Mar 24th 2011 6:49AM There are a lot of fundamental flaws with what TrueCar has done. They have not actually tested any of these vehicles. The ratings are based solely on the EPA label values for combined mpg. That's a reasonable way of comparing non-plug-in vehicles. However, that leaves the Leaf out of the picture entirely and they have messed up the Volt.
They base their comparison on the gas-only combined mileage of 37 mpg for the Volt ignoring the fact that most Volt owners are and will plug-in their vehicles. If the vehicles are compared based on combined mileage, the Volt should be compared based on its overall composite rating of 60 MPGe that blends electric (93 MPGe) and gas (37 MPG) driving. Using the 60 MPGe the Volt jumps to the top of the list (or second if the Leaf is included).
Jan 21st 2011 9:16PM Sebastian, I too spoke with Mr. Reyes at the auto show about the battery packs. Back in 2009 when Tesla first showed the Model S, Elon Musk talked about owners of Model S with the smaller packs being able to come in and swap the battery pack if they wanted to go on a road trip. Reyes confirmed that the pack can be replaced but it is not being designed to support frequent quick swaps of the type being promoted by Better Place. The pack is only intended for replacement under these special circumstances or servicing.
Batteries being designed for Better Place are air cooled and have high voltage connectors designed for thousands of insertions like the J1772 charge connector. The Tesla pack is liquid cooled, meaning extra connections and the need to purge air out of the system after a swap.
Oct 22nd 2010 7:29AM That purple car is the one and only road going Panoz Esperante GTR built to homologate the car for GT1 competition in the late 1990s. It was brought out of the museum for this parade lap at PLM
Aug 26th 2010 1:13PM Yes, if you run out of gas, the Volt will keep running on the battery in a reduced performance mode until it gets down to a minimum level (perhaps 10%).
Aug 26th 2010 1:01PM @verdegrrl No the Volt does not need to run the engine when the AC is on. The Volt is designed to power everything electrically as long as the battery has sufficient charge (>30% in most conditions). The engine comes on based on that state of charge, not when accessories are running. Of course running the A/C will deplete the battery faster, but all of the systems in the vehicle have been optimized for minimal energy consumption including the audio system.
Aug 16th 2010 8:31AM The results were accurate at the time the testing was done in mid-July. Ford engineers were on-hand during the evaluation as were GM and Chrysler engineers. The updated software for the Ford diesel was not available until several weeks after the testing was done.
Aug 4th 2010 7:09PM Dave R,
You are incorrect about the two-mode's functionality as was a recent recent review of the 2-mode Silverado that appeared on Autoblog.
The two-modes actually do run on an Atkinson cycle and in hybrid mode, the planetary gear-set runs as a CVT in much the same way that the Toyota and Ford systems do. In fact there are actually two separate CVT ranges for different vehicle speed (that's actually where the 2-mode name comes from). Only at highway speeds do the clutches start to lock up and send the power-flow around the motors through the four fixed ratios, allowing the vehicle to operate more like a conventional model.
Aug 4th 2010 6:53PM Dan
Apparently you have issues with basic reading comprehension. First I never said the engine was 95% efficient, that would be an utterly ridiculous statement. A basic toothed gearset transmits torque with 95% efficiency. The engine is probably at best 30% efficient.
Secondly, the so-called Opel "engineer" was a vehicle prep technician that didn't know what he was talking about. There is no mechanical connection from the engine to the drive system in the Volt and GM officials have made that clear.
As for the other efficiency numbers they were not meant to indicate what the volt could but only to illustrate my point about the increased losses as you stack up inefficiencies. That is four 95% efficient systems in series add up to a total system efficiency of only 81%.
Finally, I made no absolute conclusions about whether the Volt should or should not have mechanical drive. I simply explained the rationale for why it might or might not make sense. At this point we don't known enough about the car's performance to make a judgment one way or the other.
Jul 17th 2010 9:05AM You're right, I had nothing to do with this one
Jun 22nd 2010 2:52PM thanks for the translation