Has Nissan halted LEAF deliveries due to telematics problems?
Issue Date: 2016-02-24

Just months after the first 2016 Nissan LEAFs rolled off the production line, Nissan has halted all European deliveries of 2016 Nissan LEAFs due to a major fault with the NissanConnect EV service — one which sources close to the company say Nissan is scrambling to fix.

Over the past week or so, we've heard from several prospective 2016 Nissan LEAF owners who have been patiently waiting for their longer-range Nissan LEAFs to arrive. Many of them — who waited specifically for the longer-range over previous model year LEAFs offered by certain 2016 Nissan LEAF models — report that while their cars have arrived at dealerships, Nissan has put a stop on all deliveries due to an issue which causes the Telematics Control Unit on affected cars to keep unexpectedly rebooting itself.

As Transport Evolved reader and 2016 Nissan LEAF customer David Rowlands explained to us in an email this weekend, the situation is frustrating to say the least.

"Since January 13th all 2016 model-year Nissan LEAFs across the whole of Europe are either being held at the factory or at dealerships and are not being allowed to be released to customers," he said. "Dealerships aren't even allowed to register the vehicles and no updates have been given to customers at all from Nissan. Dealerships have not had any more information since January 13. We are all in the dark and only know that the issues are related to the new NissanConnect EV telematics system."

While he is willing to wait a little longer in the hope that something will be sorted out, some customers have grown tired of waiting and have already cancelled their orders.

"I have said to Nissan that customers are normally quite understanding when there are delays, as long as they are kept informed, but you are now losing sales. I am very loyal to manufacturers and am just leaving VAG after having 2 of their cars over the past 8 years. This does not inspire me with confidence," he continues. "I do understand that they want the issues sorted so that they don't have another failing system like CarWings but customers will get very upset and annoyed if they can't have their cars and have no updates."

Transport Evolved understands that early 2016 Nissan LEAF customers report that the telematics systems on their cars are constantly rebooting, meaning that the center console essentially power-cycles while the car is in use. While we should reiterate at this point that there is no connection between the centre console, telematics system and the car's main control system — meaning there's no risk to the correct function of the car's primary systems like steering, brakes, accelerator or motor control — the problem of a rebooting center console, however infrequent, makes using on-board sat-nav and radio particularly frustrating and distracting.

Moreover, an improperly functioning telematics unit means that drivers are either unable to check on their car's state of charge remotely, or unable to do so reliably.

The delay, aside from frustrating owners, has been made worse by a lack of decent communication between owners and dealerships. While some owners say they've been told the issue lies with the telematics system, nobody has been given a firm date for when the issue will be resolved.

"We have temporarily suspended deliveries of the new MY16 Nissan LEAF… due to an issue we've identified with the NissanConnect EV telematics system," a Nissan spokesperson told us earlier today. “We cannot confirm a date at this moment in time, but rest assured we're working hard to implement a solution as quickly as we can and of course, customers that are waiting on vehicles will be a priority."