Battery hire. Terms & Conditions. - Renault Z.E. Forum
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post #1 of 11 (permalink) Old 07-28-2013, 04:48 AM Thread Starter
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Battery hire. Terms & Conditions.

[From another thread]

Quote:
Originally Posted by pauledg
The battery hire comes with reams of small print that could worry you to death. I don't know why RCI don't insure the battery (their battery) and add that to the rental cost and keep things simple. Any thoughts?
hehehehee....

Yeah. Months ago I read the whole of the battery rental document, if only as a means to 'monitor' what is going on in the EV world. I had no idea at the time that I'd have one sitting on my drive today!

Anyhow, I did notice in the agreement that it seemed to say 'we have the right to take the battery off you, any time we like, and that's the end of the agreement'...

...doh!

Well, maybe I misread it, but it didn't sound entirely 'fair' on the driver's side of it.

But when the opportunity presented itself, I just signed off the agreement.

There is a very simple logic to why I did so - forget what's in the agreement. For now, no-one knows what pitfalls will come out of insurance, hire, battery damage, etc., etc.. That document is Renault's lawyer's best guess at how to handle the situation. If something goes 'wrong' for a ZE owner at this stage and leaves them high-and-dry, the press attention will destroy ZE's. I'll lay a wager that whatever Bad Things can happen, Renault will fund the remedy with barely a question. With $5 bn invested, a few k's worth here or there to show they love their ZE customers is chicken-change.

Rest easy, my fellow ZE-o-nauts! As long as you take 'every reasonable step', I'm confident you'll be just fine. These are good days for early adopters.

So, Paul, you mentioned your current car is a replacement? Can you explain? Was the first one a lemon?
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post #2 of 11 (permalink) Old 07-28-2013, 07:08 AM Thread Starter
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RE: Battery hire. Terms & Conditions.

Quote:
Originally Posted by GrumpyCabbie
Another concern. Say I buy a Fluence and take out a 2 year battery hire. What happens then? Does it have to be renewed? What if I don't actually drive the car (or haven't been able to sell it)? Do I just have to keep renewing the battery hire ad infinitum?


That's a pretty easy question to answer.

Within the agreement, you have the right to withdraw from it, with no penalty, after 1 year.

I'll explain how I have taken 'advantage' of this term.

So my hire-purchase term is 18 months. But I have signed off the battery hire for 3 years, 6000 miles pa.

Now, it may well be the case that after 18 months I hand the car back. At which point, I pay a bit extra. The extra is the difference between what I would have paid had I'd taken out an 18 month term in the first place, and the lower amount I have actually paid for the longer 36 month term.

Now, this is a real 'no-brainer' to me - given the terms of the battery hire, you should ALWAYS pick the 3 year term. This is because if you do end up going for a shorter term, you will not end up out of pocket. However, if you pick a short term and then extend it, you will have paid extra.

Similarly, don't bother to go for anything other than the 6k pa. Again, if you pick 9k and don't use it, you're out of pocket. If you pick 6 and end up at 9, they'll only charge you the difference. Why pay the higher amount in the first instance, and risk losing it?

So, my recommendation: ALWAYS pick 3 years and 6k miles. WHATEVER happens, you will then only ever end up paying the minimum of what you would've ended up paying, even if you had known beforehand your exact mileage and ownership term. You might even make a little interest on the money that you have 'held back' from them over the term (though, that hardly counts these days!!!)

This thing about 'you may be left with a car but no battery' ALSO works the other way, of course. Here I am with an 18mth hire-purchase, but an agreement from them to have a battery for 3 years. OK, so what happens if, after 18 months, I give the car back but not the battery? At the very least, this could create some 'awkwardness' that Renault might prefer to avoid, and pick a decent 'buy-it-now' price for me, to buy the thing outright! Remember that term I spotted, though, where they can take the battery back any time they like - I guess that was to cover this scenario.

BUT what does not seem probable is that they could then charge me for the 'more expensive' 18 mth term, because if I have not chosen to cancel my battery agreement, then it hardly seems fair that they charge me the extra amount!

So in 18 months time, there may well be my car sitting on a dealer forecourt somewhere, having been given back to Renault finance, but it has MY battery in it and some legal wranglings going on in the background!!!

As for buying the battery outright - I suppose one might say to Renault "I have commandeered your battery unlawfully, and pay you the 8,000 insured value as compensation to you." That could be, legally, an interesting scenario, as they would have no legal right to obtain your car with their battery in it. This would head off into the legal tanglings of 'liens', I suspect. But why would you bother? They quote an 8 year life, which seems probable and likely, so why would you want to pay 8k for an 8-year-life battery when you could hire it for 1k pa and potentially reap the rewards of improving technology and performance/breakdown guarantees along with it?

Apparently, Nissan have been encouraging US Leaf owners to lease [the whole car], rather than buy, so as to ensure they given them the best service. I guess the jury is still out on the 'own-car, hire-battery' thing, but looks quite sensible to me, really.

At the end of the day, I reckon that as long as owners act reasonably towards Renault, and Renault act reasonably towards the customers, then all shall be bliss. I'm confident that current ZE private owners are models of reasonableness and everything will work out fine, but I wonder what will happen when things become 'mainstream' along with older 2nd hand models ... it may all get quite complicated and Renault may lose a degree of their sympathy towards EV owners.

Personally, I don't see how EVs will catch on. I can't see how 10,000 vehicles an hour down a motorway will find enough charging stations at the services to keep going. We'll see 'EV gridlocks' at services where people will end up literally fighting to get on a charging station. Every EV project to date has ended up being scrapped, with the few owners that enjoyed it while it lasted singing heavenly praises of their vehicles and regretting having to give them back. Just enjoy it while it lasts!



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post #3 of 11 (permalink) Old 07-28-2013, 07:54 AM
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RE: Battery hire. Terms & Conditions.

Fascinating - but oh so true!

And yes, Donald, my first one WAS a lemon. After one month getting it on the road, one month of use, there followed 18 weeks during which I had use of it for just 4. Then I stamped my feet. Everything crossed, so far so good with No.2

When they work they're a pleasure to drive. I hope you also enjoy yours to the full, or at least as far as 100 miles (that's 45 each way and a bit of spare) will take you. Any charging points in your neck of the woods? And do yours show up on the satnav?
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post #4 of 11 (permalink) Old 07-28-2013, 08:49 AM Thread Starter
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RE: Battery hire. Terms & Conditions.

(OMG! So sorry, I missed that thread for some reason. If I had read that before seeing the car, I might well have decided against it.)

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post #5 of 11 (permalink) Old 07-28-2013, 09:47 AM
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RE: Battery hire. Terms & Conditions.

Quote:
Originally Posted by pauledg
Fascinating - but oh so true!

And yes, Donald, my first one WAS a lemon. After one month getting it on the road, one month of use, there followed 18 weeks during which I had use of it for just 4. Then I stamped my feet. Everything crossed, so far so good with No.2

When they work they're a pleasure to drive. I hope you also enjoy yours to the full, or at least as far as 100 miles (that's 45 each way and a bit of spare) will take you. Any charging points in your neck of the woods? And do yours show up on the satnav?
What was the reg number of said lemon?

Would hate to see a bargain Fluence for 7,000 with 2,000 miles on it and end up with a lemon on my drive and egg on my face.

(you're welcome to mail the reg number if you don't feel comfortable displaying it on a public forum)

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post #6 of 11 (permalink) Old 09-02-2013, 02:51 PM
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RE: Battery hire. Terms & Conditions.

Quote:
Originally Posted by donald
Quote:
Originally Posted by GrumpyCabbie
Another concern. Say I buy a Fluence and take out a 2 year battery hire. What happens then? Does it have to be renewed? What if I don't actually drive the car (or haven't been able to sell it)? Do I just have to keep renewing the battery hire ad infinitum?


That's a pretty easy question to answer.

Within the agreement, you have the right to withdraw from it, with no penalty, after 1 year.

I'll explain how I have taken 'advantage' of this term.

So my hire-purchase term is 18 months. But I have signed off the battery hire for 3 years, 6000 miles pa.

Now, it may well be the case that after 18 months I hand the car back. At which point, I pay a bit extra. The extra is the difference between what I would have paid had I'd taken out an 18 month term in the first place, and the lower amount I have actually paid for the longer 36 month term.

Now, this is a real 'no-brainer' to me - given the terms of the battery hire, you should ALWAYS pick the 3 year term. This is because if you do end up going for a shorter term, you will not end up out of pocket. However, if you pick a short term and then extend it, you will have paid extra.

Similarly, don't bother to go for anything other than the 6k pa. Again, if you pick 9k and don't use it, you're out of pocket. If you pick 6 and end up at 9, they'll only charge you the difference. Why pay the higher amount in the first instance, and risk losing it?

