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Hi, I joined this forum last week since I've found it to be a good source of information about the LEAF and EV's in general.

In Holland, where I live, there's currently a private lease offer for the LEAF. It works out quite favorably compared to the diesel I was eyeing (Citroën C4 Cactus in the very low emission trim). After researching the ins and outs, I decided today to jump ship and enter the EV world. I'll receive a contract soon, so I'd love to ask you experienced LEAF drivers for a last minute sanity check...

My situation is as follows:
I expect to drive around 30000km power year.
Most of that is in my daily commute, which is a 110km round trip, almost completely flat.
On some days, there will be additional km's for work related meetings. E.g. 55km to the office, a few hours charging, 70km to a meeting (no charging available), and another 50km back home is an extreme scenario.
I will have a charger at home, and at the workplace. The car will have the quick charger as well. A highway quick charger network is being rolled out.
For longer trips, weekend away or a holiday, I have access to a larger petrol car.

I've driven the LEAF for a few days, and found that the one way trip would cost between 35-40% battery capacity. But this was a new car in almost perfect conditions. I guess with worse conditions (winter, older car) I could lose up to 20% capacity and still be able to commute without charging. The extreme scenario would get tricky, but still feasible.

The car is a 2014 Accenta, with heat pump etc. The lease will be for four years.

So, in the above situation, I don't anticipate having (m)any problems with range. Especially because of the charging option at work.

Am I being too optimistic about this? Would I still be able to do over 120 km in winter after 3.5years and over 100.000km? Or would I be looking at something like an 85km range instead. Anyway, winters here are rarely long and really cold.

There's a lot of info about range in winter of the, 2011/2012 models. Not so much about the 2013, let alone the 2014. Hoping to hear from some knowledgeable people... TIA!
 

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Sanity check #2
I've gone for the standard white, with the light interior. It's that sane at all? Anyone have some pictures to share of this combination?
 

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It sounds sane enough to me and it looks like you've run the numbers enough for you to be quite confident.

I can't find the link at the moment but there's some places (I think Plug-in America publish them) are running lots of numbers on long-range and high-mileage EVs and the results are surprising in terms of how little distance and charging patterns seem to impact range (they do, but not as dramatically as I expected).

Cold and hot extremes seem more of an issue from what I've read/understood.
 

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You are lucky that you live on flat terrain. That's what kills the battery in my Acenta tackling the South Wales mountains.

With the heatpump it is very efficient, you will see a slight drop in range if you use it wisely.

If you keep your highway speeds to a sensible level you should just about be able to do the 120km but won't have much left to spare in the winter.

Your lucky you have workplace charging and a very good EV infrastructure in Holland. You may have to make use of it in the winter.

Are you also ordering the 6.6kw on board charger. I would definitely recommend this if you doing the sort of km's you have mentioned per year.
 

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It sounds sane enough to me and it looks like you've run the numbers enough for you to be quite confident.

I can't find the link at the moment but there's some places (I think Plug-in America publish them) are running lots of numbers on long-range and high-mileage EVs and the results are surprising in terms of how little distance and charging patterns seem to impact range (they do, but not as dramatically as I expected).

Cold and hot extremes seem more of an issue from what I've read/understood.
Hi Paul, thanks for your reply. I did see the tables with some very frightening numbers, but I also think those are for the older ones without the heat pump system. And the battery pack seems to have been improved as well. so, I'm not sure if they also apply to a new 2014 Accenta.

I'm a very relaxed driver; cruise control is my best friend, and no need to speed... When I borrowed the LEAF for a few days, the owner was surprised to see a range of 130km when I returned it at 80%. When I picked it up, it showed a range of 116 at 80%...
 

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Discussion Starter #6
You are lucky that you live on flat terrain. That's what kills the battery in my Acenta tackling the South Wales mountains.

With the heatpump it is very efficient, you will see a slight drop in range if you use it wisely.

If you keep your highway speeds to a sensible level you should just about be able to do the 120km but won't have much left to spare in the winter.

Your lucky you have workplace charging and a very good EV infrastructure in Holland. You may have to make use of it in the winter.

Are you also ordering the 6.6kw on board charger. I would definitely recommend this if you doing the sort of km's you have mentioned per year.
Hi Dean,

Thanks for your reply and confirming the usefulness of the heat pump. Do you also know if it makes sense to get the Comfort Pack? It is suggested that the heated seats and steering wheel mean you need to use less cabin heating, but I'm never a big user of hearing anyway.

I did forget to mention that most of my driving is highway, but I'm happy to put the cruise control on 60mph for long tracts. Truth is that it doesn't make much sense to drive faster on my regular routes. I did notice that 60mph on the LEAF equals 55mph on the GPS, whereas in my current car (or the Zoé) it equals 57.5mph. So I guess I'll put the LEAF on 62mph and see what happens to the range...

I do believe that range will rarely, if ever, be a problem for most Dutchies. That's why it's such a shame that pure EV's like the LEAF and Zoé are not really popular in Holland (Tesla Model S being the big exception). We have a very conservative car press, always going on about range, while in reality we have one of the most suitable countries for EV's and a very good infrastructure.


