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Discussion Starter #1
My wife has become addicted to never going to the gas station, so while she's not thrilled with the look of the new generation, she's leaning towards getting the new one when her 2014's lease expires this summer.

Some questions:
- Did they put in a grab handle on the passenger side?
- Can you set it to charge at 110V 12 amps permanently? Or do you have to set that every time you plug in?*
- Does the region mode(s) feel same as the previous? I always drive in Low, but my wife and kid don't like how the car instantly slows.

Meanwhile, I'm feeling some urge to change from my Kia Sorento to something hybrid. I really wish there was a Voltec SUV (and it's gotta be an SUV to fit my Golden Retriever and go camping). My current leading candidate is I guess a Toyota RAV4 Hybrid...options are few...is there even a Ford Escape Hybrid any more? The new Chevrolet Equinox also looks nice, though I wonder how the mileage would be with the 2.0 (1.5 is just too small for that size vehicle, even with a turbo, which then would just be straining a lot. That will be yet another small-motor turbo car that doesn't meet it's EPA rating in the real world...)


*We plug this thing in on our porch. With our 2014, I leave it to charge at 8 amps, it pretty much gets fully charged each night, and only on occasion do we use gas (About 4-5 gallons a month). That gives me zero incentive for a bunch of electrical work and $600 worth of 240V charge cable. However, in conjunction with other electrical work, I could easily have the porch rewired for a beefier outlet and massive wire back to the electric box, allowing 12A charging with no problem.
 

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I'm only able to go by specifics that have been discussed on the forum, so I can't speak from experience but I do understand that the Gen 2 does have a GPS based setting that will allow you to set it to always default to 12A charging from one location, so if it's set at home, it will always charge at 12A without having to change it from 8. The other two would be best answered by other forum members who do have a Gen 2.

On a side note, with the Volt being as versatile as it is as far as having the gas backup, has your wife considered looking at the Bolt? The range is far better and would definitely satisfy her desire never to go to a gas station again.
 

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Some questions:
- Did they put in a grab handle on the passenger side?
- Can you set it to charge at 110V 12 amps permanently? Or do you have to set that every time you plug in?*
- Does the region mode(s) feel same as the previous? I always drive in Low, but my wife and kid don't like how the car instantly slows.
1. No
2. Sort of, you can set a GPS location and it will remember that
3. Regen in both Drive and Low feels the same, but now they included the Paddle on the steering wheel and it's even more aggressive than LOW. And as always you can use the brake pedal (blended brakes) to determine how much regen you want/need with your foot.

Personally I don't like driving in LOW, I like lifting off the throttle EARLY and costing as long as possible (traffic permitting) and then if I need to come to a stop use the paddles and only touch the brake pedal to come to a complete stop. I wish the car would come to a complete stop when using the paddle.

And the extra 15 miles of range and more efficient HVAC system is a significant UPGRADE.
 

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2. Sort of, you can set a GPS location and it will remember that.
But only for 90 days at a time, which reminds me to go check my wife's car.
 

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Driving in L might be fun, but it will give the wife and kids carsickness. Adding an even higher regen with the paddles will get them sicker even quicker. So my advice is to only use these when you're driving the car alone. Just stay in D and use the brakes when they are in the car. And remember, keeping your momentum and coasting like the dickens is better for your range than max regen.

One option you haven't presented....why not check with the leasing company to see if they are willing to drop the price of the lease buyout? Many folks have reported being able to get their volts for about $13k. You know the history of this car, the gen2 has a goofy looking lower grill, and it looks like you don't really need the extra EV range.

And as for not having an L2 EVSE, I would just get one anyway. It is oh so nice and liberating to drive, come back from shopping, plug in, then be able to jump back in without having to wait 8-10 hours to go somewhere else. The money you've saved in fuel so far could easily pay for it. Thus the freedom of being able to top off a completely empty volt in 4 hours is well worth it, even though the mathnnerd in you can't justify the price. Think of it as a car option like leather seats. You don't need it but you really want it.
 

