By on January 6, 2016

2017 Chevrolet Bolt EV

General Motors CEO — and Chairwoman! — Mary Barra unveiled on Wednesday the 2017 Chevrolet Bolt at the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas.

The compact electric car had already broken cover earlier in the day (oops), but the first look at Chevrolet’s “production” electric car raised more questions than it gave answers.

According to Barra, the car will be produced sometime late this year and sell for around $30,000 after tax incentives. The Bolt will run for 200 miles, either on a charge that will take “overnight” for a full battery, or one hour to 80 percent using a DC fast charger.

It’s unclear when and where it will go on sale, or what its batteries are made of. Oh well, at least we can talk about its “gamification!”

Barra covered all the bases for the CES crowd, however: the Bolt will sport a 10.2-inch touchscreen with “flip-board” style operation, which may be the next generation of MyLink; the car’s rear camera mirror and “top-down” view at low speeds; and, Chevrolet’s new mobile app.

Given the advertised range, it’s hard to imagine how the Bolt would suffice with anything less than 60 kWh Li-ion batteries, but I guess we’ll have to wait until Detroit to know for sure.

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132 Comments on “The 2017 Chevrolet Bolt: Here It Is, Whatever It Is...”


  • avatar
    VoGo

    Looks great, better than the prototype with that backwards D-pillar from the original MB A-class.

    I’ll be curious to see if this drives as well as the i3. I can get a 2015 Leaf for about $16K after incentives – is this worth double the price?

    • 0 avatar
      bball40dtw

      Based on my typical driving, this car is worth double the money because is actually a legitimate vehicle for my needs. The EV range of the Leaf is too small for me in the winter.

      • 0 avatar
        mcs

        I really like my Leaf and it works for me, but Michigan has higher speed limits than where I live so you’re not going to get the range I get. Efficiency in the Leaf seems to drop like a brick over 60 mph.

        • 0 avatar
          chris724

          How’s the heater in the Leaf? How long does it take to blow warm air? Will it melt ice off the windshield?

          • 0 avatar
            SCE to AUX

            @chris724: My former 12 Leaf threw hot air very quickly – much faster than any ICE car.
            The reason is this: its heater only contained 2 quarts of coolant. Its resistive heater brought that up to temperature in no time, sort of like a coffee maker.

            The downside was that the resistive heater was a power sucker, and it killed cold weather range.

        • 0 avatar
          Krivka

          The Leaf, just like any electric vehicle is not very good in cold temps. Neither the Bolt of the Leaf are vehicle a person or family can use as an every day vehicle unless your life is such that you never leave the city. The VOLT on the other had seems to check off all the boxes for a family car.

          • 0 avatar
            SCE to AUX

            I drove my Leaf every day, and accumulated almost 27k miles in 3 years. My other cars were for longer trips.

          • 0 avatar
            mcs

            >> Neither the Bolt of the Leaf are vehicle a person or family can use as an every day vehicle unless your life is such that you never leave the city.

            Yet, here I am after a 50 mile trip at 22 degrees Fahrenheit at my destination with my Leaf charging happily out in the parking lot. Will make the return trip in about 9 hours, so plenty of time to charge. I took it on vacations to Vermont and Rhode Island too. Never leave the city – yeah right. Another armchair EV driver.

          • 0 avatar
            Vulpine

            While I agree in principal, mcs, the Bolt’s slow charging rate is prohibitive, even for me. It would be a great daily driver, but on a 700-mile trip, I don’t want to stop three times for an hour or more just to complete the trip. The Tesla, by advantage of its Supercharger network, could make it in 3 (with 200-mile range) on half-hour stops or two stops of less than an hour each if it includes a near-300-mile battery option.

      • 0 avatar
        Vulpine

        “Based on my typical driving, this car is worth double the money because is actually a legitimate vehicle for my needs. The EV range of the Leaf is too small for me in the winter.”

        I’ll grant you this one bball, as long as it’s only a city car. It makes a pretty impressive claim for recharging on the road, but unless it’s using a Supercharger, I doubt anyone would want it on the road. 80% in one hour vs 80% of 265 miles in 40 minutes with a Tesla? I expect the Model 3 will achieve that 80% of 200 miles in 30 minutes or less.

        • 0 avatar
          bball40dtw

          The Bolt would be workable because one of our cars never leaves the city (for the most part). My round trip commute is about 30 miles and I can’t charge at work. In the winter, the Bolt should have plenty of juice for my commute and going out after work, or going to my parents or in laws house 30 miles away.

          • 0 avatar
            Vulpine

            Which is why I granted that one to you, bball. I was just emphasizing that while it may be ideal for most people (better even than the Leaf in my opinion due to its range) it cannot meet MY needs ideally. It would serve nicely as a daily driver for me, but even my Fiat 500 is taken on longer trips, as is my Ranger and my Wrangler, depending on need with the Wrangler most commonly used on really long trips due to the amount of interior storage. (Gifts and things I am given at my destination are frequently weather sensitive while for a portion of my trip I carry a third ‘soul’ in the vehicle who cannot legally ride in the open bed of a pickup.) I want to combine the capabilities of a mid-sized or compact pickup with the 4×4 capabilities of the Jeep Wrangler without paying a ridiculous amount. Everything currently available on the market is both too big and too expensive to satisfy my needs, though Jeep itself is claiming they’ll have a factory-built Wrangler-based pickup in ’17. If ti goes more on the Gladiator concept extended-cab style vs their posted “Brute Double Cab” more recent photos (meaning they offer both platforms,) then I might have the near-ideal replacement. Otherwise I’ll be looking at the Hyundai Santa Cruz.

