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Power Transportation

Chevy Volt Rated At 230 mpg In the City 1006

Posted by kdawson
from the bragging-rights dept.
necro81 writes "General Motors, emerging from bankruptcy, today announced that its upcoming plug-in hybrid vehicle, the Volt, will have an EPA rating of 230 mpg for city driving (about 98 km/L). The unprecedented rating, the first in triple digits, is the result of a new (draft) methodology for calculating the 'gas' mileage for vehicles that operate primarily or extensively on electricity. The Volt, due out late next year, can drive approximately 40 miles on its Li-Ion battery pack, after which a gasoline engine kicks in to provide additional electricity to charge the battery. Running off the gasoline engine yields approximately 50 mpg. Of course, the devil's in the details, because the conversion of grid-based electricity to gasoline-mileage is imprecise." Now we know the meaning of the mysterious "230" viral marketing campaign.
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Chevy Volt Rated At 230 mpg In the City

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  • Vaporware (Score:5, Funny)

    by sunderland56 (621843) on Tuesday August 11, 2009 @01:43PM (#29027141)
    Chevy has been promising the Volt for years now. *IF* it ever does come out, it might be interesting - but by now their marketing campaign seems to be run by Duke Nukem.
    • Re:Vaporware (Score:5, Informative)

      by hbean (144582) on Tuesday August 11, 2009 @01:44PM (#29027191)
      Hardly vaporware. Its in production.
      • Re:Vaporware (Score:5, Interesting)

        by networkBoy (774728) on Tuesday August 11, 2009 @01:50PM (#29027315) Homepage Journal

        should be available by 2010 according to this morning news.
        I'll be buying one as well.
        My RT commute is ~24 miles. I can charge at work. Free gas anyone?

        Not having to charge at home means just a little more in my pocket each month. Since this will be replacing no vehicle (I'll keep my truck thankyouverymuch) I doubt it'll pay for its self simply on saved fuel, but maybe it will. I burn ~550 gallons of mid-grade fuel per year just on my commute. At $3/gallon that's $1650/year. Assuming the car lasts 10 years I'll save $16K just on not paying for commute fuel. Any other driving I do with it will still be more efficient than my pickup (at 11Mpg).
        -nB

        • Re:Vaporware (Score:4, Insightful)

          by idontgno (624372) on Tuesday August 11, 2009 @01:56PM (#29027445) Journal

          Assuming the car lasts 10 years I'll save $16K just on not paying for commute fuel.

          Factor in battery replacements. Unless GM has also made a lifespan breakthrough in Li-Ion battery technology, so that you can use the same battery pack for 10 years of harsh all-conditions charging and discharging.

          Still, my daily commute (on the same order as yours) would also be mostly on-battery. This would save a lot of gasoline.

          • Re:Vaporware (Score:4, Insightful)

            by hbean (144582) on Tuesday August 11, 2009 @02:08PM (#29027663)
            You also got to consider the likelihood that as full or majority electric power cars start to become popular, you're going to see governments at the state, local and federal level attempting to make up for lost tax revenues. I'm not sure how they'll manage to differentiate between power for transport and power for home/business use, but if there's one thing that the government is good at it's figuring out new and inventive ways to tax people. Suffice it to say, driving one of these, especially on a short commute, will really save money, as well as the environment, but don't count on power being (as) cheap for long if we see a lot of these types of cars take to the streets.
            • Re:Vaporware (Score:5, Insightful)

              by icebike (68054) on Tuesday August 11, 2009 @02:26PM (#29028001)

              You are also going to see metered parking lot outlets. (These are already used in places like Fairbanks Alaska for headbolt heaters).

              There is no free lunch, and there is no work place recharging stations for 99.9999% of workers. The fact that NetworkBoy found one is 1) a miracle, 2) short lived, 3) bound to be usurped by his boss.

              So NetworkBoy will end up paying the full recharge bill and will have to charge at home. Still not so bad.

