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I just recently had my HV battery replaced at 13,500 miles on a 2016 451, under warranty. I am now curious as to what to expect for the life expectancy of my car. Is there a standard life expectancy for these cars? Or is it just a crap-shoot? I should note, I love driving the car and plan to drive it until it dies or becomes so undependable that it is not worth the effort.
 

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MY08 cabrio MY09 cabrio Brabus MY15 ED
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Do you have a "back story" on what happened to necessitate the HV battery being replaced under warranty? Warranty - OEM or BAP? Was the 12V battery a contributing factor?

Remember that our 451 ED is a very low volume niche vehicle with limited range thus it is hard to equate a "standard" life expectancy in miles or years? Although the failures are few, a bricked HV battery will usually kill the vehicle as the replacement cost can be higher than the vehicle value.

This is made an even bigger "crap-shoot" by the fact that there are few Euro mechanics with EV/smart experience and our friendly M-B/smart dealer would prefer that we just GO AWAY!
 

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Yes, the back story was documented in detail about a month ago. See "Drive System, Engine Off". My MB dealer was very accommodating, not that I will expect such when the warranty is over in August. But, back to my question, surely when they developed these cars that there was some expectation as to how long they were to last.
 

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I am now curious as to what to expect for the life expectancy of my car. Is there a standard life expectancy for these cars? Or is it just a crap-shoot?
This is a question that should have been asked BEFORE you bought your smart ED?

My friend, you (we) are participating in a grand EV experiment.

For smart ED that includes Daimler closing up ALL smart Centers in the U.S.

There is no “standard life expectancy” for a smart ED, only the “crap-shoot” that you suggest!
 

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So what is the chemistry of the lithium Smart batteries, if anyone has that handy? I'm about to have a 'new' HV battery installed in my 451ED auction prize. I plan to inquire if it will be new or reassembled or ?? If it will be a rebuilt then the chemistry might be somewhat different, hopefully state-of-the-art.

Also the warranty terms that I will have to agree to.
VR
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As an owner of a 2014 Mercedes B-Class Electric and now a 2013 smart 451, I can tell you that both have about 80% or more of their original capacity and are going fine. Like the smart, a few B-Class electrics have catastrophic (motor/controller) failure that ends the car's life prematurely. But aside from those special cases, like "MB DNA" says, nobody knows the life expectancy. On cargurus.com you can find 2012 Tesla Model S's selling for over $30k. So far so good!
 

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Well, now that I know the worst case scenario, what is the best case? What is the highest mileage someone has put on a Smart EV? The oldest Smart EV still running? Give me something to shoot for....
 

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My 2012 Tesla ModelS had its battery replaced in early 2014 with one of the best versions to date, so today at 60k miles it still has the same max range of 265 miles. Plus it has the improved contactors inside. Tesla has slowly reduced the cobalt content of their batteries over the years.

Good to hear you still have 80% left in your (built in 2012) 451ED. I considered trying to resuscitate the 'dead' auction car battery, now some seven years old, but chose to have MB put in a fresh one instead. It is hard to put 'Tesla miles' on a "local" car like the ED/EQ so age and overcharging are the issues.
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Mine has always easily charged to 100%, but I don't usually charge it more than 75 or 80% unless I really need it. It's always garaged or parked in the shade. I drive it moderately in mostly city driving. So it has an easy life. My other car rarely gets driven these days. Hopefully it has newer contactors as well now and will last a long time. How long? Guess I'll find out.
 

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So what is the chemistry of the lithium Smart batteries, if anyone has that handy?

If it will be a rebuilt then the chemistry might be somewhat different, hopefully state-of-the-art.
The lithium-ion battery was developed by Deutsche ACCUmotive, a Daimler AG subsidiary specially set up to develop and produce HV batteries.

The battery consists of 93 single cells and no changes nor upgrades have been noted (by recipients of a new HV replacement) over the Gen 3 production cycle?
 

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If MB is re-populating old packs with new prismatic cells then likely they would be using the best available chemistry or even a new cell mfr compared to back in 2013, no? What cars share the same cells as Smart? I'm guessing 6 sheets, each 63v.
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If MB is re-populating old packs with new prismatic cells then likely they would be using the best available chemistry or even a new cell mfr compared to back in 2013, no?
My SWAG is NO?

