Leaf Gen2 Inverter As a Drop in Replacement for Stock

Nissan Leaf/e-NV200 drive stack topics
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InductiveJon
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Leaf Gen2 Inverter As a Drop in Replacement for Stock

Post by InductiveJon »

I had a customer request a drop in solution for their off road rig which could get them more power than stock. They are running a Thunderstruck controller and they don't want to have to rewire/reconfigure everything if they change back and forth between inverters.

I'll be the first to say - what Ive done to accomplish this for them isn't as safe as it should be, but this is an offroad rig.

One of the first things about the Gen2 Leaf adapter which doesn't make sense IMO is the location of the RUN pin. The factory Leaf enable pin lines up with the Out DCSW pin which isn't particularly good since that's usually got 12V coming into it. So since I wasn't using this, I cut the trace to the DCSW function and jumped the RUN pin over to this location.

I also threw together a quick 3d printed spacer for the mounting screws so the case wouldn't get charged to 5V because of the back plane.

That was pretty much all I had to do hardware wise.

Software was a bit more challenging. I couldn't use the latest firmware thanks to all the nice safety things that have recently been implemented with the throttle, so I based mine off of 5.27.R. I brought in the recently added support for Big-Endian can messages which was needed for the Leaf. The other issue was that the throttle output in reverse was 2's compliment. So I also added that to the throttle calculation.

The POT mapping ended up being: 468 27 -12 1
The CANIO mapping was: 468 41 2 8

For CANIO, the bits for forward and reverse are in the wrong order from what the Openinverter board expects, so you need to set dirmode to SwitchReversed.

The output messages representing the Leaf Inverter feedback can also be managed, but require Big-Endian support on TX which I haven't added yet.

In the end, this all works! Huge catch though, it randomly drops out and I'm not 100% sure why. I've noticed it will go into Neutral and the throttle will stop working until you let off completely and then press it again, which makes me think its a CAN Timeout issue, but I've had it happen with no error reported.
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Re: Leaf Gen2 Inverter As a Drop in Replacement for Stock

Post by johu »

Awesome, have been asked many times about this, cool you threw it all together. Unfortunately I don't have a clue on the dropouts.

Do you reckon this would work in an actual Leaf?
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Re: Leaf Gen2 Inverter As a Drop in Replacement for Stock

Post by EVSwap »

Are you interested in making more of these?
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Re: Leaf Gen2 Inverter As a Drop in Replacement for Stock

Post by InductiveJon »

I traced the dropout issue down to the canio value and setting the din_forward. It seems that randomly the bit would go back to 0 even though the VCU output was consistent - so it seems like either a Can issue or the inverter software. This happened very infrequently, during a 2 minute pull on the dyno it happened twice, and during another 3 minute pull it didn't happen at all. This value going to zero with the throttle down caused it to go to Neutral and since it cant shift with the throttle applied, it would stay there.
johu wrote: Wed Jan 24, 2024 10:03 pm Awesome, have been asked many times about this, cool you threw it all together. Unfortunately I don't have a clue on the dropouts.

Do you reckon this would work in an actual Leaf?
It's possible with the feedback CAN messages working properly. I'd love to find out, unfortunately I no longer have a vehicle at my disposal to test.
EVSwap wrote: Wed Jan 24, 2024 11:06 pm Are you interested in making more of these?
Sure, right now what I have now is definitely a rough draft, and would need some cleanup and safety added depending on the application.
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Re: Leaf Gen2 Inverter As a Drop in Replacement for Stock

Post by InductiveJon »

I also wanted to add with some quick tuning I was able to get 100kW output on our dyno from a 2014 Gen 2 80kW Leaf inverter with the Open Inverter board. I've heard it can do more but I ran out of time to spend messing with settings. Planning on doing some more Leaf inverter work in the future, especially with what I've been hearing about the Gen 3 power stage!
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Re: Leaf Gen2 Inverter As a Drop in Replacement for Stock

Post by EVSwap »

InductiveJon wrote: Thu Jan 25, 2024 3:59 am Sure, right now what I have now is definitely a rough draft, and would need some cleanup and safety added depending on the application.
Ok cool, I would be interested in a drop in board that would be compatible with the Resolve-EV controller, which uses OEM CAN commands and wiring. 2 boards at first and more to follow if it works good. Looking for more power and driveability tuning.
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Re: Leaf Gen2 Inverter As a Drop in Replacement for Stock

Post by jrbe »

InductiveJon wrote: Thu Jan 25, 2024 4:02 am ...Planning on doing some more Leaf inverter work in the future, especially with what I've been hearing about the Gen 3 power stage!
There's an OI Gen 3 adapter board made but not yet tested. Info if you're interested in moving it forward.

viewtopic.php?p=64365#p64365

https://openinverter.org/wiki/Nissan_Le ... 8_up_EM57)

https://github.com/jrbe/Nissan-Leaf-Gen-3-Adapter-Board

viewtopic.php?t=4276
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