              But, IF this vehicle ever became popular we will have another crisis on our hands. The electrical grid probably can't handle the load, even in off peak hours, let alone in high-demand hours. And while you wait 15 years to get another nuclear power station permitted you will be keeping the coal fired plant up all night.

              Just about all coal generation plants are Clean Coal plants these days, but the definition of "clean" keeps changing. The juice has to come from somewhere, and scrubbed coal plants may be cleaner than the exhaust of millions of vehicles, but it is by no means a Free Lunch.

              So advocates need to temper their glee with a little reality check until they can hang enough solar panels on their roofs to charge their cars.

              • Re:Vaporware (Score:4, Insightful)

                by Chris Burke (6130) on Tuesday August 11, 2009 @03:23PM (#29029193) Homepage

                The juice has to come from somewhere, and scrubbed coal plants may be cleaner than the exhaust of millions of vehicles, but it is by no means a Free Lunch.

                So advocates need to temper their glee with a little reality check until they can hang enough solar panels on their roofs to charge their cars.

                After we've already agreed that even the worst case (coal power) is better than ICEs and made the obvious statement that there's no such thing as a free lunch, I see absolutely no reason to temper my glee. I am very gleeful at getting something much better than what we have.

                I don't get where this comes from:
                1) Assume EV fan thinks they are completely perfect and do not harm the environment in any way ever.
                2) Point out the obvious that this strawman is untrue.
                3) Tell EV fan to stop being happy or advocating their solution.

                I mean there may be some wackos out there who really believe (1), but none of them are around here, so who are you talking to?

              • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

                by networkBoy (774728)

                FWIW without divulging my employer...
                We currently have 4 charging stations, configured for both EV1/2 (carryover) style paddle chargers, and with 110V20A & 208V20A available. we have 3 people using homebrew EVs that charge there in the fair weather months. When I was having power issues on my old diesel Merc I used the open slot to run a charger and block heater during the winter. (two bum glow plugs and a bum cylinder)...

                Anyway, I talked to building management a while back about if I built an EV that

          • Re:Vaporware (Score:5, Informative)

            by bkissi01 (699085) on Tuesday August 11, 2009 @02:20PM (#29027887)

            Factor in battery replacements. Unless GM has also made a lifespan breakthrough in Li-Ion battery technology, so that you can use the same battery pack for 10 years of harsh all-conditions charging and discharging.

            Actually, you don't have to factor in battery replacements because GM is supplying the Volt with a 10 year 150,000 mile warranty on the Li batteries.

            • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

              by stokessd (89903)

              If I was a betting man, I wouldn't bet on GM being around in 10 years.

              Sheldon

              • Re:Vaporware (Score:4, Insightful)

                by bkissi01 (699085) on Tuesday August 11, 2009 @02:47PM (#29028439)
                Its already been proven that the Government won't let anything happen to GM. Plus, GM has the best balance sheet in the industry because of it's bankruptcy. Have you seen any other automaker's debt-ratio lately?
              • Re:Vaporware (Score:4, Interesting)

                by QuantumPion (805098) on Tuesday August 11, 2009 @02:56PM (#29028643)

                If I was a betting man, I wouldn't bet on GM being around in 10 years.

                Sheldon

                When's the last time the government ever cut a program or subsidy? Hell, we still have a subsidy to goat herders for mohair to make WW1 uniforms.

                Now that GM has fully transitioned from company-that-makes-cars-for-profit into union-employment-welfare-program, it will never go away unless the government itself does.

                • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

                  by Hatta (162192) *

                  Now that GM has fully transitioned from company-that-makes-cars-for-profit into union-employment-welfare-program, it will never go away unless the government itself does.

                  China won't keep subsidizing us forever.

            • Re:Vaporware (Score:4, Informative)

              by Ngarrang (1023425) on Tuesday August 11, 2009 @03:01PM (#29028735) Journal

              Factor in battery replacements. Unless GM has also made a lifespan breakthrough in Li-Ion battery technology, so that you can use the same battery pack for 10 years of harsh all-conditions charging and discharging.

