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I am a total noob but a new owner of a 2017 Volt and I love using so little gas!!!

I have done plenty of searching and seen plenty of opinions but no real imperial facts. Now that the Gen 2 have been out for a little while... What are the facts? What are the real world results?

City driving:
What's best? "D" or "L"? "D" with paddles? "L" with paddles? Etc?

Highway driving:
What's best? "D" and 'HOLD' when driving long distances (Beyond the electric range) at ~ 70MPH? Etc?

Looking forward to some data! Thanks!
 

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I have 2500 miles on my 2017 LT. I haven't taken any long highway trips yet, so no help there. In the city, you cannot go wrong by keeping the little green bubble/ball in the left side of the instrument cluster right in the middle of its range. Accelerating hard enough to move it (doesn't take much) upward will noticeably reduce economy, as will decelerating hard enough to move it downward (again, doesn't take much). Your local traffic environment will determine just how far you can go with this. Obviously, if you're in an area where there's a fair amount of traffic, and you follow my advice religiously, you're going to die of road rage. I do follow my own advice, but only when/where it's polite to do so. Even so, my car's lifetime MPGe is 129 right now, and has been steadily climbing at a rate of slightly more than 1 number/week. So far, the highest MPGe that I've seen on a single round trip has been 189, and my daily all-electric range is averaging 76 miles, so far. I always leave the shifter in "D", and I only use the re-gen paddle when someone stops suddenly in front of me. The heavy re-gen induced by the paddle does not result in the most efficient regeneration possible...that's why that green efficiency bubble/ball in the display dives for the bottom and turns yellow when you use it. GM optimized the systems on this car to operate most efficiently on their own in the vast majority of circumstances. They purposely left a lot of them vulnerable to owner manipulation because they understand about human nature and the need to mess with things, but if your true goal remains, as stated by you, ultimate efficiency, then you may want to give the many engineers who designed/refined this car the benefit of the doubt. Try letting their system work its own magic before messing around with all the "goodies", unless you often drive in the mountains or some such. Then you can use one of the driving "modes" that they've thoughtfully provided for those instances, as well.

All of the above refers to electric-only operation, as that's almost all I've seen so far. I say "almost" because after I'd had the car for over two months without the ICE ever running, I decided to leave the house one day with a full charge while placing the car in "hold" mode...just to make sure my ICE would operate normally if I ever needed it. I drove all around the area in "hold" that day, putting on about 80 miles. I drove the car exactly the same as I drive it in "normal" (electric) mode...that is, conscious of the bubble/ball...and ended up with a round trip fuel economy of 47 mpg. That's the only gasoline that I've burned so far. I think the next time I need gas for my yard equipment, I'll siphon some out of the Volt. I don't know how I'll ever get rid of it before it goes bad...I don't want the car just burning it for "maintenance" if I can put it to good use doing actual work.

Enjoy your new Volt!
 

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I have 2500 miles on my 2017 LT. I haven't taken any long highway trips yet, so no help there. In the city, you cannot go wrong by keeping the little green bubble/ball in the left side of the instrument cluster right in the middle of its range. Accelerating hard enough to move it (doesn't take much) upward will noticeably reduce economy, as will decelerating hard enough to move it downward (again, doesn't take much). Your local traffic environment will determine just how far you can go with this. Obviously, if you're in an area where there's a fair amount of traffic, and you follow my advice religiously, you're going to die of road rage. I do follow my own advice, but only when/where it's polite to do so. Even so, my car's lifetime MPGe is 129 right now, and has been steadily climbing at a rate of slightly more than 1 number/week. So far, the highest MPGe that I've seen on a single round trip has been 189, and my daily all-electric range is averaging 76 miles, so far. I always leave the shifter in "D", and I only use the re-gen paddle when someone stops suddenly in front of me. The heavy re-gen induced by the paddle does not result in the most efficient regeneration possible...that's why that green efficiency bubble/ball in the display dives for the bottom and turns yellow when you use it. GM optimized the systems on this car to operate most efficiently on their own in the vast majority of circumstances. They purposely left a lot of them vulnerable to owner manipulation because they understand about human nature and the need to mess with things, but if your true goal remains, as stated by you, ultimate efficiency, then you may want to give the many engineers who designed/refined this car the benefit of the doubt. Try letting their system work its own magic before messing around with all the "goodies", unless you often drive in the mountains or some such. Then you can use one of the driving "modes" that they've thoughtfully provided for those instances, as well.

All of the above refers to electric-only operation, as that's almost all I've seen so far. I say "almost" because after I'd had the car for over two months without the ICE ever running, I decided to leave the house one day with a full charge while placing the car in "hold" mode...just to make sure my ICE would operate normally if I ever needed it. I drove all around the area in "hold" that day, putting on about 80 miles. I drove the car exactly the same as I drive it in "normal" (electric) mode...that is, conscious of the bubble/ball...and ended up with a round trip fuel economy of 47 mpg. That's the only gasoline that I've burned so far. I think the next time I need gas for my yard equipment, I'll siphon some out of the Volt. I don't know how I'll ever get rid of it before it goes bad...I don't want the car just burning it for "maintenance" if I can put it to good use doing actual work.

