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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
After 3 failed attempts (one sold out from under me and two botched deals with Carvana) I finally picked up my first Volt this past Saturday.

I purchased from a local Houston (Katy) dealer. It is a 2015 Premium with what I think amounts to all the available options.

Like every car, there is the good and the not so good.

It is red (good).

It has the black leather (good).

It has 5,000 miles (good).

It was a demo (not so good).

Most of the miles are in CS mode as the lifetime average is 44.5mpg (probably not so good...but fortunately the miles are still very low).

I am the original title holder, so get the Tax Deduction (very good).

I read the story "A Tale of Two Volts", so I was prepared for the battery/guess-o-meter to be a little confused/wacko...and I think it was.

My salesman is a Volt owner, so in addition to having the oil/filter changed prior to delivery (OLM was at 14% as the car was at the dealership 23 months), he made sure the battery was fully charged overnight.

When I picked the car up, the DIC said 27 mile of battery available. I drove home 18 miles with just the fan on low and the DIC said 22 miles available (?). My son took it out for a spin and brought it back at 15 miles available.

I put the car on the OEM 115V charger and let it go until the car indicated the charge was complete. This took about 9 hours. DIC said 31 miles.

I had to go out of town the next day (Sunday), but when I got home around 6pm I plugged it back in and it charged another hour or so and now read 32 miles. I guess we call that burping?

This morning I drove the car to work. I left at 0545, so of course had the lights on. No HVAC...just the windows cracked a half inch. I was driving carefully, and traffic was light for a Houston work-day, given the early hour and the fact that some folks were off for President's Day.

I drove the 12 miles to work (from far NW Houston to I-10/Kirkwood) via Hwy 6, Clay Road, Eldridge Road, I-10 Feeder (for those familiar with the route). Energy usage was 2.2 kWh! DIC still read 32 miles (and that's why we call it a guess-o-meter!).

I decided to drive a long route home, to get the battery nearly depleted. I ended up putting a total of 49.7 miles on the battery, and used 10.2 kWh. The DIC indicated 5 miles of battery remaining.

It was raining most of the drive home, but I had Rain-X on the windshield and only hit the wipers a couple times.

My route home included about 10 miles of I-10 at 55 to 62mph, and then mostly back roads north from Old Katy to Clay, east to Barker Cypress, north to 290 then to Huffmeister.

I am a bit shocked that I got that sort of performance from the battery after it had lived for two years mostly at a very low SOC...but that shows you what I know!

I plugged the car in as soon as I got home (about 5pm) and the car said charge would be complete at 0645! Holy cow...13.75 hours to replenish 10.2 kWh? Maybe that L2 charger is in my future....

Anyway, I have really enjoyed the first 70 miles in my "new" car. I remember when the Volt was first being talked about. I chuckled to myself...Chevrolet/GM can barely get a simple car right - what chance do they have with something this complex?

Perhaps Chevy/GM get the last laugh? After mostly driving VW, Volvo, Lexus and Toyota for the past 30 years, my daily is now a Chevy.

Oh, and when my 24 year old finished his little drive in my Volt, he turned to look at his R-Design C30, then back at the Volt. Then he said "I could own one of these Volts"!
 

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Yes, that displayed range is just an estimate and would be very low if it's been sitting a lot, mostly not charged and occasionally driven short distances.

Good things for range:
- warm temperatures
- smooth, dry surfaces
- low to moderate speeds
- flat terrain
- no HVAC use
- higher tire pressures
 

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Keep in mind too that the car defaults to the slower 8 amp charge rate which is about 12 hours for a fully depleted battery. If you press the leaf button and choose the charging tab it will allow you to change to the 12 amp setting. This will have to be done each time as it doesn't stay. After a couple weeks the GOM should start reading a bit more accurately as it adjusts to learn your driving patterns.

I agree that the Volt is an incredible marvel of technology, but it just goes to show how accomplished engineers from the US can really compete with some of the brightest minds on the planet to create something so complex yet reliable and impressively simple to operate.
 

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Keep in mind the car uses a combination of past history and current use to guage your estimated range. it will take a couple hundred miles of driving for the car to learn your typical driving. After that you should find that the range estimator will become fairly accurate. Unless there is a major change in your habits. As an example an unusually cold day where you use the climate control.
 

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If you got 49.7 miles with 5 miles left on the GOM (guessometer), then you're driving too much like a grandpa. try driving it like you're racing that R30 and enjoy. Given your commute, it sounds like you are well within range, now go torch some pony cars and ricer boys.

Don't worry, I drove like a grandpa for 2 years and then bam, I threw on some 18" wheels, stickier tires, and now drive more like Jeff Gordon. My MPG rating dropped from 90 to 70 MPG, still blows away any Prius (except for the new Prime - on a long trip, it might beat the volt in mpg, but not in fun).
 