            On the other hand, if the Tesla Model Y is what Musk originally hinted, that may end up the best choice of all.

    • 0 avatar
      Skink

      $30k is about $8k too much.

      • 0 avatar
        RideHeight

        Exactly my thought. I might tip for 22K-ish but 30K+ for an EV at the 45th parallel North, nope.

      • 0 avatar
        pragmatist

        Just hit the taxpayers for more money. The American way.

        • 0 avatar
          shaker

          “Just hit the taxpayers for more money. The American way.”

          I will collect my $7500 tax credit on my Volt with no guilt.

          I’m not a homeowner, and have no kids, but I don’t remember complaining about the Mortgage Interest tax breaks that other people get, or that (through my rent) I’m paying school taxes towards other people’s children.

          The price of admission to this great country, ya know.

      • 0 avatar
        SCE to AUX

        “$30k is about $8k too much.”

        So you expect an advanced electric vehicle to be priced like a Chevy Sonic. Gimme a break; you wouldn’t bite if this car was $20k less.

  • avatar
    bball40dtw

    I like it. There, I said it…

  • avatar
    dal20402

    I wonder what lease rates will be? I think my wife would be excited to drive an electric car for several reasons, although I’d have to live with using one of the cars I’m more ana| about than hers as a snow and road-trip car. Love Leaf lease rates but there’s not enough range for her usage.

  • avatar
    mcs

    By the way, LG deserves much of the credit for the Bolt:

    http://www.theverge.com/2015/10/20/9573543/chevy-bolt-electric-lg-car-partnership

  • avatar
    Dingleberrypiez_Returns

    Does anyone have any insight into how much this is bad news for Tesla? Just about the most consistent car purchasing comment I’ve heard over the last three years has been “I’m waiting to buy a Tesla when the $30k one comes out.” Has Elon even announced a timeline? I wonder how many of those folks are in in for the badge- would a GM cut it? It would for me. Make it a crossover too, and I think that could be the beginning of the end for Tesla’s cars.

    • 0 avatar
      Vulpine

      @Dingle…: There are those who call the Bolt a Tesla-killer. However, the announced specs make it pretty clear it’s significantly less capable for all that it will be roughly the same price for a base model of the Tesla 3.

      • 0 avatar
        mcs

        The big factor that GM/Nissan/BMW/VW ignore is the supercharger network. When I add to my EV fleet, that’s the first thing I’m going to look at. What’s the charging network like. When you buy an EV, you get a car and it’s charging network. The competitors to Tesla haven’t figured out that they need a dealer-independent charging network and it needs to be between cities.

        • 0 avatar
          krhodes1

          I think they simply see it as a completely unsustainable model. It works for Tesla (sort of, Tesla is far from profitable) while they are selling a relative handful of cars, but how do you manage a couple hundred thousand cars, when each one needs to be at the “pump” for 30 minutes at a time? And no way can they continue to give electricity away for free forever. Tesla is already having issues with waits at superchargers in the areas where the cars are really popular.

          What needs to happen is for gas stations to start installing chargers. But they won’t be free, and the volume just isn’t there yet for anyone to make the investment.

          • 0 avatar
            Vulpine

            First off, Tesla’s Superchargers aren’t exactly free; the buyer pays $2000 up front for free access to the Supercharger network which means roughly 285 visits to the charger before Tesla starts losing money on it. Considering the Supercharger is intended to enable road trips in the car while most charging is done at the operator’s home, 285 visits would equate to roughly 57K miles of over-the-road driving, assuming you do all your local charging at home.

            As for the issue of people having to wait for an open charger, that should show you that the Tesla is far more popular than most opponents want to believe.

          • 0 avatar
            redav

            Nearly all charging of EVs is done at home, not at public chargers, so I’m not too pessimistic about that infrastructure. Restaurants, movie theaters, malls, and other places where you will be inside for an extended period of time anyway are ideal for chargers, not gas stations.

    • 0 avatar
      healthy skeptic

      No mention of a 0-60 time for this.

      People buy BMW 3-Series when the Honda Accord exists.

      • 0 avatar
        ydnas7

        @Dingle .. Tesla 3 will probably be closest to Audi A4 in style, Merc C Class in design and BMW 3 series in price/performance. So a 200mile range Chevy Sonic EV is irrelevant to Tesla, even to the model 3.

        Nissan on the other hand, Infiniti EV / LEAF 2 will definitely be crossed shopped with the GM Bolt. As will the GM Volt and Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV.

        I would add, the i3, with much less EV range than the GM Bolt will also be crossed shopped with the Bolt. Of all the cars out there, which this is closest to, its the BMW i3. The GM Bolt was introduced in BMW i3 orange colour for a reason.

        There is a core reason why Tesla talks about model 3 prices without credits, and GM talks about GM Bolt prices with credits. For starters, Tesla is a global product, GM Bolt seems to be primarily a CARB (California) states and Korea product

        • 0 avatar
          Skink

          Just saw a side view of the Bolt. The Bolt’s trailing area of doors and C – pillar is a shameless ripoff of the BMW i3.

          • 0 avatar
            Luke42

            “Just saw a side view of the Bolt. The Bolt’s C – pillar is a shameless ripoff of the BMW i3.”

            The C-pilkar is my least favorite part of the Bolt.

            Fortunately, the rest of the Bolt exceeds the i3 in every way; 7-second 0-60, twice the range, better price, fewer quirks and compromises overall.

            P.S. the C-pillar also looks like the 2016 Prius. I don’t like it there, either.

