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The forum helped me quickly figure out that the message I got the other day was normal. We climbed La Bajada on I25 south of Santa Fe NM at a high rate of speed with the electric range at zero. Near the top the Propulsion Power is Reduced message appeared. All returned to normal once we got to the top and we really didn't seem to slow much even with the message still passing vehicles the whole way up. The old postcard image at the link below gives an idea of the 1000' climb long ago.

https://www.nps.gov/nr/travel/el_camino_real_de_tierra_adentro/La_Bajada_Mesa.html

This is a pretty good image of the modern climb with a 75mph speed limit.
 

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No, not normal if you are operating the car correctly.

Mountain Mode is designed to prevent this. Read your owners manual for details on how it works.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Ok, thanks, will do. Apparently my wife has gone up La Bajada many times without the message now that I'm talking with her about the experience.
 

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That's normal if you are pushing the car. I use mountain mode, but that just builds a short lived cushion for your car. That warning just let's you know the computer in the car is going to keep your ELECTRIC car from running out of electricity. I am a regular on I-25 too. Colorado. Mountainous areas, I get the warning often going up hills.
 

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The thing to remember is that the Volt's ICE generator can only produce about 60 kW of power, and it will tap into the battery to supplement power. However, if you have depleted the battery, it only has a small reserve, which will be quickly depleted on a high-speed hill climb.

As others have stated, Mountain Mode is designed to maintain a much larger reserve to account for these types of situations. If you don't want to leave that much of a reserve (it doesn't sound like you need the full capability of Mountain Mode), you can also switch to Hold Mode when you have a few miles electric range left.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
We've been using hold quite a bit to keep some EV range for city driving and a hill climb. On the previous trip to Abq (100+ mi round trip), I had left about 5 mi when leaving Abq specifically for La Bajada. This was my own mountain mode I guess, but I'll just hit the button long before we're out of EV range next time. Someday cars will know where I'm going...not sure if that's good or bad.
 

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There is always the potential for a Volt to eventually kick into reduced power when the battery falls to 0 miles. In the Volt's case, it's the fact the gas engine is less powerful than the electric motor, but ... not by a huge amount.

Trivia: MOST cars have always had this "reduced power" issue in mountains. Those who tow heavy have always known this. You might have full power at the bottom of a grade, but at the top, it feels like your V8 is now a poorly running V6.

Air density and temperature controls engine output on gas and diesel cars. Less so for super/turbocharged cars, but it's always been there.

It's why people who tow heavy often buy the diesel pickups. They lose the least amount of power in thin, hot air.

It is interesting that at high altitude, in hot air, with your battery charged, you are probably sitting double the effective rated HP in a Volt than an ICE sedan. HP is measured in "thick, cool" air. And electric HP doesn't require the perfect RPM to yield maximum power, nor does it retard the ignition timing when the air gets hot.
 

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Thanks for the interesting link to the historical site on the area.
 

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I speak Spanish, so I say that the hill name is probably wrong. It should be "La Subida" (the Climb).
 

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There is always the potential for a Volt to eventually kick into reduced power when the battery falls to 0 miles. In the Volt's case, it's the fact the gas engine is less powerful than the electric motor, but ... not by a huge amount.

Trivia: MOST cars have always had this "reduced power" issue in mountains. Those who tow heavy have always known this. You might have full power at the bottom of a grade, but at the top, it feels like your V8 is now a poorly running V6.

Air density and temperature controls engine output on gas and diesel cars. Less so for super/turbocharged cars, but it's always been there.

It's why people who tow heavy often buy the diesel pickups. They lose the least amount of power in thin, hot air.

It is interesting that at high altitude, in hot air, with your battery charged, you are probably sitting double the effective rated HP in a Volt than an ICE sedan. HP is measured in "thick, cool" air. And electric HP doesn't require the perfect RPM to yield maximum power, nor does it retard the ignition timing when the air gets hot.
Technically the Volt's electric propulsion system would work on the MOON with ZERO air.
 

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Technically the Volt's electric propulsion system would work on the MOON with ZERO air.
A Volt MIGHT work on the moon (GM has a couple of cars parked there already), but a TESLA will work on [email protected] :D

(seriously, nothing that requires transfer cooling will work in a vacuum, a powerful EV would overheat)
 

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There is always the potential for a Volt to eventually kick into reduced power when the battery falls to 0 miles. In the Volt's case, it's the fact the gas engine is less powerful than the electric motor, but ... not by a huge amount.
It's actually quite a bit less powerful (roughly half).
 

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It's actually quite a bit less powerful (roughly half).
That was sort of a dig at the BMW i3. ;)

The Gen1 is 84hp on gas. That's a normal HP level for economy cars in 2000.
The i3 REx has 34hp. That's the normal HP for a decent ride on mower. :D
 

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That was sort of a dig at the BMW i3. ;)

The Gen1 is 84hp on gas. That's a normal HP level for economy cars in 2000.
The i3 REx has 34hp. That's the normal HP for a decent ride on mower. :D
Ah. I was just stating that the Gen 1 Volt's ICE produces 84 hp, but its primary electric motor produces 149 hp (almost double).
 
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