              Actually, you don't have to factor in battery replacements because GM is supplying the Volt with a 10 year 150,000 mile warranty on the Li batteries.

              Doesn't this just shift the burden of pollution and disposal to a different party? The net effect is unchanged. Li-Ion batteries use a lot things that aren't good for the environment and a lot of energy to do so. Someone else is using more energy so you can use less. Net of zero.

              Give me a TDI motor any day over this hybrid stuff.

              • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

                by MikeURL (890801)
                The amount of effort going into making passenger cars more efficient is absurd. Passenger cars are already a miracle of modern engineering in terms of efficiency and pollution. While we try to squeeze the last 3-5% of possible gains out of the system we are simultaneously almost completely ignoring the major polluter on the road. Legacy diesel engines are, by far, the worst offender in terms of pollution of the type that actually hurts people directly (smog, particulate, etc).

                As a society it is foolis
              • Re:Vaporware (Score:4, Informative)

                by Rei (128717) on Tuesday August 11, 2009 @04:39PM (#29030313) Homepage

                1) "A lot of things that aren't good for the environment"? Name one. Here's a rough recipe for your typical LiP cell. 1) Lithium carbonate (as found in mineral water); 2) Phosphoric acid (as found in soft drinks) 3) Iron powder; 4) Sugar (regular old sucrose, burned to make the cathode's carbon binding); 5) Graphite or amorphous carbon (for the anode); 6) A porous polyethylene membrane; 6) One of several typically nontoxic electrolytes (BYD's pres likes to show off by drinking his company's electrolyte); 7) casing, wiring, etc.

                Which of those do you have a problem with? The only reason you can't throw traditional (laptop-style) li-ions in the trash is because of the cobalt and the fire hazard. LiPs and manganese spinels (what almost all EV makers are using, with the notable exception of Tesla) have neither. Plus, they're all setting up systems for their packs to be recycled -- not because of either any particular value to the raw materials nor any significant environmental consequences to their disposal, but to assuage the fears of people like you.

                2) "Give me a TDI motor any day": Oh please. Even the cleanest commercial diesels, like the Jetta TDI, can barely meet modern US emissions regs. Show me a single SULEV diesel. Heck, have they even managed to make a commercial LEV diesel yet? Diesels emit less CO2 than gas cars, sure. But EVs emit less CO2 *and* less of every other pollutant except PM. And, the pollution that they do emit is displaced, no longer at street level in crowded areas, but at altitude and generally in less population dense areas.

                Plus, that's on our current grid. Electricity is getting cleaner (42% of new capacity added to the grid last year was wind, and most of the rest, natural gas), while oil is getting dirtier (increasing share of syncrude and high-energy sources as the easy-to-get stuff gets used up -- think Athabasca bitumen)

        • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

          by thesolo (131008) *
          And what's to say that electricity prices won't jump up dramatically with people suddenly charging their cars on the grid every day? Also, assuming that a GM car will last for 10 years, particularly a first-generation plug-in hybrid, is a pretty tall order.
          • Re:Vaporware (Score:5, Insightful)

            by Delwin (599872) * on Tuesday August 11, 2009 @02:14PM (#29027789)
            The same thing that says that if electricity prices go up too much more putting photovoltaic cells on my roof becomes profitable.
            • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

              by LordKazan (558383)

              in some areas it already is profitable with latest-generation ones to my understanding.

              recent discoveries in photovoltaics have boosted their efficiency greatly and lowered their cost to produce at the same time.. cannot wait until those new generations hit the market.

          • Re:Vaporware (Score:4, Informative)

            by clone53421 (1310749) on Tuesday August 11, 2009 @03:26PM (#29029239) Journal

            Electricity prices are already going to "skyrocket" if cap and trade goes through. Obama "guaranteed" it.

