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stasisLAX
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Will The New Chevy Volt Be General Motor's Savior?

Wed Sep 17, 2008 12:40 am

Here are some of the engineering details for the 2011 Chevrolet Volt that was unveiled to the public today in celebration of General Motor's 100th birthday.

2011 Chevy Volt sedan


The car will travel 40 miles on electric power alone, as the Volt carries a battery pack made up of 220 lithium-ion cells. The pack generates 16 kilowatt hours of electricity. It can be recharged in about three hours when plugged into a 240-volt line, or about eight hours with a 120-volt line. The four-passenger Volt has a top speed of 100 mph. Its electric motor cranks out 273 lb-ft of torque and the equivalent of 150 hp.

2011 Chevy Volt sedan


The interior includes a driver-configurable liquid-crystal instrument display, seven-inch touch-screen information display, touch-screen-style climate and infotainment controls, an optional navigation system with onboard hard drive, and Bluetooth connection technology.

2011 Chevy Volt interior


The chassis includes an independent MacPherson strut suspension in front and a compound crank twist axle in the rear, four-wheel disc brakes with full regenerative capability, and electric power steering. Wheelbase is 105.7 inches; overall length, 177.0 inches (about the size of the Chevy Cobalt sedan); width, 70.8 inches; height, 56.3 inches; trunk space is 10.6 cubic feet.

GM says its plans to build the Volt in its Hamtramck assembly plant in suburban Detroit, but it is still negotiating with governments for incentives to convert the plant. GM says it will begin Volt production in late 2010.

Source: http://www.motortrend.com/features/a...9_chevrolet_volt_reveal/index.html

But is the Volt really enough to save GM? Here's my thoughts - it's a boring looking sedan in comparsion to the concept Volt's unique styling. And there is no word yet on how much the Volt will weigh, which has a huge impact the vehicle's real-world range. The average American commutes 32 miles each day to and from work - currently, the Volt has a range of 40 miles. Plan side-trips carefully! And it's expected to cost approximately $40,000 USD - that's a lot of money for a small Chevy hatchback. So what do you think, fellow electro-motorheads?

[Edited 2008-09-16 17:44:53]

[Edited 2008-09-16 17:50:22]
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MCOflyer
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RE: Will The New Chevy Volt Be General Motor's Savior?

Wed Sep 17, 2008 12:43 am

Could be and could not be. Depends on how you see it.

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UAL747
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RE: Will The New Chevy Volt Be General Motor's Savior?

Wed Sep 17, 2008 12:50 am

I think what GM/Chevy/et al needs to do is re-brand. It's getting to the point when you see American symbols, you automatically think over-priced low quality, or redneck car. Not that they are, but when I first looked at the picture of that car, I though it was decent looking, then I saw the Chevy symbol, and for some reason, I thought..."oh" ...end of story.

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RE: Will The New Chevy Volt Be General Motor's Savior?

Wed Sep 17, 2008 1:13 am

if It can do 100+ miles on a single charge then it will be a success. What about going to the cottage?

The GM EV-1 had a range of almost 90 miles back in the VERY early 90's.... No improvement in almost 20 years is PATHETIC!
 
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RE: Will The New Chevy Volt Be General Motor's Savior?

Wed Sep 17, 2008 1:14 am



Quoting StasisLAX (Thread starter):
The interior includes a driver-configurable liquid-crystal instrument display, seven-inch touch-screen information display, touch-screen-style climate and infotainment controls, an optional navigation system with onboard hard drive, and Bluetooth connection technology.

One would think that you'd want as few gadgets as possible to conserve energy in an electric car .....  Silly
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HapppyLandings
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RE: Will The New Chevy Volt Be General Motor's Savior?

Wed Sep 17, 2008 1:17 am

Oh, and 2011 for the release of a car that has worse specs then what was released 20 years before by the same company? I am baffled, It seems like GM does not want it to succeed... Oil company lobby?
 
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RE: Will The New Chevy Volt Be General Motor's Savior?

Wed Sep 17, 2008 1:21 am



Quoting Ual747 (Reply 2):
It's getting to the point when you see American symbols, you automatically think over-priced low quality, or redneck car.

Not really. American cars are quite popular here. Any idea if/when this car will be exported to other markets?

IMO $40,000 is a bit too much for a small hatch. It looks better than the current hybrids/electric cars we have here, but if it costs US$40,000 then by the time we get it it'll be around $70-75k..which is a bit too much. The Prius and Civic Hybrid sell for around AU$38,000. GM better think of ways to reduce that price tag if they want it to be a success.
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Fly2HMO
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RE: Will The New Chevy Volt Be General Motor's Savior?

