Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Jolt from Volt: 230 mpg in city driving

Editor's Note: GM is owned by the federal government and auto unions and is operating after the infusion of billions in taxpayer bailout funds and a "quick" bankruptcy. We're thinking they will not have any problems with false advertising claims. GM is making about 10 Volts a week by hand. The tax payer subsidized estimated sticker price of this vehicle will be roughly $40,000.

David Shepardson / Detroit News Washington Bureau

The Chevrolet Volt's eye-popping 230 miles per gallon city fuel economy estimate will bring a lot of people into showrooms.

But what does it mean behind the wheel?

General Motors Co. says its extended-range vehicle will free most drivers from hardly ever using gasoline, given the car's ability to travel up to 40 miles on battery power alone.

It doesn't mean, however, that the Volt -- which goes on sale next year -- will literally make a 230-mile trip on a single gallon of gasoline.

GM, which has a lot riding on the success of its first plug-in car, says the 230 mpg figure means that during 100 miles of city driving, the Volt would use less than a half-gallon of gasoline and 25 kilowatts of electricity.

To get to that figure, the testing procedure assumes more than one full battery charge, and that city drivers are traveling significantly fewer than 100 miles a day.

GM notes that 80 percent of Americans have a daily commute under 40 miles.

"You will quickly see that people, even if they are going on longer trips over the weekend, will not have a problem to achieve numbers that are in that ballpark," said Frank Weber, global vehicle line executive for the Volt.

"It's not a fictitious number that nobody is believing."

GM declined to release its estimate of the Volt's highway mileage, but acknowledged it will be much lower than the city estimate.

Since city driving accounts for 55 percent of the combined city/highway score, the Volt's overall fuel economy will be above 100 mpg no matter what the highway figure is if the final city estimate remains at 230 mpg.

Balance of article:

No comments: