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I am just gonna say it. This car is ugly!

bilbo9747 said:   after 3 years youve spent 10,000 dollars and have no car...where is the gas savings in that.....electric cars are a horrible idea at this stage ..

It depends. If you take into account the cost of gas. At 12000 miles/year, 25 miles/gallon and $3.50/gallon, that is about $1700 a year in gas price. If electricity cost is half of that, then we are talking $8-900 a year in savings. For 3 years, that could be closed to $3k in savings. My estimate could be off but $7000+ for 3 years are pretty reasonable for driving around a new car. That is not very far from 3 year depreciation cost of new cars with similar MSRP. The main problem is that it is not a big win. I'd rather have a real hybrid or gasoline car without the short range and charging time problem.

bilbo9747 said:   after 3 years youve spent 10,000 dollars and have no car...where is the gas savings in that.....electric cars are a horrible idea at this stage ..

Dude, after the CA rebate, I'm net positive on the down payment. My current gas bill is around 200-250/month. Lets assume electricity will cost me half that, I'm sure its much less, but lets be conservative. So my real cost is around $100/month. There is also no maintenance on the cat at all, over a three year lease, that should save at least $500+, so I'm down to ~$4,500. For this I get a great car for over three years AND a carpool sticker!

I'd pay that just for the sticker!!

Here's my impressions after having one for 12 months and 13,500 miles.

The range is advertised as 100 miles - but on a 60 degree day with no wind on a flat road at 45 miles an hour. Change any of those variables and it drops like a rock. Most of my driving is on the highway - depending on your speed range is closer to 70-80 miles. But you learn to drive it - at first I was getting 3.5 kw/mile, now I regularly get 4.5kw/mile. You learn to slow down, coast to traffic lights, and avoid wasting momentum. Aircon and heat cause about a 10% drop in range. I now sit on 63mph on the highway instead of 70+. It takes a few minutes longer for my commute (38miles each way), but I typically make it up by getting in the HOV lane. (I'm in Atlanta we have HOV and HOT (High occupancy toll) lanes - with the Leaf you can go in both with an Alternate Fuel tag.) It's changed the way I drive our other cars as well - I'm now a lot more efficient (although I haven't compared mileage from before the Leaf).

When you first get one you are always worried about range, but you learn to trust the computer. Twice I've forgotten to plug it in at the office and both time I've made it home with 1 mile left - exactly what the computer told me when I left the office - 38 miles to go, 39 miles range. The GPS tells you where the nearest charging stations are (not many in Atlanata, lots on the west coast). In 13k miles I've only once needed to charge unexpectedly - running multiple errands and getting lost twice I pushed it for my last stop of the day knowing that I'd be close to being able to make it home. When I left I was a couple of miles short, but knew there I was driving past a mall with free chargers so I stopped for 20 minutes and got enough juice to make it home.

When I first ordered it Nissan sent an electrician over to quote the charger install - it came back at $2,400!!! I bought the same charger off eBay for $600 and had an electrician install it for $300 (it was a long run to where I wanted it). The charger in my garage uses 240V and charges the car in about 7 hours. I get to charge at my office using a normal 110V outlet - in an 8 hour day it's usually back to full when I leave work.

I moved to new house just before getting the car so I can't compare my electricity bill from before the car, but I went from filling up a car once to twice a week, to now putting gas in my wife's car once or twice a month.

It took me a few months to get used to it, but now I love it. Never having to go to a gas station is fantastic, as is getting through traffic in the HOV lane. From a financial perspective, I doubt I'll have it long enough to justify (although in Georgia we get 7,500 ferderal + 5,000 state tax credits).

For those serious about electric cars, take a look at a Volt. There are lease deals for $200 with $3k down and purchases around $26k after rebates. I get around 45 miles per charge (4 hours) and then it goes right into gas mode with a solid 39 mpg. No range anxiety, take it cross country, no worries. Drives much better than the Leaf and is really fast AND quiet. There's better battery thermo management so your batt will last long. Also has leather interior, OnStar, Nav, heated seats, and every other gadget. It's a beautiful car inside and out. The Leaf is a great car too, but test drive a Volt and see for yourself.

