To the XCAPEPOD!
Join Date: Jan 2008
Location: Martinsburg, WV
Thanked 1,760 Times in 867 Posts
Mentioned: 1 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 68 Post(s)
Yes, I've seen some of the Munro tear down videos for the Model 3. He gushed over the battery and electronics and was critical that the body was too complex/stiff (of course that might be why it's the safest car NHTSA has tested when looking at the subscores). They were theorizing that Tesla was using Halbach magnet arrays in the motors to generate more power cost effectively.
Regarding leasing, the Model 3 isn't available to lease yet. The Model S/X are available to lease but they cost quite a bit more, so the lease is also quite a bit more. When the Model 3 lease becomes available, then it will be a good bit less.
Some EV's value (Leaf, cough, cough) have suffered mostly due to poor battery life of early models. And, like any electronic product, the technology is moving forward at a fast pace, making older, short range EVs less desirable. Tesla specifically hasn't really suffered from that issue since their cars were always long range models and they have fantastic battery designs that stand up over time. The older Model S/X with early autopilot that is no longer supported will see a hit, though.
As far as battery recycling is concerned, most modern batteries with active thermal management are going to last years and years beyond any lease period. Even if a car is damaged or the battery degraded, the batteries generally see a second life in stationary storage (Nissan and BMW are doing this). Tesla batteries from wrecked cars are generally in high demand from the aftermarket for other projects. So, battery recycling isn't an issue YET. However, this will become a bigger problem in the future with more EVs on the road. The Tesla Gigafactory in Nevada was supposedly conceived with a method for reclaiming failed batteries. The great thing about lithium is that it can be used over and over versus distilling more from a salt flat, so there is an economic incentive if you can make the recovery process cost effective. I'm sure this is more work to be done here and battery tech is still evolving - reducing the amount of cobalt needed (like Tesla has already done in the 2170 cells) or moving toward dry electrode technology (like Maxwell Technologies has developed and Tesla is purchasing that company).
So, bottom line, at the end of your typical lease, the car will still be worth a lot of money. Off lease Tesla Model S/X sell for $40K and up depending on condition, miles and age of course, so no "pennies on the dollar". An early Leaf, however, you can find good deals if you're willing to put up with the reduced range. I have a Leaf and it's a good commuter, but Nissan really screwed up the early models in some climates. My car is a later model with the improved battery chemistry, but it still doesn't have active thermal management which is critical in areas like the south where heat is a major issue.