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(In short, drive it how you like. If gaming up the displayed range is fun for you, do it. If you feel like beating Mustangs down the block, do it. If you feel like driving 62 on a freeway, do it. If you feel like cutting off an F350 in traffic because you're faster and more maneuverable, don't do that because you're being an ass. ;) )
 

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In short, drive it how you like....
I agree!
Just don't pinch those expensive electrons too hard,,, because they are not expensive. You are driving as cheap as it gets !
Enjoy! The honeymoon period lasts a long time with these cars !
 

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The Guess-O-Meter--really the Predict-O-Meter as the Guess-O-Meter is where it tells you Kwh use--is really responding to the difference between your driving style and how the car was driven as a demo. What that means is that your driving style is efficient, not that you burped it.

As llninja above alludes, the car can be fun to drive without worrying about all those electrons, but from my perspective, its best to settle into the car--and let it settle into you--before you let your inner child out. At least that way--presuming you don't cause an accident--you know the cost in electrons of being that way. No harm, no foul, the Predict-O-Meter will return to its senses shortly after you do.
 

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Great post!

We just purchased our "new to us" 2014 Volt Premium yesterday. It is a fully optioned "off lease" car with 20,000 miles on it. I can not see any wear or defects anywhere on this baby.

Just finished it's first charge, (took 14 hours so an L2 charger has already been ordered), and the guess-o-meter showed 30 miles available so I was wondering about this very subject. I guess this thread took care of my question. Thank you!
 

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I think all of us, when we first get the Volt, try to see how high we can get the GOM to report the next day. After a while, one reverts back to their old driving habits.
 

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If you got 49.7 miles with 5 miles left on the GOM (guessometer), then you're driving too much like a grandpa. try driving it like you're racing that R30 and enjoy. Given your commute, it sounds like you are well within range, now go torch some pony cars and ricer boys.

Don't worry, I drove like a grandpa for 2 years and then bam, I threw on some 18" wheels, stickier tires, and now drive more like Jeff Gordon. My MPG rating dropped from 90 to 70 MPG, still blows away any Prius (except for the new Prime - on a long trip, it might beat the volt in mpg, but not in fun).
Indeed and I'm so with you! I've been waiting for my original tires to wear out and get stickier tires...
 

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Give it about two weeks to learn your driving style and good to go.
I would fully deplete the battery each time for 8-10 cycles to help it recalibrate as well.
 

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Indeed and I'm so with you! I've been waiting for my original tires to wear out and get stickier tires...
It took me 2 years, then I got 18" Sport Edition P4 wheels from Tire Rack and Yokohama Avid Ascends. After almost 35K miles on these Yokohamas, they are still deep treadded have much more tread life in them. I should easily be able go another 20-30k miles, maybe more
 

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Discussion Starter #16
Interesting variety of replies and opinions!

I have noticed that the crew here is quite varied in many ways...not the least of which is why they bought their Volt, and how they use it.

I spent most of the last 14 years squeezing the max mpg out of various VW TDI cars. The diesel emission cheating scandal has, at least for the time being, ended that gig.

My Volt is intended to be my daily commuter and given my analytical side, I am quite interested in learning just what this technology is capable of in my hands and with my drive cycle. As for driving like a Grandpa, I am pushing 60, so I have an excuse!

Today's charge took me 52.1 miles on 11.1 kWh. The car switched over to CS mode as I was pulling into the driveway!

I went to the dealer today and had them re-set the lifetime mpg, to get rid of that nasty 44.5 mpg from mostly CS mode...so now what the vehicle shows is just what I've done.

And in the interest of full disclosure, I have now driven the car 125 miles and I have yet to apply more than half the go-pedal!

You can call me "Feather-Foot"! :)

I am curious to see what the stated range will show tomorrow morning. As mentiioned by several here, it should gradually figure out there is a new Sheriff in town.


Tim
 

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First off, I would be glad that the gas engine got some use so it wasn't sitting around for 3 years. I wouldn't sweat it.

More importantly, what was their asking price on a "new" 2015. Seems like a steal if you can still find one (and we're all still able to take the tax credit next year).
 

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Today's charge took me 52.1 miles on 11.1 kWh.
Sounds like it's operating perfectly. You should see the morning range estimate shoot up a bit each day until settling around your norm.
 

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Discussion Starter #19
First off, I would be glad that the gas engine got some use so it wasn't sitting around for 3 years. I wouldn't sweat it.

More importantly, what was their asking price on a "new" 2015. Seems like a steal if you can still find one (and we're all still able to take the tax credit next year).
Fully loaded Red Tintcoat - MSRP on the sticker is $39,475. Allowing for the $7,500 tax credit, I paid $18,471.
 

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Discussion Starter #20
Sounds like it's operating perfectly. You should see the morning range estimate shoot up a bit each day until settling around your norm.
Yup, that's exactly what is happening. Up a few miles each of the first two days, and a whopping 10 more this morning (said 42).

I only drove 29 miles today, on 5.6 kWh.

I still haven't been able to get the stupid grin off my face.

TDI Sportwagon? What TDI Sportwagon? :)
 
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