Sunday, June 29, 2014

Finally Nissan offers Replacement LEAF Battery Pack, for $5,500

The battery pack is the single most expensive component in a plug-in vehicle and, until now, figuring out the cost to replace one has been a bit of a mystery. Last year, Nissan tried a $100/month price for a new battery in its popular Leaf, but was loudly criticized for that attempt. Today, Nissan is changing gears with a big announcement regarding the price of a new pack for your Nissan Leaf: $5,500 to buy. With an asterisk.

Nissan's Brian Brockman, writing at My Nissan Leaf, announced that Nissan Leaf replacement batteries are now available to purchase at certified Leaf dealers in the US at a suggested retail price of $5,499. These packs are the ones found in 2015 Leaf models, which are similar to the ones the Leaf has always had, just with a different, better battery chemistry. To buy a new pack, you need to give Nissan your original battery pack (which Nissan says will be recycled and has a value of $1,000) and the $5,500 "does not include tax, installation fees or an installation kit required for 2011 and 2012 vehicles." That kit costs around $225. A $100/month financing program will still be available (details will be made available later) but now it will have an end date and the driver will own the pack at the end of the payment process. All replacement packs will have the same eight-year, 100,000-mile warranty as the battery in a new Leaf. You can read Brockman's full statement below or over on My Nissan Leaf.

Ever since the Leaf entered the market in late 2010, Nissan has been dealing with degrading battery issue, both as a real thing (in warm climates like Arizona) and as a worry in the mind of potential customers. Now that we know how much it'll cost to get a new pack, we can calculate that the overall cost for a new 24-kWh pack is now officially $6,500. That means the price to a customer is less than $270-per-kWh. That's quite low compared to some early estimates, right on target with others and a very big deal for EV shoppers and drivers out there.

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