NISSAN LEAF 2013 1.G Owner's Manual
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The LEAF is an electric vehicle. Some of the
vehicle’s systems operate differently and have
different operating characteristics than vehicles
equipped with an internal combustion engine. It is
important to carefully review the entire Owner’s
Manual for this reason. The main difference is the
LEAF is powered by electricity. The LEAF does
not require and it is not capable of using gasoline
like a vehicle powered by a traditional internal
combustion engine. The LEAF uses electricity
stored in the lithium ion (Li-ion) battery. The ve-
hicle Li-ion battery must be charged with electric-
ity before the vehicle can be driven. As the vehicle
operates, the Li-ion battery gradually discharges.
If the Li-ion battery becomes completely dis-
charged, the vehicle will not operate until it is
re-charged. The charging process usually takes
from approximately 30 minutes to 21 hours as
described more fully in this manual.
This vehicle uses two types of batteries. One is
the 12-volt battery that is the same as the battery
in vehicles powered by gasoline engines, the
other is the Li-ion battery (high voltage) .
The 12-volt battery provides power to the vehicle
systems and features such as the audio system,
supplemental restraint systems, headlights and
windshield wipers.The Li-ion battery provides power to the electric
motor (traction motor) that moves the vehicle.
The Li-ion battery also charges the 12-volt bat-
The vehicle must be plugged in for the Li-ion
battery to be charged. Additionally, the vehicle
system can extend the vehicle range by convert-
ing driving force into electricity that is stored in
the Li-ion battery while the vehicle is decelerating
or being driven downhill. This is called regenera-
tive brake. This vehicle is considered to be an
environmentally friendly vehicle because it does
not emit exhaust gases, such as carbon dioxide
and nitrogen oxide.
Your vehicle contains a sealed Li-ion
high voltage battery. If the Li-ion battery
is disposed of improperly, there is a risk
of severe burns and electrical shock that
may result in serious injury or death and
there is also a risk of environmental dam-
To prevent damage to the Li-ion battery:
Do not expose a vehicle to extreme ambient temperatures for extended
Do not store a vehicle in temperatures below 13°F (25°C) for over seven
Do not leave your vehicle for over 14 days where the Li-ion battery available
charge gauge reaches a zero or near
zero (state of charge) .
Do not use the Li-ion battery for any other purpose.
THE EV (ELECTRIC VEHICLE)
SYSTEM LI-ION BATTERY
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If the outside temperature is 13°F
(25°C) or less, the Li-ion battery may
freeze and it cannot be charged or provide
power to run the vehicle. Move the vehicle
to a warm location.
The capacity of the Li-ion battery in your
vehicle to hold a charge will, like all such
batteries, decrease with time and usage.
As the battery ages and capacity de-
creases, this will result in a decrease from
the vehicle’s initial mileage range. This is
normal, expected, and not indicative of
any defect in your Li-ion battery. NISSAN
estimates that battery capacity will be ap-
proximately 80% of original capacity after
five years, although this is only an esti-
mate, and this percentage may vary (and
could be significantly lower) depending
on individual vehicle and Li-ion battery
The Li-ion battery has limited service life,
and when its charging capacity falls be-
low a specific level, the EV system warn-
ing light will illuminate. Owners should
bring their vehicle in for inspection and
possible battery replacement.
The Li-ion battery has a limited service
life. Contact a NISSAN certified LEAF
dealer for information about recycling or
disposal of the Li-ion battery. Do not at-
tempt to recycle or dispose of the Li-ion
DRIVING WITH A DISCHARGED
When a destination is set in the navigation sys-
tem that exceeds the available vehicle range, the
navigation system automatically searches the lo-
cation of nearby charging stations. When the
nearby charging station locations are displayed,
charge the Li-ion battery as soon as possible
(models with navigation system) .
Warning lights illuminate on the instrument panel
and messages are displayed on the dot matrix
liquid crystal display to inform you that the Li-ion
battery charge is low. Instructions are also dis-
played on the navigation system screen to direct
you to nearby charging stations (models with
navigation system) .
