laptops, or cell phones typically come with at best a one-year
battery warranty. The
Tesla Roadster comes with a three-year, 36,000 mile
warranty. However, GM is going to offer and unprecedented
eight-year/100,000-mile warranty on the advanced lithium-ion battery
found in its upcoming 2011 Chevy Volt electric vehicle.The
Volt will launch later this year, priced somewhere north of $40,000
before a $7,500 federal tax credit. Initial launch markets
will include Michigan, California and Washington, D.C., Austin,
Texas, and New York City (New Jersey, Connecticut and the rest of
Texas will received Volts in early 2011). GM's
Volt Battery packs have seen vigorous testing, including 1 million
miles total miles of road tests and 4 million hours of validation
testing. They have also been subjected to an array of tests
including corrosion, impact, water submersion, short circuit, crush
and penetration, dust and extreme temperature changes.
Aggressive drive cycles, also known as "Shake, Bake, and Roll",
were also tested. The battery can reportedly withstand
temperatures as low as -13 degrees Fahrenheit and as high as 122
degrees Fahrenheit.Vice Chairman of Global Product Operations
Tom Stephens says that the warranty -- three years longer than the
standard GM powertrain warranty -- is a sign of the company's
satisfaction with its finished product. He states, "This
is really a major statement of our confidence."The
warranty covers all 161 battery components, 95 percent of which are
designed and engineered by GM, plus the vehicle's thermal management
system, its electric drive system, and its charging system.
TheThe 100k warranty is similar to the 100k mile warranty
offered with the Toyota
Prius. Much like the Prius, whose warranty is bumped to
150k in California to meet California's Air Resources Board's
standards, the Volt may receive an even longer warranty in California
and other states that have adopted its standards. California
Air Resources Board has not yet specified what warranty GM would need
to score partial zero-emission vehicle credits.Other
competitors also offer similar warranties -- the Honda Insight comes
with a 100k, eight-year warranty (10-year, 150k in California) and
the Ford Escape and Mercury Mariner hybrids come with an eight-year
100k warranty, as well. However, the battery packs used in
those hybrids are nowhere near as large as the one used in the Volt.
Nissan so far has announced no warranty yet on its 2011 Nissan Leaf
EV vehicle.The Volt gets 40 miles on a fully charged battery
under ideal conditions. However, this can dip lower in hot or
cold weather. The gas engine should provide a steady 300 mile
range, under almost any weather condition, when the tank is full.
GM initially plans to produce 10,000 Volts in 2010, bumping
production to as many as 30,000 in 2011.GM has scored $241
million in federal grants, including $106 million for its new
battery pack assembly factory, to help with the cost of
developing its electric vehicles.
quote: I predict that the Volt will see significant sales upon release but will ultimately not be a long term success
quote: Apparently GM has little confidence in potential first year sales.
quote: GM does not deserve any commendations for the Volt, at best they are only duplicating what Toyota, Nissan, and Ford have already accomplished.
quote: The Volt is a series hybrid , and hence unlike anything currently on the market.
quote: The Tesla Roadster for example has no such problem with fantastic instantaneous acceleration
quote: By it's very nature a Series hybrid will be far more efficient for you can run the combustion engine at a narrow range of rpms where efficiency and power are optimal for generating electricity, it's only job. The overall efficiency per amount of power produced is the whole point
quote: unlike the kludge parallel system Toyota created
quote: Passing power is a factor of the motor, battery, and when present, transmission specs, which for the Volt is aimed more at efficiency and stoplight to stoplight acceleration.