So, my recommendation: ALWAYS pick 3 years and 6k miles. WHATEVER happens, you will then only ever end up paying the minimum of what you would've ended up paying, even if you had known beforehand your exact mileage and ownership term. You might even make a little interest on the money that you have 'held back' from them over the term (though, that hardly counts these days!!!)

This thing about 'you may be left with a car but no battery' ALSO works the other way, of course. Here I am with an 18mth hire-purchase, but an agreement from them to have a battery for 3 years. OK, so what happens if, after 18 months, I give the car back but not the battery? At the very least, this could create some 'awkwardness' that Renault might prefer to avoid, and pick a decent 'buy-it-now' price for me, to buy the thing outright! Remember that term I spotted, though, where they can take the battery back any time they like - I guess that was to cover this scenario.

BUT what does not seem probable is that they could then charge me for the 'more expensive' 18 mth term, because if I have not chosen to cancel my battery agreement, then it hardly seems fair that they charge me the extra amount!

So in 18 months time, there may well be my car sitting on a dealer forecourt somewhere, having been given back to Renault finance, but it has MY battery in it and some legal wranglings going on in the background!!!

As for buying the battery outright - I suppose one might say to Renault "I have commandeered your battery unlawfully, and pay you the 8,000 insured value as compensation to you." That could be, legally, an interesting scenario, as they would have no legal right to obtain your car with their battery in it. This would head off into the legal tanglings of 'liens', I suspect. But why would you bother? They quote an 8 year life, which seems probable and likely, so why would you want to pay 8k for an 8-year-life battery when you could hire it for 1k pa and potentially reap the rewards of improving technology and performance/breakdown guarantees along with it?

Apparently, Nissan have been encouraging US Leaf owners to lease [the whole car], rather than buy, so as to ensure they given them the best service. I guess the jury is still out on the 'own-car, hire-battery' thing, but looks quite sensible to me, really.

At the end of the day, I reckon that as long as owners act reasonably towards Renault, and Renault act reasonably towards the customers, then all shall be bliss. I'm confident that current ZE private owners are models of reasonableness and everything will work out fine, but I wonder what will happen when things become 'mainstream' along with older 2nd hand models ... it may all get quite complicated and Renault may lose a degree of their sympathy towards EV owners.

Personally, I don't see how EVs will catch on. I can't see how 10,000 vehicles an hour down a motorway will find enough charging stations at the services to keep going. We'll see 'EV gridlocks' at services where people will end up literally fighting to get on a charging station. Every EV project to date has ended up being scrapped, with the few owners that enjoyed it while it lasted singing heavenly praises of their vehicles and regretting having to give them back. Just enjoy it while it lasts!



Got to agree with Donald that it looks like a no brainer to go with the 3yr 6000 mile deal. I reckon I will be running about 9000 miles per annum so I would just pay the 5p per mile penalty and still be better off.

On this point, from the agreement is it clear when Renault will apply the penalty would it be at the end of the battery lease? Let's say I signed up for 6000 miles plan and at the end of the 3 year lease I had done 28000 miles. That means Renault would be looking for 500. Better off in my bank than theirs for the 3 years or do you think they have the power under the terms of the agreement to request payment at the end of each year? Anybody know if there is a copy you can view online so I can do a bit of analysis like Donald.

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post #7 of 11 (permalink) Old 09-02-2013, 06:17 PM Thread Starter
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RE: Battery hire. Terms & Conditions.

The terms say they can/will adjust the monthly lease rate when it becomes clear that you are going significantly over your estimated mileage.

The battery lease contract is on the internet somewhere. You should find it. I'll see if I can find it some time, but I have to go now.
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post #8 of 11 (permalink) Old 09-03-2013, 03:23 AM
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RE: Battery hire. Terms & Conditions.

414 views in a week? This topic appears to have sounded alarm bells somewhere?
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post #9 of 11 (permalink) Old 09-03-2013, 03:38 AM
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RE: Battery hire. Terms & Conditions.

Quote:
Originally Posted by donald
The terms say they can/will adjust the monthly lease rate when it becomes clear that you are going significantly over your estimated mileage.

The battery lease contract is on the internet somewhere. You should find it. I'll see if I can find it some time, but I have to go now.
There goes my masterplan for keeping the 500 in my bank!!
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post #10 of 11 (permalink) Old 09-03-2013, 07:04 PM Thread Starter
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RE: Battery hire. Terms & Conditions.

http://www.renault.co.uk/Resources/PDF/batteryterms.pdf
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