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10.0

really awful
Crashes / Fires:
1 / 0
Injuries / Deaths:
1 / 0
Average Mileage:
20,482 miles

About These NHTSA Complaints:

This data is from the NHTSA — the US gov't agency tasked with vehicle safety. Complaints are spread across multiple & redundant categories, & are not organized by problem.

So how do you find out what problems are occurring? For this NHTSA complaint data, the only way is to read through the comments below. Any duplicates or errors? It's not us.

2011 Nissan Leaf brakes problems

brakes problem

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2011 Nissan Leaf Owner Comments

problem #12

Jul 142016

Leaf

  • 40,000 miles

A D V E R T I S E M E N T S

I have had the car into the dealer twice in the past 1 1/2 years to 'reprogram' the grabby brakes. They get very sensitive when braking below 25 mph. They grab, let go, grab, and let go. I am now being told that it will cost me over $100 just for them to look at them a third time. I am tired of the bandaid approach and want it fixed but should not have to pay a penny for it. The car just turned 40,000 miles. I love it except this annoying and possibly dangerous braking problem.

- Upland, CA, USA

problem #11

May 272016

Leaf

  • 25,000 miles
I echo so many others who have had the experience of the brakes being out of one's control at low speeds. Instead of allowing for a smooth, slow deceleration, the brakes activate hard end end up jerking the car. There have been times when this has been really frightening. Enough people have complained about this that it should be looked into! it's hard to recall exactly the conditions under which this happens, because it's intermittent, but mostly at low speeds.

- Los Angeles, CA, USA

problem #10

Mar 312016

Leaf

  • 15,677 miles
When depressing the brake pedal, the vehicle goes from a soft braking to a jolting stop at speeds below 20 mph. The vehicle jerks severly when braking and I am also very concerned this will be a problem on wet roads and I'm worried about being rear-ended as it stops suddenly. I experience this everyday that I drive it. Now, the brakes have also been releasing when I'm trying to stop at higher speeds, giving the feeling that I may not get stopped in time. And this is only getting worse. The car especially jolts when creeping forward at a light or into a parking spot. The releasing, where I felt like I could not stop the car, I have experienced recently also happened in the same situations. The car will also occasionally creep forward when the car was stopped, and the brake pedal is still depressed.

- Plantation, FL, USA

problem #9

Jan 102016

Leaf

  • 21,000 miles

A D V E R T I S E M E N T S

Brakes did not work after engaging drive from stationary position. After a few moments, normal brake activity resumed. Believed to be related to depleted 12 V battery.

- Berkeley, CA, USA

problem #8

Oct 182015

Leaf

  • 35,500 miles
The brakes go from a soft braking to a jolting stop at speeds below 20 mph. I have small children in the car, and their heads are being jolted around when the car brakes this way. I am concerned this will be a problem on slick roads and I'm worried about being rear-ended when it stops so suddenly. It does this everyday that I drive it, however the dealership can find nothing wrong with the car. Lately, the brakes have also been releasing when I'm trying to stop, giving the feeling that I may not get stopped in time. I would say it feels like the car cannot smoothly transition between regular and regain brakes. I have had it at the dealership twice, and they performed a software update that did not fix the problem. It is only getting worse. The car especially jolts when creeping forward at a light or into a parking spot. The releasing, where I felt like I could not stop the car, I have experienced recently also happened in the same situations. The car will also occasionally creep forward when the car was stopped, and the brake pedal is still depressed.

- Lincoln, NE, USA

problem #7

Jul 052011

Leaf

  • 2,550 miles
While in a lineup of cars at a stop sign intersection, I had to start and stop repeatedly, as each car moved forward. Very soon, the brakes developed a jerky response, grabbing and releasing. So the car was lurching forward and jerking to a stop. It was quite embarrassing, and the car behind me nearly rear-ended me. This was the first occurrence, and the same thing has happened several times since. The brakes are not consistent - sometimes they grab completely and a couple of times I have completely lost braking power for a few moments. The issue still exists, and I know several other Leaf drivers who have also experienced it. This is very dangerous, and one of these days someone will be killed because of Nissan's negligence, unless NHTSA forces some action on it. This needs to be looked into very thoroughly and fixed.

