Browsing articles tagged with " volt"
Oct 18, 2012
Chris Weiss

Cadillac Will Begin Production on ELR Hybrid Next Year

GM announced plans to develop the Cadillac ELR, essentially an upgraded luxury version of the Chevy Volt, last summer. This week, it provided an update, stating that it is investing $35 million into its Detroit-Hamtramck plant for ELR production to begin in late 2013.

The Detroit-Hamtramck plant is already GM’s base camp for electric-based vehicles like the Chevy Volt and Opel Ampera, so it’s not surprising that it is being prepped for the ELR.

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Jun 29, 2012
Chris Salamone

Cadillac ELR Details (And Weight) Add Up

The journalistic wizards at Car and Driver have uncovered a motherload of new details regarding the incoming Cadillac ELR, based on the current Chevy Volt. Originally billed as the Cadillac Converj Concept, at Detroit’s 2009 Auto Show, the Cadillac ELR has been the focus of rumors all over the blogosphere for years. ELR-related conversations have mostly involved concern that the Volt is already priced like a Cadillac – and already appeals to Cadillac’s consumer market.

But another potential issue has arisen as well. Cadillacs must be powerful, quiet, luxurious, and a long list of other features – which, in sum, amount to a heavy vehicle. The Volt’s mechanical guts, rated at 94 MPGe and powered by an uninspiring 1.4 liter engine plus 16.5 kWh battery, are simply not strong enough to accommodate the extra weight.

That’s why Cadillac will be adding a little fuel to the fire.

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Feb 1, 2012
Chris Weiss

Chevy Volt Owners Could Get Renewable Charging With Innovative OnStar App

Chevy Volt owners clearly care about the environment or they wouldn’t be coughing up a big premium for series-hybrid technology. GM may give these owners even more power to clean up their commutes by launching a unique renewable-energy program for OnStar.

With the proposed system being developed in conjunction with Google, OnStar would receive a signal from PJM Interconnection showing the available renewably-sourced energy within the grid. PJM Interconnection is a regional electricity transmission organization (RTO) that coordinates the movement of wholesale electricity in more than a dozen eastern states.

The information would be uploaded to OnStar’s Advanced Telematics Operating Management System (ATOMS), where OnStar could use it to automatically match up charging Volts with renewable energy. A mobile app would let owners know when renewable energy is available.

“In the near future customers will have a real signal of demand for renewable energy,” said Nick Pudar, OnStar vice president of planning and business development. “As customers configure their Volts to favor renewable energy for their charging cycle, this real demand signal will influence utilities to tap into renewable sources.”

The system is still in the prototype stages and may or may not become commercially available. If it does, GM says that Volt owners will need only sign up to opt in. OnStar will take care of the rest.

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Jan 27, 2012
Chris Salamone

GM Acknowledges Rough Volt Publicity, Launches New Ad To Bolster Sales

For the next month GM will air a commercial which aims right to the heart of the matter, suggesting the Volt is a car “America had no choice but to build” and implying the car’s automotive nuts and bolts make up the very fabric of Detroit. If this all sounds a bit desperate, that’s because the Volt needs a lifeline. GM just recently publically acknowledged that sales of the Volt have been dramatically hurt by recent negative publicity. Concerns ranging from battery safety, design, and price have popped up everywhere and often.

The Volt has become something of a media-induced tumor, made even more noxious because of GM’s otherwise financially successful 2011. Which effectively means the new Volt “Morning in Hamtramck” ad represents a critical attempt by the company to salvage the Volt’s sinking reputation.

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Dec 20, 2011
Chris Weiss

Mitsubishi Delivers First i-Miev

Well this feels like a replay of December 2010. In that month, Chevy and Nissan launched their respective mass-market e-vehicles within days of each other. In December 2011, the next two highly anticipated mass-market EVs are both making headlines. Ford began production on the Focus Electric on Wednesday and Mitsubishi delivered its first i-Miev a day later.

The event wasn’t in California, where EV launches tend to be, but on the beautiful island of Hawaii. Mitsubishi representatives joined by Hawaiian Governor Neil Abercombie delivered the very first 2012 i-Miev to Bryson and Bridget Nishimura of Waipahu, Hawaii. The event was held at the Hawaiian State Capitol Building in Honolulu.

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Dec 16, 2011
Chris Weiss

Ford Begins Production On The 100 MPG-E 2012 Focus Electric

Around this time last year, Chevy launched the Volt range-extending hybrid and Nissan launched the Leaf electric. Those respective launches marked the beginning of a new chapter in automotive history: the mass-produced EV chapter (okay, the Volt isn’t an EV, but it does derive its drive power from a motor).

This year, the EV chapter is getting a few new characters. The newest is the Focus Electric, which Ford began production on Wednesday.

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Dec 13, 2011
Chris Weiss

Despite Fires, 2012 Chevy Volt Is Still A Five-Star Safety Pick

Though it’s been on the hot seat for potential fire issues of late, the Chevy Volt is still one of the safest cars on the road according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. The Volt renewed its five-star safety rating from the agency for the 2012 model year.

Interestingly, the NHTSA’s designation comes at a time when the agency is investigating about 5,000 Volt models for a potential safety hazard. That hazard relates directly to crashes–the battery may become damaged in a crash, leading to fire. The investigation was launched after a Volt caught fire in the garage of an NHTSA testing facility.

Chevy says that its own internal tests over the past two years have indicated no fire hazard.

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Dec 8, 2011
Chris Weiss

Cadillac ELR Will Be FWD, Not RWD

Over the summer, GM confirmed that it will be building a production car based on the Cadillac Converj concept. The ELR will essentially be a luxury Volt. Some murmurs recently indicated that one of the factors that will distinguish it from the Volt is a rear-wheel drive platform. No way, says a GM source.

Auto News released a report indicating that the ELR should use a RWD platform to properly differentiate itself from the Chevy Volt. The logic was that if GM really wanted to build a luxury car based on Volt technology, it would need to provide a very strong argument for the extra money involved in buying a Caddy over a Chevy. That argument should include RWD, according to AN’s Rick Kranz.

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Nov 19, 2011
Dave Walter

Jay Leno Drives His Volt 11,000 Miles Without Refueling

Despite its 40 mile electric range, Jay Leno has managed to drive 11,000 miles in his Chevy Volt without refueling once in the 11 months he’s owned it.

“They gave it to me with a full tank of gas. I’ve used less than half of that, ” says the Leno. “It’s my daily driver… I commute in it to work every day. My commute, and all my other daily running around, totals less than 35 miles.”

Read more about Leno and his Volt at The New York Times.

Nov 15, 2011
Clay Ritchings

The Electrified Chevrolet

Way before the Volt was unveiled by Chevrolet to the Coolaid drinking EV enthusiastic masses, there were other lesser known electric vehicles with the bow tie that helped pave the way for what we are being force fed today.

The evolution of Chevrolets electric cars starts long before the EV1 that was made famous by the 2006 documentary “Who killed the electric car” a film that explores the creation, limited commercialization, and subsequent destruction of the battery electric vehicle in the United States, specifically the General Motors EV1 of the mid 1990s.

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