        • Re:Vaporware (Score:4, Insightful)

          by Darth Sdlavrot (1614139) on Tuesday August 11, 2009 @02:16PM (#29027825)
          It's not that my commute is 35 miles -- one-way. It's that four months out of the year the outside temperature averages 30ÂF during my commute. That's currently (no pun intended) the major drawback to a fully electric commute, because I'm certain that running an electric heater to keep warm will kill the car's driving range.
          • Re:Vaporware (Score:5, Informative)

            by jfengel (409917) on Tuesday August 11, 2009 @02:53PM (#29028551) Homepage Journal

            A good heater shouldn't require more than around 1.5 kilowatts, the size of a space heater that can keep a small room toasty. The Volt's engine is rated at 111 kilowatts.

            So running the heater shouldn't cost more than around 1% of your total range.

            • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

              by ivan256 (17499)

              I doubt it does this for PR reasons...

              But it could just idle the gas engine to generate heat. It should consume very little gas to idle the engine, and if there's one thing ICEs are good at doing with high efficiency, it's generating heat.

              • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

                by timeOday (582209)
                It would be crazy to heat up a 500 lb slug of metal just to make warm air to blow into the cabin.
          • by Animaether (411575) on Tuesday August 11, 2009 @03:22PM (#29029173) Journal

            ...why do these stories about hybrids, fully-electrics, etc. always elicit responses like "but it freezes here, which kills performance" and "but I drive 200 miles every day, will it be able to do that? No."

            I don't hear anybody ranting on the Mini for not being able to support a soccer (hockey?) mom with her 3 kids+entourage+equipment.
            I don't hear anybody complaining that a Ford Excursion is crap up in northern Alaska because the tires keep sinking into the thawing dirt roads.
            Who last complained about a Scuderia Spider (open top car) because they lived in Seattle and, well, dur?

            Not every single car is going to fill your specific needs and desires; thank goodness, then, that there is a wide range to choose from.. and with the Volt and other initiatives, those whose desires include having a non-gasoline car to drive short distances regularly in non-extreme (4 months of freezing is extreme enough, tyvm) weather will be having that choice available to them, just as you have had the choice between a myriad of cars that will happily run with little performance loss at 30F and the heater blasting at full.

        • Re:Vaporware (Score:4, Insightful)

          by PingPongBoy (303994) on Tuesday August 11, 2009 @02:23PM (#29027945)

          Wondering how much current is required to charge though - if you charge at work, where they expect you to do no more than plug in the block heater, would it be easy to trip the breaker with several cars charging? Here's a market for a time-sliced plugin octopus.

          Free gas - the economics of free imply people will use it until it's not so free. If you can always get free charging, maybe everyone will drive more and you have gridlock everywhere. On the other hand, free charging might mean mobile homes on electricity rather than little gas misers. Park your home at work and never leave! Free LAND!

        • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

          by AP31R0N (723649)

          "My RT commute is ~24 miles. I can charge at work. Free gas anyone?"

          i hope you're right. i suspect that your company would frown upon filling your tank. That would be an awesome benefit though. "We offer competitive salaries and free recharging of electric cars and plug-in hybrids."

          More likely, there would first be an effort to prevent such charging, followed by charging stations that require payment. Followed by a spike in electricity prices.

    • Maybe Chevrolet's engineers are just insisting on being thorough and working the bugs out BEFORE release... which is a concept too many software engineers seem to have forgotten? That fleet of 50 "beta" Volt cars that's been on the road wasn't just for advertising, ya know.

  • Heat & A/C (Score:5, Insightful)

    by s31523 (926314) on Tuesday August 11, 2009 @01:47PM (#29027267)
    One of many BIG questions I have: How does this thing provide heating/cooling and what impact does running these systems have on said MPG performance?
    • Re:Heat & A/C (Score:4, Interesting)

      by ShooterNeo (555040) on Tuesday August 11, 2009 @01:58PM (#29027477)

      The Tesla uses electricity for both. It sounds inefficient, but compared to the power draw for moving the vehicle, it's a drop in the bucket.

