Nissan Flex batteries can now be bought

Nissan Leaf in white

Miles Roberts from the SpeakEV forum “had a notification through from Nissan to say that customers are now able to buy themselves out of the battery rental on a Flex agreement, and terminate the lease agreement.”


To terminate the battery lease, customers need to go to a Nissan dealer and pay the battery’s remaining value to fully own it. It appears that Nissan considers that the battery lose 10 % of its value per year.


This is great news, it’s specially helpful for Flex Leaf’s owners that are having difficulties selling their cars because of the battery leasing.


Allowing Flex Leaf’s owners to buy the battery is another evidence that Nissan is abandoning the battery lease scheme. In Portugal and Spain, Nissan already completely removed the Flex option, as you can see it here.

In my opinion the battery lease damages both automakers and electric cars in particular, as it indicates that the automaker isn’t confident in its battery quality and scares off potential customers by stating that batteries are more prone to failure than other components. This is why we’ll never see battery rental in automakers that are proud to build good quality electric cars, such as Tesla Motors or even BMW. It’s curious that in Renault Zoe’s case, the electric motor and the charging system are more likely to fail than the battery. Why don’t we lease those two components instead? The battery made by LG Chem cells is proving to be very robust.


Sooner or later Renault has to do something similar and find its way off the battery leasing. In Renault’s case it’s even more damaging to the company’s reputation, since we can compare the Zoe with the Clio. As I wrote in a previous article it seems like a scam when a Zoe Life 40 without the battery in Spain costs 24.625 €, while the Clio Life with an internal combustion engine, also in Spain starts at 11.436 €. I’ve been saying for a while that when you buy a Zoe with the battery lease, the battery cost is already included in the price, everything that Renault gets from monthly battery payments is more profit. Truth to be told, Renault isn’t alone, every automaker is selling overpriced electric cars so they don’t compete with their ICE car’s offer.


What do you think? Do you see any future for battery rentals? Specially in Renault, where batteries are proving to be very reliable and their cost is dropping fast?!



More info:

Pedro Lima

My interest in electric transportation is mostly political. I’m tired of coups and wars for oil. My expectation is that the adoption of electric transportation will be a factor for peace and democracy all over the world.

Notify of
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments
Jonas Jovial
5 years ago

Battery renting would made sense if instead of charging stations over de road we would find a place where our discharged battery would be quickly replaced by another one completely charged. This process would only take a few minutes and would eliminate the annoying waiting charging time to some people that don’t want to wait.

Also, it should be much cheaper to buy the car with battery renting. Current prices are just unjustified.

5 years ago

Battery leasing is a scam so it is a good thing they are moving away from it…
All legacy auto makers are trying to make the move from ICE to BEVs as slow as possible…
Who cares about global warming when you can make a buck…

5 years ago

I don’t think leasing as such is a problem, but nor a better idea for the battery than other components. The real problem with the leases is the unreasonable terms of the lease. I see it as simply an attempt to exploit the fact that consumers are usually willing to shell out more when making many smaller payments than even they make a single, large upfront one.

The computer gaming industry is a prime example. Back in the day when games were physically distributed to consumers and were played locally on one machine you could only extract so much dole from a single customer – perhaps 60 bucks for a prime title. With the internet, making games free, but with various limitations, and having people get monthly subscriptions, and selling things directly in the game, all of a sudden they could extract perhaps 30 bucks EVERY MONTH from a single customer – as well as reach far more customers, and keep ALL of the revenue themselves.

This trend towards subscriptions or leases instead of purchases spread, first in the software industry, and later to many other industries for the very simple reason that it tends to increase profits. In some cases it’s also a win for the consumer. A service like Spotify no doubt gives me access to a huge catalogue for relatively little money. But there’s also little doubt it generates more revenue, at least from me, than the old buy a CD model did. And it’s a much lower cost way to distribute music than physically putting discs on shelves in stores and wait for someone to come buy it.

If you look at the various car pooling schemes you can see that car companies too are trying to figure out how to transform their product into a service as well.

I think the battery leases are unpopular because the amounts of money involved are so much bigger. This isn’t a monthly payment that the average worker hardly notices. It’s a continual drag on the buyer’s economy, and far more expensive than the cost of financing the outright purchase of the battery.

The supposed logic that a lease indicates lack of confidence in the battery strikes me as irrational. The high price of the lease can perhaps be interpreted in such a way, but not the fact of leasing in itself, as that does nothing to make battery failure any less of a problem for the car maker. If anything, with lifelong leasing, it would make failure after the warranty period MORE of a problem for the maker.