Enjoy your new Volt!
Interesting, so in other words, drive it gently like a normal car and the Electric range will also improve on the Volt. You mentioned using the regen paddle when someone suddenly stops in front of you, do you ever use the brake pedal? I thought the regen pedal won't stop you completely?

I'm still shopping for a Volt so don't have anything to report, just curious.
 

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Yeah, I saw that but not clear if based on facts and actual results.

I was thinking the more the regen went negative, the better... But you actually want to be as center as possible, whether expelling or regaining energy. Is that correct?
For acceleration, clearly the more progressive the more efficient. When you accelerate fast, you waste more energy fighting inertia and with friction losses.

For speed, the faster you go the less efficient as you have to fight an exponential amount of air resistance.

If you have to stop within a certain distance, then using regen as much as possible is the best of course. But if you can plan ahead to minimize the amount of braking necessary, then that is a better proposition.

Think of it this way, if you have to brake (regen or otherwise), it means you wasted energy by accelerating the car faster than it needed to.
Regen does recuperate some of that energy, but not all of it, so the less you need to brake, the better. But when you do, use regen with any of the solutions offered to you. L, paddle or brake pedal, all will be equally efficient to recuperate the slowing down energy.

Which one you use depends on your preference based on the comfort they give you.
 

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And in case you haven't come across this yet, range and efficiency are dependent upon the 5T's: temperature, terrain, technique, traffic and tire pressure.

On Father's Day, my son drove to my place in CD mode and we then drove to various places. From his house until battery depletion he never exceeded 50-55 mph. During the last part of the day, we drove around 25-35 mph for perhaps 15-20 minutes on Shelter Island driving up and down hills while looking at the houses and the water. He has a 2016 and had 6693 miles on the clock when he reached 80.5 miles on the battery. We made a rough calculation of range between his car with the 18.4 kWh battery and my 2014 with the 17.1 kwh battery (yes, it got the 2015 battery capacity). All things being equal, we determined that my battery range should be around 70 miles. That the best I have gotten is 54 miles points to the better efficiency that the Gen2 enjoys over the Gen1.
 

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I am a total noob but a new owner of a 2017 Volt and I love using so little gas!!!

I have done plenty of searching and seen plenty of opinions but no real imperial facts. Now that the Gen 2 have been out for a little while... What are the facts? What are the real world results?

City driving:
What's best? "D" or "L"? "D" with paddles? "L" with paddles? Etc?

Highway driving:
What's best? "D" and 'HOLD' when driving long distances (Beyond the electric range) at ~ 70MPH? Etc?

Looking forward to some data! Thanks!
I played around with "L" vs "D", too, but have found that "L" only really benefits me when I do a steep downhill that has a low speed limit (15-20 mph). Just leave in "D" and let the car do its thing.

For "HOLD" mode, this is only useful if you would otherwise exhaust your battery before plugging in again. It forces gas usage, and saves the EV mode for more efficient uses, like city driving. So, even if you drive 80 mph on the interstate, EV mode is probably best if you're still going to plug in and charge before the battery runs out.
 

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Interesting, so in other words, drive it gently like a normal car and the Electric range will also improve on the Volt. You mentioned using the regen paddle when someone suddenly stops in front of you, do you ever use the brake pedal? I thought the regen pedal won't stop you completely?

I'm still shopping for a Volt so don't have anything to report, just curious.
I should have said that I only use the paddle when stopping distances are fairly short. I didn't mean to imply that I never use the brake pedal. I use it alot...it's only possible to modulate regen while using the brake with varying pressure. The regen paddle gives a fixed, and rather aggressive, amount of regen...as does placing the shifter in "L". Using "L" simply makes every lift of the accelerator a fixed-rate, regen-paddle event. So, as someone pointed out, "L" would be good for low-speed downhill running...say, coming down Pike's Peak, etc. The regen paddle with pull the car down to almost completely stopped...to maybe 1 or 2 mph, where the car's in-gear creeping speed wants to take over.

In almost all conventional driving situations, leaving the shifter in "D" and using gentle pedal motions will get you right where you want to be, in terms of efficiency.
 

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Recall reading (not GM Manual) that D allowed up to 44kwh/L49/ROD(paddle)54-i.e each offers different regen.Generally D seems to offer best overall since deceleration is slower resulting in longer time in regen mode.L very advantageous on downhill slope to maintain speed without braking & provide increased regen.The paddle provides max regen for a short time so,as mentioned previously,it helps if need to slow quickly,without having to use brake pedal.Uphill driving uses a lot of electric miles so if possible try to limit that,drive moderately and limit cruising speeds.Watch that power readout atop DIC-it helps.Enjoy your Volt.(Don-2017 LT-Big Island,HI.)
 

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Actually in EV
SPEED is one of the t's

Coasting to a stop as much as possible helps
 

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I am a total noob but a new owner of a 2017 Volt and I love using so little gas!!!

I have done plenty of searching and seen plenty of opinions but no real imperial facts. Now that the Gen 2 have been out for a little while... What are the facts? What are the real world results?

City driving:
What's best? "D" or "L"? "D" with paddles? "L" with paddles? Etc?

Highway driving:
What's best? "D" and 'HOLD' when driving long distances (Beyond the electric range) at ~ 70MPH? Etc?

Looking forward to some data! Thanks!
Ask Ari...:)
 
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