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Chevrolet Volt

GM's Blockbuster Battery Car

— January 7, 2007 — Autos
The cleverly named Chevy Volt was released this week at the Detroit auto show. This very sleek and stylish concept car is powered entirely by an electric engine that gets it's juice from lithium ion batteries. Those batteries are either charged one of two ways. Plugging into a 110v outlet overnight (for approx 6-6.5 hrs) or let the gas generator kick in and recharge the batteries. On a full charge the gas generator won't kick in until around 40 miles (65 Km). Of course adaptability is key, when big companies would like to see the success of a product, so GM went ahead and made the volt interchangeable from it's original gas generator to either ethanol generator, bio-diesel generator, or even a hydrogen fuel cell generator. On a full gasoline fuel tank the Volt has a range of 640 miles (1,030 Km). At 71 Hp the volt hit 0-60mph in 8.5s, which isn't bad for a 4 door sedan that in the long run will save you heaps of money and our environment.

Here are the Chevrolet Volt details from Chev:
The Chevrolet electric concept sedan, powered by the next-generation electric propulsion system, could nearly eliminate going to the gas station altogether with little or no sacrifice in performance. This is coupled with an aggressive, athletic design that confidently challenges the notion that environmentally conscious vehicles can't be beautiful looking and possess an aesthetic spirit that matches their driving characteristics.

The Chevrolet electric concept is a battery-powered electric vehicle that uses a gas engine to create additional electricity, thereby extending its range. It can be fully charged by plugging it into a 110-volt outlet for approximately six hours each day. When the lithium-ion battery is fully charged, it can deliver 40 city miles of pure electric vehicle range. When the battery is depleted, a 1-liter, 3-cylinder turbocharged engine spins at a constant speed to create electricity and replenish the battery.

It is built on GM's E-flex system, which enables multiple propulsion systems to fit into a common chassis using electric drive to help the world diversify energy sources and establish electricity from the grid as one of those sources.

Vehicle Features/Highlights:
- First variant off GM's E-flex system, a family of electric vehicle propulsion systems built into a common chassis.
- The E-Flex system is being developed for production intent. Core engineering and manufacturing feasibility studies are underway.
- On-board engine or fuel cell creates electricity and extends vehicle range; capable of converting and storing electricity from energy carriers such as hydrogen, gasoline, E85, bio-diesel and diesel.
- Capable of nearly eliminating the need to go to the gas station altogether and greatly reducing tailpipe emissions.
- Configured as a pure fuel cell, the E-Flex system reduces the size of the lithium-ion energy batteries and eliminates the internal combustion engine.

Long driving range:
- 40 Mile Daily Driving Pattern - The Chevrolet electric concept car will use zero gasoline and produce zero emissions and could nearly eliminate going to the gas station altogether.
- 60 Mile Daily Driving Pattern - Drivers who travel 60 miles a day (over 21,000 miles per year) would save nearly 570 gallons of gasoline annually (compared to a similar size vehicle that averages 30 mpg) averaging about 150 mpg.
- Extended Road Trips: The Chevrolet electric concept car has an impressive range of 640 miles averaging nearly 50 mpg. The range extending power source will continuously recharge the Volt's battery for the duration of the trip.
- Battery suppliers are currently under evaluation as the technology matures.
- No production date set.