      Best part is, you'll be able to sit in your Volt in the parking lot and nap with the A/C or the heat running, and yet the engine can be off until it needs to start in order to charge the batteries back up. (which would probably be many hours later if you started with full batteries)

    • by lymond01 (314120) on Tuesday August 11, 2009 @02:05PM (#29027623)

      How does this thing provide heating/cooling and what impact does running these systems have on said MPG performance?

      The answer is two-fold, my boy:

      It's air conditioning is wind powered!

      The effect on MPG is directly related to which way the wind is blowing.

      If you have any other questions, feel free to ask. I can provide detailed equations like E=mc^2 and c=pi*r^2 if you need them.

  • How about miles per pound of carbon dioxide emission?

    Or, or in addition, miles per PRIMARY unit of energy input?

    --PM

    • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

      by Anonymous Coward

      Because we don't know where your grid power comes from. Coal fired? Nuclear? Hydroelectric?

      The cost is different in each case.

    • A plug-in hybrid's "miles-per-gallon" rating can be made arbitrarily high -- it just depends on the gasoline/grid electricity "blend assumption" made during the calculation.

      • As the CNN article points out, "When gasoline is providing [all] the power, the Volt might get as much as 50 mpg."
      • If you assume that 98% of the time the car operates on grid electricity, hey, you'll only consume 0.4 gallons in 1000 miles, that's 2500 miles-per-gallon!
      • And to take the argument to the ultimate extreme, if you assume the car
  • by fataugie (89032) on Tuesday August 11, 2009 @01:52PM (#29027353) Homepage

    They forgot to mention the Forward Mounted, Cannon Fired Grappling Hook (TM).

    The instructions were a little vauge, but the pictures showed the driver aiming on a HUD at a City Bus....so you fill in the blanks.

  • by Lord Ender (156273) on Tuesday August 11, 2009 @01:54PM (#29027401) Homepage

    If you have the cheddar to drop $40k on a commuter car, you probably don't think twice about the price at the pump. Let's hope there are enough people buying this for the novelty value that it will stay afloat long enough that production efficiency can improve to the $25k/unit level.

    • by east coast (590680) on Tuesday August 11, 2009 @02:12PM (#29027725)
      If you have the cheddar to drop $40k on a commuter car, you probably don't think twice about the price at the pump.

      Don't fool yourself. People with the kind of cash to afford 40k on a car are probably more honest about their finances. There's a reason the rich remain rich; they're not idiots about their money.
  • by Trails (629752) on Tuesday August 11, 2009 @01:57PM (#29027459)

    I would just like to point out that I'm sick of the American auto industry treating us Canadians and the rest of the metric world like second class citizens. You in the US all enjoy your wonderfully efficient 230 mpg, whereas we are stuck with only 98km/L, less than half!! For shame.

    I plan to start a boycott until this terrible treatment of the metric world halts.

    Who's with me?

  • 50MPG WTF (Score:3, Interesting)

    by wiredlogic (135348) on Tuesday August 11, 2009 @01:59PM (#29027487)

    Why in the hell couldn't GM have just come out with a normal 50MPG car that didn't suck ass like the Metro? That would sell well and be a ton cheaper to make.

  • Gallons? (Score:5, Funny)

    by qmaqdk (522323) on Tuesday August 11, 2009 @02:01PM (#29027539)

    How many gallons of electricity does it hold?

    • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

      by compro01 (777531)

      Approximately 0.44 gallons.

      A gallon of gas contains about 36 kilowatt hours of energy and the volt battery pack is 16 kilowatt hours.

  • Why all the hate? (Score:5, Interesting)

    by VoiceInTheDesert (1613565) on Tuesday August 11, 2009 @02:03PM (#29027577)
    I'm not sure why people are hating on this car so much other than the fact that it's GM and everyone is mad at them for the whole bailout thing right now.

