I took my LEAF in for its 5th year service and one of the things I wanted them to look at was the bonnet release cable. The bonnet doesn’t “pop” up properly when pulling the lever in the cabin. It is still possible to open the bonnet (just) with a bit of fiddling but it’s inconvenient. Anyway, I thought it should be a simple thing for them to fix.
Their reply? The cable has “stretched” and they’d need to order in the part from Melbourne ($120) and then another $280 for labour “because it’s quite hard to thread the new cable through”. You are freakin’ kidding me - $400 to fix that?
I would have thought that the cable would just be clamped at one end and could be retensioned fairly easily. But apparently not.
Any ideas?? Has this happened to anyone else?
Last Edit: Oct 7, 2019 8:50:07 GMT 11 by EVangelist
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Looks like Nissan is gouging. I don't think they like that the Leaf needs so little maintenance, so when something does go wrong they go all in to bloat out the price as much as they can. Solution: take the car to someone who is independent - not Nissan.
I've got the same problem as well, I noticed it a few weeks ago and thought it just needed lubrication. I didn't think the release cable does anything other than release the latch. I'm going to take a closer look, maybe spray some lithium grease and report my findings.
The bonnet release cable is a steel cable inside a steel spiral conduit or sleeve, with a slug of metal on the inner cable at either end. If the cable has "stretched" it will be because the inner cable has elongated (highly unlikely), the outer sleeve has compressed (highly unlikely), one of the slugs has moved (possible) or the bracket that locates the end of the conduit under the bonnet has bent towards right, effectively lengthening the cable (possible, but unlikely as it is a sturdy bracket). Under the dash the bracket that locates the end of the outer sleeve is moulded into the dashboard and can't bend, only break. The slug locates in the plastic release lever and that may be subject to wear, but I doubt if wear here would cause enough 'stretch' to interfere with operation.
At each end of the cable assembly there is a rubber locating sleeve and it is also possible this rubber has deteriorated or has become mispositioned thus causing slack in the cable assembly.
If one of the slugs has come loose and is sliding off the inner steel wire cable, the normal option would be to replace the assembly, however it may be possible for a handy person to crimp something onto the core to replace or fix the slug in position.
If the slugs are not loose, the under bonnet bracket doesn't appear to be bent, the rubber buffers are intact and in place, then it may be possible to install a spacer or shim to 'extend' the cable sleeve back to a functional length.
As far as threading a new bonnet release cable into the car, I would have thought that the old cable could be used to pull a new one into place, making it a relatively simple process.
Refer to page 187 of the DLK (Door & Lock) section of the service manual, which you can view or download here: