Nissan: 95% Of LEAF Owners Willing To Recommend Car To Friends

NOV 7 2014 BY ERIC LOVEDAY 33

Nissan LEAF

Nissan LEAF

Nissan LEAF

Nissan LEAF

The vast majority of Nissan LEAF owners are willing to recommend Nissan’s electric hatchback to their friends.  That’s according to Nissan:

“95 percent of customers are willing to recommend the car to friends.”

As we all know, it’s difficult to recommend something to friends if it’s not at least decent – although in this case, we do have to also consider the source of this learning as well.

Why are all these LEAF owners so willing to recommend the electric hatch?  Nissan believes there are several reasons:

  • LEAF is reliable
  • LEAF is affordable
  • Nissan is an established automaker
  • LEAF seats five, with adequate cargo room
  • LEAF is cheap to operate

Of course, the list goes on and on.

While the LEAF may not excel in any one category, it’s darn near the top in so many key areas that it’s probably the most well-rounded electric vehicle available today for less than Tesla money.  That’s why the LEAF is the world’s top-selling electric vehicle and why it’s recommended to friends by those who own the LEAF.

Source: Globe and Mail

Categories: Nissan

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33 Comments on "Nissan: 95% Of LEAF Owners Willing To Recommend Car To Friends"

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David Murray

If you want a pure EV (not a PHEV) that isn’t a compliance car, the Leaf is about the best thing you could buy, especially if you need fast charging, 5 seats, cargo area, and a payment you can afford.

dack

We are the 95%.

With two fairly large caveats for people who live where there’s a legit winter:

1. The range on a very cold winter day in Minneapolis — and there were a lot of them last winter — is in the high 30s at best.

2. It is horrible in the snow.

Nine months out of the year it’s a 10. The remaining three months it’s a 5 or 6.

alain

I have a leaf ,it’s a great car but winter is a problem ,the volt is better for cold climate.you do learn to live with it.it”s cold in quebec.

Kubel

I’ve got a LEAF in Michigan- and part of my hesitation in replacing it with a Volt is that winter conditions would require running the genset for the majority of, if not all of, my commute.

So my choices: Suffer with a limited range car that gets even more limited in the winter, or suffer with a car that guzzles gas in the winter needlessly.

I really like the Volt- and it’s not that I’m an EV purist- I just hate burning gas when there’s enough juice in the battery to do what I need it to do. I really wish GM would make an option to disable genset-based heating if I don’t want it.

Financial EV

Dack – question about the snow. I had ok experiences this past winter, but outside of 1 big snowfall, I didn’t have an opportunity to really test it. Was it traction, low clearance, or something else?

dack

@Financial EV: Traction. My understanding is that it’s a combination of the nature of EVs’ torque and the Leaf’s tires.

Whatever the case, when it snows I bike, take the bus, or borrow my wife’s SUV.

ffbj

Yes, that is really the only downside that would concern me. Yes it was a miserable winter in Mpls last year.

Kyle

Snow tires. I plowed through 14″ snowfalls just fine with snow tires.

Last year during one storm I passed 3 4x4s who couldn’t get up the road to the ski area. One of them was stuck in the middle of the road and I had to drive around!

When people tell me a vehicle isn’t good in snow, my first question is “What snow tires are you using?” I have yet to have a single person reply that they actually had proper winter tires on the vehicle in question.

BraveLilToaster

“when it snows I bike”

I used to do that. But still. Damn, that’s hard*core*!

Me too I have ridden a bicycle in the snow going to/from work many times. Everybody thinks I’m a nut job. The high torque of the electric motor in my Leaf simply will not get traction in any kind of snow.

Scott

We have 3 vehicles, the Leaf is the best one in the snow! It weighs nearly 4k lbs and is a tank in the winter. Range is about 38-45 miles when you get down to zero degrees F.

ModernMarvelFan

3,200lbs is nearly 4,000lbs?

Brian

With 5 160-lb passengers it sure is 😉

ModernMarvelFan

You can say the same with most “mid size” family sedans…

Brian

I live in Syracuse, NY. One of our claims to fame is the amount of snowfall we receive. Last winter (2013-2014), we received 132″ of the stuff.

The stock tires on the Leaf are HORRIBLE in the snow. However, if you put proper tires on the car, it is one of the best FWD cars you can have. It has a high clearance, yet low and well-balanced center of gravity.

The Leaf is GREAT in the snow. The tires are terrible. But anyone who lives in a snowy area knows that you need proper snow tires.

The one caveat is that snow tires will reduce your range even further. On a cold snowy day, with the heat blasting, I have seen the car get about 30 miles on a full charge.

Spec9

Battery thermal management systems really matter if you live in a really cold or really hot place.

In cold places, the thermal management system should keep the battery pack reasonably warm when coupled to AC power. This means when you wake up and your EV was plugged in at night, the battery should be warm and you should have a decent rate. But if you park somewhere w/o AC power, you will still have the problem.

And I don’t need to bring up the problems the LEAF has had in warm climates, but I guess that has been fixed.

You are way overstating this. With preheating while still plugged in, and with the current models having *all* the seats heated, and the steering wheel heated and the outside mirrors heated and the cabin heat / defroster being a heat pump, I think you are about half of what the real range is.

