2018 Nissan Leaf battery real specs

AESC new battery cell specs

The 2018 Nissan Leaf battery – like all previous versions – uses a 96s2p cell configuration, this means that in total there are 192 cells in the battery pack. However, the battery cells now have a much higher energy density.

 

In the Nissan Leaf, each battery pack has 24 modules and each module has 8 cells. Originally, the Nissan Leaf was launched with double the modules. The 24 kWh battery in the 2011 Nissan Leaf had 48 modules, each module with 4 cells. However, when Nissan released the 30 kWh battery, the number of modules was reduced to half – to further increase the energy density of the battery pack. If you look at the new battery module below you’ll see that it seems 2 old modules stuck together…

 

AESC new battery module specs

 

Moving on…

 

Now we can calculate the new battery real capacity:

  • 192 x 3,65 V x 56,3 Ah = 39,46 kWh

 

And compare it to the original battery pack in the 2011 Nissan Leaf.

  • 192 x 3,75 V x 32,5 Ah = 23,4 kWh

 

Specs of the AESC battery cells used in the first generation Nissan Leaf 24 kWh battery

 

The energy density of 460 Wh/L (volumetric) and 224 Wh/kg (gravimetric) is pretty impressive for a NCM 523 battery cell. It would be great to see AESC develop NCM 811 cells to compete with SK innovation and LG Chem.

 

Anyway, I’m a bit disappointed with the battery real capacity, because for a while now the inside information was that Nissan – with the new battery – would start advertising the usable capacity, as others have been doing. In fact, that’s what Nissan says that is now doing – as we can see in the video below -, but the numbers don’t add up…

 

 

Now you know that the 2018 Nissan Leaf has a battery with a rated capacity of 39,46 kWh. This is under normal conditions and can be affected by temperature or C-rate.

 

 

More info:

http://www.eco-aesc-lb.com/product/liion_ev/

This Post Has 35 Comments

  1. There is something fishy going on. Data from spec(39.46 kwh) seems to contradict statements from video. Perhaps this iec 62660-1 norm is more strict and mesured capacity is essentialy usable one ? On the other hand there is more than 40% range increase. 33% battery capacity increase and worse mpg rating from EPA(slightly but still) something strange is going on. Now if they rounded cell capacity down from like 56.34ah and voltage like from 3.654v then Leaf pack is over 39.5 kWh and rounding goes up to 40kwh. If this 39.5 is like usable then increase over previous usable(Ca. 28.5) is about 38.5% and things gets more in line.

    1. Yes, that’s interesting. If the 2018 Leaf has the same efficiency as the older one, then 39.5 is just about 40% more than the old useable capacity of 28kwh, which is the same percentage increase as the range increased. However, if you assume that 39.5 is the rated capacity and then calculate range / rated capacity you get ~170wh/km (old) vs ~162wh/km (new) and the difference is about 5%, so it could just be that the new Leaf is 5% more efficient. This would allow the range increase of 40% even if the capacity has only gone up 33%.

  2. So it will still die just not as quick and Nissan will leave those that bought the disposable car without any warranty and certainly without any upgrade options. If you have a 2011-2017 too bad for you!

    1. I’m looking to buy one of those disposable things. Used, that is, disposed of

      1. me too

  3. Is there a source that confirms that it is NCM 622?

    1. No source, it’s my educated guess. However, looking at the specs it’s pretty obvious that those cells are NCM 622.

      1. Can you offer an explanation for the 39.46 kWh contradicting the video statement that the 40kWh leaf will have 40kWh as a minimum? He heavily emphasizes minimum in the video you linked. What makes your findings so obvious that we should take your educated guess over the video?

      2. The educated guess is about the chemistry being NCM 622, not the capacity.

        The battery cell specs are not a guess, they come from AESC that makes the batteries.

        Nissan can simply overrate the battery capacity by testing it at higher temperature and lower C-rate.

        It’s like EPA and NEDC testing the same thing, but with different procedures, thus getting different results. In this case AESC is the EPA and Nissan is NEDC.

      3. But why do you calculate the first-gen battery using a nominal voltage of 3.75V, then drop it to 3.65V for the NCM622..?

        I don’t know if there’s any standard for nominal voltage, but I don’t think so. It used to be conventional to go with 3.6V for li-ion, until it became conventional to use 3.7V.