Wed Sep 17, 2008 1:30 am

Blah.   

Electric cars didn't work out then (EV-1), don't see why now it would be any different.

I'll give it one thing, just for looks I'd take the volt over a Prius any day   

Anybody notice how diesel is quietly rising in popularity in the states these days? America is FINALLY realizing the wonders of diesel in vehicles other than needledick-compensating trucks and SUVs.

Which is something the Europeans have realized 40+ years ago.  

[Edited 2008-09-16 18:32:06]
 
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stasisLAX
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RE: Will The New Chevy Volt Be General Motor's Savior?

Wed Sep 17, 2008 1:34 am

I guess I have some deeper questions about the Chevy Volt and electric power source pollution. Electricity in the U.S. is predominately produced by coal fired power plants. Coal is a very dirty fuel and harmful to the environment, even though there's plenty of it in America. The forth-coming issue here is efficient electricity production and distribution. If we all want to be able to plug in our Chevy Volts, we need to always have the reliable electrical energy available. Nuclear power might be the best and most reliable "clean" electricity source going forward, along with looking at ways to leapfrog the necessary technology for clean-burn coal power plants.
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RE: Will The New Chevy Volt Be General Motor's Savior?

Wed Sep 17, 2008 1:53 am



Quoting StasisLAX (Thread starter):
But is the Volt really enough to save GM? Here's my thoughts

No. For the same reason the iphone (as it stands now) - although widlely successful - will never make Apple the #1 cell phone manufacturer.

1 single product does not make a company successful. You can also ask Motorola and ask them about the Razr.
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RE: Will The New Chevy Volt Be General Motor's Savior?

Wed Sep 17, 2008 1:59 am



Quoting ACDC8 (Reply 4):
Oh, and 2011 for the release of a car that has worse specs then what was released 20 years before by the same company?

That car was a tiny car, cost a ton of money, developed with a ton-and-a-half of money which was never recovered. . . the problem is the technology isn't economical yet.
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sv7887
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RE: Will The New Chevy Volt Be General Motor's Savior?

Wed Sep 17, 2008 2:03 am

It's rather pricey so I don't know if it is above the price point for most Hybrid or Alternative Vehicle Fans.

Quoting Mt99 (Reply 9):
Quoting StasisLAX (Thread starter):
But is the Volt really enough to save GM? Here's my thoughts

No. For the same reason the iphone (as it stands now) - although widlely successful - will never make Apple the #1 cell phone manufacturer.

1 single product does not make a company successful. You can also ask Motorola and ask them about the Razr.

Exactly! GM has some good cars out there but lacks a strong portfolio of vehicles. The CTS and Malibu are good cars, but they just don't have enough mainstream stuff yet..
 
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RE: Will The New Chevy Volt Be General Motor's Savior?

Wed Sep 17, 2008 2:10 am



Quoting PPVRA (Reply 10):
Quoting ACDC8 (Reply 4):
Oh, and 2011 for the release of a car that has worse specs then what was released 20 years before by the same company?

That car was a tiny car, cost a ton of money, developed with a ton-and-a-half of money which was never recovered. . . the problem is the technology isn't economical yet.

Sorry, but that wasn't my post ....  Wink
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RE: Will The New Chevy Volt Be General Motor's Savior?

Wed Sep 17, 2008 2:22 am



Quoting Mt99 (Reply 9):
1 single product does not make a company successful. You can also ask Motorola and ask them about the Razr.

The bulk of Motorolas business isnt mobile phones. Infact if Motorola would sell Mobile Phone division it would still be a sizeable company. What would GM do if they stopped selling cars? Nothing.
 
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RE: Will The New Chevy Volt Be General Motor's Savior?

Wed Sep 17, 2008 2:23 am



Quoting StasisLAX (Thread starter):
The car will travel 40 miles on electric power alone,

 rotfl   rotfl   rotfl 
Get serious! Come back when the range is about six times that figure and we'll talk.

Quoting StasisLAX (Thread starter):
the Volt carries a battery pack made up of 220 lithium-ion cells.

What is the life expectancy on this battery pack in charge cycles, and how much will a replacement battery pack cost?

Quoting StasisLAX (Thread starter):
It can be recharged in about three hours when plugged into a 240-volt line, or about eight hours with a 120-volt line.

 rotfl   rotfl   rotfl 
Again, get serious. Cut those charge times down to about 1/8 what they currently are and we'll talk. In the meantime, cover the roof with solar cells so it can at least get a trickle charge on sunny days.

