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Chevrolet Volt window sticker
93 mpg on battery power, 37 mpg on gasoline power

After a cluster bomb that was unleashed yesterday when the Nissan Leaf was rated for an EPA estimated 99 mpg -- even though it is a "battery only" vehicle -- General Motors is dropping a bunch of digits on us when it comes to the EPA rating for its Chevrolet Volt.

According to the window sticker that will be plastered on all new Volts sold in the U.S., the vehicle is rate at an equivalent of 93 mpg when running on electricity, and a more sedate 37 mpg when the gasoline engine kicks in after the battery is depleted. This two figures combined give the Volt a "composite" rating of 60 mpg.

And here are some more numbers -- the Volt will have an official "battery only" range of 35 miles, while the total driving range (taking into account the batteries and the gasoline tank) will be 379 miles.

When the Volt was first announced, GM said that the vehicle would have a 40-mile range when running on battery power. The company recently revised that figure to 25-50 miles.

The Volt will go on sale later this month with a price tag of $41,000 before a $7,500 federal tax credit.



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By Targon on 11/26/2010 6:19:09 AM , Rating: 2
What people really want to know is what the cost of ownership will end up being for them, and that is what has NOT been talked about.

Cost of ownership=initial cost of the car+maintenance+fuel(whatever the source).

Everything else tends to be a secondary factor and just distorts things quite a bit. This applies to the Prius, Volt, or even a normal car.

I don't see how a $40,000+ car will ever end up with a lower cost of ownership than a $23,000 car with a normal engine that gets 40 mpg highway/30 mpg city. You put more out of your pocket up front for the EV/hybrid, but you don't end up saving $17,000 in fuel costs over a 5-7 year period.

Now, those numbers, 40mpg/30mpg are close to the 2011 Hyundai Elantra(due in Dec of 2010), the 2011 Ford Fiesta, and the 2012 Ford Focus(due Spring of 2011 with the current fuel efficiency estimates for it). The Fiesta is a 120 horsepower subcompact that sells for $15,000-$19,000. The new Focus will be a 160 horsepower compact, and the Elantra is set to get 140 horsepower. Much lower in overall cost of ownership compared to a $40,000+ Volt.

One other thing to consider is how comfortable any vehicle is, since the more you pay for a car, the more enjoyable you want it to be. There are clearly tradeoffs to be had when you go for a hybrid in terms of trunk space or even vehicle appearance(I don't like the look of the Prius), so that can be factored in.

And then, the thing that won't be mentioned, how much pollution is generated in the creation of these cars, including the batteries? Batteries tend to be fairly toxic, and the production of batteries can release a LOT of pollution into the environment where the batteries are made. If it happens in China, many consumers outside of China won't care as long as pollution is not generated HERE, but it sure doesn't help save the planet.


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