The vehicle’s range is very limited when these
warning lights illuminate and messages are dis-
played. Follow the instructions on the navigation
screen (models with navigation system) and im- mediately charge the vehicle at the nearest
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There are three levels of information that will be
displayed as the Li-ion battery becomes dis-
1. The following warning lights illuminate on theinstrument panel and messages are displayed
on the dot matrix liquid crystal system screen
display at the same time to indicate low Li-ion
The low battery charge warning light
The master warning light
“Li-ion battery level is Low” warning message is displayed on the dot matrix liquid crystal
See 16. Li-ion battery low charge warning
in the Instruments and controls section.
Messages are displayed on navigation sys- tem screen (if so equipped)
See Low battery warning in theInstru-
ments and controls section. The driving range flashes
Due to traffic conditions, it may be diffi-
cult to get to the charging station sug-
gested by the navigation system. If the
Li-ion battery is almost completely dis-
charged, drive directly to the nearest
charging station (models with naviga-
tion system) . 2. If the vehicle is driven and the Li-ion battery
continues to discharge, the driving range on
the instrument panel changes to “---”2.
Messages are displayed on the Navigation
System screen (if so equipped) . For more
information, see “Low battery warning” in the
“Instruments and controls” section.
3. When the power limitation indicator light
illuminates, traction motor output is lim-
ited resulting in reduced vehicle speed. Stop
the vehicle in a safe location before the Li-ion
battery becomes completely discharged and
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there is no power available to drive the ve-
hicle. Contact Roadside assistance service
shown in your NISSAN Warranty Information
Booklet. SeeIf the Li-ion battery becomes
completely discharged in theIn case of
CHARGING THE 12-VOLT BATTERY
The 12-volt battery is charged automatically us-
ing electricity stored in the Li-ion battery.
When the 12-volt battery is being charged, the
charge status indicator light on the instrument
panel flashes. (except when charging the Li-ion
battery or the power switch is in the READY to
drive position.) See Charge status indicator
light in the Charge section.
While vehicle is driven
The Li-ion battery charges the 12-volt battery as
necessary when the power switch is in the
READY to drive position or ON position.
The 12-volt battery is not charged in the following
When the power switch is in ACC position.
When the power switch is in ON position and
shift position is in the N (Neutal) position.
While the vehicle is not in use
When the EV (Electric Vehicle) system is off for
an extended time, the 12-volt battery may be
automatically charged for a short period of time
on a regular basis.
LI-ION BATTERY WARMER
The Li-ion battery warmer does not oper-
ate if the available Li-ion battery charge
is less than approximately 30% and the
charger is not connected to the vehicle.
To help prevent the Li-ion battery from
freezing, do not leave the vehicle in an
environment if temperatures may go be-
low -1°F (-17°C) unless the vehicle is con-
nected to a charger.
The Li-ion battery warmer helps to prevent the
Li-ion battery from freezing and helps to prevent
significant reductions in the Li-ion battery output
when the temperature is cold. The Li-ion battery
warmer automatically turns on when the Li-ion
battery temperature is approximately -1°F
(-17°C) or colder. The Li-ion battery warmer au-
tomatically turns off when the Li-ion battery tem-
perture is approximately 14°F (-10°C) or higher. The Li-ion battery warmer uses electrical power
from an external source when a charger is con-
nected to the vehicle. The Li-ion battery warmer
uses electrical power from the Li-ion battery
when the charger is not connected to the vehicle.
Connect the charger to the vehicle and
place the power switch in the OFF posi-
tion when parking the vehicle if tempera-
tures may go below -1°F (-17°C) . This pro-
vides external power to the Li-ion battery
warmer when it operates and does not
discharge the Li-ion battery.
The charging status indicator lights illu-
minate in a specific pattern when the Li-
ion battery warmer operates. The charg-
ing status indicator lights use the same
pattern to indicate 12-volt battery charg-
ing, Climate Ctrl. Timer operation or Re-
mote Climate Control operation (models
with navigation system) . The charging
status indicator lights do not change if the
Li-ion battery warmer operates at the
same time as the above features. See
Charge status indicator light in the
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The Li-ion battery warmer uses Li-ion bat-
tery power to operate, even if the vehicle
is connected to a charger when: – the vehicle’s power switch is in the ON position.