Quoting StasisLAX (Thread starter):
The four-passenger Volt has a top speed of 100 mph.

What is the Volt's battery range at that speed? What is the Volt's battery range at 60% of that speed?

Quoting StasisLAX (Thread starter):
The chassis includes an independent MacPherson strut suspension in front and a compound crank twist axle in the rear

The exact same as the Cobalt and the 1982 Cavalier from which the Cobalt eventually sprang. Also the same (design-wise) as the 1975 Volkswagen Golf/Rabbit. Yawn.

Quoting StasisLAX (Thread starter):
it's expected to cost approximately $40,000 USD

 rotfl   rotfl   rotfl 
Hmmmm... BMW 3-series, or lame electric Chevrolet with a 40 mile range- which would you rather drive every day?

Quoting StasisLAX (Thread starter):
So what do you think, fellow electro-motorheads?

 rotfl   rotfl   rotfl 
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MattRB
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RE: Will The New Chevy Volt Be General Motor's Savior?

Wed Sep 17, 2008 2:31 am



Quoting FLY2HMO (Reply 7):
Anybody notice how diesel is quietly rising in popularity in the states these days? America is FINALLY realizing the wonders of diesel in vehicles other than needledick-compensating trucks and SUVs.

Problem is, the US can't drive them..

http://www.businessweek.com/magazine...ifestyle+subindex+page_top+stories
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RE: Will The New Chevy Volt Be General Motor's Savior?

Wed Sep 17, 2008 2:36 am



Quoting StasisLAX (Thread starter):
But is the Volt really enough to save GM?

At the project cost of $40,000..? seriously doubt it..and just wait till it comes time to replace the battery...

Quoting TSS (Reply 14):
how much will a replacement battery pack cost?

$6,000-$9,000
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RE: Will The New Chevy Volt Be General Motor's Savior?

Wed Sep 17, 2008 2:41 am

If this thing can really only go 40 miles on a charge and costs 40k, I reckon it will be a total bust. I wouldn't have let this thing get through an early phase design review. I hope to be wrong.
 
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RE: Will The New Chevy Volt Be General Motor's Savior?

Wed Sep 17, 2008 2:48 am



Quoting LOT767-300ER (Reply 13):
What would GM do if they stopped selling cars? Nothing.

Except for that GMAC division which does billions of dollars in finance and insurance services  Wink
 
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RE: Will The New Chevy Volt Be General Motor's Savior?

Wed Sep 17, 2008 2:55 am

Can assume that 40 mile range is on a 70 degree day.

Batteries loose efficency in colder weather and I don't think it is going to get near to 40 miles in Duluth or Anchorage in January.

There are simply too many drawbacks to an electric vehicle for most people to use it as a primary vehicle. In addition to the temperture related quirks of batteries, lack of range, long recharge time, costs, and heavy metal pollution to make it come in common usage.
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RE: Will The New Chevy Volt Be General Motor's Savior?

Wed Sep 17, 2008 2:57 am



Quoting MattRB (Reply 15):
Problem is, the US can't drive them..

I really hope we overcome our issues with diesel in this country. It's a nice option in Europe.
 
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RE: Will The New Chevy Volt Be General Motor's Savior?

Wed Sep 17, 2008 3:26 am



Quoting L-188 (Reply 19):
Can assume that 40 mile range is on a 70 degree day.

Batteries loose efficency in colder weather and I don't think it is going to get near to 40 miles in Duluth or Anchorage in January.

There are simply too many drawbacks to an electric vehicle for most people to use it as a primary vehicle. In addition to the temperture related quirks of batteries, lack of range, long recharge time, costs, and heavy metal pollution to make it come in common usage.

Lithium ion batteries don't have that problem with the cold.

Everybody here is forgetting that it also has a gas generator. You will not be stranded after 40 miles. GM learned from that mistake with the EV. It will have a range as long as most other cars and all you need to go farther is a fuel stop.
I listened to a lengthy interview with the head designer of interior and he also said that GM has not determined a price yet and $40k was high. We'll see.
 
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RE: Will The New Chevy Volt Be General Motor's Savior?

Wed Sep 17, 2008 3:49 am



Quoting StuckInCA (Reply 20):
I really hope we overcome our issues with diesel in this country. It's a nice option in Europe.