I am so excited by this thread and EVs in particular! FINALLY some progress in the automobile!
Just think the advantage GM would have today had they not killed their electric car years ago.. See the movie "WHo Killed the Electric Car?"
If you think about it, they changed the whole path our world has taken since then! OPEC and all! Middle East Gas wars! GEESH!

You can trash electric vehicles if you want but they are designed specifically for certain consumers. If it is not you then don't trash because it is not practical in your case. Also technology only gets better if people use it. They are developing batteries that retain charges longer and some that will charge significantly faster.

Leased my leaf a month ago, for $0 down and about $280 a month, 36 months, 15k miles per year. Plus I get $2500 back. Charger was (almost) free to get installed in my home (look up Ecotality). Love it so far. I thought it would just be a commute car, but we find we're using it on the weekend and evenings too - fits 2 car seats and a big stroller no problem.

If you by in California, make sure to change your PG&E to the EV rate schedule (9A), which is time of day based. You can program the leaf to recharge from midnight to 6am, when it's only 3cents per kwh instead of 30 cents per kwh. (base tier)

My gas costs for $8 a day, and now I'm down to under a dollar per day. It is going to pay for itself by the end of the lease.

The cost to operate the Leaf will depend on your local electricity costs. That can vary a lot.
It has a 24 kWh battery. National average cost for electricity is 11 cents per kWh. So on average it costs about $2.64 to charge the battery. Then you get say 70 miles out of that. That comes out to about 3.8 cents per mile.
Compare to a car that gets 25 MPG average. If gas is $3.50 then you're paying 14 cents per mile.
If you drive 12,000 miles a year the Leaf will cost you about $452 a year in electricity to operate. The 25MPG car will cost you $1680.

Thats about $100/month savings. Or more like $50/month versus a Prius.

Of course individual savings will depend on all the variables.

If VA were to get on board with some tax incentives, this might really work out (but they won't). I pay about 8c/mile in tires/fluids/brakes/misc on my truck, plus about 25-30c/mile in gasoline. Call it 35c all in. If I could get 35,000 miles on this at 3.8c/mile with effectively no maintenance costs, that'd be a savings of just under $11,000 over three years. Sadly, in addition to the $9200 lease fees, I have to add $600 dealer fee, about $200 in registration, $1100 in sales tax and $500-600 in property tax every year (I can't get rid of my old car, so that tax is in addition to), for a total of $3400 additional. So instead of almost $2000 to the good, I'd be $1600 in the hole, plus the cost of the charger and install, plus whatever increase in having the third car would be on insurance.

If I could actually replace my truck with this Leaf, it would be like getting it for free though.

dilrod said:   looks like desperation is setting in on the green car

If by "desperation" you mean dealers are lowering prices to move cars before Nissan releases a budget version built in TN, then sure? IIRC speculation was the price tag would be ~$28k.

http://www.shopautoweek.com/articles/2012/10/budget-trim-level-a...

jerosen said:   The cost to operate the Leaf will depend on your local electricity costs. That can vary a lot.
It has a 24 kWh battery. National average cost for electricity is 11 cents per kWh. So on average it costs about $2.64 to charge the battery. Then you get say 70 miles out of that. That comes out to about 3.8 cents per mile.
Compare to a car that gets 25 MPG average. If gas is $3.50 then you're paying 14 cents per mile.
If you drive 12,000 miles a year the Leaf will cost you about $452 a year in electricity to operate. The 25MPG car will cost you $1680.

Thats about $100/month savings. Or more like $50/month versus a Prius.

Of course individual savings will depend on all the variables.


I'm interested in one of these but not sure if it makes sense, financially, at this time. My wife drives a '09 Rav4 and I drive a '93 Camry XLE. We probably spend at least between $200-300 and higher per month, combined. The Rav4 gets a little better mpg than the Camry but also uses regular unleaded. The Camry takes premium, unfortunately.

Anyway, both cars are paid off - in fact, the Camry was more of a hand-me-down so I'm pretty lucky not to have paid for it. Not considering maintenance costs, etc of course.

