good news on Tesla battery life

good news on Tesla battery life

This site shows that the battery on the S and X keeps a good part of it's health (93%) over the range tested:

This is really good news! Of course Tesla is changing to a new battery, but I still have high hopes with the batteries longevity.

This is compared to some of the other electrics out there, my 2012 leaf had around 33K miles and only had around 71% life left.

4fishtankz | April 13, 2017

This should add to the warm fuzzies about owning a Tesla and defuse any worries about having to replace the battery too soon.

KP in NPT | April 13, 2017

Nice to read. Still not the least bit worried about battery degradation with our Tesla. :)

4fishtankz | April 13, 2017

Yep, my RAV4 EV had Tesla battery and drive train and noticed no degradation on it either. The leaf on the other hand was a nightmare with changes in the weather and degradation. Had to use Leafspy just to monitor it's health.

4fishtankz | April 13, 2017

Very important features in electric cars that some may overlook is how good is the battery chemistry and how fast will it degrade over the life of the car, how fast can you recharge it, and where you can recharge it. Customer support is also a big plus in my book.

M3forMe | April 13, 2017

thanks for the info

akgolf | April 13, 2017

Looks good!

JeffreyR | April 13, 2017

There's a guy who tracks information on this over at TMC too. Lots of data. Good news for sure.

noleaf4me | April 14, 2017

I would only expect this to get better as the make incremental improvements to the battery chemistry. Also longer range = fewer charging cycles = longer life.....

melinda.v | April 15, 2017

@eagles - the Tesloop guys have proved this is not true. They have multiple Teslas that charge daily from nearly 0 to 100% solely at Superchargers and have experienced very little (6%) degradation after more than 200k miles. All indications are the batteries will out-perform most ICE engine out there on longevity.

KP in NPT | April 15, 2017

Melinda he's a troll. He blatantly lies.

melinda.v | April 15, 2017

The Tesla Show podcast recently had a PhD who specializes in advanced battery tech from UC Berkley on to talk about batteries - it was very informative and interesting in regards to why Li-Ion batteries immediately lose some capacity and what following that initial phase causes degradation and what doesn't.

melinda.v | April 15, 2017

KP - oh I know, and every day driving around Ptld I'm looking out for a crappy (hatchback of course) car with a roof rack w/skis heading toward the mountain . lol

melinda.v | April 15, 2017

mostly those short 280 mile hops to vegas.....thru the desert.

dyefrog | April 15, 2017

""There will be a firmware update in three months that will take care of the discrepancy, but Tesla just replaced the battery to solve the problem. ‘We got our 6% range back with the new battery,’"
Which makes no sense. If Tesla replaced the non-working 200,000 mile battery why would it show 6% degradation."

Let me help with the translation.
Their 200k mile battery had shown a 6% degradation before being replaced with a new battery that had 0 degradation. Therefore, they now have a battery with 6% more range than they had before the replacement. Does this make sense or should I take it down a notch? I'm well aware that your comprehension of the written word is a bit challenged and I'm doing the best I can.

Gen3Joe | April 15, 2017


Did you get your Leaf battery replaced under warranty?

I've lost 2 bars after 25,000 miles and am looking forward to losing 2 more so I can make the warranty claim. I went in to make a warranty claim arguing that 2 bar loss in under 25,000 miles is too rapid of degradation and they told me that I would have to lose 2 more before they would replace.

Gen3Joe | April 15, 2017

More on topic, I really hope they use a battery chemistry that is at least as good as the Model S. I'm planning to have this be my only car and keep it for a long time. High hopes for Model 3!

SamO | April 15, 2017


Wow. I didn't realize the Leaf was so prone to degradation.