    The only real difference between this car and previous hybrids is that this one will go 40 (maybe, I'm guessing closer to 30) miles before it kicks into hyrbid mode.

    This car is a great concept and for the vast majority of people I know, will provide essentially gas-less lifestyles (except on road trips, but if you're taking THIS little thing on a road trip, you did something else wrong). And if you need to go 70 miles instead of 40 in one day, you spend what? .75 gallons? You're going to complain about that?

    This is the kind of technology that can break the oil companies hold on the auto industry. yet people continue to bitch about how it's not good enough for them. I say fuck you all and I hope other companies follow in this car's footsteps. All technology has to start somewhere and this is the first version of a gas-free car to hit the market. Give it a few years and we'll be seeing cars that go 60 miles on one charge, then 100, then maybe even more. Give it time, stop bitching and appreciate how far we have come, not how much you still want to happen.
    • Re:Why all the hate? (Score:5, Informative)

      by Sir_Real (179104) on Tuesday August 11, 2009 @02:57PM (#29028651)

      That is NOT the only real difference. The biggest difference here is that there is NO variable timed engine. No cam lobes. No transmission. Just a gas powered electric generator. There is NO hybrid mode. This vehicle operators only on power from the batteries. When you take it over a certain speed, the generator kicks on to keep the batteries juiced. This decouples the generator from the power source. Also, it's not a little car. It's a 4 door sedan that gets 50 mpg on the highway.

    • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

      by GroundBounce (20126)

      I agree. This obviously isn't the ultimate alternative fuel vehicle, but this process has to start somewhere. Yes, it's expensive, yes it's hard to justify on pure economics at the current gas price of $3/gallon here in the US. But $3 gasoline isn't going to last forever. Last summer, before the economy crashed, we had $4.50 gas, and once the economy cycles back and demand for oil goes back up in the face of flat or declining world oil production, prices will likely climb even higher than that and the e

    • Totally Agree (Score:5, Interesting)

      by sampson7 (536545) on Tuesday August 11, 2009 @03:06PM (#29028855)
      Amen. People need to accept that is a progression of technology and that things are not going to happen overnight.

      I bought my 2002 Prius after a six month wait time. I paid more for it then a comparably equiped gas car. There was no economic rationale for my purchase -- I did it because I loved the car, and had the privilege of driving a cutting edge piece of engineering for going on seven years now, with minimum maintenance and hassle. There's something beautiful about driving with virtually no noise and I still smile when I roll up to a stop sign and the engine shuts off.

      Moreover, I am willing to pay higher than market rate because of the externalities associated with having the world's first mass-produced electric car:

      I am supporting an environmental technology that I believe in.

      I am supporting green-tech projects, built in America.

      I love driving on electric power only.

      I am willing to take a risk on buying the Volt or the Prius or any other quasi-experimental first-generation piece of tech hardware because I have the money.

      I am buying it because as a child I wanted to know why I couldn't put a windmill on top of the family car and use wind power to make it go.

  • by PolygamousRanchKid (1290638) on Tuesday August 11, 2009 @02:05PM (#29027615)

    So I guess there is no conflict of interest there?

    The Chevy Volt has great mileage, by Presidential Executive Order.

  • by wiredog (43288) on Tuesday August 11, 2009 @02:06PM (#29027635) Journal

    From The Atlantic: GM's Volt Offers Amazing Mileage, But At What Cost? [theatlantic.com]

    I used the Toyota Corolla (regular, non-hybrid vehicle) as my comparison, since it's popular and similar in style. According to Toyota's website, it gets 26 miles per gallon in the city and starts at $15,350.

    ..[various assumptions]..

    if you assume $4 per gallon, then you'd need to drive around 177,000 miles to break even.