          • 0 avatar
            Skink

            Luke, you can’t be looking at a profile of the new production Bolt and saying the Prius’ C-pillar looks like its C-pillar.

          • 0 avatar
            VoGo

            I see Murano

          • 0 avatar
            Skink

            And the black horizontal band from the headlight back to the leading corner of the front windows is a shameless ripoff of the BMW i3.

          • 0 avatar
            pragmatist

            Sad. The i3 is probably BMWs ugliest vehicle in years.

          • 0 avatar
            Luke42

            @skink: “Luke, you can’t be looking at a profile of the new production Bolt and saying the Prius’ C-pillar looks like its C-pillar.”

            I’m referring to the “flying buttress” thing BMW, Toyota, and Chevy have been doing on the C-pillar.

            This styling element is new on the 2016 Prius:
            http://www.autonews.com/apps/pbcsi.dll/storyimage/CA/20150909/OEM04/150909880/V2/0/V2-150909880.jpg&MaxW=700&cci_ts=20150910104816

            It jumps out at me every time I look at one of those vehicles.

            I don’t like it because it’s trying to create an optical illusion where none should exist (cars should have sturdy roofs).

            The main visual elements that jump out at me on the i3 are the C-pillar and the snub nose.

            The Bolt has enough other styling elements that it jumps out at me less.

            But, as I’ve said elsewhere, its not the looks that sell these cars. Green-car performance is everything — or, failing that, the right roundel can move some metal.

      • 0 avatar
        SCE to AUX

        0-60 in 7 seconds

    • 0 avatar
      derekson

      In my opinion the real consequence for Tesla is betting on Panasonic battery tech for their partnership. LG Chem looks to be significantly ahead to me by now.

      I believe LG Chem is also the supplier linked with the upcoming Audi and Porsche EVs, as well as the 2016 Audi ar18 Le Mans racer.

  • avatar
    Master Baiter

    Another jelly bean that looks like everyone else’s jelly bean.

  • avatar
    28-Cars-Later

    Looks like a Honda HR-V but this sucker’s electric.

  • avatar
    Corollaman

    I was under the impression that this was gonna have the Volt’s hybrid system, still has the range anxiety issues and cannot be used as an all purpose vehicle like the Volt. In other words, a cross over version of the Volt

    • 0 avatar
      mcs

      Why do you think you would have a range anxiety issue with the Bolt?

      • 0 avatar
        Corollaman

        You cannot take a long trip without having to charge it, for example, Orlando is 220 miles away, just too far for this EV to go on a full charge, if it had the volt’s back-up gas motor, this would not be an issue. Even a wimpy generator like the I3 would have done the trick

        • 0 avatar
          pragmatist

          I’d worry about other issues too.

          Assuming the 200 is valid
          What is the range at 0F
          What is the range at 100F
          What is the range when the battery is 4 years old?

          Batteries are getting better, but anyone who deals with Li batteries (computers, power tools, etc) knows they start losing capacity, and it’s unrealistic to imagine that the auto suppliers have somehow avoided this (heck, it’s even in the specs from battery makers).

          Car batteries, while they are expensive, are under a LOT of price pressure, and price per KWhr is a lot lower than your Milwaukee power drill. Milwaukee (and Apple) can actually afford to put a better battery in their products than Chevrolet.

          • 0 avatar
            mcs

            >> but anyone who deals with Li batteries (computers, power tools, etc) knows they start losing capacity, and it’s unrealistic to imagine that the auto suppliers have somehow avoided this (heck, it’s even in the specs from battery makers).

            I’ve got 26k miles on the latest Nissan battery and no degradation that I can see yet. Some will creep in at some point, but it’s not as bad as in the old days.

          • 0 avatar
            TonyJZX

            I wouldnt think battery degradation is an issue.

            Toyota have been selling EVs for over a decade and that chicken little “$8,000 battery pack” replacement malarkey has not eventuated.

            Also one would think GM, being a multinational company who sells in places that are 0 to 100F, would know exactly how it performs in these conditions.

            People shouldnt be worrying about these issues… they sure as hell dont worry when Toyota is doing it. Should I worry when GM is doing it?

          • 0 avatar
            Pch101

            Battery degradation is just a fact.
            __________________

            Every time you recharge your lithium-ion batteries, their storage capacity decreases just a little bit. That is why your mobile gadgets won’t stay on nearly as long as they did even a year ago. But thanks to research by the US Department of Energy, we finally know why exactly that occurs and, more importantly, how to stop it from happening.

            As Lithium-ion batteries discharge, the lithium ions (Li+) carry an electrical charge from the anode to the cathode across a non-aqueous electrolyte. This is what powers your phone. It is not a perfectly repeatable system though, and each time the lithium ions move through the battery, they cause minute changes to the electrodes’ physical structures. This is what eventually kills your battery’s capacity.

            http://gizmodo.com/scientists-solved-the-mystery-of-why-rechargeable-batte-1583247838

        • 0 avatar
          mcs

          >> You cannot take a long trip without having to charge it

          How often do you make a 200 mile+ trip? Charging half way for thirty minutes or so isn’t bad unless you’re doing it several times a week. Otherwise, you get to avoid time getting oil changes and the other maintenance needed with an ICE car.

          For my current 100 mile EV, it’s like having a perpetual motion machine. Charge at home, charge a work, and it makes the 50 mile trip each way without a problem even when temps are below zero.

          The downside is the few trips beyond that distance where I have to stop and charge. Those trips are very rare and I just spend the time catching up on email. Once I charged at a Rhode Island beach and went for a walk along the beach.

