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Old 11-06-2014, 07:20 PM   #1 (permalink)
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2011 Nissan Leaf - Private Party Listing

There are 2 Nissan Leafs for private party sale in my area.

The first is a 2011 SL with 21,000 miles and a clear title. Asking price is $12,000.

The second is a 2011 SL with 31,000 miles and a clear title. Asking price is $14,000.

What should I be aware of when looking at these vehicles? I know improvements in range were made in the 2013 model year. Is there any way to determine battery health?

What is a reasonable price for a 2011 Leaf? Edmunds and KBB say the car is worth $13,500-$14,000.

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Old 11-06-2014, 09:56 PM   #2 (permalink)
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You might want to get LeafSpy and a Bluetooth OBDII unit and check out the battery cells. But you are not in a hot area, so they probably are fine. Check the Leaf Forum for (a lot of!) information on this.

Do they both have the Level 3 quick chargers? Do they both have the navigation system? I think that is required for CarWings to work.
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Old 11-06-2014, 11:07 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by NeilBlanchard View Post
You might want to get LeafSpy and a Bluetooth OBDII unit and check out the battery cells. But you are not in a hot area, so they probably are fine. Check the Leaf Forum for (a lot of!) information on this.

Do they both have the Level 3 quick chargers? Do they both have the navigation system? I think that is required for CarWings to work.
I checked out the car tonight. Upon turning the car on, the battery gauge displayed all but 3 or 4 bars of charge, and a 65 mile range.

It has CarWings, NAV, backup camera, and a solar panel in the spoiler. It also has the level 2 charger and quick charger. The tires were changed to 17" low profile, the windows are tinted, and the car had a sound system installed. This indicates it was owned by a younger man. It still has Arkansas plates, so that's where it has mostly lived. I'm not sure how hot it is there, or how hard it is on the battery.

The downside is it's cold in the PNW, and I need to run the heater all the time. The 2011 doesn't have an efficient heater, and just uses electric grid heating. No heated seats or steering wheel.

I'm wondering how hard it would be to retrofit my own heated seats?

I can probably get the car for $11,400 but I don't know if that's a good price. My hesitation is that several exciting cars are set to release in the next couple years that have much better efficiency, range, and styling.
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Old 11-07-2014, 06:15 AM   #4 (permalink)
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If it is missing 3-4 bars of capacity, then the range could well be ~65 miles instead of ~85 miles for the 100% battery. My sister-in-law's 2011 (with just over 18K) is still at 100% and she sees ranges over 100 miles on the RR gauge. Her's has the solar panel, too. I think that is more of a gimmick than anything else. It might keep the 12v battery charged when the car is sitting in bright sun - the panel is probably enough to charge you cell phone.

You are right, the 2011 has a resistance heater. But my sister-in-law's has heated front seats - maybe because it was sold here in New England, they equipped it for the region? If it shows 65 miles now, the heater will probably drag that down to 45-50? Her's averages 70 miles in the winter with the full battery. My brother's i MiEV is in the 40-45 mile range in the winter. It only has the driver's seat heated, a resistance heater, and a 16kWh pack. It is still usable for him with a ~26 mile commute, but you need better charger if you want to make several trips spread out over the day.
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Old 11-07-2014, 07:39 AM   #5 (permalink)
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$11,400 was the buy out on a 3 year lease. Ask them to fully charge the battery to see if it will still get all 12 bars.

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Old 11-07-2014, 08:44 AM   #6 (permalink)
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I dunno about the rest, but installing a heated seat retrofit is pretty darn simple. I think they cost about $65 on amazon.
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Old 11-07-2014, 12:26 PM   #7 (permalink)
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The buy out on our lease is ~$12,200 with up to 36,000 miles.

Another heating solution that is probably going to use just 20-30W per person is to wear a heated (motorcycle) vest with a thermostat, plugged into the auxiliary power outlet.
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Old 11-07-2014, 02:19 PM   #8 (permalink)
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Craigslist ad.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Old Mechanic View Post
$11,400 was the buy out on a 3 year lease. Ask them to fully charge the battery to see if it will still get all 12 bars.

regards
mech
I wonder why KBB, Clearbook, and Edmunds all say the car is worth more? People on Craigslist almost never list things below KBB.

Quote:
Originally Posted by NeilBlanchard View Post
Another heating solution that is probably going to use just 20-30W per person is to wear a heated (motorcycle) vest with a thermostat, plugged into the auxiliary power outlet.
Hah, that was my first thought after driving the car last night. There is no way I'm going to get my wife to do that. She already hates the idea of plugging in the car every trip.

I looked up how to install a seat heater last night and it is cheap and relatively easy.

It annoys me that Nissan not only used resistive heating, but combined it with a water loop. Electric heating should be instantaneous, but they figured out a way to make you wait for heat as if you were driving an ICE.

I'm leaning away from purchasing the vehicle since it's unclear where I'm going to live in Portland. There is a good chance we will be renting, and most places only have street parking. I can't snake an extension cord over a public sidewalk, and some bum would probably steal it anyhow.

If the price isn't something spectacular, then I'll just hold out to see where I end up living.

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