Nissan offers a 5-year/60,000-mile warranty on the Nissan Leaf battery bank, which is a lot less than the 8-year/100,000 mile warranty of the Chevy Volt’s battery pack. Considering the cost of battery packs, this could be a deal-breaker for some customers.
However, Nissan will offer a unique battery replacement program for U.S. customers in 2014, under which you pay them a monthly amount for a guarantee that your battery pack will be replaced if your battery’s capacity falls below 9 bars, or 70% of what it originally had.
Erik Gottfried, Nissan’s director of Electric Vehicle Sales and Marketing, said: “Nissan anticipates that the great majority of our current Leaf drivers will never need this battery replacement option. However, this program is yet another example of Nissan’s commitment to deliver peace of mind for our continually growing community of Leaf drivers.”
Peace of mind is certainly crucial to the adoption of electric vehicles, but this costs program costs $100 a month, or $1,200 per year That is $6,000 after 5 years. That is about the cost of a battery pack, and even though you can sign up for the program even after your standard battery warranty is up, there is no “end” to the payments. Sounds a lot like Renault’s battery-leasing program, but without the significantly-cheaper MSRP.
You can keep getting fresh battery packs as long as you keep paying your $100 a month. But what happens when you stop paying? Nissan doesn’t seem to know. Could they repossess your battery? Sounds like an option they are considering.