Nissan's Mark Perry: We're Investigating Arizona's Wilting Leafs

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More than two months after a few Nissan Leafs in Arizona began to lose capacity bars in the extreme heat and suffer premature battery aging, Nissan has started formal investigations into the issue. 

While being interviewed over the telephone by Arizona’s KPHO 5 station in Phoenix, Mark Perry, Nissan North America’s product planning and advanced technology director, confirmed the automaker was looking into the problem. 

“We wanna learn more about what’s going on,” said Perry, confirming that Nissan has received five complaints from Phoenix Leaf owners about rapid battery capacity loss. 

“It’s something that we’ve just been made aware of, and we don’t have any conclusions as yet,” he continued. 

Perry’s statements mark a change in Nissan’s corporate stance on the issue, which to date has been to reiterate that battery life is dependent on how the car is driven and charged.

2011 Nissan Leaf SL

2011 Nissan Leaf SL

Enlarge Photo

The change in public stance coincides with the news that several Leaf owners in Arizona are now reporting that their Leafs have lost a third capacity bar, indicating their car’s battery pack capacity is around 70 percent of what it was when new. 

Back in 2009, Nissan executives said the Leaf battery pack would retain 70 to 80 percent of its charge capacity after five years, and only reach 70 percent capacity after 10 years. 

Meanwhile, many more owners in states with prolonged high summer temperatures have noticed their Leafs have started to lose battery capacity bars, with as little as a few weeks passing between the loss of the first and second bars.  

While investigations continue at Nissan, it has indicated it does not believe the cases to be a major problem, but has asked Leaf owners with similar complaints who have taken their cars to their dealers to ensure that Nissan’s regional technical service manager has been called before they leave the dealership. 


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Comments (9)
  1. Did that guy say he used to be able to drive 90 miles and now can only drive 44 miles?

  2. Thanks for picking up the story, Nikki. What I find very amusing is Mark's statement about wanting to know more about the issue. If they want to better understand the issue, it's interesting that those with the worst capacity loss in Phoenix are being sent home *with* their vehicles and told (from corporate) that the loss is "normal."

  3. Mark said/what that meant
    "we know of 5 reports so far" (not in this article but a statement made to TV"/ damage control

    "We wanna learn more about what’s going on," said Perry/ stall tactic

    "It’s something that we’ve just been made aware of, and we don’t have any conclusions as yet,"/ our hopes of it not manifesting itself until TN was up and running did not work...

    other than that. i wonder if the TV station encouraged the "44 mile" statement

  4. This should help Focus EV sales or Volt sales.

    I just hope that this problem does NOT give EV community a "black eye" or more fuels for the naysayers.

  5. I sincerely hope Nissan does these folks "right" as it will give all *EVs a bad name including the one I drive.

    Here is a post today by the person involved in the news report. They were contacted by Nissan. See response:
    (quote-begin)We just got our call-back today on our case. Coincidence? Here is a summary...

    * In our original request, we asked them to buy back the car. Their final decision was no.
    * I asked if they had any other proposed remedies. Answer: no.
    * I asked if Nissan is acknowledging an issue with our car or Leafs in general. Answer: The car is still meeting specifications and the capacity loss is to be expected with batteries.
    * It was suggested that we contact the BBB. Done.(quote-begin)
    Google search above for more info.

  6. This is why you should ALWAYS LEASE a EV right now, and not buy. After 2-3-5 years, you hand it back in, no skin off your back, and get a newer model that has all these 'early-adopter' kinks worked out. I don't understand why people are getting so upset at this..

  7. B/c those people are so into their "Pure EV" that Leaf can have no fault...

  8. My LEAF still retains 100% of battery capacity. I attribute this to the mild temps here in the pacific Northwest and baby the batteries. As for the Arizona LEAF owners I hope Nissan addresses their concerns and does right by them. If they don't this will be the last Nissan I buy.

  9. That's right Mark, Play the blame game. Surely your junk is beyond reproach as are you. Enjoy that fat bonus you just earned!

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