I've never leased or purchased a car before... so with this deal, do you pay exactly $1999 down and then pay $199 per month for 36 months? And is this *before* any of the CA incentive rebates? Besides taxes, cost of electricity, and maintenance, are there any other additional or hidden fees?

The Camry still runs really well, and I'm wondering if it's even worth pursuing buying a new car versus just driving the one I have into the ground to get the most out of it and save.

Good deal on these, but its sad we can't just use the technology that allows Europeans to get 70+ mpg diesels for years. And sadly, many how these high mileage diesels are made in the USA as well!

http://www.volkswagen.co.uk/about-us/news/433/a-real-family-car-...

"With its 50-litre fuel tank and 88.3 mpg fuel consumption, the new Golf has a theoretical range of 970 miles. Assuming an average annual driving distance of 15,000 km (approx. 9,300 miles), most drivers will only have to refuel ten times a year."

Sadly, our government does not allow these cars to be sold in the US for "economic reasons", those being the decreased road tax collected off gas when cars get 70+ mpg.

I'm all for being green when the bottom line saves me money, and I would much rather have a reliable Diesel engine years down the line when the battery in the leaf dies and is now toxic waste.

That said, green deal on the lease on the leaf, again we don't have much to compete with it sadly is all I wanted to point out

My friend has one of these and we went out a few weeks ago, she went back to her car around 1 in them morning and NADA (this is in CA where it doesn't get that cold). Car would not start up or anything, completely dead. Towed to Nissan the next day and they couldn't find out what was wrong with it but now she is just waiting to be stranded again.

jplee3 said:   
I'm interested in one of these but not sure if it makes sense, financially, at this time. My wife drives a '09 Rav4 and I drive a '93 Camry XLE. We probably spend at least between $200-300 and higher per month, combined. The Rav4 gets a little better mpg than the Camry but also uses regular unleaded. The Camry takes premium, unfortunately.

Anyway, both cars are paid off - in fact, the Camry was more of a hand-me-down so I'm pretty lucky not to have paid for it. Not considering maintenance costs, etc of course.

I've never leased or purchased a car before... so with this deal, do you pay exactly $1999 down and then pay $199 per month for 36 months? And is this *before* any of the CA incentive rebates? Besides taxes, cost of electricity, and maintenance, are there any other additional or hidden fees?

The Camry still runs really well, and I'm wondering if it's even worth pursuing buying a new car versus just driving the one I have into the ground to get the most out of it and save.


I'm in the same boat - with one of the cars being a 2008 Camry. I've never leased a car before, though - and we (my wife and I) would certainly jump on this deal if it did make financial sense. It appears there are taxes and other fees to go along with the 1999 down and 199/month - so I, too, am interested in the total price out-of-pocket monthly. It's a pretty close call, given that our gas costs do equate to ~200-300 a month too. Is it normal for the dealer to handle all maintenance in a lease situation? If that were true, that would help the bottom-line too (although, I guess since this isn't an ICE, there are no oil changes that have to be made). Might just sell one car to avoid 3 years of depreciation while used car prices are holding up...

should buy the 2013 model, the LEAF has a cooling problem with older model. cooler weather works well.

jerosen said:   The cost to operate the Leaf will depend on your local electricity costs. That can vary a lot.
It has a 24 kWh battery. National average cost for electricity is 11 cents per kWh. So on average it costs about $2.64 to charge the battery. Then you get say 70 miles out of that. That comes out to about 3.8 cents per mile.
Compare to a car that gets 25 MPG average. If gas is $3.50 then you're paying 14 cents per mile.
If you drive 12,000 miles a year the Leaf will cost you about $452 a year in electricity to operate. The 25MPG car will cost you $1680.

Thats about $100/month savings. Or more like $50/month versus a Prius.

Of course individual savings will depend on all the variables.


Good post and example but don't forget about the other costs that make the Leaf cheaper - no oil changes, tuneups, cooling or trans service and brakes last forever with regen. I think pretty much all you'd need are tires but I haven't looked at the Leaf's maint schedule.

EDIT: according to this CU article, cooling flushes are required at same interval as gas cars, and they say brake fluid changes are more frequent but can't figure out why. But few people get brake fluid changed anyway so both of these are kind of a wash. The real savings are in not having to do oil and trans fluid changes (and no need for brakes) since gas engine tuneups are infrequent now too.

