In response to a potential class action lawsuit filed against it in California last week over the battery life and range of the Leaf, Nissan says the case “lacks merit.”The lawsuit was filed by Humberto Daniel Klee and David Wallak, on behalf of current owners and lessees in California of 2011-2012 Leafs.
It charges that Nissan violated the California Consumer Legal Remedies Act and the Unfair Business Practices Act.
It comes down to Nissan’s advertisement of the electric car’s range as 100 miles. The lawsuit reads:
Unbeknownst to purchasers, the advertised driving range is based on the vehicle’s performance only after fully charging the battery to 100% capacity. In fact, however, charging the battery to 100% causes battery damage, and Nissan expressly recommends that owners not charge their vehicle to 100% in order to maximise battery life and that the battery be charged to only 80% capacity.
Filed in the California Central District Court, the lawsuit also charges that Nissan did not disclose a “thermal management defect” in the battery system that has limited range and battery performance in all 2011-2012 Leaf cars.
Nissan released a statement that does not respond directly to the accusations, but says it has not withheld information or misled owners and potential customers:
Nissan has provided information on how the vehicle works, its estimated range, and factors that can affect both range and battery life through many sources, including the Nissan LEAF website, owner’s manual and detailed written disclosure.
The plaintiffs are seeking an order to stop Nissan using misleading information while selling the Leaf, to send Leaf owners and lessees “corrective disclosures,” to reform its battery warranty, and to replace the battery systems of all the vehicles in question.
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