Weather Or Not: Nissan's Leaf Range Influenced By Barometric Pressure

Cammy Corrigan
by Cammy Corrigan

weather or not nissan s leaf range influenced by barometric pressure

While GM has problems trying to get the Volt price point to a point where customers won’t suffer a coronary (even with help from the DC sugar daddies), Nissan has a few problems of their own. Nissan is still reeling from the news that a Nissan Leaf would save you the princely sum of $361. Now, Automotive News [sub] reports another black eye on Nissan’s “Prius Killer”. Automotive News says that Nissan’s “100 miles range” may be slightly off in real world conditions. How far off?

How do 38 percent grab you? 38 percent? That leafs something to be desired! (I’m here all week.) As Automotive News puts it, “consider the following scenarios outlined during a recent Leaf test drive:

  • If your Leaf is stuck in stop-and-go traffic, doing 15 mph on a cold winter day with the heater on, you can count on a range of around 62 miles, said the car’s chief engineer, Hidetoshi Kadota.
  • If it’s a hot day, in the 90s, and you’re cruising down the road at 48 mph, your full-charge range would be about 70 miles before having to plug in again to juice up the lithium ion batteries.
  • If the weather’s perfect with no need for air conditioning, you can get 105 miles in normal city-highway driving. And when touring the countryside at a steady 38 mph, the range climbs to 138 miles.” (Will Nissan give you free earplugs, so that you can ignore the honking cars behind you?)

Wow. Who’d have thunk it? Driving conditions and use of air conditioning may vary ones fuel economy figures? What next will they tell us? That electric cars are zero emission? Oh hang on, they DID try that one. After this revelation, Nissan sought to maintain the validity of the Leaf. “Depending on the way you use the air conditioning and the driving mode, the autonomy varies largely,” said the car’s chief engineer, Hidetoshi Kadota. “This is a physical characteristic of electric vehicles.”. Well, that and the tax subsidies.

I see it coming: “Shall we drive over to grandma?” “The weather is glorious. We might not make it back home.”

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  • Kray007 Kray007 on Jun 25, 2010

    The problem is that, with my gasoline powered car, if I run out of gas, I can simply call someone and they'll bring me a gallon. If I run out of electricity, what then? Do I get towed to the nearest available charging station? What about all those morons out there who don't pay attention, who say to themselves, I only have to drive 20 miles, tomorrow, and ask themselves do I really have to charge it, tonight? What happens if you have a power outage at home and your car doesn't get charged? What happens if you get home late, plug in your car, go to bed, then the power goes off and you wake up in the morning with an uncharged battery? What if some kid in the neighborhood thinks it's funny to unplug your car? I could go on, but...

    • Patrickj Patrickj on Jun 26, 2010

      Once there's enough electric cars on the road, you call AAA and they bring you a big-ass truck-mounted generator as a quick charger.

  • Joeaverage Joeaverage on Aug 27, 2010

    I thought about the "what if I run out of juice" scenario. There are going to be recharge points all over cities with time. EVs usually charge quite a bit quickly and then taper off for a slower charge. Stop for a coffee or a meal and you're back to 65% of charge perhaps on a fast charger. How much juice does that pull? Something like a 220V welder? No big deal. HVAC equipment uses similar circuit loads. We'll likely find those charge points on GPS gadgets easily. Especially if somebody is trying to make a profit from them. We have a couple of 35 and 45 year old aircooled VWs. I also do all my own repairs. Never go to a shop. If one of my newer or older cars breaks down or especially if I lived in a large metropolitan area where cars get stolen often - I'd simply invest in a collapsible towbar. Break down? Run out of charge? Call my wife and we'll tow it home. Fortunately my ownership of a towbar and towdolly has immunized me against breakdowns forever. (I hope) GRIN! Only my VW Cabrio has ever given me fits and that is only because it is sensitive to deep water. Once in 72K miles has it failed to start b/c of a wet distributor. I doesn't tolerate ankle deep water or worse very well. I think Nissan's range is pretty good. It would easily work for my family's needs and I could commute for 2-3 days on a single charge. I hope they sell a million of those cars. I'd still rather have a NiMH battery which is more proven and mature but I suppose GM and Chevron have ensured that won't happen until at least after 2015. On the flip side I suspect that the leaf could be upgraded to a NiMH after 2015 should the NiMH return to the consumer market. Am wondering if there would be a market for a EU2000i Honda style quiet ginny that clipped into a dedicated soundproofed compartment in the front or rear of the car with a proper exhaust hook up to charge a parked car in a pinch? Not sure how much juice the Leaf would consume rolling down the road and whether a small Honda style ginny would make any difference at all. I can imagine a few diehard people who really like their EVs buying additional battery modules that strapped to the floor of the luggage area to get an additional 100 miles of range so they didn't need an ICE powered car once battery prices come down in a few years. Would like to see solar incorporated into the roof as an option. Would like to hear how much that could contribute to the battery parked in the sun during an eight hour work day. Even 4-5 miles of additional range would be useful if a person's commute was only 15 miles each way.

  • Skippity “Things To Watch Out For When Buying a 1979 Mercury Cougar XR-7.” A 1979 Mercury Cougar XR-7.
  • Mike Beranek Would you cross this man? No way!
  • Skippity I kinda like styling. There’s plenty of lookalike boxes on the road. Nice to see something unique.
  • Make_light I drive a 2015 A4 and had one of these as a loaner once. It was a huge disappointment (and I would have considered purchasing one as my next car--I'm something of a small crossover apologist). The engine sounded insanely coarse and unrefined (to the point that I wasn't sure if it was poor insulation or there was something wrong with my loaner). The seats, interior materials, and NVH were a huge downgrade compared to my dated A4. I get that they are a completely different class of car, but the contrast struck me. The Q3 just didn't feel like a luxury vehicle at all. Friends of mine drive a Tiguan and I can't think of one way in which the Q3 feels worth the extra cost. My mom's CX-5 is better than either in every conceivable way.
  • Arthur Dailey Personally I prefer a 1970s velour interior to the leather interior. And also prefer the instrument panel and steering wheel introduced later in the Mark series to the ones in the photograph. I have never seen a Mark III or IV with a 'centre console'. Was that even an option for the Mark IV? Rather than bucket seats they had the exceptional and sorely missed 60/40 front seating. The most comfortable seats of all for a man of a 'certain size'. In retrospect this may mark the point when Cadillac lost it mojo. Through the early to mid/late 70's Lincoln surpassed Cadillac in 'prestige/pride of place'. Then the 'imports' took over in the 1980s with the rise of the 'yuppies'.