– there is no electrical power being sup- plied to the charging equipment.
When the Li-ion battery warmer is already
in operation using an external power
source, it will continue to use the external
power even if the power switch is placed
in the ON position.
Vehicle driving range is reduced if the
Li-ion battery warmer operates (Li-ion
battery temperature approximately -1°F
(-17°C) or colder) while driving the vehicle.
You may need to charge the Li-ion battery
sooner than in warmer temperatures.
The Li-ion battery requires more time to
charge when the Li-ion battery warmer
The predicted charging time displayed on
the meter and navigation system (models
with navigation system) increases when
the Li-ion battery warmer operates.
Climate control performance is reduced
when using the Climate Ctrl. Timer or Re-
mote Climate Control (models with navi-
gation system) while the Li-ion battery
The Li-ion battery may not charge to the
expected level using the charging timer
when [Start Time] (models with navigation
system) and [End Time] are set while the
Li-ion battery warmer operates.
Set the charging timer [End Time] when
charging in cold weather. The vehicle au-
tomatically determines when to start
charging to fully charge the Li-ion battery,
even if the Li-ion battery warmer operates.
Charging ends before the set end time if
the Li-ion battery is fully charged.
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The EV (Electric Vehicle) system uses high voltage up to approximately DC
400 volt. The system can be hot during
and after starting and when the vehicle
is shut off. Be careful of both the high
voltage and the high temperature. Fol-
low the warning labels that are at-
tached to the vehicle.
Never disassemble, remove or replace high-voltage parts and cables as well
as their connectors because they can
cause severe burns or electric shock
that may result in serious injury or
death. High-voltage cables are colored
orange. The vehicle high voltage sys-
tem has no user serviceable parts.
Take your vehicle to a NISSAN certi-
fied LEAF dealer for any necessary
1. Traction motor and reduction gear
2. Power delivery module (PDM) (Charger,DC/DC Converter, Junction Box)
3. Traction motor inverter 4. High-voltage wire harnesses (colored
5. Li-ion battery
6. Service plug
HIGH VOLTAGE PRECAUTIONS
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In case of a collision:
If your vehicle is drivable, pull your vehicle off the road, push the P (Park)
position switch on the selector lever,
apply the parking brake and turn the
EV (Electric Vehicle) system off.
Check your vehicle to see if there are exposed high-voltage parts or cables.
For their locations, see High voltage
. To avoid personal injury,
never touch high-voltage wiring, con-
nectors, and other high-voltage parts,
such as inverter unit and Li-ion battery.
An electric shock may occur if exposed
electric wires are visible when viewed
from inside or outside of your vehicle.
Therefore, never touch exposed elec-
If the vehicle receives a strong impact to the floor while driving, stop the ve-
hicle in a safe location and check the
floor. Leaks or damage to the Li-ion battery
may result in a fire. If you discover
them, contact emergency services im-
mediately. Since the fluid leak may be
lithium manganate from the Li-ion bat-
tery, never touch the fluid leak inside
or outside the vehicle. If the fluid con-
tacts your skin or eyes, wash it off
immediately with a large amount of
water and receive immediate medical
attention to help avoid serious injury.
If a fire occurs in the EV (Electric Ve- hicle) , leave the vehicle as soon as
possible. Only use a type ABC, BC or C
fire extinguisher that is meant for use
on electrical fires. Using a small
amount of water or the incorrect fire
extinguisher can result in serious in-
jury or death from electrical shock.
If your vehicle needs to be towed, do it with the front wheels raised. If the
front wheels are on the ground when
towing, the traction motor may gener-
ate electricity. This may damage the
components of the EV (Electric Ve-
hicle) system and cause a fire. If you are not able to safely assess the
vehicle due to vehicle damage, do not
touch the vehicle. Leave the vehicle
and contact emergency services. Ad-
vise 1st responders that this is an elec-
In the event of an accident that re- quires body repair and painting, the
vehicle should be delivered to a
NISSAN certified LEAF dealer to have
the Li-ion battery pack and high volt-
age parts such as the inverter, includ-
ing the wiring harness, removed prior
to painting. Li-ion battery packs ex-
posed to heat in the paint booth will
experience capacity loss. Damaged Li-
ion battery packs may also pose safety
risks to untrained mechanics and re-
ROAD ACCIDENT PRECAUTIONS
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EMERGENCY SHUT-OFF SYSTEM
The emergency shut-off system is activated and
the high-voltage system automatically turns off in
the following conditions:
- Front and side collisions in which the air bags
- Certain rear collisions.