GTFan said:   jerosen said:   The cost to operate the Leaf will depend on your local electricity costs. That can vary a lot.
It has a 24 kWh battery. National average cost for electricity is 11 cents per kWh. So on average it costs about $2.64 to charge the battery. Then you get say 70 miles out of that. That comes out to about 3.8 cents per mile.
Compare to a car that gets 25 MPG average. If gas is $3.50 then you're paying 14 cents per mile.
If you drive 12,000 miles a year the Leaf will cost you about $452 a year in electricity to operate. The 25MPG car will cost you $1680.

Thats about $100/month savings. Or more like $50/month versus a Prius.

Of course individual savings will depend on all the variables.


Good post and example but don't forget about the other costs that make the Leaf cheaper - no oil changes, tuneups, cooling or trans service and brakes last forever with regen. I think pretty much all you'd need are tires but I haven't looked at the Leaf's maint schedule.

EDIT: according to this CU article, cooling flushes are required at same interval as gas cars, and they say brake fluid changes are more frequent but can't figure out why. But few people get brake fluid changed anyway so both of these are kind of a wash. The real savings are in not having to do oil and trans fluid changes (and no need for brakes) since gas engine tuneups are infrequent now too.


Don't you still need to replace the brake pads though? And also, aren't most of these savings really meaningful if you own the car in the long-run versus a 3-year lease? Guess it depends on how much you drive, etc.

garbage car and garbage deal.

tpchau said:   

My co-worker just leased one. She said the number of miles remaining keeps dropping when she turns on the AC.
If that's true, it's kind of sucks in the summer!


Someone failed high school science. However, in all seriousness, running the A/C uses electricity very quickly.

The car will not be meaningful or useful for most people for the 36 month duration, so much of this discussion is irrelevant. Remember that the stated range is for a full battery discharge - charge to 100% (which Nissan does not recommend) and drive to full battery discharge (vs to the Low Battery Warning which comes on around 15 miles). Full battery discharge is analagous to driving until you run out of gas to figure out how far one can go on a tank of gas - it's interesting, but not reality of everyday life.

Nissan recommends charging to 80% to "extend" battery life - but their own data shows capacity loss of 10%.
Most people want to have at least 15 miles available as a "cushion" at the end of their drive (what if you hit traffic, need to make sidetrip, etc...)
There is AT LEAST a 10% capacity loss per year (it is considerably higher rate of loss in So Cal, AZ, NV, NM)

So, after 24 months: 73miles range (new car 100% charge per EPA) x80% (Nissan recommended charging) - 7.3 miles (after first year) - 6.6 miles (after second year) - 15 miles (unless you want to coast into home with zero miles left)

So: after 24 months, you only have 29 miles of usable range per charge!!!

http://www.mynissanleaf.com/viewtopic.php?f=30&t=9694

(I own a LEAF, electric vehicles are great... it's just that Nissan failed to put in a battery temperature management system and thus the capacity falls way too fast for this size of battery)

great car to lease for 24 months max, though.

Anything electric/gas hybrid like the Volt, Prius plug-in, etc. will also need all the regular maintenance that an all-gas engine powered car will need. Oil changes, tune ups, air filters, etc. So maintenance cost is higher for those compared to purely electric vehicles. Trade-off is that you get unlimited combined range albeit the further you drive the lower your mpg goes.

I'm not sure where everyone is getting their real-world numbers for range on the Leaf, but here in the San Francisco Bay Area, I easily get 100+ miles with regular/conservative driving. Not exceeding the speed limit, coasting when possible, etc. If I hyper-mile, I could probably edge that up to 110-120. Weather is mild here, so A/C use is minimal (also energy spent cooling the battery is minimal).

Cost wise, a full 24 kWh charge costs me $4.56, which means that it's $1.52 to go 33 miles, assuming 100 miles/charge. That's less than half the price of gas. If you can charge at work or anywhere else for free, your out of pocket costs go down even more.