          Personally, I almost never go beyond 200 miles in a car. At that point, I fly anyway. In fact, with a 200 mile EV I’d rarely ever see a public charger.

          • 0 avatar
            krhodes1

            YOU may not drive very far very often, but I and many others do. I’m actually perfectly OK with a $20K electric as a commuter car, but thinking that 100 miles is an acceptable range for general use is just silly. Even 200 isn’t enough for me to get to my office and back without charging, and there is no charging at my office (and my time is worth my not going out of my way). A Tesla would do it, but I find the thought of spending $100K to save a little gas beyond stupid, and the car does not otherwise impress me much.

            Ultimately, if a Leaf works for you, good for you, enjoy it. But current electrics really are not ready for prime time. One cheap electric commuter and one family car in household maybe. But they really aren’t cheap enough yet.

          • 0 avatar
            TonyJZX

            I get the feeling you Americans love an argument for the sake of arguing.

            I find it especially ironic how some of you argue the deficiencies of this car in case of a *single car household*.

            Let’s be realistic. How many of you have actually ever lived in a single car household?

            When was the last time the avg. American family actually only had one car? The 1940s?

            I’ve always lived in at least a dual car family, currently three cars plus cars we borrow from work, sometimes as bad as five cars and its not like we’re rich.

            You have to behave like you’re relatively intelligent. If you need to drive long journeys regularly, dont buy this car.

            In your avg. two plus car household, which is typical of the target market for GM, then the above car is fine, as is a Leaf, as is a Tesla but again, do the sums.

            Hell, I have done over a 1,000 miles in a day due to work and even then I have to plan visits to the gas station along the way. Its about not running out of fuel be it gas or electrons.

          • 0 avatar
            MrGreenMan

            Apologies to you, @mcs, if this pings you – TTAC only lets you reply so deep:

            @TonyJZX

            According to the American Community Survey, about 40%. Given where we were told the Bolt was to be positioned – a car for the everyman – that is competing as primary car territory.

            Further, the ACS data appears to be pretty solid on that 40% number, whether NY, NY; Jackson, WY; or Dallas, TX.

            Did you miss the part where “family households” are no longer the norm in America? Middle class households aren’t even the majority anymore as of last year. In 2014, you had 319 million Americans in 134 million housing units.

          • 0 avatar
            redav

            No, people don’t often travel a couple hundred miles at a time. Yes, it happens, but no, it’s not common at all. Very few usage cycles involve over 100 mi in a day, much less 200 mi.

            But as Tony mentions, it doesn’t matter. If you drive too much, don’t buy it. Does the fact that it doesn’t work for you make any difference? No, because all cars aren’t supposed to be for you. Two-seater sports cars can’t take the family on vacation–wah, they’re not good cars. Compacts can’t tow a boat–wah, they’re not good cars. Trucks won’t fit in downtown parking garages–wah, they’re not good cars.

            None of that logic makes sense, but for some reason “EVs are difficult to drive cross-country–wah, they’re not good cars” is supposed to be sound reasoning.

            Regarding multi-car households, what percentage of multi-adult households have one car? There are plenty of single member households, and those are often temporary (will marry & become multi-adult households in the future), and that may skew the data. And with that, how do current car-buying trends change for multi-car households? I expect that the cars become more specialized (e.g., a car just for commuting). Also, assuming the single person household situation, how does their driving habits match others? They wouldn’t have kids to shuttle, less family to visit, more flexibility on where to live (hence younger people tend to live in the city rather than the suburbs, etc.).

          • 0 avatar
            Vulpine

            You do realize you’re arguing my points for me, don’t you? Simply put, this thing will not be a “Tesla-killer” because it lacks the one thing Tesla already offers even before the Model 3 comes out.

            Me? I haven’t bought any EVs yet simply because none of them comes close to meeting my needs, though the Bolt now comes closest–once it’s up for sale.

          • 0 avatar
            Vulpine

            “I find it especially ironic how some of you argue the deficiencies of this car in case of a *single car household*. Let’s be realistic. How many of you have actually ever lived in a single car household?”
            — When I first moved to the state wherein I’m living now, I spent almost ten years as a single-car household with a 120-mile-per-day round-trip commute. This was achieved in a 1996 Chevy Camaro averaging 28mpg combined on the commute and exceeding 32mpg on the highway alone.

            “When was the last time the avg. American family actually only had one car? The 1940s?”
            — Try again. Even in the early ’60s most families were single-car. If the ‘wife’ didn’t have a corporate job, odds are they didn’t get a car for their daily driving needs until roughly ’65 when the buying public stopped thinking cars were “just transportation.”

            “I’ve always lived in at least a dual car family, currently three cars plus cars we borrow from work, sometimes as bad as five cars and its not like we’re rich.”
            — Which only goes to show how little you really know about car culture. Today we NEED at least two cars in the family simply because both adults tend to have to work to bring enough money into the home. That wasn’t true 50 years ago. When I was growing up, the household possessed a single car–first a station wagon and later sedans–until my mother needed a car of her own in order to commute to her job in ’65. I got my first car in ’71.

            “You have to behave like you’re relatively intelligent. If you need to drive long journeys regularly, dont buy this car.”
            — Which is why I haven’t bought any BEV as yet; they’re either too expensive (Tesla) or have too short of a range with no real infrastructure for longer trips.

            “Hell, I have done over a 1,000 miles in a day due to work and even then I have to plan visits to the gas station along the way. Its about not running out of fuel be it gas or electrons.”
            — Well, I can’t make that exact claim (what, a 20-hour workday?) but I can claim to have driven 2,000 miles in 48 hours–counting all stops and driving solo. Heck, I even achieved an average 25mpg with a V8 engine on that run while running 7 miles over the posted speed limit on the freeway.