I hope so too - and Volkswagen is offering a reasonably priced "clean" diesel engine in the 2009 Jetta sedan and station wagon in all 50 states.
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RE: Will The New Chevy Volt Be General Motor's Savior?

Wed Sep 17, 2008 4:10 am



Quoting StuckInCA (Reply 20):
I really hope we overcome our issues with diesel in this country. It's a nice option in Europe.

In most countries (aka where the fiscal system does not unfairly advantage diesel over petrol), diesel is more expensive than petrol. That is the case here in Australia, but also in the UK. And probably in Germany and the Netherlands.

You would need big time fuel economy to overcome the double whammy of 1) a higher price tag for the car and 2) a higher price tag for fuel.

You may also want to have a look at NOx and particulates emissions of these things - not pretty at all.

For what it is worth, the trend of "all diesel" has finally stopped in France, and stabilised (granted, at nearly 65% of total sales, yuk).

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RE: Will The New Chevy Volt Be General Motor's Sav

Wed Sep 17, 2008 6:47 am



Quoting StasisLAX (Thread starter):
But is the Volt really enough to save GM? Here's my thoughts - it's a boring looking sedan in comparsion to the concept Volt's unique styling. And there is no word yet on how much the Volt will weigh, which has a huge impact the vehicle's real-world range. The average American commutes 32 miles each day to and from work - currently, the Volt has a range of 40 miles.

Yes, 40 mi uncharged range is wildly dissappointing. My commute is more like 32 miles each way, plus any errands I want to run, so I'd think a bare minimum of 80 miles is needed for this to make any sense for me, unless my place of employ decides to put plugs out in the parking lots.

Quoting HapppyLandings (Reply 3):
The GM EV-1 had a range of almost 90 miles back in the VERY early 90's.... No improvement in almost 20 years is PATHETIC!

What I've read is they are using a lot more advanced battery technology (Li instead of NiMH or lead acid) but the battery is about 1/4th the size of the one in the EV, thus the poor range.

Smaller battery means cheaper battery and lighter car but poor uncharged range.

But it does have the on-board gasoline engine to recharge the batteries.

But maybe it needs the smaller battery to make room for the gas engine?

I thought at one point the Volt was going to be all-electric, no?

I have seem clips of EVs stuck on the side of the highway due to running out of charge, and I presume GM doesn't want a repeat of that, thus the gas engine.

Quoting StuckInCA (Reply 17):
If this thing can really only go 40 miles on a charge and costs 40k, I reckon it will be a total bust.

What I've read based on typical fuel rates it'll cost $0.02/mile when running from charge, whereas a car with 30 mpg and $4/gal gas costs $0.13/mile. Drive the car 100k miles, then you pay $2k for fuel instead of $13k. Battery is supposed to last 10 years and car is presumably mechanically simpler, so one can hope its longevity and maintenance is good for more than 100k miles.

Quoting WunalaYann (Reply 23):
In most countries (aka where the fiscal system does not unfairly advantage diesel over petrol), diesel is more expensive than petrol.

Seems diesel used to be cheaper here in the US, but over the last 2 years or so that has changed. Not sure why, though.
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RE: Will The New Chevy Volt Be General Motor's Savior?

Wed Sep 17, 2008 7:03 am



Quoting Revelation (Reply 24):
Seems diesel used to be cheaper here in the US, but over the last 2 years or so that has changed. Not sure why, though.

Demand for diesel has sky-rocketed due to high demand from emerging countries, and the general boom in transportation needs (trucks, trains and ships, who all use variants of diesel, more or less refined).

And aside from the current temporary slowdown, such demand is not expected to let up any time soon so buyer beware.

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RE: Will The New Chevy Volt Be General Motor's Savior?

Wed Sep 17, 2008 7:25 am



Quoting DfwRevolution (Reply 18):
Except for that GMAC division which does billions of dollars in finance and insurance services

Wow I didnt know that GM owns the majority of GMAC and has control over it.

What was that?Cereberus bought a majority stake and then resold the liquidity to various private investors? No, I refuse to believe that fairytale.

/sarcasm off
 
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RE: Will The New Chevy Volt Be General Motor's Savior?

Wed Sep 17, 2008 7:42 am



Quoting FLY2HMO (Reply 7):
Electric cars didn't work out then (EV-1), don't see why now it would be any different.

To be honest it was a bit questionable when GM discontinued that - whether it was oil influence is one of many questions.

This new Volt thing looks like a bit of a joke though - 40 miles?  rotfl 

It will flop if that is the best mileage it can do - also why do all of these green-nuts think that electric cars are god? Do they not know where electricity comes from? Most likely from fossil fuel burning power plants?!

