Edmunds: 2011 Nissan Leaf First Drive

Discussion in 'Nissan/Infiniti Hybrids and EVs' started by cwerdna, May 1, 2010.

  1. cwerdna

    cwerdna Senior Member

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    (Hope this isn't a repost...)
    2011 Nissan Leaf First Drive

    I guess Edmunds isn't aware of the 2.5L V6 engines that aren't on any Nissans in the US. IIRC, I've seen them at Tokyo Motor Show and they're mentioned at Nissan VQ engine - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia.
     
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  2. mwalsh

    mwalsh Member

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    I think the most important thing I noted in this article is that Nissan is starting to inform people of range degradation in relation to speed:

    "Moreover, the Leaf will top 90 mph, but it won't travel 100 miles at that sort of speed — 60 miles is more like it, we're told."
     
  3. daniel

    daniel Cat Lovers Against the Bomb

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    Great article! Thanks for posting that.

    Just a couple of quibbles: The article says that at 90 mph the range will diminish to 60 miles. Who drives that fast? That's illegal off the race track in the entire country. (Unless Montana and Texas still have no speed limits on open highways.) And since wind resistance increases as the cube of the speed (IIRC) the range at 70 mph should be around 80 miles. And at 60 mph it should be 85 to 90 miles.

    My other quibble is their statement that since charging infrastructure and battery technology will move slowly, half of the cars on the road will still be powered by gasoline in 2050. I think that long before 2050, virtually all gas-powered cars will be in the junk yard because only the super-rich will be able to afford gasoline.
     
  4. mwalsh

    mwalsh Member

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    I think you could well be correct, in the main. Though car collectors (like myself) will continue to need small quantities to power vintage and antique vehicles. Does it need to be gasoline? Perhaps not....alcohol would perhaps do, with the right modifications. But only cellulostic for me - I am against using food for fuel.
     
  5. ljbad4life

    ljbad4life New Member

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    That's a pretty fair review. roomie, fast and handles well. only "drawback" is range (anxiety really)
     
  6. Trebuchet

    Trebuchet Senior Member

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    Seriously thinking of getting one. Great article thanks.
     
  7. Ripley44224

    Ripley44224 Member

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    What do you think about Tequila as fuel? Maybe Chrysler will bring back the Turbine!

    "The engine would run on virtually anything and the president of Mexico tested this theory by running one of the first cars — successfully — on tequila."

    More:

    [ame="http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Chrysler_Turbine_Car"]Chrysler Turbine Car - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia[/ame]
     
  8. DaveinOlyWA

    DaveinOlyWA 3rd Time was Solariffic!!

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    very well balanced and informed article. it does verify what i have read and heard elsewhere. waiting for a real road test which wont happen until the car is on the market.

    who knows, maybe we can finally get BACK to something like this (which was about 12 years ago)

    here is a sheet on a Ford Electrica?? saw it at the Lacey Alternative Fuel Fair and Electric Car Rally.

    it funny that after a what??? 8-9 year drought, we will again have a mass market EV priced for the masses...
     

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  9. mwalsh

    mwalsh Member

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    Sure! The Agave plant is one of the most water efficient plants on the planet!
     
  10. vegasjetskier

    vegasjetskier New Member

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    The Electricas were converted by Jet Industries in Austin, TX, in the early 1980's using "gliders" (chassis without the ICE components) made by the "real car" manufacturers. I used to own one that used a Dodge Omni as the glider, but Jet also made them on Ford Escort gliders. They used lead-acid golfcart batteries and were heavy and cumbersome to drive. Zero-to-sixty in about 45 seconds. Range was about 40 miles on a good day and they were provided with a very bulky Lester off-board charger. Better not run out of juice until you got home! Mine didn't have power anything (brakes, windows, door locks) and no AC. It used a gasoline-fired heater to heat the cabin.

    The Leaf is light-years ahead. Accounting for inflation, the Electrica would be about $41,000 in today's dollars. No doubt, the Leaf is a remarkable accomplishment for Nissan.
     