Stateside, no smart Center HV replacements have been refurbs, all new. No smart Center replacements have resulted in any change in range being reported which may suggest no change in chemistry nor architecture.

This may be dictated by HAZMAT shipping requirements and smart Centers that are not allowed to open the HV can?? Obviously, across the pond Daimler may employ a different protocol?

As with all things “smart,” more questions than answers...
 

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Well, now that I know the worst case scenario, what is the best case? What is the highest mileage someone has put on a Smart EV? The oldest Smart EV still running? Give me something to shoot for....

The failures of battery packs on the Smart ED's have nothing to do with the life of the lithium cells - the failure is in the buggy BMS software - which can only be fixed under the corporate-mandated repair rules by replacing the whole battery pack.

The ED uses 'NMC Cells - LiNIMnCO2. Properly cared for, the battery should last at least 15 years and at least 2000 charge cycles to the point where it loses 20 percent of capacity.

The key to long lithium battery life is keeping the battery at no more than 60 percent SOC and only charging it full within a few hours of using the car. This is especially important in hot climates. Another precaution for colder climates is to find way to keep the car in a place where exposures to temperatures below -25C (-13F) for more than a day or so can be avoided.

As far as a best case scenario for car life, like most electronic devices, the probability of failure goes way down after a shake-down/burn-in period. So if you can get it through the first 3-4 years withot trouble, it should be trouble free for a long time
 

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Well, I'm glad MB has agreed to sell me my core battery back so I can try to restore it. Prior owner took car to dealer with typical '2 bad batteries' syndrome just 30 days ago, so I should be able to get in there in time to attend to each cell. Plus it saves me the job of removing. :)

I would say 80% SOC as a very very responsible operating max for day to day ED operation (was the 60 a typo??). It's a crap shoot stopping the charge by 80% in any event. If I bring mine up to 90% just before a 50 mile shopping trip it gets me back home before it dips to 20%.

Long term storage rules from Tesla Motors is between 40-60%. Cold nights @7400ft in the Rockies usually only 2 nights in a row in Dec caused no battery damage to my 2 Teslas for years. Batteries could warm up during the day from cold soak, and if the wind blows the temp never gets much below 0*F at night anyway. Northern MN however not so lucky in that regard.

Long term storage rules from MB . . . I will inquire.
VR
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Eight years of use on my two and I plug them in and charge them overnight to 100%. Actually a 100% state of charge is actually about 95% according to the test unit reading. Almost never any long term storage for mine and I keep an eye on the 12v battery. So based on things so far, I'll take my chances with my procedures. Hope to heck that I don't have to report back here someday and say, "I should have done this" or "I should have done that." :)

Len
2014 EV Coupe 20,000 miles
2014 EV Cabriolet 18,500 miles
 

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Last trip I read the voltage (12.2v) just before turning the key (where it jumps up to 14.4v) so, right, the car had been sitting for over a week.
But it started and ran fine. So the 5 year old battery (from factory date) is showing its age and I should replace it with the new 12v Li-Ion battery
that is on the shelf waiting. First I want to scope the charger's output to be sure that it is limited to 14.5v max with no spikes above that figure.

Today I decided to read the voltage by sneaking in the pass door and measuring @the battery terminals rather than the cigar o/l voltmeter. It
read 14.5v!! So double-clicking to open the pass door must be equivalent to giving the key its first click. So much for that idea.

I don't want to leave this car alone for a month or so without at least doing something pro-active. Not with this weak 12v battery.
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Could it be that your 12v battery is weak to the point where the HV battery is charging it even when the car is off? If that's the case then two things should be happening. One - your HV battery charge should be going down overnight a little more than would be typical. Two - the contactor to the HV battery would be on when it should be off. Our test unit shows whether the contactor is on or off. If it's on when you test the 12v battery, something is not right with the 12v battery. When we use our test units to check the 12v battery, we do it with the key in our pocket and just click on the door lock/unlock button. Typically if the 12v battery is reading that high, it means that the contactor is on and the HV battery is charging the 12v battery. Probably would be a good idea to take a multi-meter to the 12v battery itself and test it. Something doesn't sound right. Maybe that five year old battery needs to be replaced as you are saying?

Len
2014 EV Coupe 20,000 miles
2014 EV Cabriolet 18,500 miles
 
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