I'm not sure how Toyota got the plug-in Prius to qualify for the HOV sticker with a <20 mile electric range, but if you were to have only one car, yes a electric/gas hybrid would be the best option over the Leaf. I have a "regular" hybrid SUV for traveling, so the Leaf makes for the perfect commute/weekend car. To each his own.

leprechanmonkie said:   Sadly, our government does not allow these cars to be sold in the US for "economic reasons", those being the decreased road tax collected off gas when cars get 70+ mpg.


This can't be true can it? I know CA wanted to change current gas tax to charge by the mile driven because of high efficiency cars, but this seems like some sort of conspiracy theory.

This is reply to the British VW website that shows 80+ MPG

http://wiki.answers.com/Q/US_Gallon_vs_Imperial_Gallon

an imperial gallon is 1.2x an US gallon

GoBears98 said:   Anything electric/gas hybrid like the Volt, Prius plug-in, etc. will also need all the regular maintenance that an all-gas engine powered car will need. Oil changes, tune ups, air filters, etc. So maintenance cost is higher for those compared to purely electric vehicles. Trade-off is that you get unlimited combined range albeit the further you drive the lower your mpg goes.

I'm not sure where everyone is getting their real-world numbers for range on the Leaf, but here in the San Francisco Bay Area, I easily get 100+ miles with regular/conservative driving. Not exceeding the speed limit, coasting when possible, etc. If I hyper-mile, I could probably edge that up to 110-120. Weather is mild here, so A/C use is minimal (also energy spent cooling the battery is minimal).

Cost wise, a full 24 kWh charge costs me $4.56, which means that it's $1.52 to go 33 miles, assuming 100 miles/charge. That's less than half the price of gas. If you can charge at work or anywhere else for free, your out of pocket costs go down even more.

I'm not sure how Toyota got the plug-in Prius to qualify for the HOV sticker with a <20 mile electric range, but if you were to have only one car, yes a electric/gas hybrid would be the best option over the Leaf. I have a "regular" hybrid SUV for traveling, so the Leaf makes for the perfect commute/weekend car. To each his own.


Are you leasing or did you purchase or pay it off? It sounds like it makes most sense to lease EVs, as alluded to and suggested previously; taking into consideration the fact that the battery life and durability is YTBD. In other words, leasing is a good way to play it safe. I'm wondering though, once I get into the market for a new car, if it would make the most sense for me just to lease a Leaf or if I should invest in buying a hybrid or just a regular w/ good mileage. I'm thinking the latter would be the most economical still, at this point in time, especially if buying used.

sflv said:   leprechanmonkie said:   Sadly, our government does not allow these cars to be sold in the US for "economic reasons", those being the decreased road tax collected off gas when cars get 70+ mpg.


This can't be true can it? I know CA wanted to change current gas tax to charge by the mile driven because of high efficiency cars, but this seems like some sort of conspiracy theory.
It's one of those urban myths, partly because the Euro-gallon is 20% larger than the US-gallon, and partly because European emissions standards are lower allowing their cars to pollute more.

jplee3 said:   Are you leasing or did you purchase or pay it off? It sounds like it makes most sense to lease EVs, as alluded to and suggested previously; taking into consideration the fact that the battery life and durability is YTBD. In other words, leasing is a good way to play it safe. I'm wondering though, once I get into the market for a new car, if it would make the most sense for me just to lease a Leaf or if I should invest in buying a hybrid or just a regular w/ good mileage. I'm thinking the latter would be the most economical still, at this point in time, especially if buying used.
It depends on how you drive. If you can stick to mostly highway going ~55-65mph, then a fuel efficient regular car won't cost that much more than a hybrid. If you lead foot it and/or drive a lot in the city a hybrid will get way better mileage. Just for comparison, at ~60mph in the summer I would get ~45mpg highway with the last gen Corolla, and ~55mpg with the last gen Prius. Otoh in city driving or at higher speeds the Corolla would drop to ~25-35mpg, but the Prius would stick to ~45mpg. Even my girlfriend has trouble getting the Prius below 40mpg, and she'll do ~22mpg all day long in her A3.

peas said:   sflv said:   leprechanmonkie said:   Sadly, our government does not allow these cars to be sold in the US for "economic reasons", those being the decreased road tax collected off gas when cars get 70+ mpg.


