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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
What happens if I take my Niro EV on a dirt road and happen to high center it on a rock? What about if I just bottom out at a dead crawl on some hard dirt and back off of it? What happens if I hit a 7" tall sharp rock at 30 mph? What if I high-center on a really tall speed bump?

Is the battery tray strong enough to support the weight of the car on top of it? Or will it just cave in or tear open and catch fire? If I accidentally scrape the bottom of the battery tray will it just have scratches or serious damage? I can't find anything for non-teslas and nothing for Kia.

For ICE vehicles if that happened I'd mash up my exhaust, put some dents in the underbody... maybe damage some body molding... What about BEVs?

Thanks in advance!

2020 Niro EV EX Premium (Leased)
 

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That's really not an off-road vehicle. There's no way of knowing what might happen if you high-center it on the battery pack. There have been reports of a couple of Tesla cars having battery fires from road debris penetrating the bottom of the battery tray, although I believe more recent models have been strengthened. But the Niro is simply not designed nor tested for off-roading.

I will say that I've never heard of a Niro EV battery fire from any cause, so either it can take debris impact or it's simply never happened with enough impact to damage the battery case. Kia uses SKI batteries, not LG. LG is what both Hyundai and Chevrolet have used and both have had numerous battery fires.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
That's really not an off-road vehicle. There's no way of knowing what might happen if you high-center it on the battery pack. There have been reports of a couple of Tesla cars having battery fires from road debris penetrating the bottom of the battery tray, although I believe more recent models have been strengthened. But the Niro is simply not designed nor tested for off-roading.

I will say that I've never heard of a Niro EV battery fire from any cause, so either it can take debris impact or it's simply never happened with enough impact to damage the battery case. Kia uses SKI batteries, not LG. LG is what both Hyundai and Chevrolet have used and both have had numerous battery fires.
Agreed. So what you're saying is you don't know and have never heard anything either.

Yes it's not an off road vehicle and I'm not interested in taking it off road - I just want to know if I should be worried about any battery contact at all since it hangs down so much and I feel like at some point in it's life it might come in contact with a speed bump, excessively high parking lot entrance, or some dirt. I was hoping someone had experience with battery tray contact...

LG and SK are both the same pouch cell type batteries afaik so shouldn't be much difference between them for impact or burn resistance, except for different quality control to avoid the bolt QC issues.
 

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Nothing on the net specifically for electric cars I can find. I exercise more care, but I am not worried. I found this cool thing called a "brake pedal" I use when encountering a speed bump, none are high enough to touch if driven slowly, and slow, sliding pressure of a speed bump won't damage the tray (manufacturers will note this, you will have to find the writing on this)

Much more dangerous, as you have pointed out is driving, and running over something unexpectedly, where you cannot react and slow down or avoid.

Yes, you could puncture, but it would probably need a pointed rock and a lot of speed.

normal driving on normal roads where you can see the road would not worry. You live in the country then perhaps you might want an additional skid plate added to mitigate your concerns.

No driving in Moab though ha ha!
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Nothing on the net specifically for electric cars I can find. I exercise more care, but I am not worried. I found this cool thing called a "brake pedal" I use when encountering a speed bump, none are high enough to touch if driven slowly, and slow, sliding pressure of a speed bump won't damage the tray (manufacturers will note this, you will have to find the writing on this)

Much more dangerous, as you have pointed out is driving, and running over something unexpectedly, where you cannot react and slow down or avoid.

Yes, you could puncture, but it would probably need a pointed rock and a lot of speed.

normal driving on normal roads where you can see the road would not worry. You live in the country then perhaps you might want an additional skid plate added to mitigate your concerns.

No driving in Moab though ha ha!
Very helpful! Thanks!

And I do go to Moab all the time! I was there two weeks ago! It was beautiful! I have to stay on the smooth dirt roads and be careful if I pull into a dirt campsite or something like that...

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I wouldn’t risk it. Friend with a Model 3 went over some piece of scrap on the highway. Car broke down, and had to be towed. Turns out the battery was punctured. They totaled the car. (Guess it could have been worse…it could have caught fire.)
 

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Dude, you're leasing the vehicle. Lease agreements are long term rentals. The contract may have words to the effect that you break it you own all of it. Think renting a Ferrari for a day and flip it on a race track. Doing a BULLIT reenactment on the streets of San Francisco in a rented Shelby Mustang. Insurance is going to wash their hands. That's just an aluminum box with a half ton of batteries under there. It's not a bash plate. I worry about chassis twist when cornering. These are not heavily tested cars. We don't yet know what the long term effects of all that mass has on body and ancillaries systems.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Dude, you're leasing the vehicle. Lease agreements are long term rentals. The contract may have words to the effect that you break it you own all of it. Think renting a Ferrari for a day and flip it on a race track. Doing a BULLIT reenactment on the streets of San Francisco in a rented Shelby Mustang. Insurance is going to wash their hands. That's just an aluminum box with a half ton of batteries under there. It's not a bash plate. I worry about chassis twist when cornering. These are not heavily tested cars. We don't yet know what the long term effects of all that mass has on body and ancillaries systems.
Exactly. So the summary here is that the Niro EV should survive if I accidently high center on a speed bump at very low speed, but if I hit a cinder block on the highway or bottom out on a rock I'm buying myself a new battery. So basically be extremely careful in how it is used.

Munro talked about this too with the Kona. The Niro and Kona both fail the "cinder block test"...
 

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You hit a cinder block on the highway it would most likely be covered by your insurance. Deductible to be paid, of course.
 

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Be sure you tell them the cinder block was tumbling.

One time I ran over a brick in the road and the insurance company tried to get out of it, claiming it was a fixed object, and thus my fault.
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
Be sure you tell them the cinder block was tumbling.

One time I ran over a brick in the road and the insurance company tried to get out of it, claiming it was a fixed object, and thus my fault.
Interesting. What was the specific language in the contract they were trying to use to get out of it? Curious what insurance provider you had also.
 

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Yes, there wass specific language and it was AAA. Basically if you hit something and it was moving, it was not your fault... no deductible... like you are driving on a freeway and something flies out of a truck and hits you... i.e. the idea it was unavoidable...

The language was if you hit a stationary object (like a wall, a building, a curb) it was your fault (avoidable)... in this case it was a brick lying in the road, but could not see until the car ahead of me revealed it and no time to recover... bent up the rim of my motorcycle... and it was a BMW with cast alloy wheels.

They tried to get out of it - make me pay a deductible, but baloney.. in the end i persevered
 
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