Leaf battery could cost £19k

11 Aug, 2011 7:09pm

Nissan UK vice-president says the cost of a replacement battery could hit £19,392

It’s finally been revealed how much a replacement battery pack could cost for an electric car – and it’s more than the price of a brand new diesel model.

Nissan UK senior vice-president Andy Palmer has said the Leaf hatch’s lithium-ion power source consists of 48 modules, each costing £404 to replace. So owners could face a bill of up to £19,392 for a new pack – that’s £727 more than the £18,665 list price of a VW Golf BlueMotion.

The Japanese firm has also revealed that battery capacity will drop by at least a fifth after five years. When new, the Leaf’s lithium-ion pack has a 24kWh capacity – enough for a 100-mile range. But Nissan said: “Our tests suggest that the battery will be at 80 per cent capacity after five years, depending on charging and usage.” Bosses also revealed that the cell’s five-year warranty does not cover degradation.

A spokeswoman told us the £19,000 replacement figure was not representative of what owners would pay in the real world. “It’s unlikely all 48 modules would need to be replaced,” she said. “The cost of a conventional engine and transmission built up from individually sourced parts would be similarly high.”

The firm expects battery units to decrease in price substantially by 2013, when its Sunderland plant will start producing an estimated 500,000 packs a year.

Used Leaf batteries are to get a second life storing power from wind and solar energy schemes – and this will help protect residual values. Trade expert CAP predicts the Leaf will retain £10,770 or 41.44 per cent of its price after three years/30,000 miles.

Disqus - noscript

And if you tried to build a car from spares it would be a lot more expensive than a whole new one at a dealer.

You even say in the 4th paragraph this is a non-story so why run it? Pretty sure you got it from the Times, anyway.

Batteries aren't thrown away they are refurbished at a fraction of the cost of new ones. There are Toyota RAV 4 EVs that have reached 150000 miles on original batteries and 200000 on refurbished ones.

Surely the "story" is the 20% reduction in range. Given that road tests have shown the real-world range with confidence is 60 miles - a 20% reduction means 48 miles.

Or is the story more based on the statement: The firm expects battery units to decrease in price substantially by 2013, when its Sunderland plant will start producing an estimated 500,000 packs a year.
Will global demand mean the price of battery packs will get worse rather than better?

The author assumes that the price per module is scalable to multiple module replacement. However even the slightest research would have permitted an understanding that the quoted figure of "48 modules, each costing £404 to replace" includes the cost to lift the vehicle, remove the battery, disassemble the battery, test for which module is bad, replace the module and reverse the procedure.

If research has failed than at least semantics should have been a clue. This is the cost "to replace" not the "cost per unit." On such a foundation of sand the headline becomes at the best sensationalism and is appropriately characterized as “Yellow Journalism.”

NIMH can recharge in 15 minutes! see bottom.
We did a test with LI-Ion vs NIMH and NIMH won hands down. (We over discharged 2 small cells from cordless phones both to zero volts, the NIMH came back up and ran normally, the Li-ion never woke up again. Also MIT tried to run an electric car cross country to calif on LI-Ion, but only got as far as ILLinois? Toyota spent a whole year evaluating Li-Ion for prius , then inexplicably decided to stay with NIMH> they also say that if you run NIMH WITHIN 40-80% that there is ZERO DEGRADATION , meaning what: that they will last beyond lifetime of car. Is that why TEXACO BOUGHT THE NIMH PATENT FROM GM AND CURTAILED large format nimh battery PRODUCTION AT SAME TIME AS RAISING PRICES 20X HIGHER. Toyota has already built the large format types , got sued by texaco, had to go back to medium size stacked pack types, is wating until 2014 to go into full production again. NIMH is really the best but it has to be managed for HEAT and overcharging/ over discharging (stick to 40-80% range). inventpeace.com for original copy of 1995 ad from GM for NIMH battery showing 15 minutes RECHARGE.

but you can see why Texaco wanted to suprress it so badly.


Starting in 2014 we should start seeing the cheap NIMH batteries in the large format (so far suppressed ) that toyota got sued for making in 2004. In 1998 the price was rumored to be only $50-$60 for the large version and the GM EV1 only needed 14 of them to operate at 70 mph for distances of over 130miles, and recharge to 80% in only 15 minutes.

NiMh can't offer the current output that newer Lithium cells can.

NiMh can't offer the same energy density as Lithium.

Battery management systems for Lithium batteries has improved greatly and like NiMh it will never allow complete charge or discharge.

The Gen II leaf will have a much better battery and about 200 miles range, it will last much longer too.

Eventually, the battery prices will go down

Auto Express 1,372
For more breaking car news and reviews, subscribe to Auto Express - available as a weekly magazine and on your iPad. We'll give you 6 issues for £1 and a free gift!

Sponsored Links