I've got 80k miles on my S60 and I've got ~5% degradation so far. Generally there is an initial drop (or none at all) and then very consistent. I haven't lost a mile in 6 months.

dyefrog | April 15, 2017

"Wow. I didn't realize the Leaf was so prone to degradation. "

The 2011 and 2012 Leafs were notorious for degradation, especially in hot climates. They modified the chemistry IIRC for the later models (lizard batteries) which have shown a remarkable improvement. Still without any hot weather temperature management. One has to wonder how this was possible though since all Li-Ion batteries are the same. Maybe Ghosn had a little "chat" with the battery gods.

dyefrog | April 15, 2017

You're confusing a "typical" (in your mind) Tesla owners habits with a specific example being the Tesloop. As Melinda pointed out, the overwhelming majority of their use patterns is nothing like you describe. Almost the exact opposite. What myth exactly are your trying to create?

Red Sage ca us | April 15, 2017

Evidence: facts, figures, and documentation; outweigh Fear, Uncertainty, and Doubt at every turn.

Carl Thompson | April 15, 2017

"Also the 200,000 miles are not long distance miles but a lot of short hop stuff that is less than 80% discharge with home base safe slow charging."

From what I understand Tesloop's car was shuttling people back and between Los Angeles and Las Vegas. So most of its "trips" were undoubtedly not short hops but long trips to the next supercharger and most of their charging would have been done at the supercharger and not at slow home charger.

However, I do agree that careful reading between the lines of the Techcrunch article suggests that Tesloop's car's battery had begun the more rapid degradation at the end of life and that why it was replaced.


Bighorn | April 15, 2017

Driving 200,000 miles mostly in short hops is oxymoronic.

jrheilig01 | April 15, 2017

Anyone have any feedback on battery performance and/or life for cars in very hot climates? I live in Tucson, and it gets REALLY hot here in the summertime. Just wondering if that will decrease performance or life of the battery.

Captain_Zap | April 15, 2017


The battery management system monitors your battery 24/7 and cools it accordingly. Your battery will be fine. If you want some experienced answers try the Model S thread

Badbot | April 15, 2017

oxymoronic eagles needs another flag

Red Sage ca us | April 15, 2017

Good news means good things are happening, not doom, gloom, fear, uncertainty, and doubt. Yet, the trolls keep up their drum beat, certain that something, somewhere 'must be wrong' despite all evidence presented.

akgolf | April 15, 2017

I think it's more likely Tesla wanted a battery that reached 200,000 miles to test the software update with.

They did something similar with other components early on with the Model S.

Frank99 | April 15, 2017

Cool. And GM will have 200,000 vehicles in the field with this cooling system when, did you say? Oh, and how many connections are there that could spring a leak in that GM pack compared with a Tesla pack? Looks like about 32 for the Tesla pack, and literally hundreds for the GM pack. And how does this cooling system compare with the Bolt? What, you're not going to tell me that you linked to a year-old comparison that doesn't include GM's latest, are you?

tstolz | April 15, 2017

Yup ... every passing day more data comes in supporting Tesla batterys last and the FUD get weaker.

I am so happy that my battery degradation is so low. Based on real-world data, after 10 years and 400,000 miles I'll still have 65 kw + capacity! That would still be tons for many people!!

greg | April 15, 2017

@akgolf, @Carl

Agree with akgolf that Tesla swapped out Tesloops 200k mile battery because:

(a) its covered in the [no quibble, ifs, buts or whatevers] 8 year drive train warranty, even when used 100% for commercial profit as it was for Tesloops Tesla.

(b) Tesloop got exactly what they paid for - their Model S is back in service with the remainder of its 8 year drive train warranty in tact, in short order. The fact that they got "betterment" in the process is something that most normal ICE [GM and Ford] car owners would seldom see. But Tesla's approach to customer service mandates it be that way.

(c) the alleged $ costs to Tesla to swap out the battery is quite simply immaterial as per (a) an (b). But beyond that to Tesla that pack is valuable beyond the cost of any replacement to allow them to get their hands on a real world 200k mile fast charged for all its life battery pack from the field. Not because its used as a way to shut up a noisy customer.