Part of me choosing to go electric is to show that it can be done easily even with relatively high mileage and without woolen socks. But there are still many myths and FUD being spread, so I feel like a missionary at times...

I was advised against the 6.6kW option, since there are not many 32A+ chargers yet. The additional cost in the lease is also insane irt the price, so I decided to leave it out. I can imagine a few scenarios where it might com in handy, but those can be fixed with quick charging as well (I hope...).
 

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One thing you may find (picking up on your speed comments) is you'll be more relaxed in the LEAF and less inclined to push the last few MPH out of the car... It's a bit of a breeze cruising in an EV, aside from road and wind noise it's like nothing else you can drive.
 

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Thanks, and be sure to let me know if you need info about the NL!
Hi, as a fellow Dutchman (but living in Scotland) looking at the status of plug points in the Netherlands it looks like you will rarely be without an option for charging. I can't see anyone getting stranded with an empty battery. I might contact you when I am planning to come over with our Leaf (1st generation, 2012) for advice on cards for charging over there.
I am sure that you will enjoy using the Leaf, we do more than 20.000 Miles a year with ours.
 

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Hi Dean,

Do you also know if it makes sense to get the Comfort Pack? It is suggested that the heated seats and steering wheel mean you need to use less cabin heating, but I'm never a big user of hearing anyway.

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I have the Comfort Pack and yes, it is useful. Something however which is worth remembering is that the times when you use these to reduce the amount that you use the main heater are also those times that it is cold outside so that water condenses on the inside of the car, needing you to run the main heater to clear it!

You may wish to consider something to treat the inside windows which will repel this moisture
 

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Discussion Starter #15
One thing you may find (picking up on your speed comments) is you'll be more relaxed in the LEAF and less inclined to push the last few MPH out of the car... It's a bit of a breeze cruising in an EV, aside from road and wind noise it's like nothing else you can drive.
Yes, when I tested the LEAF, I really enjoyed the relative quietness. Very comfortable to listen to the radio and pick up the tones that are drowned by an ICE car...
 

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Discussion Starter #16
I have the Comfort Pack and yes, it is useful. Something however which is worth remembering is that the times when you use these to reduce the amount that you use the main heater are also those times that it is cold outside so that water condenses on the inside of the car, needing you to run the main heater to clear it!

You may wish to consider something to treat the inside windows which will repel this moisture
Thanks, I hadn't thought of that yet! That you need to use the heater anyway to clear the windshield makes the Comfort Pack of little use to me. I'm rarely cold (sleep with open window in freezing temperatures), so I don't think I'll be uncomfortable...
 

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Hi, as a fellow Dutchman (but living in Scotland) looking at the status of plug points in the Netherlands it looks like you will rarely be without an option for charging. I can't see anyone getting stranded with an empty battery. I might contact you when I am planning to come over with our Leaf (1st generation, 2012) for advice on cards for charging over there.
I am sure that you will enjoy using the Leaf, we do more than 20.000 Miles a year with ours.
Great to hear from you, and feel free to contact me if you come over. I'm not really into the cards yet, but will research over the next few weeks (after arrangements for home charging are made).

For international drivers some kind of pre paid card would be ideal, I guess. Not sure if they're available...
 

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Any relative to the Dutch woman living in Grasse who goes en famille to Scotland in their LEAF each summer?
no, we are not related. Have never had the pleasure of meeting them neither.:)
 

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Great to hear from you, and feel free to contact me if you come over. I'm not really into the cards yet, but will research over the next few weeks (after arrangements for home charging are made).

For international drivers some kind of pre paid card would be ideal, I guess. Not sure if they're available...
Thanks,
I have tried to contact the ANWB before but have never had a reply. It's not such a big problem for me as my family still live in Holland and they can order or enquire for me. Will be good to get some feedback when you have used the car fro a while.
 

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The 6kw can make a big difference for your kind of use but understand if the lease deal stops it making sense. Went for outright purchase over 5 years - for me those monthly payments made sense at 25,000 a year. Also the 6kw charging works out slightly cheaper per mile at home as is more efficent.

Some have found that driving without cruise control gets a greater range. Driving with the road. This may be less or not true on flat roads.

Heavy rain / headwinds can impact on range as much or more than temperature. Also needing frequent brief blasts with the demister on untreated windscreens. My worst January experience was still in the 90's for range from a charge but this was driving slower than 60 mostly. (miles).

Rapid charging - there is a uk driver with a gen 1 leaf who lost a capacity bar soon after 50,000 miles. While the consensus seems to be rapid charging does not affect your battery, another forum member remembers her rapid charging a few times in one day and posting a pic with her battery temp gauge in the red. Rightly or wrongly, I connect these dots and am wary of frequent rapids in one day. Other drivers in America lost the first capacity bar later.

Remember too that in America the cost of a replacement battery pack has been announced as $5,000. Even if I replace my battery pack at 100,000 miles the numbers stack up.

Good luck - you will love it!
 
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