Chevrolet Volt: GM’s New Breed of Electric Cars
In Detroit: The Chevrolet Volt concept sedan which is powered by the E-flex System (GM’s next-generation electric propulsion system) is offering one remarkable design that could eliminate trips to the gas station.
The Chevrolet Volt is a battery-powered four passenger electric vehicle equipped with top-of-the-line Chevy parts and makes use of gas engine to create additional electricity to extend its range. The Volt concept was derived from GM’s previous experience in modern electric vehicle market particularly in the year 1996 when it launched the EV1.
According to GM Vice president Chairman Robert A. Lutz, “The EV1 was the benchmark in battery technology and was a tremendous achievement. The Chevrolet Volt is a new type of electric vehicle. It addresses the range problem and has room for passengers and their stuff. You can climb a hill or turn on the air conditioning and not worry about it.”
But despite the encouraging words from GM Chairman Lutz, a great number of people are frowning at the idea basically because electric vehicles have limitations such as limited range, limited room for passengers or luggage, inability to climb hill or run the air condition without draining the battery plus there are no device that can help you in case the battery charge run low. —GM has solved all the aforementioned problems with their Volt.
The Volt can be charged by simply plugging it into a 110-volt outlet for six hours. When the lithium-ion battery is completely charge, the Volt is capable of covering 60 city kilometers of pure electric vehicle range. In the event that the battery is drain, a 1.0 liter, three-cylinder turbocharged engine spins at constant speed (measured in rpm) producing electricity and at the same time replenishes the battery.
Chairman Lutz further explains, “If you lived within 50 km from work (100 km round trip) and charged your vehicle every night when you came home or during the day at work, you would get fuel consumption of 1.6 liters per 100 km. More than half of all Americans live within around 30 km of where they work (60 km round trip). In that case, you might never burn a drop of gas during the life of the car.”
The Volt is also capable of running 4.7 1/100 km even when it is undercharged. It makes use of its engine to convert gasoline into electricity and extending its range of up to 1030 km, which is doubled the capacity of any conventional vehicle. It is also designed to run on E85 which is a fuel blend of 85% ethanol and 15% gasoline.
The Volt is just one variant of the E-flex System and makes use of a large battery and a small, 1.0 liter turbocharged gasoline engine that produces enough electricity to cover 1030 km. GM will introduce the other variants of the E-flex at future auto shows.