(d) the software update that they will (and probably have released by now) will affect very few cars at this stage [Tesla knows how many it is/was] so Tesla doesn't need to drop tens of thousands of $ of valuable engineer time urgently creating a firmware update for one or two customers cars, just yet - when they haven't had time to analyse the issue in full detail, and then test it thoroughly on real world examples. So swapping out the pack while they work through the issue makes sense, 100%.

All in all, Tesla took a customer-centric, pragmatic, consistent and "engineering" based approach to the problem.
As you'd expect them to do.

As opposed to the corporate profits at all costs, marketing & BS lead approach we saw with ICE car makers, that VW, Audi and every other Diesel car maker took when trying to escape their Dieselgate problem.
Or the very similar approach that GM took over their own "ignition switch"-gate issue of recent times.

As a result all this tells me is that Tesloops battery issue is simply a case of " **nothing** to see here - move along".

akgolf | April 15, 2017


Agree completely.

Tesla is definitely proactive on many issues.

dyefrog | April 15, 2017

"Agree with akgolf that Tesla swapped out Tesloops 200k mile battery because:"
I've noticed and actually get entertainment watching our two trolls put a negative spin on pretty much everything Tesla. I have to give credit for creativity but it's pretty much negated for it's dishonesty and obvious desperation. All in all, I file it under disgustingly reprehensible.

SamO | April 15, 2017

Great summary Greg.

kaffine | April 15, 2017

@Eagles No it didn't go from 6% degradation to suddenly 100% degradation. The car had just driven ~120 miles and was showing it had have a few miles of range left when the car shut off. Being able to drive ~120 miles shows that it wasn't 100% degraded. Tesloop tries to minimize time spent at SC with customers so they try to charge just enough to make it to the next stop plus a bit for reserve. They were having problems where it showed they had the range to make it but it turns out the range estimate was high, the car would turn off even though it was showing it still had another ~10 miles of range left. They were not doing full charge at the SC stop just topping it off enough to make it to the destination. Story didn't say which direction they were going LA is ~120 miles from Barstow while Vegas is ~150. There is a huge difference from the range estimate being off and complete battery failure.

My guess is the reason Tesla replaced it is they wanted to run tests on the battery pack for R&D. You can try all you want to test things in the lab but it doesn't quite match real world conditions.

akgolf | April 15, 2017

And when the Bolt loses 40% of capacity GM will not have to replace it, it's in their manual.

End of story.

kaffine | April 16, 2017

@Eagles Where are you seeing that the battery pack failed? Everything I have read on that says the car turned off with a few miles still showing on the range. That is not the same as a battery failure. That would be like me running out of fuel with the distance to empty showing I still have 10 miles left it doesn't mean the something failed it means I ran out of fuel faster than the car thought I should.

dyefrog | April 16, 2017

Don't hold your breath waiting for a factual answer. For comparison, this is what a battery failure description looks like:

"I was very happy with my new Chevy Bolt until a week ago when I received a cryptic text from my car telling me an error had occurred. OnStar then sent a diagnostic email that a critical error had occurred. When I got into the vehicle to drive to work that morning the indicator gauge showed almost full charge but range said 10 miles (I had driven just fine the day before with about 150 miles of range left when parked in drive way). The service vehicle light was on so figured I would see if I could drive to dealer...NO GO. Attempting to shift the transmission into anything other than Neutral or Park resulted in a beep and a error in the cluster saying roughly "Incorrect conditions to shift". I had the vehicle towed to the dealer and was given a loaner (gas Malibu). It has been there all week and I have just received notice that GM has indicated that the battery needs to be replaced...they are sending a battery....will take a couple days to install once it arrives could be another 2 weeks."

gregcropper | April 16, 2017

I'm hoping some Tesla owners will weigh-in with this question. I have a reservation for a Model 3. I have no doubt that the battery will last this long, but my big concern at this point is regular maintenance and occasional repair.

What can I expect with regard to repair costs? With fewer moving parts, I would assume that the likelihood of repair would be less, but I can only suppose.

