Current Nissan Leaf-owners and prospective buyers can sleep a little easier, as the automaker has announced it will amend the existing warranty to cover battery life, Automotive News reports. The electric hatchback’s original warranty made no mention of battery life loss, but Nissan will now replace the lithium-ion battery pack if a car shows fewer than nine of the 12 bars on the battery gauge – a loss of more than 30 percent – after five years or 60,000 miles, whichever comes first.
The warranty amendment works retroactively, and applies to all U.S. Leaf models sold through model-year 2013. The announcement was made in a letter from Nissan executive vice president Andy Palmer published on Leaf-owner site Mynissanleaf.com. In the letter, Palmer says Nissan has been working to ensure Leaf batteries are operating within specification, in response to numerous complaints regarding battery life. The loudest of those complaints came from seven Leaf-owners in Phoenix, Ariz., who claimed their EVs were fading much faster than Nissan’s estimate of a 20-percent loss after five years. However, after Nissan’s engineers flew out to Phoenix to see what was up, they determined these owners were putting twice the normal mileage on their cars, according to Automotive News.
Nissan also claims the new battery warranty is the first of its kind, as it covers excessive loss of charge capacity. The Leaf’s battery warranty previously protected against battery failure for eight years or 100,000 miles. That warranty is matched by its range-extended EV competitor Chevy Volt, which currently offers no concessions for loss of battery life.
Source: Automotive News (Subscription required)