New EV Bolt a game changer, says GM

POSTED BY Nigel Andretti ON 14 September 2016

GENERAL Motors says that the new Chevy Bolt with an EPA estimated range of estimated range of 380 kilometres on a full charge will change public perception of electric cars.

“The Chevy Bolt (for 2017) is a game changer for the electric car segment,” said Alan Batey, GM North America president.

Whether the Bolt’s range can jump-start America’s interest in electric cars remains to be seen. Over the last 10 years, auto executives have touted full electric and extended-range electric models that would make consumers trade in their gasoline-powered cars and crossovers for battery-powered models.

For the most part, those models have failed to electrify excitement with consumers.

The Volt’s best years for sales were 2012 and 2013, when sales topped out at roughly 23,000 vehicles, when the company ex[pected figures to hit 40,000.

GM believes the all-electric Bolt is different because it will offer more than 350 kilometres range fully charged.

The Bolt is fitted with a nickel-rich lithium-ion battery with a liquid cooling system to help manage its temperature when the outside climate varies. The battery pack has an energy capacity of 60 kWh giving it its extended range.

Bolt EV offers a low-profile underbody. This maximises interior space for passengers and cargo. The centrally located battery pack provides an optimal centre of gravity for excellent ride and handling, GM says.

“If you look at the reason why people didn’t buy electrified or pure electric vehicles, it was really around either cost or price range, or in some cases utility. We think with the Bolt we have all of those covered and more,” Mark Reuss, General Motors executive vice president of global product development, told CNBC’s “Squawk Box” on Tuesday.

The automaker will announce the official price of the Bolt later this year shortly before the car goes on sale.