This can't be true can it? I know CA wanted to change current gas tax to charge by the mile driven because of high efficiency cars, but this seems like some sort of conspiracy theory.
It's one of those urban myths, partly because the Euro-gallon is 20% larger than the US-gallon, and partly because European emissions standards are lower allowing their cars to pollute more.
Not only do they have man sized gallons, but they also have easier fuel economy tests. Here's a link to a list comparing the fuel economy of the most efficient cars in he UK...

http://carfueldata.direct.gov.uk/search-by-ved-band.aspx?step=2&...

In terms of why we don't see smaller cars here, diesels and otherwise, that comes down to size. As we can see, while the Prius isn't the most fuel efficient vehicle in the UK (the Yaris hybrid is, with similarly size diesels coming in very close), most people aren't willing to get into a compact car to go from ~45mpg to ~50mpg, which is the real reason why we don't see small diesels here in the US. If we had European gas prices that would probably change, but until we do people will probably choose 45mpg in a mid-size Prius (or fusion, or whatever) over 50mpg in a compact Smart/Kia/etc...

lyeinyoureye said:   jplee3 said:   Are you leasing or did you purchase or pay it off? It sounds like it makes most sense to lease EVs, as alluded to and suggested previously; taking into consideration the fact that the battery life and durability is YTBD. In other words, leasing is a good way to play it safe. I'm wondering though, once I get into the market for a new car, if it would make the most sense for me just to lease a Leaf or if I should invest in buying a hybrid or just a regular w/ good mileage. I'm thinking the latter would be the most economical still, at this point in time, especially if buying used.
It depends on how you drive. If you can stick to mostly highway going ~55-65mph, then a fuel efficient regular car won't cost that much more than a hybrid. If you lead foot it and/or drive a lot in the city a hybrid will get way better mileage. Just for comparison, at ~60mph in the summer I would get ~45mpg highway with the last gen Corolla, and ~55mpg with the last gen Prius. Otoh in city driving or at higher speeds the Corolla would drop to ~25-35mpg, but the Prius would stick to ~45mpg. Even my girlfriend has trouble getting the Prius below 40mpg, and she'll do ~22mpg all day long in her A3.



That's true... I think I may gravitate more towards a lead foot. My commute to work is only 5-6 miles each way and my wife probably drives about 7-8 each way, so we're both relatively close. Of course, it's the weekends that we'll go out and also make occasionally trips up to her parents who are 60 miles aways (so roughly 120-130 miles on one weekend out of the month).

Even though it's tempting to get a new car and get better mileage/performance/etc, I think I'll probably save more in the long-run if I can hold off and keep driving the Camry until it's almost completely un-driveable. I don't even know how much I'd be able to sell it for - it's in pretty good condition though

OP's deal works in Seattle area, but can't find any dealers with SV models in stock...seems like all SLs...?

DiamondJim22 said:   There are a small handful of public quick chargers available. They can put an 80% charge on the Leaf in about half an hour. Charging fees at one of the more available stations is $7 per 1/2 hour.

prastogi said:   
thanks,

looks like its hard to find charging stations, definitely hope the next version is faster charging 7-8hrs is still too much. Some employers are installing pay-stations for electric cars - that will help....


Wow, hardly sounds like a bargain to me. If an 80% charge is enough to get your 64 miles, then you are paying $7 to go 64 miles. By comparison, a fuel efficient gas car can do perhaps 40 mpg, and at $4/gallon its 9.2 miles per dollar on the Leaf and 10 miles per dollar on the gas powered. You also get limited range, limited charging availability, and relatively lengthy "refueling" times. Plus, to be blunt, 80% charge in a half hour cannot be good for the batteries.

peas said:   sflv said:   leprechanmonkie said:   Sadly, our government does not allow these cars to be sold in the US for "economic reasons", those being the decreased road tax collected off gas when cars get 70+ mpg.


This can't be true can it? I know CA wanted to change current gas tax to charge by the mile driven because of high efficiency cars, but this seems like some sort of conspiracy theory.
It's one of those urban myths, partly because the Euro-gallon is 20% larger than the US-gallon, and partly because European emissions standards are lower allowing their cars to pollute more.


