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Discussion Starter #1
Working on whether to buy that 2017 500e that I mentioned elsewhere. I came across a posting that says that, while Fiat covers the battery 8yrs/100k, the battery has to fail completely for that warranty to kick in. Battery degradation is considered normal wear and tear and is, specifically, excluded and not covered at all. Does anybody have any experience with this?
 

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I guess nobody has any experience with a 500e battery warranty. That says a lot.

The only two verified, confirmed battery degradation test results I've seen were both around 26k miles, & both a little under 2.3% per 10,000 miles, so unless that's a huge coincidence, I'd expect about that much in most of them.

With 25k myself, I can't even detect any range loss. It still averages over 250% of my normal 40-mile US average daily drive. So I haven't bothered with the process of actually measuring my battery.

I recently read that battery costs are forecast to drop another 50% in the next few years, so non-warranty replacement at that time shouldn't be all that costly, especially compared to a worn-out gas engine.
 

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Not only that, but with increased energy density, the range is going to be much higher, also. I wanted to send you a youtube link, but now I can't find it . It was a repair shop in England, they take down a Nissan leaf battery, open it up, find a bad cell, replace it and put the car back together in about 2 hours. They guy is saying 2 hours of labor and the cost of just 1 cell and, basically, you've got a perfectly functioning car. That is beautiful.
 

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Apparently there's a shop doing that somewhere in continental Europe with 500Es that have been abused: Without software update U69, the drive battery keeps the 12V battery charged when it goes dead after a few weeks unplugged. Enough months of that & the drive battery goes damagingly low. They take it apart & replace the bad cells. Hopefully that will become available over here by the time we need it. Actually more likely that our batteries will just keep gradually losing range at 2.3% every 10k miles. So it will still do my 40-mile drive after 260,000 miles.
 

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Almost every US and foreign manufacturer has an electric car. There are about 50 Elecrtric cars on the market now. It's only a matter of time until independent mechanics get on board and begin to service EVs. Over the past 40 years, we have owned 14 new cars and I have never had a pleasant experience with dealership mechanics. Usually, after one or two dealer services I have always found a qualified independent mechanic. I think it's just a matter of time until we see independent EV mechanics.

Fiat Plans: Fiat Reveals an Even Cuter Electric 500 with Doubled Battery Range.

Future cars in 5 years: Future EVs: Every Electric Vehicle Coming Soon
 

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Apparently there's a shop doing that somewhere in continental Europe with 500Es that have been abused: Without software update U69, the drive battery keeps the 12V battery charged when it goes dead after a few weeks unplugged. Enough months of that & the drive battery goes damagingly low. They take it apart & replace the bad cells. Hopefully that will become available over here by the time we need it. Actually more likely that our batteries will just keep gradually losing range at 2.3% every 10k miles. So it will still do my 40-mile drive after 260,000 miles.
Optimistic? 260,000 miles at my rate of use it will take 87 years.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
Almost every US and foreign manufacturer has an electric car. There are about 50 Elecrtric cars on the market now. It's only a matter of time until independent mechanics get on board and begin to service EVs. Over the past 40 years, we have owned 14 new cars and I have never had a pleasant experience with dealership mechanics. Usually, after one or two dealer services I have always found a qualified independent mechanic. I think it's just a matter of time until we see independent EV mechanics.

Fiat Plans: Fiat Reveals an Even Cuter Electric 500 with Doubled Battery Range.

Future cars in 5 years: Future EVs: Every Electric Vehicle Coming Soon
Yes, but I'm a little surprised. That I know of, there's no group of hobbyists, nobody making their own equipment to modify anything, no garage tinkerers doing far out stuff. It was a long time ago, but when PC's started, there were many people doing all sorts of stuff. Computer shows all over the place, where you could go to get boards, parts, etc. Here I am doubting about spending $ 7900 on a car because I'm afraid something will happen and it'll get bricked. If you take it to the dealer, if you can find one in the Northeast, they probably won't know how to fix it any more than I could. How complicated can an electric car be? You should be able to hook up an inexpensive machine that would tell you exactly what module to replace or repair. For me, it's taking way too long. There has to be a reason. Someone buys an EV, today, they are still saying they're early adopters, but it's already been more than 10 years.
 

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There are hobbyists & a couple pro shops doing "far out stuff":

  • Someone in Australia installed an E drivetrain in a right-hand-drive gas 500.
  • Someone bought a nearly-free "broken" 500e, took apart the battery case, fixed a coolant leak, & it's fine.
  • Someone is working on putting a 500e drivetrain in a Subaru Brat.
  • A shop in Southern California has been working on a CHAdeMO conversion.
  • A shop in Europe was upgrading to cylindrical-cell battery packs with more range and DC charging.
 

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There are hobbyists & a couple pro shops doing "far out stuff":

  • Someone in Australia installed an E drivetrain in a right-hand-drive gas 500.
  • Someone bought a nearly-free "broken" 500e, took apart the battery case, fixed a coolant leak, & it's fine.
  • Someone is working on putting a 500e drivetrain in a Subaru Brat.
  • A shop in Southern California has been working on a CHAdeMO conversion.
  • A shop in Europe was upgrading to cylindrical-cell battery packs with more range and DC charging.
There are hobbyists & a couple pro shops doing "far out stuff":

There are videos on YouTube of a guy doing a 500e teardown. Episode #7 shows the car separated from the drive battery. Getting into the drive battery looks like a major undertaking.

 

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There are hobbyists & a couple pro shops doing "far out stuff":

There are videos on YouTube of a guy doing a 500e teardown. Episode #7 shows the car separated from the drive battery. Getting into the drive battery looks like a major undertaking.

From that video, it looks relatively easy. Only negative is that battery modules are made from 5 or 6 cell packs, so if one cell pack fails, you have to replace entire module with 5 or 6 cell packs. On Leaf you can replace individual cell packs.
 
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