“The EV1 was the benchmark in battery technology and was a tremendous achievement,” Lutz said in a statement. “Even so, electric vehicles, in general, had limitations. They had limited range, limited room for passengers or luggage, couldn’t climb a hill or run the air conditioning without depleting the battery, and had no device to get you home when the battery’s charge ran low.
“The Chevrolet Volt is a new type of electric vehicle. It addresses the range problem and has room for passengers and their stuff. You can climb a hill or turn on the air conditioning and not worry about it.”
The Volt can be fully charged by plugging it into a 110-volt outlet for approximately six hours a day. When the lithium-ion battery is fully charged, the Volt can deliver 40 city miles of pure electric vehicle range. When the battery is depleted, a 1.0-liter, three-cylinder turbocharged engine spins at constant revolutions per minute, to create electricity and replenish the battery.
“If you lived within 30 miles from work (60 miles round trip) and charged your vehicle every night when you came home or during the day at work, you would get 150 miles per gallon,” Lutz said. “More than half of all Americans live within 20 miles of where they work (40 miles round trip). In that case, you might never burn a drop of gas during the life of the car.”
In addition, the Chevrolet Volt is designed to run on E85, which results in a fuel economy of 150 mpg.
In the event a driver forgets to charge the vehicle or goes on a vacation far away, the Volt would still get 50 mpg by using the engine to convert gasoline into electricity and extending its range up to 640 miles, more than double that of today’s conventional vehicles.