General Motors has made the claim that its Chevy Volt hybrid electric plug-in car will achieve more than 200 miles per gallon. It is an interesting Chevy concept and one that could allow the GM Volt to lead in the hybrid mileage race.
200 Miles Per Gallon Chevy Volt
Common sense tells us that if General Motors can deliver the Chevy Volt with a 200 mpg rating, that it would have to drive shorter distances and only use electric power. This concept is not new, as golf carts do it all the time. This could also mean that daily commutes will have to be 40 miles or less and using a standard home electrical outlet as its primary fuel.
Skeptics believe that the GM Volt is nothing more than an oversized golf cart. Even so, if General Motors can pull it off, it will be a huge accomplishment for the auto industry. The Volt will run on a new version of the lithium-ion battery that can store 16 kilowatts of stored energy. There are still a few raising concerns if the hybrid battery is safe or not, as it has not been publicly tested in a vehicle of this size.
What we do know about the Chevy Volt is the constant chatter from its employees and blog websites. Some of the promises seem too hard to believe, and it just seems that the hype might become too big for GM to deliver. If this happens, it will be much harder for the automaker to recover from such public scrutiny. The price of the new hybrid electric vehicle is also more expensive than most hybrids we see today.
“We wanted an EV [electric vehicle] for the mass market. In order to do this, we had to deal with range anxiety. If you put in a 200-mile battery pack someone has to pay for it,” Bob Kruse, General Motors executive director of global vehicle engineering, said in a statement.
I’m all for plugging in an electric GM Volt automobile if it can save money on gas, but this doesn’t seem like a car that will get an actual 200 mpg rating, especially an official EPA rating. Most people are going to look at buzz words such as “200-mile battery pack” and think that this vehicle is going to do 200 miles per gallon. When they find out that you can only achieve that by using your extension cord and only driving a maximum of 40 miles per day, consumers are going to find it very misleading.
For the past two weeks, GM officials were on a number of talk shows, and it just seems too early to draw public relations on a new electric plug-in vehicle that isn’t even on the market. I understand that American tax payers and the government own about 60 percent of the auto manufacturer, and receiving news about the new promised car is nice, but there are many promises that seem unbelievable. Some skeptics believe that it’s nothing more than a distraction to keep buyers away from Ford, Toyota, and Honda. If that is the motive, then it will be hard to convince buyers on a vapor-car than vehicles from other automakers that already have something to show and sell.
I know that I probably seem a bit skeptical in this writing, but I don’t want to hope for something and then be duped. I am not saying that GM doesn’t have a pre-production model of the Chevy Volt already in testing, as far as I know they do, but I also have to realize that there might be a big-catch-all to this public relations hype and that is what I’m afraid of.
On a positive note, if General Motors can pull this off, they will again become a leader in the automotive business and the workers will really have a major accomplishment to be proud of. Releasing a vehicle with all the promises noted will be the best thing to convince and win consumer confidence. We’ll keep you updated on the upcoming Chevy Volt.