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I really wish there was a Voltec SUV (and it's gotta be an SUV to fit my Golden Retriever and go camping). My current leading candidate is I guess a Toyota RAV4 Hybrid...options are few..
I was thinking the exact same thing! Why doesn't GM come out with a SUV volt! It would solve many of our problems and for sure I would get rid of our SUV and use the SUV-Volt for trips!

Some say GM still loses money on each Volt/Bolt sold. If so, then I see there's no incentive for them to build a SUV-Volt, as that would only mean more loss. Kind of sad if this is the reason.

Driving in L might be fun, but it will give the wife and kids carsickness. Adding an even higher regen with the paddles will get them sicker even quicker. So my advice is to only use these when you're driving the car alone. Just stay in D and use the brakes when they are in the car..
Sage advice! I like to drive in L, and my wife always gets car sick in my volt (kids seems to be fine). I need to remember to drive in D when they are in the car! I think it helps, but haven't been able to prove it definitely, as she refuse to get in the volt as passenger. ;)
 

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But only for 90 days at a time, which reminds me to go check my wife's car.
I've had mine set at 12 longer than 90 days, I think...although I haven't had mine out of the dealer for that long consecutively, so maybe the dealer visits reset the time or something...

My current leading candidate is I guess a Toyota RAV4 Hybrid...options are few...is there even a Ford Escape Hybrid any more?
Ford doesn't have a hybrid SUV anymore; the closest is the C-Max. Toyota/Lexus is the only brand that currently offers a hybrid SUV. That being said, my family owned a Highlander Hybrid for 11 years and it was a perfect vehicle...extremely reliable and fun to drive. So, if you do decide that a new Volt is too small, you won't be disappointed by a Toyota :)
 

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I was thinking the exact same thing! Why doesn't GM come out with a SUV volt! It would solve many of our problems and for sure I would get rid of our SUV and use the SUV-Volt for trips!

Some say GM still loses money on each Volt/Bolt sold. If so, then I see there's no incentive for them to build a SUV-Volt, as that would only mean more loss. Kind of sad if this is the reason.



Sage advice! I like to drive in L, and my wife always gets car sick in my volt (kids seems to be fine). I need to remember to drive in D when they are in the car! I think it helps, but haven't been able to prove it definitely, as she refuse to get in the volt as passenger. ;)
I'd kill for a Voltec Equinox/Silverado/Subyukonade.

As for driving in L, if you're a leadfoot, it doesn't matter whether you are in D or L, or whether you're driving a Volt or an ICE vehicle. Try driving like a grandpa instead of driving like Jeff Gordon. But when you have the volt to yourself....
 

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Discussion Starter #9
On a side note, with the Volt being as versatile as it is as far as having the gas backup, has your wife considered looking at the Bolt? The range is far better and would definitely satisfy her desire never to go to a gas station again.
No, then we would really need higher level charging, and that would be a bunch of money. You could pretty much do anything but a road trip with the Bolt, though.
 

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Discussion Starter #10
more efficient HVAC system is a significant UPGRADE.
Oh? Tell me more.

And, tell me about your Equinox, how do you like it? I'm starting to think about moving on from my Sorento, and the new Equinox looks pretty nice. What motor do you have?
 

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No, then we would really need higher level charging, and that would be a bunch of money. You could pretty much do anything but a road trip with the Bolt, though.
Your charging time for a Bolt using level I charging at 12 amps would not be that much more than you spend charging your Gen 1 Volt. Assuming your daily average miles driven does not change, the 5 gallons per month you currently use represents perhaps 200 miles per month of driving using gas. That is about 6 miles per day. So assuming level I charging @ 12 amps the Bolt would take an extra 1.25 hours on average to charge. If you didn't finish charging one day, because you run out of time, you would catch up the next night. With more than 200 mile range you could skip a day and still have enough battery range to continue your daily driving. Level II charging would be worthwhile upgrade when you are ready.
 

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Another advantage to L2 charging is reduced electrical rates (approx. 3 cents per KWH vs 12 cents) while charging in the AM. My power company has the capability to monitor the time of usage. You might want to check with your power company to see if they offer that.

Have you or your wife considered a Malibu Hybrid? I know it's not an SUV and you'll need to go to the gas station more often, but you don't have to plug it in. I've driven one and liked it, but it's hard to give up the silent ICE free driving range of a plug in.
 

