All-new 2016 Volt with extended range, offers up to 80 kilometres of pure electric driving on a full charge then the onboard gas-powered generator kicks in.
The future is electric when it comes to how our personal vehicles are powered.
The transition from gasoline engines will not be complete for perhaps decades but early examples of electrical propulsion, be they pure electric, gasoline hybrids or plug-in hybrids, clearly indicate this positive direction is no longer a pipe dream of futurists.
Last year, we gave away an all-electric Nissan LEAF in our Vancouver International Auto Show contest and it attracted a record-breaking 34,558 entries. This year, we are pleased to announce that we are giving you the chance to win the keys to an electric Chevrolet Volt (see it at this year’s show at Vancouver Convention Centre West, Wednesday, March 23 to Sunday, March 27).
The all-new 2016 Volt with extended range, offers around 76 kilometres of pure electric driving on a full charge. Once you exceed that range, the onboard gas-powered generator fires up quietly and ensures the battery tops up to keep the dual electric motors running.
It offers the best of both worlds and removes the ‘range anxiety’ associated with an electric vehicle that must be hooked up for a recharge once it reaches its limit. Once the generator kicks in (range extender in manufacturer-speak), on a full tank of regular gas, you could drive up to another 600 kilometres. That translates roughly to the equivalent fuel economy of about 5.7 L/100km.
Yours truly spent a week driving the new Volt, which is a darn sight prettier and sleeker than the first generation. And now the all-new interior provides seating for five, which makes it far more appealing for families looking for an eco-friendly sedan.
Big improvements to the instrument panel and controls. The Volt retains its dual digital colour displays with an eight-inch-diagonal reconfigurable screen. An additional eight-inch-diagonal touch screen in the centre of the instrument panel controls the Chevrolet MyLink system.
You are constantly aware of how much juice you are using. Green cars always challenge drivers to compete with themselves to get the most out of the vehicle in fuel efficiency. For instance, when I picked up the car the screen showed there was around 66-kilometres of electric range. A 10-minute freeway trip and almost 100 klicks and I was at 61-km range. Do the math! It’s magic!
By the way, reaching 100 km/h reportedly takes just 8.4 seconds. I say reportedly because I didn’t have a stop watch. What I love about electric power is the Formula 1 start you can make at the lights if you are feeling naughty. Zero to 50 in just 2.6 secs. Yep, a family sedan that leaves the rest in its dust! Not that I’m encouraging such behavior, just saying.
Of course, city stop-go traffic soon brings one down to earth and drains the battery but if you anticipate lights, smooth out the acceleration and make full use of the power regeneration when you brake or coast down hills, you can get back on the eco-track. Incidentally, you can set the amount of regeneration that suits your driving style.
I charged overnight on a regular domestic garage power point. By morning it was at maximum range. You can cut that time in half and better with a charger designed to make maximum use of the power on tap.
The Volt offers new standard and available safety features including a standard rear-vision camera, 10 standard air bags, including driver and front-passenger knee air bags. Also available as options are such active safety features as ‘lane keep’ assist with lane departure warning, side blind zone alert with lane change alert, rear cross traffic alert, forward collision alert with following distance indicator, front automatic braking, and advanced park assist with front and rear park assist (semi-automatic parallel parking).
Pricing before government incentive rebates starts at $38,390. In B.C., with the full rebate, that drops to $33,390. Take one for a very quiet spin and then enter to win! An auto show preview will appear in Driveway in two weeks.
keith [dot] morgan [at] drivewaybc [dot] ca
Win a Chevrolet Volt
Readers 19 or older can enter via the contest pages at any of the following Black Press sites: AbbyNews.com, TheProgress.com, LangleyTimes.com, MapleRidgeNews.com, PeaceArchNews.com or TheNowNewspaper.com.
The contest ends at 7 p.m. PT on March 28, 2016.