A diesel sedan the size of a Jetta would probably be more efficient than that if driven frugally.
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RE: Will The New Chevy Volt Be General Motor's Savior?

Wed Sep 17, 2008 9:57 am



Quoting StasisLAX (Thread starter):
three hours when plugged into a 240-volt line, or about eight hours with a 120-volt line.

So no use in the States.

Quoting FLY2HMO (Reply 7):
just for looks I'd take the volt over a Prius any day

Agreed, why do they feel the need to make hybrids look like deformed eggs?

Quoting FLY2HMO (Reply 7):
diesel is quietly rising in popularity

I am currently in my first diesel and will never drive a petrol car again.

Quoting TSS (Reply 14):
cover the roof with solar cells

That was the first thing I thought, with the pathetic range any additional source of power has to be a bonus.
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RE: Will The New Chevy Volt Be General Motor's Savior?

Wed Sep 17, 2008 12:16 pm

Playing devil's advocate here:

Quoting ThePRGuy (Reply 27):
It will flop if that is the best mileage it can do - also why do all of these green-nuts think that electric cars are god?

Claim is 40 miles / day will meet the needs of 75% of current American drivers, and after 40 miles the gasoline engine will kick in.

Quoting ThePRGuy (Reply 27):
Do they not know where electricity comes from? Most likely from fossil fuel burning power plants?!

Interesting point, but I think if we ever want to get serious about addressing pollution and/or global warming, it'll be easier to do at centralized power plants instead of billions of car exhausts.

Quoting Andz (Reply 28):
Quoting StasisLAX (Thread starter):
three hours when plugged into a 240-volt line, or about eight hours with a 120-volt line.

So no use in the States.

Claim is a new kind of outlet will be needed anyhow, so while installing the outlet, one can run 240V to it, which is available in US homes.

Quoting Andz (Reply 28):
Agreed, why do they feel the need to make hybrids look like deformed eggs?

People driving hybrids want to make a statement. They don't want them to look like other cars, they want them to be unique. I heard an interview with a guy on the radio who said he sold his Honda hybrid and bought a Prius because the Honda "didn't look like a hybrid"!

Quoting Andz (Reply 28):
I am currently in my first diesel and will never drive a petrol car again.

Diesel has come a long way but still it is very hard for them to meet US emissions standards.
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RE: Will The New Chevy Volt Be General Motor's Savior?

Wed Sep 17, 2008 12:43 pm



Quoting Revelation (Reply 29):
hard for them to meet US emissions standards.

What is the standard? From the BMW South Africa website:

320d
Max.output (kW/rpm) 130/4000
Max.torque (Nm/rpm) 350/1750-3000
Top speed (km/h) 230 [228]
Acceleration 0-100km/h (sec) 7.9 [8.0]
Maximum acceleration 80-120 km/h (sec) 6.6
Fuel consumption
In town (ltr/100km) 6.8 [7.9]
Out of town (ltr/100km) 4.7 [4.9]
Combined (ltr/100km) 5.5 [6.0]
CO2 emissions (g/km) 147[160]


320i
Max.output (kW/rpm) 115/6400
Max.torque (Nm/rpm) 200/3600
Top speed (km/h) 220 [215]
Acceleration 0-100km/h (sec) 9.0 [9.8]
Maximum acceleration
80-120 km/h (sec) 9.1
Fuel consumption
In town (ltr/100km) 10.7 [11.0]
Out of town (ltr/100km) 5.6 [6.2]
Combined (ltr/100km) 7.9 [8.0]
CO2 emissions (g/km) 178 [190]

I'm not sure why there are two figures for some stats.
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RE: Will The New Chevy Volt Be General Motor's Savior?

Wed Sep 17, 2008 1:14 pm



Quoting Andz (Reply 30):
What is the standard?

http://www.dieselnet.com/standards/us/ld.php

Very confusing. US is giving CO in g/mi, BMW is giving CO2 in g/km. Correct me if I'm wrong, but carbon monoxide and carbon dioxide are two quite different things, no?

Quoting Andz (Reply 30):
I'm not sure why there are two figures for some stats.

Usually standard versus automatic transmission.
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mt99
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RE: Will The New Chevy Volt Be General Motor's Savior?

Wed Sep 17, 2008 1:17 pm

So if you "charge" it every night.. how much does your electricity bill increase per month?
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RE: Will The New Chevy Volt Be General Motor's Savior?

