Nissan Exec: Next-Generation LEAF To Be Offered With Multiple Battery Pack Sizes
Autocar is reporting that, at least in Europe, Nissan is expected to offer multiple battery pack size for the next-generation Nissan LEAF:
“Nissan’s next-generation Leaf electric hatchback, due in 2018 (Autocar’s opinion only on ETA), will be offered with a series of different battery pack options, one of which could provide a range of up to 340 miles (NEDC).”
Autocar references Gareth Dunsmore, director of Nissan’s zero-emission division, with the revelation of multiple pack sizes. Quoting Dunsmore:
“We have two battery options now, and will grow options, making it more accessible with a longer range and a price to match.”
The more choices the merrier, right?
“The recently revised current Leaf is now offered with a larger, 30kWh lithium ion battery pack, which is good for a claimed 155-mile range, up from the 124 miles of the standard 24kWh battery.”
“This strategy is set to continue with the next-gen Leaf, with Nissan set to offer several different batteries to give buyers the option of different ranges — and with an increased price to match.”
“It’s a strategy similar to that of Tesla. Offering larger battery packs allows Nissan to give the Leaf a longer range even though there hasn’t been a significant chemical or technological breakthrough in battery technology, which is understood to still be a decade or so away.”
A note on range estimates from the quotes: The “155 mile” range from today’s 30 kWh battery on the optimistic NEDC scale is rated at 107 miles/172 km in real world/EPA driving. Meaning that a future “340 mile”/60 kWh LEAF on the same NEDC rating system would translate to roughly 235 miles/380 km of real world/EPA range.
This strategy is also followed by BMW with the i3 soon to be offered in two pack size as well.
Our assumption has always been that both the 30 kWh battery of today and the 60 kWh battery pack found in the IDS concept (and recently confirmed for LEAF 2.0) would be available options, however the quote “several different batteries” would give the impression there is at least one more, as of yet unknown, battery sizing option.
As we all eagerly await the next-generation LEAF, more choices such as the Chevrolet Bolt and Tesla Model 3 are nearing production. Therefore, the timing for the next-gen LEAF is vital, our expectation for the LEAF is for an early 2017 release in the US and Japan.
As for Tesla’s emergence on the electric car scene, Dunsmore had nothing but praise to offer, along with a little hint that Nissan was the first in this mass-produced electric car segment:
“Having Tesla, the visibility for the technology is a massive benefit. Go to Google, type in ‘EV’ and we’re there. We have expertise in the tech and in making it accessible. We will continue to do that, and the more people that catch up the more visibility there is for us.”
You’ll find some additional details on the next-gen LEAF here. Unfortunately, the vital info like launch timeline and pricing remains a mystery at this point in time.