Electric Vehicle Monitoring the Nissan Leaf

 In Inside FleetCarma

The following is an excerpt of an article by Michael Bettencourt which appeared in the drive section of the Globe and Mail on July 14, 2012. The article is part of a series titled Living with the Leaf; the series documents the author’s personal experiences owning the Nissan Leaf. Michael used FleetCarma’s electric vehicle monitoring system to report his findings.


The owner’s log

  • Electricity used in April, May and June: 249.2 kWh, 179.4 kWh, 145.1 kWh, respectively
  • Current mileage: 5,814 km
  • Total cost of EV electricity for April to June: $46.69
  • Average spring fuel economy: 1. 7 litres/100km equivalent
  • Average cost per 100 km: $1.82 (or $0.0182/km)
  • Observed spring maximum range: 154 km
  • Calculated maximum range: for April, 140 km; May, 165 km; June, 203 km

Michael Bettencourt writes in terms of range:

… it’s obvious the Leaf enjoys hot weather much more than cold temperatures. Helping me to discern exactly how much this preference paid off at the EVSE (charger) over the past few months was a unique EV data monitoring program by FleetCarma, a Waterloo, Ont.-based technology company that helps fleet operators save money by analyzing employee driving patterns. Plug in a little matchbox-size logger into the OBD II sensor under the steering wheel, and it will tell you your exact kilometres driven per day/week/year, an Eco Score that rates your driving out of 100, as well as how many kilometres you could have travelled that day, all based on your real-world driving patterns.

It showed us that between April 17 and June 29, the Leaf averaged 1.7 litres/100 km equivalent, and used 412 kWh to travel 2,217 km. Combine those figures with the Toronto Hydro cost figures that measures only the juice going to recharge the Leaf, and the overall cost and range pictures clearly shows that even with some record high May and June temperatures, and lots of A/C use, the Leaf was still slightly more efficient in those months than in the last two weeks of April, when most days averaged less than 10 degrees.

An interesting figure contained there was the real-world range estimate the program provided, which tells you on each day how far you could have travelled before recharging, based on your driving style, temperatures and traffic patterns. It suggested on a couple occasions that more than 200 km per full charge was possible in our hot June, a 165 km max in May, and a 140 km max in April. Our furthest actual travelled distance was closer to 150 km, since we rarely let it go under a 20 per cent charge.


Your fleet can enjoy the same benefits that Michael did monitoring his Nissan Leaf. Our electric vehicle monitoring solution allows you to log your vehicles and create powerful reports to validate EV investments, maximize EV benefits, and measure energy usage and emissions. If you don’t currently have EVs in your fleet we can help decide if they would be a good investment with our total cost of ownership reports.


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