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Is the Gen 2 Volt really a road car? I drive a lot of highway miles on two-lane roads. When you sit in a car for twelve hours, waiting behind trucks because you don't have the power to pass is unbearable. How does the Gen 2 Volt do in, say, 60-80 mph acceleration, engine only? Where does Mountain mode come into this? Will driving in Hold or Mountain charge the battery while driving?
 

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Is the Gen 2 Volt really a road car? I drive a lot of highway miles on two-lane roads. When you sit in a car for twelve hours, waiting behind trucks because you don't have the power to pass is unbearable. How does the Gen 2 Volt do in, say, 60-80 mph acceleration, engine only? Where does Mountain mode come into this? Will driving in Hold or Mountain charge the battery while driving?
It has 149 HP and weights 3500 lbs...I'd say it's adequate at best.
 

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Is the Gen 2 Volt really a road car? I drive a lot of highway miles on two-lane roads. When you sit in a car for twelve hours, waiting behind trucks because you don't have the power to pass is unbearable. How does the Gen 2 Volt do in, say, 60-80 mph acceleration, engine only? Where does Mountain mode come into this? Will driving in Hold or Mountain charge the battery while driving?
Yes and no, I would not have any reservation about taking the Volt on a road trip but 12 hours in any small vehicle might get a bit tiring.

Mountain mode enables you to use the gas engine to put some charge (less in the Gen II than the Gen 1 Volt) into the battery (assuming the battery charge has been depleted) at least 20 - 30 minutes in advance and anticipation of making a prolonged mountain ascent. Mountain mode will not fully recharge the traction battery. Mountain mode is largely a relic of the Gen 1 Volt. The fact is you can confidently ascend most any mountain road in a Gen II Volt in Normal , Sport or Hold Mode without experiencing reduced power whereas having a reserve battery charge might be needed in a Gen 1 Volt to maintain speed on a long ascent.

Hold mode is as it sounds, it will maintain (more or less) whatever the current traction battery state of charge is when you engage Hold mode and use the gas engine until you return to Normal mode or end your trip. In Hold mode the Volt functions much like a conventional hybrid; using a combination of the gas engine and the traction battery to propel the Volt. If you slow down then regen will put energy back into the battery. If you stop then the gas engine may stop and use the battery to propel the Volt at low speed until the traffic starts flowing again. If you engage Hold mode on a descent then the battery level may increase somewhat due to regen but if you were on flat road or ascending a hill the Volt would maintain the battery at approximately where it started when you engaged Hold mode.

If you have a long ascent it makes sense to have the battery at no more than 50% of charge when you crest the top of the mountain pass so you can maximize energy recapture on the descent. You can recover maybe half of the battery charge on a long descent using L mode on the transmission, little or no need to use the brake pedal. If the battery is full when you crest the mountain then there is little to no additional battery capacity to store the descent energy and the Volt will just dump the excess energy.

While there is electric only mode (Normal), there is really no such thing in the Volt as gas engine only mode. If you dip into the throttle the Volt may decide to use motor generator A (MGA) to provide additional power to the drive wheels along with the power that is being provided by the the gas engine. You can read about the Voltec transmission here: http://gm-volt.com/2015/02/20/gen-2-volt-transmission-operating-modes-explained/

50 to 70 mph: 5.2 sec (Normal EV mode), 4.3 sec (Hold Mode, gas engine + EV assist)

You can read the Road & Track Comparison of the 2017 Volt and Prius Premier here:

http://www.caranddriver.com/comparisons/2017-chevrolet-volt-premier-vs-2017-toyota-prius-prime-advanced-comparison-test-final-scoring-performance-data-and-complete-specs-page-4
 

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I just took my first trip in the '17 Volt where I knew I'd have to use some gas. It was to another city and a mountainous highway. As I thought I'd save some of my battery for when I got to the city, I started out for about10 miles in Normal, and then switched to Hold...where it placed a red marker at about 80% on the battery, and then used electric power until it got down to that marker and then it used gas and/or gas and battery and regen to keep the level there. On the way back, I'd left the city with a full charge and drove back in mountain mode. This placed a red mark at about 20% on the battery meter, and then just used battery until it got down to that mark where the motor kicked in and kept the level at the mark using a combination of gas/electric/and regen ...so when I was at the final few miles from home, I just put it back to Normal mode and finished off the last 20% of battery and almost made it home but the motor kicked in again as the battery was depleted....This doesn't sound like these modes worked in the previous reply to this thread?...Is that perhaps how the modes operate in the Gen 1s?
 

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I just took my first trip in the '17 Volt where I knew I'd have to use some gas. It was to another city and a mountainous highway. As I thought I'd save some of my battery for when I got to the city, I started out for about10 miles in Normal, and then switched to Hold...where it placed a red marker at about 80% on the battery, and then used electric power until it got down to that marker and then it used gas and/or gas and battery and regen to keep the level there. On the way back, I'd left the city with a full charge and drove back in mountain mode. This placed a red mark at about 20% on the battery meter, and then just used battery until it got down to that mark where the motor kicked in and kept the level at the mark using a combination of gas/electric/and regen ...so when I was at the final few miles from home, I just put it back to Normal mode and finished off the last 20% of battery and almost made it home but the motor kicked in again as the battery was depleted....This doesn't sound like these modes worked in the previous reply to this thread?...Is that perhaps how the modes operate in the Gen 1s?
For your outbound trip the Gen II Volt was driven on a mountainous route in Hold mode (in this case with a 90% battery charge). Your return trip was the same as described in response #3 in this thread except you engaged Mountain mode when you already had a full charge. In this case the Volt running in Mountain mode used the battery power until the battery level dropped to 20% instead of starting with less than 20% and building up a minimum 20% charge in the battery in anticipation of making an ascent. When you placed the Volt in Normal mode the Volt resumed using the battery. If you had run a few more miles in Mountain mode or Hold mode before switching to Normal mode you would have made it home without the gas engine restarting.
 

