GM Volt Forum banner

1 - 4 of 4 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
4,677 Posts
Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
Drive_Better_Electrically_III.jpg At the beginning of July 2016 I changed from a 2011 Ford Fusion, 3.0 V6 that had AWD and routinely delivered no more than 21 MPG in mixed driving to a 2017 Volt Premier. I almost never use the back seat of my vehicles for passengers so I don't miss the Fusion's generous rear seating. My EV range in the Volt has enabled me to drive my 40 mile round trip commute purely in EV mode. My best estimated EV range this past summer and fall was 68 miles, typically I was seeing 65 miles. Now that the winter weather has arrived in the Mid Atlantic my estimated EV range is down to 48 miles.

My 2017 Volt Premier has Driver Confidence Pkges 1 & 2 and also ACC. I did not choose to get the Navigation option as I use CarPlay and my iPhone for navigation. ACC was the primary reason I waited for the 2017 models to be released and I am glad I waited. I commute in DC Metro traffic and ACC has made a huge difference in reducing my driving stress and fatigue.

The things that the Volt does not offer that I thought would matter turn out not to be a big deal:

1) Power front seats (or at least a power driver's seat) I am the only driver so the seat position never needs to be changed once I have it adjusted for my preferred seating position.)

2) Rear wiper (at speeds over 50 mph) the airflow over the rear hatch of the 2017 Volt will clear rain drops in just a few minutes. Of course, if there is snow or sleet on the rear glass I will need to use the electric defroster and a snow brush to clear the glass but that is true of any car.

3) Home Link (I had this on my Fusion and never programmed the Home Link in the vehicle, preferring to use the garage remote that came with the opener as I can remove the remote from the vehicle.) I could never figure out from the Ford Fusion Owner's Manual or any of the Ford support forums if the Home Ford Fusion Home Link would remain active when the car was turned off.) I think Home Link is a dead end technology, smart home technologies such as Amazon Alexa, Apple HomeKit are already starting to integrate smart phone apps with garage door openers. In my opinion GM did the right thing when they dropped the Home Link from the Gen II Volt.

I may be atypical but one of my primary reasons for choosing the Volt is that it enables me to (mostly) skip the gas station experience. In more than 40 years of driving I can honestly say I have never had a satisfying experience at a gas station. My gas station experiences have been mediocre at best, dangerous at their worst. If GM really wants to sell many more EV and Plug-In HEV they should market to men and women the chance to skip the whole gas station experience. Charging at home, in my garage, is one of the best things about having a plug-in vehicle. I recently had a Clipper Creek LCS-20P Level II EVSE installed at home. Now I can charge the Volt in under 4.5 hours (230VAC at 16 amps) instead of 8-9 hours (110VAC at 12 amps) or 13+ hours (110 VAC at 8 amps.) I installed a 50 amp receptacle so I am all set for whatever plug-in hybrid or pure EV I buy next.

I don't have range anxiety in my Volt but I do have LRR Michelin Energy Saver A/S thin sidewall anxiety. Anecdotes abound of Volt drivers brushing curbs and crippling their vehicle by tearing the sidewall of the Michelin Energy Saver tires. I purchased a spare tire for my Volt, also a lug wrench and a scissor jack, but I leave these in my garage unless I am taking a long trip in the Volt.

I am interested in the information about the 2017 Bolt's tires is correct,that the Chevrolet Bolt will come with a new variant of the Michelin EnergySaver A/S tire that features Michelin's SelfSeal puncture seal technology. Since the 2017 Bolt and 2017 Volt use the same size tires I would be interested in purchasing the SelfSeal tires when it is time to buy tires for my Volt (of course the fragile thin sidewall issue will still be there.)

Until this week my 6 month experience with my 2017 Volt had been trouble free. On Monday when I started the Volt the driver information screen displayed a message that the charging system required service. Not wanting to be stranded I drove my Volt to the dealer where it stayed for 4 days while the service department diagnosed and fixed the problem. I will post more information on my issue and the resolution on the appropriate Gen II Volt forum.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1 Posts
Jcanoe, Thanks for your post. I purchased a 2017 Volt in September and I have enjoyed driving it so far. You mentioned you were getting in the 60's EV range at full charge and then it dropped to 48. I have had the same experience although I got only in the upper 50's and now it goes only to the mid 40's. It was a sudden, over night, drop. I have had no messages on the DIC. It has been in the dealership for a few days and they say everything is okay but I was disappointed in the sudden change. If you or anyone on the forum has anymore insight regarding the sudden drop in EV range at full charge I would be interested in comments. Once again, thanks for your post.

John
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
4,677 Posts
Discussion Starter #3
I think the drop in estimated EV range is due to a combination of outside temperature, driving pattern and use of electric heat. Although I preheat my Volt each morning while it is plugged in to a Level II EVSE I don't always wait the additional 10 or so minutes needed to fully recharge the battery after the remote start cycle ends, so there is a small mileage hit right there. The first major threshold in lowered EV range seems to take place at about 50 degrees F. Below that temperature the Volt will lower the estimated EV range and continue to lower the range as the temperature continues to drop. Right now the outside temperature here is 25 and the temperature in my garage is 35 (my garage tends to be about 10 degrees warmer than outside.) When I get in the Volt after preheating it will display either 47 or 48 miles EV range based on recent experience. If I am driving a short distance I will use the heated seats and heated steering wheel but I also set the climate control to 74 F and use the electric heat on both Max (initially) and Economy (sustaining) to stay comfortable. If I was taking a longer drive I would switch to Hold mode and bring the engine up to full operating temperature ~ 180 - 190 F and then return to Normal mode for the duration of my trip or as long as the battery has a charge. I realize that the Engine Heat Assist would be more efficient but I frequently run errands close to home and don't want the ICE engine turning on for short periods when the electric heat will work even though it uses a good deal of the Volts EV range to heat the cabin. If I am only driving a short distance, even if I have used 30% of the battery by the time I return home I just plug in and in a little over an hour the battery is fully recharged and ready for the next trip.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,966 Posts
Jcanoe, Thanks for your post. I purchased a 2017 Volt in September and I have enjoyed driving it so far. You mentioned you were getting in the 60's EV range at full charge and then it dropped to 48. I have had the same experience although I got only in the upper 50's and now it goes only to the mid 40's. It was a sudden, over night, drop. I have had no messages on the DIC. It has been in the dealership for a few days and they say everything is okay but I was disappointed in the sudden change. If you or anyone on the forum has anymore insight regarding the sudden drop in EV range at full charge I would be interested in comments. Once again, thanks for your post.

John
Having just had a conversation about this with my team lead who's based in Austin....

What temperature was it on Friday? What temperature is it on Monday? Did the heater run on Friday? Did it run on Monday? That's an up to 6kw draw and can use up as much as 1% of your battery per minute just sitting there. At what pressure were your tires Friday? And at what pressure were they Monday? Even on a Gen 1, there's five miles of range difference in five PSI, even when the warning indicator hasn't come on yet.
 
1 - 4 of 4 Posts
Top