What the heck is a Euro Gallon?

An Imperial Gallon = 4.546L
A US Gallon = 3.8L

I'm a Brit (Scottish) and it's a bit weird over that way in the UK - we buy fuel in Litres but talk about Miles per Gallon (never L/100km) buy all our food in Kilos and grams but buy a Pint (20oz) at the pub and say yeah he is about 6' tall.

We're pretty messed up for sure but they don't use Gallons in the rest of Europe just Litres.

hpmax said:   Wow, hardly sounds like a bargain to me. If an 80% charge is enough to get your 64 miles, then you are paying $7 to go 64 miles. By comparison, a fuel efficient gas car can do perhaps 40 mpg, and at $4/gallon its 9.2 miles per dollar on the Leaf and 10 miles per dollar on the gas powered. You also get limited range, limited charging availability, and relatively lengthy "refueling" times. Plus, to be blunt, 80% charge in a half hour cannot be good for the batteries. Yes, most of the for-profit QC stations are not really a good deal unless you needed them in a pinch (ie, you were going on a trip farther than your range). As for the battery, L2 (QC) stations should not degrade them because they use higher voltage (500-1000V, IOW they're charging many battery cells in parallel simultaneously) rather than current.

For longevity:
1. Keep battery between 20-80% charge whenever possible
2. Keep battery at warm temperatures whenever possible (neither cold nor hot)
3. When you do go above 80% charge, reduce current (12A may be ideal for <80% and 16A acceptable, but this should ramp down to a couple as you approach 100%).

I believe the Volt does all three automatically for the user while the Leaf requires the user to be knowledgeable and responsible (bad assumption on the leases, especially in very hot and cold states).

jerosen said:   The cost to operate the Leaf will depend on your local electricity costs. That can vary a lot.


A true FWer will always use a public charge station where the electricity is FREE. So the cost to operate is next to negligible.

hpmax said:   DiamondJim22 said:   There are a small handful of public quick chargers available. They can put an 80% charge on the Leaf in about half an hour. Charging fees at one of the more available stations is $7 per 1/2 hour.

prastogi said:   
thanks,

looks like its hard to find charging stations, definitely hope the next version is faster charging 7-8hrs is still too much. Some employers are installing pay-stations for electric cars - that will help....


Wow, hardly sounds like a bargain to me. If an 80% charge is enough to get your 64 miles, then you are paying $7 to go 64 miles. By comparison, a fuel efficient gas car can do perhaps 40 mpg, and at $4/gallon its 9.2 miles per dollar on the Leaf and 10 miles per dollar on the gas powered. You also get limited range, limited charging availability, and relatively lengthy "refueling" times. Plus, to be blunt, 80% charge in a half hour cannot be good for the batteries.


Most people aren't going to use an expensive public charger like that for the majority of their charging needs. Most charging will be done at home where it will cost a few bucks to charge; even less if your utility has an off-peak rate at night.

IMO Prius is a better buy and your calculations are a bit off

Cost of gas for Prius in your example would be $1680/2 = $840
So net savings with leaf would be $840 - $452 = $382 or $32 per month or $1100 over 3 years

Is it really worth paying 7-8k upfront on leaf when you can buy a Prius for about 18K and sell it 3 years later for 14-15k? Plus in my experience with Prius, it is impossible to remain under 12k per year. I normally use Prius for most of my driving and put on 20k miles per year. If I replicate that situation to Leaf, lease overrun would be devastating. Also we are going to need offices to put charging stations out. If charging at work is not an option and your commute is 70 miles, you are going to need a full charge overnight. But that is not going to happen on 120V. So install 240V charger. That charger has to be outside the home too because my garage cannot hold a car any more. Don't know how many people use garage for vehicles but most I see in CA have cars outside

Idea is nice for limited situations. Needs work to be practical in most situations

jerosen said:   The cost to operate the Leaf will depend on your local electricity costs. That can vary a lot.
It has a 24 kWh battery. National average cost for electricity is 11 cents per kWh. So on average it costs about $2.64 to charge the battery. Then you get say 70 miles out of that. That comes out to about 3.8 cents per mile.
Compare to a car that gets 25 MPG average. If gas is $3.50 then you're paying 14 cents per mile.
If you drive 12,000 miles a year the Leaf will cost you about $452 a year in electricity to operate. The 25MPG car will cost you $1680.

