Chevrolet Bolt – Eight Electrifying Facts

Blog post by Madison D’Angelo
February 17th, 2015

Eight “electrifying” things you should know about the new Chevrolet Bolt: 

The Chevrolet Bolt EV Concept is a five-door, four-passenger subcompact that is equipped with a 100% electric powertrain.

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A sleek and funky small crossover, the Bolt features limited overhangs, a high beltline and narrow grille. The style bears some resemblance to the BMW i3—an all-electric car selling for a higher price, while delivering just 81 miles of driving range according to EPA estimates.

The message from consumers about the Bolt EV concept was clear and unequivocal: build it,” said Alan Batey, president, General Motors North America, in a prepared statement on February 12 from the 2015 Chicago Auto Show. “We are moving quickly because of its potential to completely shake up the status quo for electric vehicles as the first affordable long-range EV in the market.”

With that being said, here are eight electrifying things you should know about the Chevy Bolt:

1. Go green from the start.

A green vehicle should be green from the start. The Chevy Bolt will be built at GM’s Orion Assembly in Michigan, a plant powered by gas from two nearby landfills, and a 350 kW solar array. 

2. Go farther.

GM is currently claiming that the estimated driving range on a single charge will be 200 miles, or 320 km. This will require a battery pack that’s approximately 55 to 60 kilowatt hours.

The company’s official statement explained that it will “leverage” battery technology used in the Chevy Volt and Spark EV. The 2015 Volt carries a 17 kWh battery pack, the Spark EV with a19 kWh pack.

3. Spend less.

GM is currently saying that the Bolt will be sold for approximately $30,000 USD, after tax incentives for purchase of a plug-in electric vehicle (which are expected to be $7,500). That puts a starting price at the Bolt at $37,500 USD. 

(Ontario offers rebates ranging from $5,000 to $8,500 CAD to individuals, businesses and organizations that purchase or lease a new plug-in vehicle.)

4. Save time.

An advanced lithium-ion battery provides over 320 km of all-electric range, and with DC fast-charging capability, an 80 percent charge can be achieved in less than 45 minutes!

5. Be innovative.

Every aspect of the Bolt is designed to be aesthetically and technologically innovative.

Bolt EV is equipped with lightweight aluminum wheels featuring clear inserts between the spokes, giving the wheels a unique look while maximizing efficiency by reducing drag.

The Bolt Connect app would provide drivers with an unprecedented level of vehicle control. Incorporating automatic park-and-retrieval technology owners will be able to exit the vehicle and tell Bolt EV to park itself while they run errands, then summon it to their location when they’re done.

A central touch screen gives the driver access to an array of electronic readouts with only a tap or two on the large, 10-inch diagonal screen.

6. Know your allies.

The Bolt is similar to its big brother, the Volt, and its little brother, the Spark EV.

The Volt has the highest customer satisfaction of any vehicle GM has ever sold, and a sterling reputation for advanced technology and battery durability.

The Spark EV is sold in the United States, but in Canada, it’s only available for purchase by corporate fleets. Although winning many awards and beating out all the competition, the Spark EV has an estimated range of 82 miles, less than half of what GM expects the Bolt to offer.

 The Bolt would be certified for sale in all 50 states as well as Canada.

7. Know your competition.

Many commentators have suggested it will compete with the promised Tesla Model 3, also a 200-mile electric car that is targeted for production sometime between late 2017 and 2019. But the Chevrolet Bolt is more likely to compete with the next generation Nissan Leaf, expected to be unveiled late this year or early next, which will go on sale as a 2017 model.

The Bolt could also compete against the Mitsubishi i-MiEV, the Ford Focus Electric, the Kia Soul EV,  and the Fiat 500e, if these models will still be on the market by the time the little Chevy will roll off the production line.

8. Get ready… It’s coming soon.

General Motors is fully committed to building a 200-mile all-electric vehicle. The company introduced the Chevrolet Bolt as a concept car at the Detroit auto show—and then, in a matter of about five weeks, took swift steps to confirm production of a car based on the concept.

With production beginning late next year, the Bolt electric car would go on sale early in 2017–either as a 2017 or 2018 model.

A companion model to be sold by GM’s German brand, Opel, will also be assembled at Orion Township and exported to Europe for sale there.