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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I've noticed, in quite a few threads on this forum discussing the pros and cons of driving in L, some people expressing concerns that by driving in L they are, or could be, inviting being rear-ended by an inattentive driver -- a driver apparently looking for but not seeing any brake lights come on the Volt ahead of them (driving in L, of course). But it seems to me that this has always been posed as speculation rather than described as an event that occurred.

So I will ask here, whether you, while driving a Volt in L, have ever, in fact, been rear-ended?

If this has actually happened to you, please provide a bit of info about the circumstances.

Just the facts, Ma'am!

PS: I was going to post this as a poll but I don't understand about "options" and anyway this isn't about opinions, it's about actual events.
 

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I use L almost exclusively and no rear end hits here after 3 years on either Volt.

I attribute this to rear view mirror observations, if needed a quick flash of the brake lights is usually enough to warn the followers.
 

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No. What is your point, Bammerman? By asking if we were "actually" ever rear-ended, I think I know your position already.

If this thread is to encourage unsafe driving, then I will provide another viewpoint. I haven't been in an accident in decades, but I still wear a seat belt (even if it wasn't the law), because it could happen and isn't worth the risk. I HAVE been rear-ended, when I was at a red light thirty years ago.

I DO drive in L when approaching a red light, but I ALWAYS look in my rearview mirror first to make sure someone isn't behind me, and I always put my turn signal on first before I slow down (in D or L) if I'm going to turn mid-block. I don't want to chance a rear-end collision and having back problems for the rest of my life.

I also look before stepping into a crosswalk. Yeah, I'm right, but I don't want to be dead right.
 

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I don't have a Volt, but I was rear ended in my Buick Regal, and the guy who hit my car did see my tail lights on. His excuse was that his Ford Econoline van has bad brakes. His van had to be towed away. I drove my Regal home and had it repaired.

So no option of stop or flashing tail lights will prevent any car from getting read ended!
 

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The responses to this thread can not constitute a valid sample of Volt drivers.

Having said that, I will add that I never drive in L because rapid deceleration without brake lights increases the risk of collision. I also always wear my seat belt, clear any snow from all windows before driving and replace burned out bulbs as soon as possible. Anyone else can choose their own poison.

KNS
 

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I've had my Volt for almost 3 years, I drive almost exclusively in L, and I've not been rear-ended - not even a close rear-end collision.

On the hi-way, I sometimes switch to D (if I remember) because it is smoother.

However, in conventional ICE cars, I've been rear-ended 5 times. People just don't pay attention.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
No. What is your point, Bammerman? By asking if we were "actually" ever rear-ended, I think I know your position already.
I don't have a "point"; I'm trying to gather information from people who "actually" have it.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
The responses to this thread can not constitute a valid sample of Volt drivers.
I would say, rather, that the responses to this thread may not constitute a valid sample of Volt drivers. We cannot know for sure. But I think asking the question is better (i.e., provides more information) than not doing so.
 

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. . . in quite a few threads . . . some people expressing concerns that by driving in L they are, or could be, inviting being rear-ended by an inattentive driver -- But it seems to me that this has always been posed as speculation rather than described as an event that occurred.
I'll be surprised if we hear about any . . we would have already heard about it in those "quite a few threads."
 

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We have had this "discussion" in the past. Some on here are very supportive of driving in L; however, I am not. I choose to not experience the rapid deceleration by using L. I do believe using L puts you at more risk of being rear ended under certain circumstances. For me, I grew up driving a standard shift car. Driving in L and completely releasing pressure from the accelerator is about the equivalent of skipping two gears in a standard shift. For example, the deceleration is so strong that I would compare it to going from 4th gear to 2nd gear. While others can choose to drive this way, if it were my decision, I would encourage GM to have the volt apply the brake lights under such strong deceleration. As drivers, even keeping the proper 2-3 seconds of distance, this type of rapid deceleration without the brake lights warning the driver behind me is cause for concern for me, so I simply choose to not use it except under the circumstance described in the owners manual which states using L is for controlling speed going down steep hills, in deep snow, or in mud. That to me states that L was never designed to be used as others on here use it. For me, it is simply to much of a safety concern. Pretty close to the equivalent of a driver having no brake lights. I understand there are strong feeling about this, but this is how I view it along with the owner's manual. Previously a couple of weeks ago, we drove to the top of the Smokey Mountains. On the way back down, I used L and never once touched the brakes I believe I used L for its intended purpose.
 