  11. DaveinOlyWA

    DaveinOlyWA 3rd Time was Solariffic!!

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    they were made in the early 80's?? wow...
     
  12. vegasjetskier

    vegasjetskier New Member

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  13. bisco

    bisco cookie crumbler

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    how much is heat or a/c going to eat into the distance capability?
     
  14. Tideland Prius

    Tideland Prius Moderator of the North
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    That's a good question. How is the range determined? Same as current EPA testing? (with A/C running)
     
  15. DaveinOlyWA

    DaveinOlyWA 3rd Time was Solariffic!!

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    umm, not exactly what i meant. its not "light years" ahead of a 12 year old RAV 4 EV.
     
  16. ItsNotAboutTheMoney

    ItsNotAboutTheMoney EditProfOptInfoCustomUser Title

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    I read part of a study that assumed a load of something like 864W as a typical heavy load for lights, stereo and HVAC. (A car cabin is much smaller than a typical room) Given the 16kWh usable it's significant but not completely range-destroying.

    Let R be unloaded range.
    Let C be usable capacity
    Let S be speed in mph, which varies. For simplicity's sakes let's assume range doesn't vary with speed.
    Let L be the additional load on the battery.
    Let r be the loaded range.

    Then r = SC/((C/R)S+L)

    Why?

    C/R = capacity / unloaded range, which gives you energy/mile
    (C/R)S = energy/mile * miles/hour = energy/hour to drive at speed S
    (C/R)S+L = (driving energy + additional energy) / hour
    C/((C/R)S+L)= capacity/ (capacity consumed / hour ) = total hours of driving as speed S
    SC/((C/R)S+L) = speed * hours of driving = total range at speed s

    Let unloaded range R = 100m(iles).
    Let capacity C = 16kWh.
    Let additional load L = 0.864kW(hph).

    Then r(s) = s * 16 / ( ( s * 16 / 100 ) + .864 )

    (type that into PowerCalc for Windows XP )

    r(30) = 84.745762711864406779661016949153
    r(35) = 86.633663366336633663366336633663
    r(40) = 88.105726872246696035242290748899
    r(50) = 90.252707581227436823104693140794

    Obviously the range won't be 100 miles at the higher speeds, but this gives an idea. The additional load is time-based so slow speeds lead to more consumption.
     
  17. evnow

    evnow Active Member

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    That 16kwh would be too small for Leaf. They would need a remarkable efficiency of 6m/kwh to get 100 m range.
     
  18. ItsNotAboutTheMoney

    ItsNotAboutTheMoney EditProfOptInfoCustomUser Title

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    Well, I can't remember where I got the 16kWh but much more than that would be comparatively high for a battery. The Volt-pumping gm-volt.com say 21.6kWh usable but that would be astonishingly high. The Volt is something like 8.8kWh usable from 16kWh. The PHEVrius is 3.5 from 5.3?

    TheForce has reported varying consumption on his converted Prius between 160Wh/m on flat (at steady 35mph I think) and 250Wh/m going uphill or with heavier acceleration. The "up to" 100 mile range Nissan are quoting would fit with his experience.

    In this post he mentioned quite low numbers on a test drive.
     
  19. SageBrush

    SageBrush Senior Member

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    Holy smokes, Batman! I'm glad I am not an engineer, and can just throw out an estimate ...

    Motive power ranges from 10 - 30 Kw, so the fixed ACC stuff increases power demands up to 10.864 - 30.864. This is about 9 - 3%. The mileage will decrease by the same fraction.
     
  20. daniel

    daniel Cat Lovers Against the Bomb

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    I'm guessing 10 to 20% loss in range for heating or A/C, based on my experience with the Xebra (which has a powerful aftermarket heater, but no A/C) and the Porsche (which has both but I've only ever used the A/C, not the heater).

    As for battery depth of discharge, some of the above posts assume 50% usable battery. That's fair for lead and NiMH, but Lithium has a greater useful capacity. My LiFePO4 batteries are supposed to be okay down to 80% DoD. Of course the LiMn batteries in the Leaf might be different again.
     
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