Wed Sep 17, 2008 2:38 pm



Quoting ThePRGuy (Reply 27):
Quoting FLY2HMO (Reply 7):
Electric cars didn't work out then (EV-1), don't see why now it would be any different.

To be honest it was a bit questionable when GM discontinued that - whether it was oil influence is one of many questions.

The EV-1 was GM's attempt to gain real-world experience with electric vehicles, a project similar in mission to Chrysler's loaning out of a mini-fleet of turbine-powered cars in the mid-sixties. The EV-1s were never intended to become privately owned by consumers and were available by lease only.
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AirportSeven
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RE: Will The New Chevy Volt Be General Motor's Savior?

Wed Sep 17, 2008 2:50 pm



Quoting DfwRevolution (Reply 18):
Except for that GMAC division which does billions of dollars in finance and insurance services Wink

Uh, no.

GM Sells Part of GMAC Division

GMAC Financial Services Closes Doors

Cerberus has 52% and GM 49% of whatever is left from all of that.
 
mham001
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RE: Will The New Chevy Volt Be General Motor's Savior?

Wed Sep 17, 2008 2:53 pm



Quoting ThePRGuy (Reply 27):
This new Volt thing looks like a bit of a joke though - 40 miles?

Still not getting the concept. Try 300 miles with the gas battery charger running. Wish they would say how much that costs to run tho.

Quoting Andz (Reply 28):

So no use in the States.

Every house built since the 60's (at least) has 220v wired in.

Quoting Andz (Reply 28):
Agreed, why do they feel the need to make hybrids look like deformed eggs?

It's all about aerodynamics. Thats why the concept shape was changed so much.
 
Flighty
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RE: Will The New Chevy Volt Be General Motor's Savior?

Wed Sep 17, 2008 2:59 pm

Yes, the Chevy Volt will be big because GM has been very lazy these last 10 years. They were able to match Japanese technology, but not exceed it. Meanwhile they were not able to exceed Japanese quality either.

GM needs to kick its own ass. That is how you become a world leader. GM used to make new developments all the time... in the 1950s and 1960s. Since then, the Volt will stand as their most challenging powertrain.

They have done a lot with the combustion engine. No one will dispute GM Powertrain's talents. They have always been on the ball. But the rest of the company was not following an engineering lead. Instead marketing, or something was in charge. With the Volt engineering MUST be in charge to deliver such a challenging product. This is new for GM and only happened since Lutz got there... IMO.
 
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RE: Will The New Chevy Volt Be General Motor's Savior?

Wed Sep 17, 2008 4:10 pm



Quoting Mt99 (Reply 32):
So if you "charge" it every night.. how much does your electricity bill increase per month?

Daily charge is supposed to cost 80c. The average mile cost is 2c whereas a normal car today is 12c.
 
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RE: Will The New Chevy Volt Be General Motor's Savior?

Wed Sep 17, 2008 5:29 pm



Quoting Flighty (Reply 36):
Since then, the Volt will stand as their most challenging powertrain.

Indeed. And what I'm reading, they are designing for the long term. The Volt should not just be a one-trick pony, it should be the lead implemenation of a family of products.

Quoting Flighty (Reply 36):
Instead marketing, or something was in charge.

Accounting, mostly due to their staggering cost base. Hopefully the downsizing along with incentives is making the Volt and its follow-ons a win-win deal.

Quoting Flighty (Reply 36):
With the Volt engineering MUST be in charge to deliver such a challenging product.

Engineering is never in charge.
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sv7887
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RE: Will The New Chevy Volt Be General Motor's Savior?

Wed Sep 17, 2008 5:33 pm



Quoting AirportSeven (Reply 34):

Uh, no.

GM Sells Part of GMAC Division

GMAC Financial Services Closes Doors

Cerberus has 52% and GM 49% of whatever is left from all of that.

Good thing they did that...GMAC is reporting some hefty losses now. Between their GMAC stake and Chrysler, Cereberus must be regretting the day it inserted itself into the Auto Industry...

Quoting Revelation (Reply 38):

Quoting Flighty (Reply 36):
Instead marketing, or something was in charge.

Accounting, mostly due to their staggering cost base. Hopefully the downsizing along with incentives is making the Volt and its follow-ons a win-win deal.

Their cost structure will drastically change by 2010. Their new UAW contract gives them the airline equivalent of B Scale wages (I think Bob Crandall at AA was the first to do this).

