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Wednesday, August 12, 2009
Chevrolet Volt - 230 MPG Hybrid
Image: © 2009 General Motors

2011 Chevrolet Volt - 230 MPG Electric Car That Sips Gasoline

WARREN, MICHIGAN - General Motors Chevrolet division released information yesterday (Tuesday, August 11, 2009) regarding the performance characteristics of their new 2011 Chevrolet Volt, which has an expected release date into showrooms of late 2010. GM's Chief Executive Officer Fritz Henderson announced that the 2011 Chevrolet Volt is on track to achieve an EPA equivalent city driving fuel economy of 230 MPG.

The news means that General Motors will enter the marketplace at the end of 2010 as one of the only car companies that can deliver such an incredibly efficient car in high production volumes. The 2011 Chevy Volt is capable of travelling the first 40 miles (64 km) of a journey on battery power alone, and it has an advanced technology lithium-ion battery pack that can store 16-kilowatt hours of charge. An electric drive motor propels the Volt and it is integrated with a gasoline (petrol) powered engine-generator that gives the car an extended range of more than 300 miles (480 km) on a full charge & full tank of fuel.

Chevrolet Volt purchasers will be able to charge the car's battery pack overnight by plugging into a regular household outlet. The Chevy Volt's high efficiency gasoline (petrol) engine drives a generator which provides electric power once the battery becomes sufficiently depleted. General Motor's CEO Henderson said, "From the data we've seen, many Chevy Volt drivers may be able to be in pure electric mode on a daily basis without having to use any gas."

The 2011 Chevrolet Volt will have two selectable driving modes - 'Electric' and 'Extended Range'. In the 'Electric' mode the Volt behaves like an electric car and it consumes no fuel until the battery power depletes at which point it switches to the gasoline engine for back-up power. In the 'Extended Range' mode, the engine-generator is the primary mode of power and the lithium-ion battery pack provides additional surge power during heavy acceleration. Customers who only drive return distances of less than 40 miles (64 kms) will probably choose to run their Volt in 'Electric' mode.

General Motors says that they will release final performance figures for the 2011 Chevrolet Volt closer to its release date. The new Volt is expected to be a significant contributor towards the return to health of the company, and early indications are that the Volt will be in high demand with customers putting down waiting list deposits to be one of the first to purchase the car. 

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