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The responses to this thread can not constitute a valid sample of Volt drivers.

Having said that, I will add that I never drive in L because rapid deceleration without brake lights increases the risk of collision. I also always wear my seat belt, clear any snow from all windows before driving and replace burned out bulbs as soon as possible. Anyone else can choose their own poison.

KNS
As has been discussed ad nauseum on this forum, if it was too rapid then it would invoke the Federal Safety Standards and require the brake lights to come on. But there is not sufficient deceleration to require that. There is nothing wrong with driving in L except for the fears of some drivers. If it's not for you, then don't do it.
 

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Yes. Yes I HAVE been rear ended. In a 1996 Ford Mustang. I was stopped at a stop light and someone drove into me.

The Volt is no more likely to be rear ended than my 1996 Ford Mustang was.

Does a 1998 Ford Mustang put it's brake lights on when you downshift?

Does a Dodge Pickup Truck put it's brake lights on when you downshift?

Does a Semi Truck put it's brake lights on when it downshifts?

Does ANY conventional car activate it's bake lights when you downshift?

NO.


And just to make it clear... If a driver A crashes into the back of Driver B... The LAW says Driver A is at fault. (No exceptions.) Does not matter if Driver B's brake lights were on or not. If Driver A rear ends Driver B... Driver A is at fault 100% of the time. It is the responsibility of Driver A to leave a safe following distance to stop in time safely. Brake lights are NOT responsible for stopping driver A under the law. it is Driver A's responsibility to leave enough space to stop in time.

End of story.
 

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For me, I grew up driving a standard shift car. Driving in L and completely releasing pressure from the accelerator is about the equivalent of skipping two gears in a standard shift. For example, the deceleration is so strong that I would compare it to going from 4th gear to 2nd gear.
Sorry. That's just not true. The deceleration from lifting your foot off in L is perhaps comparable to downshifting one gear, maybe. I've driven manual transmissions my whole life. With your experience, surely you also know that dropping from 4th to 2nd at normal RPM risks blowing the clutch and having your passengers brace against the jolt. There is just no way that driving a Volt in L is anything like that, ever.

And by the way, who says that an L driver suddenly should lift his/her foot, unless the situation encourages it? We frequently discuss feathering the accelerator in L as a less strenuous and more efficient (NEVER touching the brake pads) alternative to feathering the brake pedal.
 

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As has been discussed ad nauseum on this forum, if it was too rapid then it would invoke the Federal Safety Standards and require the brake lights to come on. But there is not sufficient deceleration to require that. There is nothing wrong with driving in L except for the fears of some drivers. If it's not for you, then don't do it.
See regs and how the Volt compares here: http://gm-volt.com/forum/showthread.php?25953-Brake-Light-Actuation&p=332929#post332929 also compares amount of Volt L deceleration to that of manual downshifting in other cars.

Summary: The Volt's L deceleration is below the limit (JUST below) requiring the brake lights to come on, while a Mustang 3-2 downshifting is 2X greater than the Volts, Accelerating a Mustang in 2nd and then taking your foot off the pedal (no downshifting) also decelerates faster of the Volt in L. All this is to say, the Volt in L meets the existing safety regulations for brake lights and is certainly less of a hazard than at least some cars with a manual transmission that are downshifting or simply not accelerating.

The "I Feel" comment almost always comes up when the poster desires the brake lights to come on while in L, regardless of the law or facts. But it's a feeling rather than a fact. and there is a simple solution, don't use L or tap your brake pedal if you "feel" unsafe.

Keep in mind it is a fact that brake lights do not prevent being rear-ended. An inattentive driver will rear-end a parked car, a car with brake lights on, a police car stopped with all it's lights going. Happens all the time. But if it makes you "feel" safer to have brake lights on, then tap your brakes or drive in D.
 

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Sorry. That's just not true. The deceleration from lifting your foot off in L is perhaps comparable to downshifting one gear, maybe. I've driven manual transmissions my whole life. With your experience, surely you also know that dropping from 4th to 2nd at normal RPM risks blowing the clutch and having your passengers brace against the jolt. There is just no way that driving a Volt in L is anything like that, ever.

And by the way, who says that an L driver suddenly should lift his/her foot, unless the situation encourages it? We frequently discuss feathering the accelerator in L as a less strenuous and more efficient (NEVER touching the brake pads) alternative to feathering the brake pedal.
I believe copying my whole post would have probably been a little more appropriate.
 
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