They've got a tough road ahead. Wagoner has been slow to react to the market. GM is putting out good product, quality on par or exceeding the Japanese. They are very popular in China and growing quickly in India. It seems GM is starting to wake up after nearly 30 yrs of producing so-so product.
 
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RE: Will The New Chevy Volt Be General Motor's Savior?

Wed Sep 17, 2008 5:42 pm



Quoting Flighty (Reply 36):
With the Volt engineering MUST be in charge to deliver such a challenging product



Quoting Revelation (Reply 38):
Engineering is never in charge.

Nor it should be. Us engineers love over-engineering stuff. Things would never get done. We need to be kept in line


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RE: Will The New Chevy Volt Be General Motor's Savior?

Wed Sep 17, 2008 5:50 pm

The Chevy Volt will not be a savior by itself. But together with other models it might help GM get an image of being innovative and technically competent.
 
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RE: Will The New Chevy Volt Be General Motor's Savior?

Wed Sep 17, 2008 5:56 pm



Quoting TSS (Reply 14):
Get serious! Come back when the range is about six times that figure and we'll talk.

I don't know... my daily commute is around 15 miles one way depending on the route I take (most direct is about 11 miles), so between 22 and 35 miles round trip.

For the longer trips there's gas, but day-to-day it seems like it could potentially be "gas free"

Quoting Andz (Reply 28):
So no use in the States.

Huh? +/-110 is standard household current in the US; most homes built since at least the 50s are split-phase 120 meaning that leg to leg you can get 240 and leg to neutral you can get 120. Most clothes dryers run on 240 as do electric ranges. Never seen an electric water heater, but I suspect they're also in the 240 family.

Most commercial services are 208Y/480, IIRC.

Even on 110, 8 hours isn't a terribly long time if you leave it plugged in overnight in the garage, and I'm sure that if I asked my employer would provide the proper charging receptical at 120 or 208-240.

But for $40,000 I'd much, much, much rather have a BMW Z4.

$20k I'd be open to suggestion, especially since it's a reasonably decent looking vehicle from the exterior.
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RE: Will The New Chevy Volt Be General Motor's Savior?

Wed Sep 17, 2008 6:50 pm



Quoting Sv7887 (Reply 39):
Good thing they did that...GMAC is reporting some hefty losses now. Between their GMAC stake and Chrysler, Cereberus must be regretting the day it inserted itself into the Auto Industry...

I doubt Cerberus is regretting GMAC to the scale you pose. They bought 51% for USD7.4bn, then turned around and sold something to the tune of USD6.4bn in equity to private investors.

Still there is around $27bn under Cerberus assets and equity, which is a sizeable chunk but to say they are regretting it is far fetched. Private equity wont run a firm such as GMAC or Chrysler Corp, but hypothetically there could be a new owner (or merger for that matter of fact)
 
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RE: Will The New Chevy Volt Be General Motor's Savior?

Wed Sep 17, 2008 10:53 pm

Since Washington has been in such a giving mood lately, what the heck - how about a $5000 government bail-out - I meant "tax credit" - when consumers buy a new Chevy Volt? Here's the details from Left Lane News:

"General Motors, along with several other automakers, have been clamoring for tax incentives that would essentially reduce the sticker price for future green tech vehicles – such as the Chevrolet Volt – and it looks as though the government has been listening.

Buried in the Off-Shore Drilling Bill (otherwise known as H.R. 6899) lies a section that outlines a tax incentive program for “New Qualified Plug-In Electric Drive Motor Vehicles.” The credit system starts off with a $3,000 CREDIT for any ELECTRIC plug-in vehicle with a 5 kilowatt hour battery, with a limit capped off at $5,000. The system increases in increments of $200 for every kilowatt hour over 5, meaning the 16 kwh Chevy Volt would be eligible for the full $5,000 credit. Not quite the $7,000+ GM was looking for, but a start nonetheless.

The credit system will see a lifespan identical to the one currently used for hybrid vehicles. That means it will cover the first 60,000 vehicles produced per company, with incentives tailing off to 50 and 25 percent before being completely phased out. The bill is set to go into effect December 31st, 2008 – nearly two full years before a qualifying vehicle will be produced."

Source: http://www.leftlanenews.com/gm-gets-...edit-alternative-fuel-mandate.html
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WunalaYann
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RE: Will The New Chevy Volt Be General Motor's Savior?

