The 2011 Chevrolet Volt is the most talked about car this year. It has won numerous awards. Including Motor Trends “Car of the Year” and Automobile Magazines “Automobile of the year”. Many are calling the Volt a technological tour de force. It’s the first mass produced plug in hybrid.
What is a plug in hybrid?
Most hybrids, Toyota Prius, Ford Fusion Hybrids, have two engines, a regular combustion engine and a smaller electric engine. The two engines operate together or as a single unit with the electric engine operating at low speeds. In a typical hybrid the electric engine has very limited range.
In the Chevy Volt, depending on driving conditions, the first 30 to 50 miles the car operates on electric power, then the combustion engine comes on to charge the electric motor. When the charge drops to 35% then the car operates similar to a standard hybrid. Should you forget to charge the engine, the combustion engine powers the car and charges the batteries. Buyers will need to purchase an 240 volt charging unit ($490) which charges the car in 4 hours.
The 41,ooo question?
Pricing for the Chevy Volt begins at $41,000 for a car the same size of the new Chevy Cruise. Early buyers can qualify $7500 federal tax credit. However, this does not include the charging station and if you own an older home, this cost increases as re-wiring may be necessary to achieve the 93 miles a gallon.
93 miles to a gallon is impressive, at forty one thousand plus, will American’s embrace this technological wonder that won over the automotive media?
Toyota is building a larger Prius, the vehicle will priced 10,000 less than the Volt. There are much larger and less expensive hybrid offerings from Ford and Nissan. A luxurious Lincoln hybrid sells for 35,000. Ford will introduce an electric Focus later this year
None of these cars will approach the Volts mileage.
The 26,000, all electric Nissan Leaf is limited by its 99 mile range
Before you head to your local Chevy Dealer……
The average price for a gallon of gas in Sacramento as of this date is $4.09 a gallon. The 2011 Chevy Volt is being sold at high volume Chevy dealers in California, Washington D.C, New York, Austin Texas, New Jersey, Michigan, and Connecticut. Most are sold for the model year the few that are available are selling much above sticker. Stay Tuned.