The Nissan Leaf’s battery technology has been called "primitive" by Elon Musk, CEO of electric car company Tesla.
In response to Nissan’s recent cost-per-kilowatt hour claims that it had broken the $400 (£250) barrier, Musk said, in a conference call with shareholders, he didn't believe Nissan has overtaken Tesla in reducing battery costs and claimed the Japanese firm was using a "much more primitive level of technology" than Tesla.
Musk said that the Leaf’s battery pack was not even as good as the first prototype his company produced because of its less-sophisticated cooling system. He added that the Leaf technology would struggle in extreme temperature conditions, suffering “huge degradation” when cold and not functioning properly when hot.
Tesla uses active liquid thermal control (which will also be used in the Chevrolet Volt), while the Leaf pack uses an air cooling system; Musk claims this battery technology would mean the Leaf's battery pack will have temperatures “all over the place".
Nissan supports its battery pack with an eight-year, 100,000-mile warranty. Musk said the battery cost in Tesla's upcoming electric Model S saloon would be around 40 per cent less than its only current model, the Roadster.