- Certain EV (Electric Vehicle) system malfunc-
For the above collisions and certain other EV
(Electric Vehicle) system malfunctions, the
READY to drive indicator light will turn off. See
Warning/indicator lights and audible reminders
in theInstruments and controls section.
The emergency shut-off activates for the above
collisions to minimize risk of an event that could
cause injury or an accident. If the emergency
shut-off system activates, the EV system may not
be switched to READY to drive position, contact
a NISSAN certified LEAF dealer. Even if the
power switch is switched to READY to drive
position, the system may shut-off suddenly.
Therefore, drive cautiously to the nearest
NISSAN certified LEAF dealer or contact a
NISSAN certified LEAF dealer as soon as pos-
Pay special attention to pedestrians. Because there is no engine noise, pe-
destrians may not know the vehicle is
approaching, moving or about to
move, and may step into the path of
When leaving the vehicle, be sure to turn off the EV (Electric Vehicle) sys-
Be sure to push the P (Park) position switch on the shift lever and apply the
parking brake when parking because
the vehicle can move when the READY
to drive indicator light is ON. When the
READY to drive indicator light is ON,
do not leave your vehicle in a shift
position other than the P (Park) posi-
Keep the brake pedal depressed until you are ready to drive. When the ve-
hicle is in the D (Drive) position or ECO
or R (Reverse) position, if you release
the brake pedal and do not depress
accelerator, the vehicle will creep and
may start abruptly. This may cause se-
rious injury or death.
The vehicle cannot run with a discharged
Li-ion battery. Repeated acceleration con-
sumes more power from the Li-ion battery
than driving at a steady speed.
This vehicle is equipped with a regenera-
tive brake system. The primary purpose of
regenerative brake system is to provide
some power to recharge the Li-ion battery
and extend driving range. A secondary
benefit is “engine braking” that operates
based on Li-ion battery conditions.
In the D (Drive) position, when the accel-
erator pedal is released, the regenerative
brake system provides some decelera-
When you put the shift lever in the ECO
position (models without navigation sys-
tem) or B position (models with naviga-
tion system) and take your foot off the
accelerator pedal, more regenerative
brake is applied than in the D (Drive) po-
Less deceleration is provided by the re-
generative brake system when the Li-ion
battery is fully charged. Regenerative
brake is automatically reduced when the
EV (ELECTRIC VEHICLE)
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Li-ion battery is fully charged to prevent
the Li-ion battery from becoming over-
charged. Regenerating brake is also auto-
matically reduced when the battery tem-
perature is high/low (indicated by the red/
blue zones on the Li-ion battery
temperature gauge) to prevent Li-ion bat-
The brake pedal should be used to slow or
stop the vehicle depending on traffic or
road conditions. The vehicle brakes are
not affected by regenerative brake system
operation.NOISE AND VIBRATION
You might experience the following noise or vi-
bration as a normal characteristic of this vehicle.
Traction motor noise from motor compartment.
Water pump and radiator fan noise while charg- ing.
Compressor and radiator fan noise when the Climate Ctrl. Timer or remote climate control
(models with navigation system) is used.
Relay operation noise and vibration at start-up and shut-down of the EV (Electric Vehicle) sys-
tem (power switch placed in the ON and OFF
Approaching Vehicle Sound for Pedestrians (VSP) . This section provides a brief explanation for the
most important LEAF functions. Refer to the spe-
cific sections of this manual for detailed explana-
tions of the vehicle features and operation.
CHARGING THE LI-ION BATTERY
The EV (Electric Vehicle) system uses a
high voltage current. Failure to follow the
proper handling instructions may cause
serious injury or death. Be sure to read
the Charge section and follow the pro-
cedures and guidelines described.
LIFE WITH AN EV (SCENE GUIDE)
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