        Nominal capacity of course scales proportionally to nominal voltage, so this isn’t enough to justify the claim of 40 kWh net. That requires a larger nominal charge (Ah), which as you point out could be justified by measuring under different conditions (température or rate being the main knobs to turn).

      4. Different chemistries, different voltages. It’s listed on the spec sheet.

  4. Pedro, thank you for spending your time sharing with us some in depth knowledge regarding current EV/battery technology. Much appreciated.

  5. It’s a pitty they lowered the nominal voltage of the pack. 0,1V les nominal voltage means 9,6V less pack voltage and while charging on a 100A rapid charger that is 1kW less charging power.

  6. I have a 2011 leaf. In fact I was part of the pilot program because I wanted to support Nissan and the technology. I have been trying to find factual answers on whether or not the 2011 can be retrofitted with the 2018 battery. I seem to be having a hard time getting answers.

    1. Nissan won’t do any battery upgrades. However, there are some 3rd party companies who will, but those would invalidate any remaining warranty (not applicable to you anyway), plus it’s unlikely the % range would read accurately, so you’d have to work out what the new readings meant.

    2. hi how much range do you get out of your 2011 . I really want an electric car and a second hand leaf seems the best option for now but I am worried about the battery life

  7. The capacity is not accurately determined by multiplying the nominal voltage by the Ah. An accurate result needs the integral of the voltage curve over current. It can be seen from the gen1 example that the capacity in kWh is greater for lower discharge rates. So the actual capacity requires the C rate to be specified.

    1. Well, yes and no. While you are right that the exact discharge capacity varies (slightly) depending on discharge rate, the nominal voltage and Ah capacity given for a particular discharge rate (1C by convention AFAIK?) actually allow calculating the precise Wh discharge capacity at that particular discharge rate.

      1. Actual capacity numbers are such a big developer secret that it’s not realistic to get them. We did similar research on batteries once in a student lab, and based on the results, you could immediately understand what was worth buying and what wasn’t. Imagine if you gave such information on batteries. Why would be willing to buy garbage.

    2. No more, but also no less, than the voltage or charge capacity itself. Nominal voltage * nominal charge = nominal capacity.

      The real world is too complicated. So we simplify a lot and still obtain results that are, by and large, perfectly valid and correct in most circumstances.

      Where you see a really big loss is with low temperature. If you’re getting 20-40% less than nominal, that’s definitely not within the “acceptable error margins” but something bits should know about. I’m not sure how much the active heating systems actually help. Hyundai Kona for example does get a much larger range reduction in the cold than can be explained by the 7-800 W used by the heat pump to maintain cabin temperature. Some is due to drag (cold air is denser), but I don’t know how many percent more drag…

  8. really need ten of these modules

    1. Hey there Paul. Are you the same Paul Oberman that I knew from California? I bought a 40kWhr 2018 pack on 6/5/2018 from a salvage yard. The donor car only had 3,749 miles on it and SOH was at 111%. Trying to remove the top now, the sealer is really goey and sticking to the tools whule cutting through it.

  9. Using LeafSpy it report cell Voltage at 4.21V when battery are 100% (and disconnected)
    Is’nt that dagerously high?
    I’ve seen others reporting same voltage but very few raising questions about it.

    1. Hey there.
      I share your concerns and would be interested to know if you found an answer… If charging only to, say, 90% doubles the battery life expectancy, it’d be interesting to know!
      Cheers

      1. Yes, charging to 90% generally roughly doubles cycle life, for any Li-Ion battery.

    2. ~4.2 V seems to be standard charge-end voltage for current-generation automotive Li-Ion batteries.

  10. Hi, Bob. Dave from mn.
    I just got a 2018 Leaf battery yesterday. Needed a couple torches to melt the glue. Have the modules on the bench now.

  11. So … I just need to get ~25kg out of the Cases … hello CFRP … again … 🙂

  12. Could you post dimensions for the 2018 pack thinking of a conversion of a classic truck using whole leaf drivetrain and battery? Has anyone been able to break in to the computer to program out certain things (air bag one other ) on a 2018 ?

  13. I have 2011, needs new battery. the 96 month battery warranty still in effect but apparently no longer adequately charging doesn’t qualify.
    Any ideas or how to do this for less than $7500? Also is new replacement battery an upgrade reflecting newer tech improvements or is it 2011 same battery.

    1. Where do you live? I would like to buy your battery if you think about selling it.

  14. I notice that you change the cathode material type from NCM622 to NCM523, any evidence for that?

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