Monday, September 24, 2012

LEAF - Phoenix Range Test Wrap up by Tony Williams

Time line:
- Several LEAF owners from hot weather locations, mostly in Arizona, reported battery capacity loss, up to 30% more or less for the worst one
- Nissan took some cars back to study them and sent some engineers from Japan to the US for that
- Andy Palmer, Nissan's Executive Vice President in the US, said, in Australia last week, that it was a instrumentation problem
- Carlos Ghosn, Nissan's CEO, on his side is saying there is no problem at all and that a new battery, with more energy density and less weight, is on the way
- Tony Williams conducted a precise test with 12 LEAFs (including his, the one on the picture) in Arizona to demonstrate that Nissan is wrong and that there is a battery loss issue

But, but, but .... Jack Rickard from EVTV has something very interesting to say about this problem, and the outcome could be that it is really an instrumentation / BMS (Battery Management System) problem: "LEAF people are talking in terms of Bars and Turtles"  (referring to the LEAF battery gage showing 12 bars fully charged and the Turtle sign coming on when the battery is completely depleted) ...

and that a current sensor (hall effect), damaged by too much heat, could get a wrong reading of used kWh used, because voltages in turtle mode was very different from LEAF to LEAF in this test ...
More on this soon ....

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