Thats about $100/month savings. Or more like $50/month versus a Prius.

Of course individual savings will depend on all the variables.

needdealsnow said:   IMO Prius is a better buy and your calculations are a bit off

Cost of gas for Prius in your example would be $1680/2 = $840
So net savings with leaf would be $840 - $452 = $382 or $32 per month or $1100 over 3 years

Is it really worth paying 7-8k upfront on leaf when you can buy a Prius for about 18K and sell it 3 years later for 14-15k? Plus in my experience with Prius, it is impossible to remain under 12k per year. I normally use Prius for most of my driving and put on 20k miles per year. If I replicate that situation to Leaf, lease overrun would be devastating. Also we are going to need offices to put charging stations out. If charging at work is not an option and your commute is 70 miles, you are going to need a full charge overnight. But that is not going to happen on 120V. So install 240V charger. That charger has to be outside the home too because my garage cannot hold a car any more. Don't know how many people use garage for vehicles but most I see in CA have cars outside

Idea is nice for limited situations. Needs work to be practical in most situations

jerosen said:   The cost to operate the Leaf will depend on your local electricity costs. That can vary a lot.
It has a 24 kWh battery. National average cost for electricity is 11 cents per kWh. So on average it costs about $2.64 to charge the battery. Then you get say 70 miles out of that. That comes out to about 3.8 cents per mile.
Compare to a car that gets 25 MPG average. If gas is $3.50 then you're paying 14 cents per mile.
If you drive 12,000 miles a year the Leaf will cost you about $452 a year in electricity to operate. The 25MPG car will cost you $1680.

Thats about $100/month savings. Or more like $50/month versus a Prius.

Of course individual savings will depend on all the variables.


Where did you get your pricing on the Prius for $18k? Are there rebates on them as well or something? I see the lowest model is $24k MSRP but more likely $20-22k at invoice...

You are right. This price is on 18 month old used cars. I bought 09 MY Prius with 28k miles in Dec 10 for 15.7K + tax

needdealsnow said:   You are right. This price is on 18 month old used cars. I bought 09 MY Prius with 28k miles in Dec 10 for 15.7K + tax

Nice... they don't offer rebates/incentives any more unless it's clean EV (pure electric) huh?

needdealsnow said:   If charging at work is not an option and your commute is 70 miles, you are going to need a full charge overnight. But that is not going to happen on 120V. So install 240V charger. That charger has to be outside the home too because my garage cannot hold a car any more. Don't know how many people use garage for vehicles but most I see in CA have cars outside The average person age 21-64 drives ~40mi/day and USAA tells me the median car is insured for 14k mi/yr (or 38mi/day). So 70 miles for all driving is significantly higher, much less 70 for a work commute alone. The majority of households don't need to charge at 240V (if they drive carefully) and will have a second, gas based car as a backup (usually to use for long distance trips or special purposes). The minority that you speak of can either get access to a plug at or near work, install a 240V charger, simply run a special (50') charge cord from a 240V plug hidden in their cluttered garage, or just clean out room in the garage.

Just to chime in about the Euro mileage - it's not all larger gallons and smaller cars. Compact Diesel engines are all the rage over there, and when combined with hybrid technology, you can get some outrageous numbers - think 70+mpg (and that's US gallons!) with the Peugeot 308 Diesel hybrid. 40-50mpg isn't anything terribly special there.

More pollution used to be the case, but Europe is pretty darn strict about that sort of thing these days - if you've been there, you've seen how sorting trash (like you'd see at Whole Foods here) is the norm, and the huge prevalence of diesels doesn't seem to be polluting the air at all.

Conspiracy theorists can have a field day with why more diesels aren't sold here (and I wouldn't be surprised if some of it's true), but some of it is also cultural - we Yanks are just used to big gas engines.



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