Nissan has announced replacement batteries for the Leaf will cost $5,499. The list price does not include taxes or dealer installation costs. Owners of 2010 and 2011 Leaf’s will also need to pay for a $255 installation kit necessary for Nissan’s new battery packs to fit properly in the car.
The original battery must be exchanged for the new battery as a condition of the sale. Nissan’s pricing suggests a $1,000 core value for old batteries, which Nissan plans to recycle as a part of their 4R energy business.
Leaf batteries are rated at 5-years/60,000 miles. Nissan’s “5 year” rating is based on the assumption that Leaf drivers will not exceed 12,500 miles per year. Thus far Nissan’s assumption has held true, but with the Leaf’s range extending to 300km (200 miles) per charge in 2017 that may change.
The average American drives 41 miles per day, which is approximately 15,000 miles per year. Men typically drive more than women, however, with men driving an average of almost 17,000 miles per year and women driving an average of just over 10,000 miles per year.
Whether or not battery replacement at 60,000 miles is strictly necessary is a matter of debate. Some Leaf drivers with nearly 100,000 miles on their cars report their batteries retain a respectable 80% capacity. As EV range and battery life extends with advancing technology, the need to replace the batteries will be mitigated if not entirely eliminated.
Nissan will offer financing for new batteries, with estimated monthly payments of $100. Details have not been finalized.