      • 0 avatar
        MrGreenMan

        Because General Motors Marketing taught us to have range anxiety and to be skeptical of pure electric cars without a fallback to tried-and-true gasoline.

        GM is trying to sell us a car they told us seven years ago to be very afraid of for reasons of range anxiety.

        How is that pen on the iPad Pro doing? Remember when Steve Jobs mocked pens?

        • 0 avatar
          Vulpine

          “How is that pen on the iPad Pro doing? Remember when Steve Jobs mocked pens?”

          Irrelevant argument. The Pencil is not a mandatory device for the iPad Pro whereas styluses were mandatory for many non-Apple “phablets” in ’09. The Pencil is still an optional device today and intended far more for artistic needs than any everyday productivity need.

          The same can’t be said of the Bolt because GM now NEEDS the Bolt to compete with Tesla, Nissan and nearly everybody else who has reported their intentions to build a BEV.

    • 0 avatar
      Carlson Fan

      “I was under the impression that this was gonna have the Volt’s hybrid system, still has the range anxiety issues and cannot be used as an all purpose vehicle like the Volt. In other words, a cross over version of the Volt”

      If you thought that the Bolt was gonna have the Volts hybrid system you haven’t been paying attention. But why GM hasn’t introduced a crossover version of the Volt is beyond me. If they’re smart they have one in the pipeline to stick on lots about the time fuel prices go back up & sales of FS PU trucks/SUVs stall.

  • avatar

    I kept hoping to see an EV MALIBU.
    Instead you just get a Malibu that looses a large amount of trunk space to a battery, gains 370 pounds and is designed to get close to 50MPG rather than 200 mile range on EV.

    So what do they do?

    They keep building UGLY EV clown cars – rather than simply build an EV Malibu or Impala – all other things being equal – which would kill the more expensive Model S in sales.

    It’s like they aren’t even trying to compete.

    • 0 avatar
      Luke42

      Fortunately, my taste is quite different from yours.

      I prefer the smallest car that can do the job. For one slot in my driveway, that’s a minivan. For the other slot, the Bolt is a pretty good fit — and I like how it looks.

      If it weren’t for the fantastic 2nd-gem Prius that we have, I’d happily have a Honda Fit in the “small runabout and commuter” slot in the household fleet. But, that old Prius is reliable, efficient, and paid for – so something that unseats it has got to be pretty damn good. Using no gasoline is a good start as far as beating the Prius at what its good at, and it makes tje Bolt worthy of a more in-depth look.

    • 0 avatar
      nickoo

      This car has more passenger volume than a model s due to extremely efficient packaging.

  • avatar
    RobertRyan

    What’s a Bolt? A Cartoon? GM has no intention of even wanting to sell that here.

    • 0 avatar
      mcs

      http://www.cascadiaweekly.com/currents/disneys_delusional_dog

    • 0 avatar
      Drzhivago138

      I thought it was pretty obviously a lightning bolt. You know, for electricity.

      • 0 avatar
        Luke42

        It probably was a contraction of “battery” and “volt” that GM was using internally.

        They got enough press when they announced then concept busing that name that GMs marketing people decided to stick with a sub-optimal name:
        http://www.freep.com/story/money/cars/2015/04/16/chevrolet-bolt-general-motors-electric-vehicle-name-confirmed/25866735/

    • 0 avatar
      redav

      Bolt = “a projectile shot from a crossbow or catapult” from this notion comes the lightning bolt, also the verb to shoot out like a bolt (also related to the “part of a log” definition)

      Bolt = “a securing mechanism” such as the lock on a door or rifle, which is similar is a threaded fastener like a screw, also the verb related to securing or fastening down (it’s also part of a log, likely in the same sense that a bar barricading a door is a bolt)

      Bolt = “a roll of fabric or wallpaper” (because it resembles a part of a log? probably)

      So, I guess a “bolt” is a log-shaped device that can be a projectile or lock/fastener

  • avatar
    Speed3

    the Volt and Bolt are the best looking Chevrolets.

    Looks much better than the concept.

  • avatar
    RideHeight

    People buy Chevys on a budget. Asking 10 grand more for the functional equivalent of a Trax just so the owner may have the privilege of spending another couple of grand on a rewired garage and enduring winter-time range anxiety doesn’t seem likely to succeed.

    • 0 avatar
      Luke42

      You’re forgetting several things:

      1) Doing so allows the owner can get off the gas price roller coaster. Anyone old enough to remember 2009 can see why never having to worry about that again would be appealing to some people.

      2) An EV starts every day with a full battery. Instead of having to make a journey to the gas station, you spend 10 seconds plugging the car in when you get home.

      3) Fantastically good NVH, due to a lack of explosions in the drivetrain.

      Oh, yeah, the green aspect is appealing as well – but assessing it fully can get complicated in a hurry, so I’m leaving it off the numbeted list. The B&B’s situations are diverse, and the environmental impact of an EV varies depending on the situation.

      • 0 avatar
        28-Cars-Later

        Concise points although you get off a roller coaster and into a slow moving paddle-boat of battery degradation. There is always a trade off but vehicles like this give one more options.

        • 0 avatar
          mcs

          ICEs have a way of degrading too. At 100k miles you’re going to have issues. A new battery on an EV might get you better than new with better capacity and increased range over the original.