My sister-in-law drives a 2011 Leaf, and it has just the front seats heated, and a resistance cabin / defroster – and she averages ~70 mile range in the winter.

Also, some winter tires have very low rolling resistance. Nokian Hakka R2’s are possibly the lowest RR tires *of any type* sold, and they are excellent winter tires. The Finns know how to make winter tires!

Snow and ice and slush do reduce range, because of resistance and slippage; but if you slip less with a god tire, then the loss is minimized.

BraveLilToaster

I was going to say something about this, but everyone else seems to have beat me to the punch. I’ll add this though:

Of the other Canadians I know who are Leaf owners, nobody’s complained about the car’s snow handling. Most will complain about the car’s range in winter (especially people in Winnipeg. Because Winnipeg), but one thing they most certainly *don’t* complain about is how difficult it is to start in “keep your brass monkeys inside” weather.

More accurately, how it’s *not* difficult to start, even in temperatures that would kill an ICE vehicle. We all have our block heater plugs in every apartment building parking stall and all, but even so, there’s times when starting your Ford Ranger is a dicey situation. It will never happen to a Leaf though, unless you’ve somehow managed to leave it unplugged for a week at -40, in which case you’ve also voided your battery warranty. 🙂

But give it some juice, and that motor will turn just fine at any temperature. It’s one of the areas where an ICE shows its serious shortcomings. That, and the need for a transmission.

Djoni

You either have poor winter or snow tire or are not acustomed to snow driving.
I got Michelin Ice-X that are good on icy road and plain fair in the snow.
There’s better ones to choose.
Still, it’s very easy to drive in snow, because the Leaf is so heavy and the electric propulsion so precisely controllable, that it beat most other car in those condition.
We “only” had 111 cm of snow in Montreal region last winter, and snow wasn’t an issue, but cold was quite something with an average of -9.5 c° and a polar vortex that last about 3 weeks at an average close to -30c°.
Not sure heatpump heating would have been of any help at those temperature.

Brian

I’m happy to recommend the Leaf to friends who have multiple cars in their driveway. Even then, though, the issue of range comes up. I find myself recommending the Volt much more often than the Leaf.

scottf200

I suspect this is in the 1st 3 years before they realize the battery degradation (which of course happens to cell phones, drills, etc). If you are a leaser then that works out fine but if you are a buyer that doesn’t like perpetual car payments then the reality will set in.

Ontario Leaf

Since I got my Leaf, three of my friends also got one. As to winter, get winter tires. Better than my ICE in the snow.
The ICE feels so last century.

Ocean Railroader

The current plan I have with the i-miev or the leaf is to replace the battery in it with something that has double the energy density when the next generation of batteries comes out. I would then use the old battery for storage on a home solar power system.

The logic is that I have cars that are over 20 years old still running. And to put a battery into a three to five year old car wouldn’t be too bad if the car is going to be around another 20 years.

Ocean, that assumes you will be able to just get a new battery with the new chemistry or capacity, that its the same battery Pack Specs and space as today, and that they don’t go engineering it for better fit or whatever!

I can see this being the case in most cars that are not the Tesla, but for the Tesla Model S – I think they will keep that pack style and case size well out into the future of better cells since they will likely still use the 18650 cell pack design!

I don’t know about the iMeiv but Nissan requires you to turn in the old battery pack when you get a new one. Putting a $6500 battery into a 5 year old Leaf is a dicey choice. The resale on the car may be near the battery replacement cost. As you say if you keep driving the car then everything is ok but if you have an accident or sell the car you may not get your money back.

Thanh Lim

That’s the only caveat about the Leaf. I love my Leaf as I live in Southern California and the range is gets me to work and back and I only charge at work during the week.

But yeah, more range would make the car the gas killer. Can’t wait for an everyday electric car that can easily make it to Las Vegas from Los Angeles. That would get gobs of LA driver sold on getting an electric car. 😉

Spec9

Yep. The Model S is pretty much the only pure electric that can do the LA to Vegas drive (without resorting to extreme efforts).

BraveLilToaster

That’s odd. It seems that someone on Plugshare has mapped out all the Nema 14-50 plugs in and around the Mojave desert and Death Valley. I can easily order a charger from evseupgrade.com that will handle these for my Leaf.

It’d take me a while longer, but what’s a road trip if you don’t stop anywhere?

Brian

To anyone who isn’t an adventurous early adopter, jumping from 14-50 to 14-50, and then waiting for hours at each one sounds like an extreme effort!

Spec9

That will work for enthusiasts but most people would tell you that you are out of your mind if that is the way you want to spend your vacation, hopping from charger to charger.

A Tesla or a PHEV is the only way I’d do a plug-in long road trip. We desperately need more long-range EVs . . . and with DC fast charge ports. (RAV4 has decent range but no fast-charge.)

ModernMarvelFan

I would have recommended the LEAF to friends and family if the LEAF did better in crash tests… But it didn’t..

BraveLilToaster

While we might have to consider that the source is using this for marketing, we also have to consider that the source actually wants to sell this car.

Unlike a good many other EV manufacturers.