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Discussion Starter #1
Hey guys, first post here:)

I need some advice... My commuter car just broke down, so I'm in the market for a new one. My budget is not great, but after spending some time looking at used cars, I'm coming to the conclusion that going electric might be a smart idea.

The challenge is I drive approximately 150 km each day. We also like to go on road trips, so for example driving from Vancouver to Seattle is not unusual on weekends.

Last month I spent around CAN$ 500 for gas. I can definitely use that kind of money towards an electric car, rather than paying for gas...

I’ve been looking at used Volts and came upon these two options:

1. 2012 Chevy Volt STD, 90,000 km for CAN $19,995. Looks like the base model.
2. 2017 Chevy Volt LT, 28,600km for CAN$33,995, leather, Bose speakers, etc.

Which one do you think is a good deal, and if not - what would be a fair price, so I can try to negotiate it.

Personally, I like the 2017 model, but it all comes down to if I can afford the monthly payments...

Since both are used cars, what should I be looking out for? Battery charge, etc.

I have also some questions (please excuse my ignorance, I'm just now starting to look into electric...):

1. The first model apparently has 58 km range on electric. Is this consistent, or maybe because it's an older car, the battery hold less?

2. My commute to work is 56 km one way. In reality, what how much gas should I expect to burn?

3. Are there any consistent issues/problems with this model Volt?

4. How long does it take to charge the car?

5. Will the dealer supply a charging station or do I need to get one myself? Any recommendations?

I'm definitely excited, but also worried about switching to electric:)
 

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Both prices feel a bit high, but some of that may be regional. Most of the Canadian Volts were sold in Quebec. With Vancouver gas prices much higher than the rest of North America (politically driven) fuel economical cars are bid up. US cars will be cheaper but financing won't be possible.

The 2012 has a smaller battery. The Gen 1 -2011-2015 had a smaller battery than Gen 2 2016+, with each Gen 1 year having more range.

Range will be weather and driving condition dependent. Expect less range in the winter time.

Gen 1 requires premium gas, Gen 2 will take regular.

The car should come with a standard 110v charger which plugs into a standard outlet and should charge the volt battery overnight. You can opt to buy a faster level 2 charger that runs on 220v for your home but this is typically not included in the price.

If you can charge at work, this cuts down on your gas usage. Your actual gas usage will depend on the time of year and outside temperature. Winter tires generally decrease range as well. You should expect a significant decrease in gas spend, and reduction in associated maintenance (fewer oil changes or brake rotor replacement)

Both models are technically the base models. The Gen 1 only had a base trim with option packages (leather, bose, backup camera, nav, other safety tech). Gen 2 had a base LT trim (with options) and a premier trim (loaded, but also had options). They Chevy certified pre-owned site has historical brochures so you can see what options were available and compare with how the vehicle is equipped.
 

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I got my 2013 base with Bose for $16,000 (listed at $20,990) from local Honda dealer. Told them that's what I was willing to pay and stuck to it. They had the car for over three months so were motivated to sell (their words). The Gen2 is a better car comparing feature for feature but I decided on a Gen1 for half the price (I liked the styling a better as well).


1. That 58 Km is an estimation depending on how you drive. I went from Maple Bay to North Nanaimo, 90 - 95 kph, fan only a distance of 65 Km and engine turned on just before I got there but if I hadn't taken a side trip into Duncan, probably would have made it. I charged for free for just under two hours and on the way back used just over 2 liters.

2. If you could charge at work you would use no gas, except of course for your occasional trip to Seattle but the car gets good gas mileage. If the ICE isn't used in 6 weeks it will run on next trip a short time to circulate oil.


3. No consistent problems. The car is over built but a complex piece of engineering and there is a smattering of different problems that show up but many people have none.


4. From empty it takes 4.5 hours on a L2 charger (240V at 16 amps). On an L1 (120V, 8 or 12 amps in other words standard plug home charging) it takes around 12 hours in other words overnight.


5. You have to supply your own charging station. This can be a wall plug (dedicated is better) with the stock charger that should come with the car. In my case it came with an after market L2 charger so I used my 240V outlet I use for my air compressor. If you don't do your own electrical work (don't forget the permit) you'll likely have to get an electrician to give you a 240V outlet if you want to go that route. L1 charging is fine unless you are running around on a work night instead of staying at home with the family. :p

Be aware that BC will give you (dealer) a rebate of $5,000 on a new car and Scrap It program will give another $6,000 on a trade in, even a junker (must be insured previous 6 months). Used cars (second owner) are half that. This is if they are bought from a dealer that sells electric cars (I think they get 1 rebate for each car they sell so are at a premium especially used car ones). The Honda dealer just started selling the Clarity so didn't have any rebates available for my car.
 

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Thanks, guys! This is helpful!

Yesterday I went to test drive the 2012 model - really impressed how it drives and handles. The car (obviously) is not new, so there are some scratches, but inside it was ok. One thing I noticed - the sound from the stereo was not good, especially in the back. The salesperson kept insisting that this is normal, so I have to hear other similar models, but it wasn't good...

Apart from that, my concern is the battery. I'm reading horror stories of people buying the car and then the battery dies... Since the warranty is 100,000 miles/8 years, I have two more years, but that's not so great... What are the options if there is a battery problem?

Near my work there's this ChargePoint charging station -- I visited it yesterday and there was one Tesla plugged in. Do you know if it will work with the Volt?

Today I'll go test drive a 2015 Chevrolet Volt ( 50,761 km, listed for $24,988) and on Saturday I'll go see the 2017 Volt (listed for $33,995).
 

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Thanks, guys! This is helpful!

Yesterday I went to test drive the 2012 model - really impressed how it drives and handles. The car (obviously) is not new, so there are some scratches, but inside it was ok. One thing I noticed - the sound from the stereo was not good, especially in the back. The salesperson kept insisting that this is normal, so I have to hear other similar models, but it wasn't good...

Apart from that, my concern is the battery. I'm reading horror stories of people buying the car and then the battery dies... Since the warranty is 100,000 miles/8 years, I have two more years, but that's not so great... What are the options if there is a battery problem?
Battery comes in multiple sections. If a problem develops that can't be addressed from the outside, you get to have a section replaced. The part is about $3500, and it's about 10-12 hours of labor to do, so you can expect that it'll cost about $5k all done. Actual battery problems are quite rare, though, and don't represent a hazard. Usually it's a failed (and unserviceable) temperature sensor.

Near my work there's this ChargePoint charging station -- I visited it yesterday and there was one Tesla plugged in. Do you know if it will work with the Volt?
You didn't tell us where you work, so we can't really answer that. :D

Plugshare.com maps MOST of the publicly accessible charging stations. Find the station on the map, click on it, and you'll find out what kind of charging and plugs it has, plus things like whether costs anything and comments describing any problems with it. Volts use a plug called J1772 Level 1 or J1772 Level 2. (If there's a cost for using the charger, it will usually NOT be worth it for a Volt. You've got a 300-mile backup generator on board and a slow charge rate.)
 

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Thanks, guys! This is helpful!

Today I'll go test drive a 2015 Chevrolet Volt ( 50,761 km, listed for $24,988) and on Saturday I'll go see the 2017 Volt (listed for $33,995).

Hello. Good Deal? i know Canada is a bit more $ but the above looks out of line. Just saw several 2015 Volts for $1500 plus or even minus. You can check it out a cars.com. These deals are in Florida. A bit past your line

I think the best deal for your dollar on newer cars is a 2017 or 2018 Demo. Can get for about 23K or maybe less. But they that is cause they take the 7500 tax credit. And call the demo a used car. But that comes off the price so being Canadian should not matter. For 10K I would drive a car to Canada. Although I am not sure how that would work with duty and new tariff laws.
If you can not get the whole tax credit (like me) the demo is one way to get a chunk of it.

Good Luck
 
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