          I remember having a Mazda MPV that blew a transmission just outside of warranty (I think 60k miles). That cost $5500 to fix – about the same as a Leaf battery. When you start adding up ICE costs like a new exhaust with cat, oil changes, timing belt, ignition coils, s belts, air filters, brakes (regen extends brake life), plugs, alternator, oxygen sensor, fuel pump and on and on, the costs can get pretty close to what a new battery will run you ($5k) – at least for the Leaf.

          Anyway, 26k on my Leaf and it still manages triple digit range estimation (although that’s not happening on a below freezing day) and 12 bars.

      • 0 avatar
        APaGttH

        One last thing – electric vehicles require far less maintenance and care, and are inherently more reliable. There is a mountain of data to support the reliability (driveline, etc. etc.)

        Wear items are limited basically to wiper blades, wiper fluid, brake pads (which last almost forever to begin with) and tires. Eventually light bulbs of course. That is about it.

        • 0 avatar
          DeadWeight

          Why is Tesla facing credible allegations that many of their vehicles are essentially having their drivetrain components wearing out to the point of not economically warranting repair as soon as 60,000 miles?

          • 0 avatar
            derekson

            Because of the ridiculous amount of power they’re putting through under engineered components?

          • 0 avatar
            APaGttH

            Because Tesla is a start up company that only started building their 100% own car from the chassis up about two years ago, and most of the complaints are around niggling things that $100K car buyers complain about, door handle pulls (that are over engineered, let me remind you that you criticized GM for their electric door actuators on the Corvette), and the ever present complaints on infotainment.

            The fact that Teslas are reliable as they are is pretty darn remarkable.

            The Leaf and Volt (and the Volt is a complex machine) have consistently been at the top of the quality pile, and owner satisfaction.

        • 0 avatar
          Pch101

          Vehicle reliability doesn’t come from “simplicity” — no car is simple.

          Reliability is a function of engineering, design, production management and assembly quality. Some companies are better at this than others.

          If simplicity = reliability, then cars today would be less reliable than they were decades ago. The opposite is true — cars today are far more reliable than they were in the past, even though they are more complex.

          • 0 avatar
            APaGttH

            You misinterpret simplicity. An electric motor is inherently more simple than an ICE.

            Replace the box electronic components and relays are easier to repair/replace than actual moving parts.

            Battery charge goes to electric motor that has two directions, backwards and forwards.

          • 0 avatar
            Pch101

            Simple cars don’t exist.

            Cars have become more reliable as they have become more complex.

            Adding to that, adding complexity can sometimes increase their longevity.

            You’re showing a fundamental ignorance of why stuff breaks. It doesn’t break because it is complicated, but because it was designed and built by companies that don’t have the talent to do it properly.

            Lean production improved reliability not because it made cars simpler, but due to its greater attention to improving the quality of the parts, design and assembly, which includes expanding the extent to which QC and frequent improvements are used to improve the product.

      • 0 avatar
        krhodes1

        Seems like most people who can afford a $30K new vehicle, and have enough income to actually take advantage of the tax credits probably don’t really care *that* much about the price of gas. Which obviously is true of most people considering what the best selling vehicles are even when gas is expensive.

      • 0 avatar
        redav

        As a general rule, electricity costs a third as much as gasoline. An efficient car may cost $15k in gas over its life, which means a comparable EV would cost $5k. A $10k difference in price isn’t so bad in that context, regardless of savings on oil changes & engine maintenance or cost of time to go to gas stations.

        The batteries certainly do wear out, just as engines and transmissions do. I actually think those costs end up a wash.

        A benefit on the green side of things is that the moment a power plant is upgraded/replaced with something cleaner (coal use has dropped dramatically since Obama was elected, and since Apr last year, natural gas is the US’ #1 source for electricity), every EV using that power effectively gets cleaner. There’s no way you can do the same with ICEs.

    • 0 avatar
      28-Cars-Later

      Wait for CPO, Volts are a bargain.

      • 0 avatar
        tresmonos

        This is the best advice. Volts are incredibly cheap used. If I was a GM employee, this would be my daily commuter

        • 0 avatar
          28-Cars-Later

          @tres

          What are your thoughts on Ford and GM EVs outside of the warranty period?

          • 0 avatar
            bball40dtw

            EV or Hybrids?

            You are talking about the Focus EV and Spark EV, or the various hybrid vehicles?

          • 0 avatar
            28-Cars-Later

            Volt or Leaf like EVs, not “true” hybrids.

          • 0 avatar
            bball40dtw

            Well, the Volt is a hybrid. A plug in hybrid, but still a hybrid.

            If I were buying a used Plug-In, it would be a Volt or a C-Max/Fusion Energi. I would be partial to the Ford Energi vehicles because of my familiarity with the powertrain. The Ford system is relatively simple compared to the Volt’s powertrain. Simplicity for the sake of simplicity isn’t ideal, but the Ford hybrid system has been proven to be pretty stout.

            I still like the Volt, but I worry about stuff like the fact that it has four independent cooling system loops. The four cylinder generator has a traditional belt driven water pump.

            An battery only vehicle is more ideal, but the range isn’t there yet.

          • 0 avatar
            28-Cars-Later

            My understanding is the Volt is more akin to an EV with a motor to charge its batteries. The gas motor does not drive the car at any time.

            “I still like the Volt, but I worry about stuff like the fact that it has four independent cooling system loops. The four cylinder generator has a traditional belt driven water pump.”

            Now you’re talking my language, did not know this stuff. Many points of failure.

          • 0 avatar
            bball40dtw

            That’s true. The Volt’s gas engine does not ever drive the wheels by itself. It can do it with the battery/electric motor.