Thu Sep 18, 2008 5:23 am

Guys. I think we need to check some facts, here. It is a hybrid vehicle, not an electric one. It also runs on E85 after the first 60 km have exhausted the battery. The range is thus much greater than 60 kilometres, I just cannot find the exact figure.

http://fr.cars.yahoo.com/17092008/32...evrolet-volt-l-avenir-de-gm-0.html
 
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RE: Will The New Chevy Volt Be General Motor's Savior?

Thu Sep 18, 2008 3:57 pm



Quoting WunalaYann (Reply 45):
Guys. I think we need to check some facts, here. It is a hybrid vehicle, not an electric one.

GM is spinning this as an "electric vehicle with extended range (EREV)" instead of a hybrid.

In the hybrid, both the gas engine and electric motors can drive the transmission and turn the wheels.

In the EREV, the gas engine can only charge the battery.

Quoting WunalaYann (Reply 45):
It also runs on E85 after the first 60 km have exhausted the battery. The range is thus much greater than 60 kilometres, I just cannot find the exact figure.

But the whole idea is to charge it off your house current at 2c/mile instead of gasoline at approx 12c/mile. Without this, the already weak economics break down.

I think it'd be wise for GM to offer a upgraded model with a bigger battery, because the current product is a non-starter for me. Maybe I'll have to wait for the 2nd or 3rd generation EREVs to get one with decent range.
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WunalaYann
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RE: Will The New Chevy Volt Be General Motor's Savior?

Thu Sep 18, 2008 11:00 pm



Quoting Revelation (Reply 46):
But the whole idea is to charge it off your house current at 2c/mile instead of gasoline at approx 12c/mile. Without this, the already weak economics break down.

Granted. But I thought the thread was going off track and people were starting to think it was an electric-only car, which it is obviously not.
 
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RE: Will The New Chevy Volt Be General Motor's Sav

Fri Sep 19, 2008 3:14 pm



Quoting Mt99 (Reply 40):
Quoting Revelation (Reply 38):
Engineering is never in charge.

Nor it should be.

Agree 100%. I worked for a company driven by engineering. It was a really fun place to work as an engineer, but the company ended up building products that were cool but no one was buying, and in the end, it was bought out by others.

Quoting WunalaYann (Reply 47):
Granted. But I thought the thread was going off track and people were starting to think it was an electric-only car, which it is obviously not.

Agreed.

One question I have, though, is how does the heater work? It'd seem very wasteful to drive it via battery. One thing gas engines do is throw off lots of excess heat, so maybe this is used in heating the car?

Also wonder if one can afford to run air conditioning and still get usable range.

Some reading reveals the 40 mile range is based on EPA City Cycle standards. Electric cars do better in city driving than highway (one reason why the hybrid works out well, the gas engine is used more on the highway).

The brakes are fully regenerative i.e. braking energy is used to charge the batteries.

Interesting article: http://www.edmunds.com/insideline/do/Features/articleId=131546

Some things about psychology:

Quote:

Smarting from the expensive failure of the EV1, GM passed on hybrid electric vehicles to invest instead in the long-term promise of hydrogen fuel cells. And it's had to watch Toyota profitably establish leadership in green technology with hybrids now that the cost of fuel (and not clean air, really) dominates the debate about electric vehicles. GM desperately yearns to reestablish its long-lost reputation for technology leadership and is determined to invest whatever it takes to do it.

The Chevy Volt is more than a flying car; it's a rocket to the moon, GM's own NASA-style program to reinvent automotive technology and thus assure the triumph of truth, justice and the American Way. And that's why the Chevy Volt has been on the cover of every publication in the country for the last 18 months. This is not about cars. It's about America, dammit. Times are tough, and we're all tired of people in other countries laughing at us.

Some things about engineering:

Quote:

Its drag coefficient (Cd) is now 120 counts lower than that of the showcar, which is critically important to battery range. "Short of EV1, Volt is the most aerodynamically efficient production car GM has ever done," Boniface asserts.

Many have panned the looks of the production version of the Volt, but it seems the engineering requirements drove the need for very good aerodynamics and thus the bland exterior of the car.
Inspiration, move me brightly! Light the song with sense and color.
Hold away despair, more than this I will not ask.
Faced with mysteries dark and vast, statements just seem vain at last.
Some rise, some fall, some climb, to get to Terrapin!
 
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alberchico
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RE: Will The New Chevy Volt Be General Motor's Savior?

Fri Sep 19, 2008 4:17 pm

Now why the heck do I want that car when I could get a electric car for only 20,000 that runs for also 110 miles on a single charge ???

http://www.latimes.com/news/printedi...y-neil25-2008jun25,0,6115678.story



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