- Exeter, CA, USA

problem #6

Jul 152014

Leaf

  • 50,060 miles

A D V E R T I S E M E N T S

The contact owns a 2011 Nissan Leaf. The contact stated that while driving approximately 15 mph, the brake pedal was depressed and failed to respond without warning. As a result, the contact crashed into another vehicle. The contact sustained injuries that did not require medical attention. A police report was filed. The vehicle was destroyed. The manufacturer was notified of the failure. The failure mileage was 50,060.

- Bellevue, WA, USA

problem #5

Mar 142014

Leaf

  • 7,000 miles
Brakes on the Nissan Leaf were pulsing on and the would turn off and a few seconds later would turn back on. Cycle would repeat every 3 seconds till the car came to complete stop. Local dealer investigated and informed me the disc brake rotors were warped. Can't believe the brakes would shut down if rotors were warped. Could have lead to serious accident.

- Manassas, VA, USA

problem #4

Feb 042014

Leaf

  • 25,500 miles
Two months ago I was braking moderately when the car shuttered, there was a bump and the car began coasting. I saw that it had popped into N (neutral) even though I didn't touch the gear shift. I tried to put it back into D (drive) but it wouldn't respond. I pushed the car to the side of the road and tried several times to shut it down. Finally, it responded, then restarted and drove normally. After that, there would be intermittent shuttering and bumping while braking. The recharging lights will pulse and I can feel the regenerative feature grab and then release. One morning recently, along with these symptoms the range plummeted quickly, by about 1 mile per second. After driving only 20 miles I had 17 miles of indicated range. Then, yesterday, the first problem reappeared: The car went into neutral and briefly wouldn't respond. The car is now at the dealer.

- Long Beach, CA, USA

problem #3

Mar 222013

Leaf

  • 12,000 miles
My Nissan Leaf has never been in an accident of any sort, and has never even been driven over a curb. It is less than 18 months, and less than 15,000 miles. Front the day I got it, I felt that at times when I pressed the brakes on it, that they would slip, or not grab for a 1/2 second, but thought this might have been me. The car failed completely 10 days ago, and will not start, telling me that my foot was not on the brake! (a condition for starting). Combined with the fact that it cannot see the brakes being heavily depressed (for starting) and its computer controlled brakes slipping for 1/2 second, it makes me think that the computer has some reason for not seeing the brakes working. The Nissan dealership, and Nissan usa have been unable to figure out what the problem is, and after 10 days Nissan usa has not gotten any closer to a resolution. Is this a computer/braking defect" is it common? it certainly affects the safety of those riding in a car, as brake failure is certainly as important as an accelerator sticking. Has a recall been ordered for this, and how many cars are involved in it"

- Santa Barbara, CA, USA

problem #2

Jun 052012

Leaf

  • 7,000 miles
I was driving on the highway about 50 mph. The car in front of me stopped quickly, and I had to press on the brake pretty hard to slow down quickly. But as soon as I did that, some crazy emergency/automatic brake system kicked into overdrive and slammed on the brakes like 10 times harder than I did, and caused my car to practically stop in the middle of the highway. I thought I was going to get hit by a car, but luckily I didn't. this was very dangerous and scary, and clearly a defect in some braking or computer system. I have also had a similar thing happen when I am driving slower (like 30 mph), but the effect is not as dangerous or intense. I took the car into the dealer and they updated some computer upgrades that were not related to this issue, but they could not recreate the problem. I have heard from other Leaf owners with the exact same problems, and yet Nissan does not seem to recognize this as a problem. This is a serious problem that needs to be fixed before people get hurt.

- Oakland, CA, USA

problem #1

Nov 012011

Leaf

  • 4,500 miles
Brake application is at times very inconsistent. Especially at low speeds (<40mph) sometimes a light brake application creates a disproportional brake force. This results in sudden involuntary stops often accompanied by the heads of passengers and driver being jerked forward. The issue does not occur all the time but is reproducible within a few minutes of driving.

- San Jose, CA, USA

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