    • by NetNed (955141) on Tuesday August 11, 2009 @03:25PM (#29029215)
      Hard to understand why the writer didn't just compare it to another Hybrid. Ford's Hybrid Fusion I think is the most impressive Hybrid for what you get for your dollar and the performance of the vehicle (also doesn't feel like a tin can). It starts and $27,270 and is closer to the Volt. Heck the Camry would have been closer to the Volt. The two Stipulations as to why he picked the Corolla don't really seem to make sense when there are dozens of models that would have been a closer match.
  • by onyxruby (118189) <onyxruby&comcast,net> on Tuesday August 11, 2009 @02:30PM (#29028075)

    The 230 figure is designed to account for how most people will drive the vehicle and uses a government standard test methodology. The important thing is that the same test is applied to all equivalent vehicles. Since 90% of people drive 40 or fewer miles in a day, it's not an unreasonable number if recharged as designed.

    If you wanted a better figure of how it would last for a day's worth of driving you could take the total driven range and divide that out to get miles per gallon. Perhaps even quote it with a qualifier as something like 100MPG/300kWh to account for the electrical contribution (my figures are made up but you get the idea). This would allow to easily account for the cost of the electricity as well as the extended range from batteries and post battery range once you have drained the initial charge.

    Regardless of how you interpret the results the car is impressive even if it is too expensive. Give it a few years and you should be able to get something like this for a lot less money. I've already talked over with my wife and we want to get a vehicle like this and solar panels on the roof in about three years when costs drop. I figure it should drop my monthly expenses a fair bit and be good for the environment.

  • by superdave80 (1226592) on Tuesday August 11, 2009 @02:36PM (#29028193)

    I wish they would have kept to their original listing of "40 miles on a single charge, 50 MPG when running off the generator". The EPA needs to come up with some new measuring standard for this type of car, or some idiot is going to put one gallon of gas in his uncharged Volt for a 200 mile trip one day, and bitch and moan when he runs out of gas in the middle of nowhere after 50 miles.

  • by notgm (1069012) on Tuesday August 11, 2009 @02:46PM (#29028401)

    I'd be worried that if all my runs were full-electric, that is to say that my 10 mile commute never required the car to dip into the gasoline, that without treatment, the gasoline could break down and gum up the injectors - like when you store a boat or mower over the winter...but who wants to drive around with a stabilizer-mix full time? that's gotta put a big hit on efficiency and power if you ever need the combustion engine to kick in.

    i don't think i've ever seen that issue discussed when hybrids are brought up.

    • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

      by BigGar' (411008)
      This is a great point; I wish I had mods points. While the issue could be kept to a minimum by keeping the gas tank small 4-5 gallons& keeping it between a quarter and half a tank a lot, but if you ran for a year without engaging the engine because all you drive is a few miles a day, you may have a serious problem. Most hybrids up to now this hasn't been an issue because they run their ICE a lot, with the Volt, it might start to become a problem. Should be interesting to keep an eye on this topic.
  • by georgep77 (97111) on Tuesday August 11, 2009 @03:00PM (#29028717) Homepage Journal

    Very weak. 40 miles on battery and then ~ 50mpg for the remaining 10 miles and you get the stupid mileage figure. Yes you can average 230mpg over the first 50 miles you drive on a fresh charge. Of course driving just another 10 miles would drop the mileage figure substantially. I guess it's time to have two mileage ratings. The first would be gallons per 100 miles with a fully charged battery, the 2nd would be gallons per 100 miles on a fully depleted battery.

    _GP_

  • by peter303 (12292) on Tuesday August 11, 2009 @03:38PM (#29029457)
    Because if you put in some gasoline in a new one it will still be there a decade later when you look again.
  • by tprime (673835) on Tuesday August 11, 2009 @05:55PM (#29031265)
    Why are there so many haters on this car? If anyone thinks that this is the end all be all solution to the problem, they are freaking idiots. This is just the first volley across the bow of the PRACTICAL electric car idea. With mass production brings decreased costs and better technology over time. If all car companies waited until the technology were perfect before producing it, it would be another full decade before anything hits the market. Yes, GM has screwed up in the past, but don't hold that against them with this car. THIS IS A GOOD START.

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