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For typical road acceleration/passing the Volt is just as fast with the battery depleted as it is when the battery is full.

It's only on very long extended hills with steel grades where the Volt will eventually slow, if the battery is depleted, and that is where mountain mode is needed. In other words, very rarely.

In the scenarios you described, there is a buffer in the battery available and performance remains just as good in gas mode as in electric mode.
 

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If you are cruising down the highway with the engine on (even if you are "out" of battery power) when you floor it to pass, the volt will dig into a sort of reserve it keeps in the battery for situations like this, you will see the output of both battery and engine go up to max while floored doing your passing maneuver.

depending on how much was drained in the pass, the engine will rev just a little higher once you are back to cruising to replace the electrons it just used.
 

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I was worried about passing on the highway before I bought my Volt. I was happy to find out that the Volt passes with ease. There are no issues when the battery is full or "empty". It is actually faster on "empty" because then it uses both the battery and gas engine together. The battery is never really empty because it reserves some power for when it's needed.
 

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Can confirm that performance is the same on ICE as in EV, and I drive a hilly commute (see graph). Unfortunately, the acceleration from 50-70 is a bit slow. See this videos for comparison:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uDeV39e76Cc
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aks-jibrDDA

There was a video where someone accelerated to 99MPH (yes, MPH, they were testing the limiter/top speed). It shows clearly that once you past 70, it takes forever to get to 99MPH. I just can't seem to find it in my history, and I can't see it among videos uploaded in the last week. I'm guessing owner removed the video.
 

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A while lot better at passing than a Prius.
 

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A while lot better at passing than a Prius.
Agreed! It's probably one of the best passers out of the green/eco vehicles. But it's not V8 or anything. It feels similar to me as my previous large 4-cylinder car (150hp) for 60-80mph passing (adequate). Where it shines is low speed, off-the-line is great. And actually hills on cruise control... I have a moderate hill I drive often that I used to let my old 4-cyl ICE slow down on, because the heavy downshift and high-revs to maintain speed up it at 70mph was a bit concerning. I leave the Volt alone, it flies right up, no shifting, no struggling engine sounds, just pure steady power on either battery or power-split modes... I usually pass a lot of cars on that stretch. I do like to keep a larger buffer when on road trips than default (so don't run the battery all the way down, use Hold to keep 50% or whatever you like)... plenty of buffer for any hills so the engine doesn't have to work as hard.
 

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Hi all. So just to make sure I understand... if you are on highway and your batt is at 50 percent and you place it in hold mode, then go up a hill that uses lots of power, and end up using some battery, once you go back to cruising on the flat it should recharge back the battery to 50 percent? Did I understand this part correctly?


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Hi all. So just to make sure I understand... if you are on highway and your batt is at 50 percent and you place it in hold mode, then go up a hill that uses lots of power, and end up using some battery, once you go back to cruising on the flat it should recharge back the battery to 50 percent? Did I understand this part correctly?


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Yes. it's also important to understand that if your dash display says the battery is "empty" there is still a reserve of a few kilowatts that the car can "tap and replace" in the same fashion. Personally if I know I'm doing a long highway stretch I do put mine in "hold" mode.

I regularly drive a 420 mile trip from VA to NY through the catskill mountains and have had no issues with the Volt in terms of maintaining speed or passing when I needed to. In fact it's better than my Wife's Mazda once we hit the Lackawana area of PA.
 

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I got confused reading all these posts. Is there some way to "set" your battery to a certain level at which point the engine kicks in?
 

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A while lot better at passing than a Prius.
50-70mph pass = 3.5s 2017 Bolt EV
50-70mph pass = 4.7s 2017 Volt EREV
50-70mph pass = 4.9s 2017 Camry Hybrid
50-70mph pass = 5.3s 2017 Malibu Hybrid
50-70mph pass = 5.7s 2017 Ford Fusion PHEV Energi
50-70mph pass = 7.1s 2017 Prius Hybrid (it is quicker than the Prime)

Certainly no rocket ship, but is not as slow as many other green cars.
 

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I got confused reading all these posts. Is there some way to "set" your battery to a certain level at which point the engine kicks in?
Mountain Mode will keep an extra large passing reserve by turning on the ICE at 2 bars of EV range remaining.
Hold Mode will set a marker on the battery level wherever you want then turn on the ICE and run off the ICE primarily. It can dip into the EV reserve, but will recharge the battery back to that level.

When driving through big mountains, leave it Mountain, and pretty much the car will do all the thinking for you concerning reserve capacity for passing.
 

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Mountain Mode will keep an extra large passing reserve by turning on the ICE at 2 bars of EV range remaining.
Hold Mode will set a marker on the battery level wherever you want then turn on the ICE and run off the ICE primarily. It can dip into the EV reserve, but will recharge the battery back to that level.

When driving through big mountains, leave it Mountain, and pretty much the car will do all the thinking for you concerning reserve capacity for passing.
So where/how do you set this marker?
 

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So where/how do you set this marker?
The Volt sets the marker. If you use Mountain mode the marker will be set at 20% (for the Gen II Volt). If you use Hold mode then the marker is set at the current battery state of charge when you select Hold.
 

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So where/how do you set this marker?
When you press HOLD, that's where the marker is. You cannot type a number into it.

You will see the marker in the energy scale as a red line.
 
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