          • 0 avatar
            28-Cars-Later

            Which to me doesn’t make it a hybrid in the traditional sense, although I could see it classified as a “hybrid” because of the use of the gas motor.

          • 0 avatar
            bumpy ii

            “My understanding is the Volt is more akin to an EV with a motor to charge its batteries. The gas motor does not drive the car at any time.”

            There are some operation modes where the ICE drives the differential and the electric motors are locked and nonpowered. The computer’s job is to figure out when that is the most efficient way to operate.

      • 0 avatar
        bumpy ii

        I hadn’t paid much attention to the Bolt before now (thought it was going to be Equinox-sized for some reason), but the range and form factor would work quite well for me. An off-lease Bolt for $15k would be perfect in a few years.

  • avatar
    Varezhka

    I’m sure it’s a fine car, but are they really going to use *that* name for the final product?

    They are aware that a pretty huge chunk of the world doesn’t distinguish the /b/ and /v/ sound, right? Or do these people never leave Detroit?

    • 0 avatar
      Drzhivago138

      Which chunk?

      • 0 avatar
        Varezhka

        The entire Spanish speaking part of the world (which will include decent population in US), for starters….

        Many Asian languages (such as Japanese and Korean) do not distinguish between these sounds, as with western languages like Greek, Hebrew, etc. This is even before getting into various sound swapping within alphabetic languages.

        • 0 avatar
          Pch101

          Honda and Toyota have quite a few nameplates with B’s and V’s.

          • 0 avatar
            Varezhka

            @Pch101, but no two models where the only difference is one letter “V” and “B”. There is no Toyota “Venza” and “Benza”, where two models will sound identical to the customer.

            With “Volt” and “Bolt”, there is a very good chance of customer confusion. It’s like having a Honda “Civic” and “Sivik” in the same showroom, or trying to visually distinguish between a Cadillac XTS and XT5 badge.

          • 0 avatar
            RideHeight

            Bolt been berry, berry good… to me!

            I go now, take erebeeta.

          • 0 avatar
            bumpy ii

            They could remedy that by renaming it the “Bort”.

          • 0 avatar
            28-Cars-Later

            We need more Bort license plates in the Gift Shop. Repeat, we are sold out of Bort license plates.

          • 0 avatar
            Pch101

            This is really a non-issue for a lot of reasons. Here are just two of them:

            -Few of them will be sold

            -Cars can easily be renamed for different markets. If you don’t believe me, then you need not look any further than the name given to the Volt when it carried an Opel badge.

            Of course, Bolt is still a dumb name. If GM was a human, then I would have to conclude that it had been dropped on its head during its childhood.

  • avatar
    nickoo

    This is the ev i have been waiting for. Seriously considering one for my next car.

  • avatar
    APaGttH

    Super, super, interested.

    A Leaf doesn’t have the range I need – if this is $30K (after handout), gets more than 200 miles range without unnatural acts, and can seat 4 al a current Sonic with the aforementioned 16.9 cubic feet behind the rear seats, this is the perfect lease commuter and pick up the daughter car.

  • avatar
    ajla

    I’m glad some people are into their EVs and the advancing technology involved, but I’m personally not interested in giving up my engine just yet.

    • 0 avatar
      SCE to AUX

      You should try driving an EV sometime. I like ICEs as much as anyone, but the smoothness and responsiveness of an electric drivetrain is unmatched.

      I never missed gas stations, oil changes, belt concerns, long winter warmups and uncertainty of starting, wasted fuel during idling, etc.

  • avatar
    VenomV12

    A two or three year old one of these depreciated is going to be a screaming bargain. You can use it as your daily runaround and drive for damn near free and keep the miles and wear and tear off your more awesome car for the weekends.

  • avatar
    RideHeight

    Anyone know of a handy table showing showing EV charging times from a standard household generator?

    In blustery power-outage season, one would still be buying gasoline.

  • avatar
    stingray65

    BMW charges mid-$40s for the i3, which uses an expensive carbon fiber body to reduce weight that allows for a smaller and less expensive battery to be used. This combination yields a range of less than half the Bolt, which seems to be based on conventional steel construction and will therefore need a very large and expensive battery to achieve 200 mile range. Globally the i3 has sold about 40,000 units in 2 years, and I have heard no credible reports that the i3 is expected to be profitable for BMW. So the question is how can GM sell the Bolt with 2.2 times the range of the i3 and a 20% lower price and not lose a boatload of money on this car? Is GM so flush with Silverado generated cash that they can afford to sell a money losing car such as the Bolt?

  • avatar
    Chicago Dude

    +1 for having 5 seatbelts.
    -1 for having no LATCH anchors.

    Seriously folks, 3 kids is the new way to demonstrate that you have income.

    You can finance anything these days, nobody wears watches, everybody has a smartphone, Zara, H&M and Uniqlo have the latest clothing trends on store shelves 3 weeks after fashion shows, faster than even the big brands that are sending the models down the runway.

    But kids are for real.

  • avatar
    anomaly149

    Anyone else notice that Mark Vaughn at Autoweek managed to mention the EV1 four times in their Bolt article? (And the Impact EV concept in the first sentence before the Bolt itself) Include a mention of lead-acid batteries and how they had to flatbed their presser EV1 when the battery died and you have a pretty negative article between the lines.

    Aaron, I bet you could do five before you had to write “Bolt”.

  • avatar
    TrailerTrash

    30K AFTER tax incentives…???

    I am sick of these tax selective incentives.
    This is all of us making an excess a success.

    We would be better of giving tax incentives for every car that is efficient, not just an EV.
    Giving a tax incentive to someone buying a Fit is a better move than for the Tesla S or X or Bolt or Volt.
    This is simply wrong.

