I have experience with a couple Leafs now, first having bought a Salvage
2011 and fixed it up,
Then later a good 2011 with a new battery that I sold earlier this week
and at the same day
Bought a 2012 with a new battery that a local apartment-dweller had to
sell due to being unable
To plug in anywhere but at the local Nissan dealer... that gets old real
What struck me already earlier with the Salvage was that its economy was
lower than with the
Other 2011. Not terribly different, but still. Also it tended to squeal
every time I took a turn across
A white line or a railroad track.
Then I got into the 2012 and one of the first things that I noticed was
the efficiency number.
Wow - 4.9 how did they do that?
My Salvage usually did not get better than 3.9 average and the other
2011 used to average 4.4 mi/kWh
So I was curious what was different in the 2012. First thing I looked at
was the toe-in.
Or better: the toe-out.
Looking from next to the front bumper along the front wheels (lining up
the two sidewalls at hub height)
I could see a 1/8" sliver of rear tire on each side. So, the front end
has a slight toe-out and when driving,
Apparently the force to keep moving the car forward will pull the front
wheels to neutral toe, or so I surmised.
Anyway, I went over to the Salvage, which I had as perfect as I could,
set for zero toe before and adjusted the
Toe to slightly toe-out and checked.
Beforehand I had driven a specific route at specific speed and now I
retraced that route.
This also takes me in a U-turn across tracks and the first time the
tires made their usual squeals.
The second time with toe-out, they were silent. Aha.
Also, the efficiency came to 5.1 the first time (this is a low speed
route mostly 35 MPH) while the second time
It read 5.8 (I reset the efficiency timer both times before leaving).
I also put the car in Neutral both times on the same flat section in
front of my driveway and moved the car by hand
Which is a real good indicator of problems: the first time it took me a
bit of effort to push the car, but the second time it moved almost
Soooo... if you are not getting the advertised range and you wonder what
you should change to get better mileage while you are trying to drive as
Efficiently as you can already, then adjusting the toe of the EV might
be just the way to get up to 20% more range (!)
At least that is what I surmised from going from 3.9 to 4.9 miles per
(Note that I did check tire pressure and all tires on both cars are
above 40 PSI, so that should not make much difference)
Hope this helps,
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