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Discussion Starter #13
Your charging time for a Bolt using level I charging at 12 amps would not be that much more than you spend charging your Gen 1 Volt. Assuming your daily average miles driven does not change, the 5 gallons per month you currently use represents perhaps 200 miles per month of driving using gas. That is about 6 miles per day. So assuming level I charging @ 12 amps the Bolt would take an extra 1.25 hours on average to charge. If you didn't finish charging one day, because you run out of time, you would catch up the next night. With more than 200 mile range you could skip a day and still have enough battery range to continue your daily driving. Level II charging would be worthwhile upgrade when you are ready.
Hmm, that is kind of true, once the thing was "topped off" it shouldn't really run out, because the most that car usually goes might be 60-70 miles once in a while. IIRC though she didn't like how it looked as much, and I'm not tripping across that minefield! I'll show her some pictures and see what she says.
 

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Discussion Starter #14
Another advantage to L2 charging is reduced electrical rates (approx. 3 cents per KWH vs 12 cents) while charging in the AM. My power company has the capability to monitor the time of usage. You might want to check with your power company to see if they offer that.
3 cents? Interesting, I should re-check what So Cal Edison says. Right now we're on a time-of-day plan, 13 cents in the middle of the night and somewhat more in the evening. They do offer a separate-meter plan, but again all that stuff seems like it would start to become a lot of expenditure for not a great payback, and we have other expenses that are more urgent like "We need new couches!!!" ("Yes dear, if you say so...")

Have you or your wife considered a Malibu Hybrid? I know it's not an SUV and you'll need to go to the gas station more often, but you don't have to plug it in. I've driven one and liked it, but it's hard to give up the silent ICE free driving range of a plug in.
That looks quite nice, but too long. My wife makes home calls, so shorter is better for parking. Now if they had a Cruze hybrid, mmm. I must say the Chevrolet products have really improved a lot inside, they look pretty nice.
 

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I lucked out in 2012 to get in on a program by the power company where they provided the charger. All I had to pay was for an electrician to run the power lines to the charger. That program ended soon after that.

I have the same issue with the Malibu. It's almost 17 inches longer than the 2015 Volt. I'd have to rearrange things in the garage to make it fit. Plus smaller cars are usually more fun to drive.
 

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No, then we would really need higher level charging, and that would be a bunch of money. You could pretty much do anything but a road trip with the Bolt, though.
Why would you need more charging if you got the Bolt? Would you increase your driving so much that 120V 12 amp charging could not keep up? I was able to drive my Volt 165.17 miles in one day on 120V 12 amp charging.

Granted, that was me doing it just to see how far I could push it, but if you managed to drive the Bolt empty by driving for 5 hours strait lets say from 8:00 AM to Noon, and then plugged it in for the next 19 hours on 120V 12 amps you would have over 70 miles of range by 8:00 AM the next day.

Later,

Keith
 

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Why would you need more charging if you got the Bolt? Would you increase your driving so much that 120V 12 amp charging could not keep up? I was able to drive my Volt 165.17 miles in one day on 120V 12 amp charging.

Granted, that was me doing it just to see how far I could push it, but if you managed to drive the Bolt empty by driving for 5 hours strait lets say from 8:00 AM to Noon, and then plugged it in for the next 19 hours on 120V 12 amps you would have over 70 miles of range by 8:00 AM the next day.
Lotta people only look at how long it takes to fully charge a battery, forgetting that it takes a lot less time if it's not empty in the first place. Most days, they're still not going to use more than about 5-6 hours of charging, so getting 10 hours in is a net gain, even if doing the whole thing takes 30 hours and they don't have time for that.
 

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You can view the Bolt's battery capacity as being a modest sized fuel tank. Many smaller vehicles have small gas tanks, i.e. less than 15 gallon capacity, yet we think nothing of driving around with even a small gas tank less than half full. You really only need to fully charge the Bolt's 60kwh battery to 100% if you are going on a long road trip. For daily driving, a half-charged Bolt battery has probably more than twice as much battery range as you would need for daily driving.
 
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