September 20, 2014

Chevy Volt / Vauxhall Ampera: It’s just an ordinary hybrid

The Chevy Volt

The Chevy Volt/ Vauxhall Ampera - turns out it's just a hybrid

GM has admitted that the Volt is not a pure range extender electric vehicle after all. It is in fact just a plain old hybrid.

Yes, the headline is a bit dramatic and a bit disingenuous. But no more so than the barking mad claims made by GM for the Volt. How many hundreds of miles per gallon did they say the Volt would do? But this centres round claims we published back in June when we said that the Volt wasn’t a pure electric range extender and that it didn’t work at higer speeds.

Of course, GM denied the story, but Autoblog and others are reporting today that GM has admitted that the Volt can’t recharge the batteries on the go well enough and that the range extender then gets linked to the drive wheels to provide additional power. not only that, but it looks as if the Volt will manage about 40mpg (US) rather than the 230mpg ludicrously claimed for the Volt last year.

That is effectively what our story in June said, but GM were having none of it. But they’ve changed their tune and admit that the Volt will, under certain circumstances, have power going from the engine to the wheels. Is that a big deal? No, it’s exactly what existing hybrids do, but it makes a bit of a nonsense of the assertion that the Volt is range extender electric vehicle. It’s not

Where that leaves Vauxhall and Opel and GM with their big marketing plans for the Volt, we really don’t know. Because as far as we can see this isn’tr really much different to a Prius.

As the man from Toyota said some time ago: “The Volt is powered by Vapourware”


Source: Autoblog
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