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Old 02-15-2011, 08:39 AM   #1
AVANTI R5
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Default 1 of 14 Volt Owners/Claims 110 MPG Over 3 Months of Driving

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GM-Volt.com blogger Dr. Lyle Dennis, who in November was one of 14 people to receive Chevrolet Volts to test drive as part of General Motors' consumer advisory board for the plug-in hybrid-electric vehicle, said he got about 110 miles per gallon during the three months he had the car.

Dennis burned 46 gallons of gas for the 5,100 miles he put on the car between Nov. 11, 2010, and Feb. 9, 2011. He said his average daily commute was about 60 miles and his typical range in electric-only mode was between 25 miles and 30 miles under what he called "intensive high-speed highway driving through some particularly harsh Northeast winter conditions."

"Acceleration was sufficiently energetic and the car always outperformed the basic sedans of the road passing and entering highways with ease," wrote Dennis, whose previous electric-drive experience included some time with BMW's Mini E all-electric vehicle in 2009 and 2010.


Dennis's experience may help potential Volt buyers get a handle on the Volt's fuel-economy figure, which is truly a moving target because gas mileage is solely dependent on the distance travelled between battery recharges.

In December, the EPA gave the Volt a fuel-economy rating of 60 miles per gallon in combined city and highway driving, with a 93 miles per gallon equivalent (mpg-e) rating in electric-only mode and a 37 mpg rating for gas-powered driving.

The car has a driving range of 379 miles before both the battery and gas engine are depleted, said EPA, which gave Nissan's all-electric Leaf an mpg-e rating of 99 miles per gallon, making it the most "fuel-efficient" car on the road.

In December, Consumer Reports said the Volt got about 60 miles per gallon when used for a 72-mile, mostly-highway commute. When that commute was extended to 200 miles, though, the Volt delivered about 48 miles per gallon, or the same as the EPA-rated highway fuel economy for the Toyota Prius hybrid.

Dennis, who launched the site in early 2007 to document the development of GM's first mass-produced plug-in hybrid-electric vehicle and is an advocate of electric-drive vehicles, said that he doesn’t receive financial support from GM to publish the blog and that it's unaffiliated with the automaker, though GM does advertise on the site.

It should also be noted that Dennis is probably the Volt's biggest fan outside of General Motors, given that he's rallied thousands of people on the vehicle's behalf and blogs about it daily. His influence and body of work on behalf of the Volt have enabled him to tour GM facilities and meet with the company's top executives.
http://blogs.edmunds.com/greencaradv...he-hybrid.html
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Old 02-15-2011, 08:42 AM   #2
AVANTI R5
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Default This Week in Unforeseen Consequences of Technology: Electric Vehicles Attract Rats




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Your Chevy Volt may draw adoring smiles from that cute, crunchy barista you’ve been eyeing at the coffee shop, but be advised: it may also draw rats. At least that was the experience of Cars.com correspondent Joe Wiesenfelder, who was forced to confront an unforeseen problem with the website’s Volt after a rodent made a cozy home among the car’s warm batteries.

When the Volt is charging, its batteries maintain a minimum battery temperature. Wiesenfelder’s Volt was charging in Cars.com’s downtown Chicago parking garage during last week’s Chicago blizzard, where it weathered the storm just fine. But then he started getting emails from the ChargePoint network that monitors public charging stations like the one where Cars.com keeps its Volt (the site bought the car to see how it would survive a cold Chicago winter).


The next morning he reset the charger, which began charging the car again without problems. But the next time he got behind the wheel, the dashboard lit up with a host of warning lights. A rat, it turns out, had made itself comfortable among the warming batteries when temperatures plunged during the night, helping himself to wiring harness as a snack. The result: damage to the warning lights and the rear defogger device at minimum. The cost: at least $600 (acts of rats are not covered under warranty).

Of course, this is no demerit to the Volt itself; rats are part of life in the big city. The problem, as Wiesenfelder points out, is that he can control neither the rats nor the weather nor, in this case, where he parks his Volt--there simply aren’t that many charge stations for EV’s around the city at this point. Just a reminder that with all new technologies come problems both seen and unforeseen.

On the bright side, with the exception of the rat attack the Volt has performed flawlessly in lakeshore winter conditions for more than a month and 3,000 miles.
[Yahoo! Autos]
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