    Selectively manipulative.

    • 0 avatar
      VoGo

      TrailerTrash,
      You attack government subsidies for electric cars, but what about those that run on gas? That $7,500 tax credit is nothing compared to what the US government spends to keep the oil flowing, including:
      – tax breaks like investment credits and accelerated depreciation for big oil
      – R&D subsidies to fund development of fracking technologies
      – the costs of fighting two wars in the gulf, plus all the military spend to be prepare to fight the next one.

      • 0 avatar
        SCE to AUX

        The US doesn’t fight wars to “keep oil flowing”. That’s a convenient untruth.

        Oil production, by country, bbl/day:
        1 United States 13,973,000
        2 Saudi Arabia (OPEC) 11,624,000
        3 Russia 10,853,000
        4 China 4,572,000
        5 Canada 4,383,000
        6 UAE (OPEC) 3,471,000
        7 Iran (OPEC) 3,375,000
        8 Iraq (OPEC) 3,371,000
        9 Brazil 2,950,000
        10 Mexico 2,812,000

        If the US wanted to keep oil flowing through warfare, it would take over Canada and Mexico instead of fighting expensive overseas wars.

        • 0 avatar
          Pch101

          You need to type “Carter Doctrine” into your favorite search engine. Here’s a head start:

          “Let our position be absolutely clear: An attempt by any outside force to gain control of the Persian Gulf region will be regarded as an assault on the vital interests of the United States of America, and such an assault will be repelled by any means necessary, including military force.”

          -President Carter, 1980 State of the Union

          This doctrine remains a part of US foreign policy. Learn a bit more here:

          http://www.worldaffairsjournal.org/blog/andrew-j-bacevich/carter-doctrine-30

        • 0 avatar
          DenverMike

          The US fights wars to keep the US Dollar flowing and relevant. The oil, they can keep. Once the US Dollar loses its position as the world’s “Gold Standard”, the $hit hits the fan.

        • 0 avatar
          VoGo

          I would love to hear how SCE to AUX explains the first Gulf War. Was it to defend Kuwaiti democracy?

          • 0 avatar
            Pch101

            What the right wing fails to understand is that US foreign policy is not formulated based upon the rhetoric in WWII buddy movies.

            What the left wing fails to understand is that the US doesn’t wage wars to steal the oil for itself, but to maintain a global market for it while maintaining a balance of power. It doesn’t matter whether the US consumes Middle East oil; if those supplies were cut off, then prices would skyrocket for all of us.

          • 0 avatar
            SCE to AUX

            “Was it to defend Kuwaiti democracy?”

            Not really. The first Gulf War was fought to maintain the same international borders we’ve had for almost a century. The notion of actually conquering another country is illegal now, although I don’t think it should be.

      • 0 avatar
        TrailerTrash

        Numbers please.
        I do not know the exact numbers of credits to oil.
        Not sure about the exact credits to electric energy.
        But I can see the credits given toward wind and solar energies…and the percentage when compared to their size vs that of oil…I do not know.
        Now do I know the fail rate of these government bets…and the betting success/failure seems to be dismal. The fail rate of these greenies is horrible.
        But…I am against tax credits in any way that give corporations advantages.
        I hate corp welfare.
        My brothers and I faced off on this years ago. We were not given the tax incentives larger corps were for export..it was a big money/lobbyist benefits.

        However, to make myself perfectly clear…these are shameful incentives to push specific tech. And I am suggesting this car is no better for our environment than a Fit, Mazda3 or any really sound high MPG automobile.

        And electricity comes from …where? Coal? Nuclear power plants?
        Just what would the next crisis be IF everybody was electric?
        And what would the cost be for this electric world?

        • 0 avatar
          TrailerTrash

          Pch101

          Is there an American foreign policy? I must be missing it.

          And what exactly is right wing?
          I am a conservative on many things, and radically independent on many others.
          I do not believe in god.
          I want legalization of drugs.
          I have no issue whatsoever with gay and lesbian lifestyles…only question the social conditions never addressed. And the school locker room crisis currently underway is an example.
          I want punishment for wrong doers.
          I hate large, over-reaching and controlling government.
          I am violently against government over reaching and spying.

          Now…what is right wing?

  • avatar
    SCE to AUX

    I like it.

    The smart range calculation it offers has my attention. My Leaf had ‘dumb’ range calculation, so you always had to derate the displayed miles.

    The higher capacity of this battery means it won’t have to deep-cycle as often for normal commuting, which is a very good thing.

    • 0 avatar
      mcs

      >> My Leaf had ‘dumb’ range calculation,

      The infamous Guess-o-meter! Mine was claiming 105 range this morning. The reality was a rate that would have resulted in maybe the low seventies due to the 22f temps and left lane time it couldn’t have guessed anyway.

      BTW, I’ve got a dash photo with it showing 25,800 miles, 12 bars, and the 105 mile range estimate. Might make it my avatar for a while. Expecting some sort of hit on battery capacity soon, but who knows.This battery is very different than the old ones in early Leafs.

  • avatar
    shaker

    If this has a true 200 mile range (under favorable conditions) and no less than 120 miles (under worst-case), as well as only using 80% or so of battery capacity (for long life), Chevy has made the next *big* step in EV adoption.

    It’s an adorable little thing, too.

  • avatar
    spreadsheet monkey

    Fawning coverage of the Bolt (and Mary Barra) in Wired magazine…

    http://www.wired.com/2016/01/gm-electric-car-chevy-bolt-mary-barra/


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