbed “guess-o-meter” on a lot of forums, to show 100 miles when fully charged, at least when the car is new. 100 miles is what Nissan touted as the car’s range… and for all I know, they still do.

      But of course, that’s an inflated number, since the EPA range is about 84 miles on a 100% charge. Letting the company’s marketing department decide how the guess-o-meter should work, instead of letting the engineers make that decision, was IMHO one of the worst mistakes made by any EV maker, ever.

      I thought it was inevitable that this would result in a backlash against Nissan, so I’m not at all surprised to see your comments along that line.

      1. Murrysville EV says:

        The annoying thing about the guess-o-meter is that the Leaf has all the data it needs to correctly calculate range. Tesla does it.

        I didn’t get accurate range numbers until I bought a Bluetooth dongle to monitor the car with LeafSpyPro, but that was only in the last 6 months of ownership.

    5. McKemie says:

      My first year Leaf lost 30% in 20k miles and two years. Nissan refused to fix it. I now have a Tesla and will never consider buying a Nissan.

  7. John Hollenberg says:

    45,000 miles on my 2011 Leaf, have lost about 25% capacity over 4.5 years. Leaf will still be useful to me until I have a 40% capacity loss, which I figure is another 2-3 years. Not bad for a first generation EV.

  8. ZLL says:

    4% drop after 60,000 miles. Just curious, how is the Volt’s battery in comparison?

    1. Jonathan says:

      Its really hard to measure the Volt’s capacity drop because they intentionally hide a lot of unused capacity, so the Volt battery may be degrading but you don’t really notice it because it only eats away at unused capacity.

  9. heisenberght says:

    btw winter is coming!!!

    It’s time for all EVangelists to go out and talk to the ICE-owners about battery degradation! (Winter is the season where lots of ICE won’t even start due to low lead-acid batteries.)

    Spread the word!

    I’m sick of replacing my lead-acid battery regularily! With all that battery degradation talk noone seems to care that diesel cars need huge batterys just to start that engine and they obviously have to be replaced more often than EV-batteries…

    Worst of all: ICE will leave you standing still with old batteries. EV will just not go that far with one charge, seems less stressy to me.

    1. SparkEV says:

      Dude, where do u live that ur ICE doesnt start? Minnesota? Does your pee turn to smoke when you pee outside? 😉

      In SoCal, winter is bad time to talk about EV. While ICEV are warm and toasty from heater from ICE waste heat, EV loses lots of range with electric heater.

      1. heisenberght says:

        Germany. While winter is has not that cold in the last years, there are still some days where my pee would form iceballs while falling 😉

        The point is that when it get’s cold outside many people suffer from non starting ICE. There was already one single cold day and I failed to bring my kids to school on time due to the KIA-diesel not starting.

        “While ICEV are warm and toasty from heater from ICE waste heat, EV loses lots of range with electric heater”

        Well, mine only gets warm and toasty quite a bit after starting the engine, and funnyly it’s harder to start that engine in winter… So if I can’t start it, I will freeze to death 😉

        There are some people here starting their engines some minutes before taking the trip in order to defrost the windows and preheat the car, however most people hate them.

        Some use electrical preheating for their ICE. To my best knowledge preheating EV’s should be easier to manage as they tend to be plugged in anyways.

        Most important to me is that battery degradation is already a problem for ICE drivers, and most are comfortable with changing the lead-acid-s***T regularly. And most lead-acid batterys wont be used for a second-life application while they could (I have a funny hobby…)

        Well and I really like to exaggerate sometimes, especially when I do my EV-propagandha… 😉

      2. Phr3d says:

        SparkEV, humbly offer that you don’t read much if you don’t know that, ‘yep, it steams for 3mo outa’ the year here” and that solar don’t werkasgude in places that are Not California.

        “Please No More California Songs” is currently playing through my head, lol.

  10. mhpr262 says:

    regarding range: One winter I had to use my gas car for commuting – 5km one way. The range of my car was reduced by no less than 80% by the many cold starts. Yes, 80% fewer kilometres out of my tank than what I got in the summer, with only long distance driving. and that was a typical German winter, with just a few degrees below freezing in the morning and usuall a bit above freezing when I drove home again.

    1. heisenberght says:

      somehow, this site seems to be flooded with germans 😉

      Don’t worry, the “typical german winter” seems to change quite rapidly… I still can harvest raspberries (without PI) in my garden. Did anyone calculate yet, how much CO2 we will save by burning less oil/natgas for heating every hot winter? Seems to be some kind of self-regulating system 😉

  11. Jonathan says:

    Considering my 2015 Leaf has lost 4% over the past 1.5 years and 20K miles, I’d say that this is pretty acceptable loss for the Tesla. I’ll take 4% loss every 60K miles!

  12. Priusmaniac says:

    There could be a software solution to this a bit akin to the former Model S 40 that had a 60 KWh battery but reduced to 40 KWh allowed. Likewise you could start with say 105 KWh in an S90 but the software would only allow 90 KWh, in the beginning you get less than what’s available but over time as the battery ages you are allowed to access more and more. In that way you allays get the same whatever the age. Of course after many many years you could start to reach 100% of what’s available in which case it would then start to reduce also, but by then you battery would be really very old indeed.

    1. Dawson says:

      I agree with you 100%. I think that is a good idea. Though it looks like that type of thinking is already happening. Tesla and apple and other companies are in the process of creating a ‘Smart Battery’. With Li-ION batteries how you use it will have an effect on it’s ability to hold charge and also provide power effectively. It sounds like a stupid thing to say until you look deeper at it. it is not that far away from the way some Smart Phone makers manage their batteries on their Phones. The Software keeps track of the Driver’s driving style and adjusts the Battery accordingly. For instance if the Drive tends to thrash the Car a lot during the Morning on the way to Work then the Software will keep some Power back for later on when it is needed. Similarly if the Driver is driving reasonably then the Software won’t need to hold some back. So it is along the lines that you suggest. I think though that batteries for BEV’s will get far smarter over the next few years and battery degradation won’t be much of an issue. I know it is not really the same thing, though it is as close an example as I can give. I have a Macbook pro that is nearly 2 years old. I charge it every Day and use it all the time. I have charged it carefully and I have managed to (according to various rated apps) increase the health of the Battery to 104% over what it was. Even if you think the reading is wrong it won’t be that wrong so will be not far under 100%. I personally have no reason to doubt that figure. Plus as we all know Laptops such as Apple’s macbook Pro have LI-ION Batteries which essentially are the same as what are inside Tesla’s. However in closing I would say that I would like to see some independent testing in regards to range degradation.