KP in NPT | April 16, 2017

The only non-warranty maintenance we've needed in 2 years is tire rotation. And eventually, new tires.

topher | April 16, 2017

"that pack is valuable beyond the cost of any replacement to allow them to get their hands on a real world 200k mile fast charged for all its life battery pack from the field."

I used to work for a company where the policy was, any new failure mode was fixed for the customer (outside of warranty) with whatever it took, so long as they would return the part(s) to us (on our dime). Failures are learning experiences. Mostly parts that failed got removed from the design. We went for 500 parts per item to less than 100 and failure rates plummeted. A new failure mode is precious, especially one produce by prolonged heavy use.

Thank you kindly.

kaffine | April 16, 2017

@Eagles No the battery didn't fail they ran it out of charge and the car turned off. Once recharged it continues to work. The issue was that it ran out of charge with ~10 miles left on the range.

Do you understand how valuable it is for Tesla to have a high mileage battery to run tests on. It is the same reason they include the AP hardware on all cars the data is worth more to them than the cost of the hardware.

akgolf | April 16, 2017

Probably not kaffine, Pigeon brains are pretty small and it's hard to get new thoughts in there.

lilbean | April 16, 2017

I think pigeons are smarter. :)

akgolf | April 16, 2017

That would be infinity for you Eagles since your imaginary Tesla won't need any maintenance or repairs.

akgolf | April 16, 2017

I see Carl and Eagles are still buddies.

KP in NPT | April 16, 2017

"Why on earth would you think Tesla doesn't already have many batteries which have had 200,000 miles on them? I'm certain Tesla has a entire team that does nothing but drive the cars nonstop and other endurance testing."

The Tesloop car was the first to cross 200K miles, I believe.
Remember the Model S hasn't been out long. And no I don't think they have cars they just drive around to get up to 200K miles. Their testing was done in labs.

SamO | April 16, 2017


Right. I mean it's a bunch of extreme positions for two unrelated individuals to hold. And for one, to support the 2nd biggest troll in history is "quaint."

The top of Trafalgar Square used to be inundated with pigeons:

"The main amusements back then were feeding these indulged birds. There was a famous character named Bernie Rayner who ran a stall selling little packets of grain which tourists bought at an inflated price to feed the equally inflated pigeons. They fed so well that they bred several times a year. Repairing the damage to Nelson's Column caused by pigeon droppings cost £140,000."

"The Greater London Assembly passed a bylaw making it illegal to feed them, and introduced hawks to frighten them away, and council staff made periodic raids with giant vacuum cleaners to hoover up any grain or other food from the square's smart new paving stones."

"The Square has since featured as a set in films such as 28 Weeks Later, the Bollywood production Salaam-E-Ishq and the recent version of St Trinian's. It has been the location for a sequence of anti-war rallies. In April, Boris Johnson, the current Mayor, sponsored an open-air concert in Trafalgar Square to celebrate St George's Day."

Moral of the story: Don't feed the pigeons.

akgolf | April 16, 2017

@SamO - We had to install some wire around our solar panels to keep the pigeons out. They can be destructive.

We'll be in London this August and will visit Trafalgar Square, glad to hear THEY no longer have a pigeon problem.

Badbot | April 16, 2017

"Tesla replaced a battery that costs _Tesla_ somewhere between $12,000 and $15,000 simply to work around a software glitch. Now I don't know about you but that gets my something's-not-quite-right-about-that detector going.""

you might want to get your something's-not-quite-right-about-that detector calibrated mine has you at 99.9998 %

If you could think about it, Teslas R&D cost to date for all things battery related might surprise you. I suspect it is in the millions so another 15K is pigeon feed.

Badbot | April 16, 2017

EaglesPDX | April 16, 2017

"Teslas R&D cost to date for all things battery related might surprise you. I suspect it is in the millions so another 15K is pigeon feed."

Which is why Tesla likely just replaced it because it failed .