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Hello. I just traded my 2015 Challenger SRT on a 2017 Volt (used) and being a car nut in general, thought I'd come here to find more ways to enjoy my new car. I've owned performance cars almost exclusively for about 30 years so this is my first dip into a car of this type. My reasons for moving from a brute to the Volt are mostly life situations: taking care of my family.

So far I love the car but I do have a couple intro questions. First, I've been driving in Sport mode exclusively just because I like the throttle mapping in that mode. I still drive normally and not lead footed, I just like the feel of the Sport mode. The past two trips I've started on a full charge and gone 30 miles round trip and upon pulling into the garage, the battery meter was on 50% both times and showing between 26 and 28 miles of eV range remaining. Seems pretty good. My question is: when I charge it overnight and it is showing a full charge, the range always shows 36 miles on a full charge even though I seem to be getting well beyond that. Why is this?

The second question is that my SiriusXM reception seems to be questionable. On about a 1 mile stretch of road that has high power lines on one side, it always cuts out for that ~60 seconds in the same area. Other areas seem to be OK but my other cars never did that in the same area. FM reception seems pretty bad too. Is this just an idiosyncrasy of this car?

Thanks,
Mike
 

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Welcome to electric driving. You are going to love it. Even compared to an SRT the torque is exhilarating. I came from a '14 Dodge and also love my Volt, particularly never having to buy gas. You are getting the proper range, but something doesn't sound right with your display, or what's possibly worse is that the last driver of the car had a lead foot and therefore the car still "thinks" that 36 is all you might get on a full charge. As you drive it more and get an actual range closer to 60, the G-O-M (Guess-o-meter) may begin to adjust to the way you drive and show more estimated range available at full charge. As for the radio, the Chevy radio sucks compared with that in a Dodge. I have the same problem where I lose signal near a radio tower, and overall reception and ability to pull in stations is just lousy on this car. You will get used to it :(
 

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The guess-o-meter bases its guesses on the last few minutes/miles of driving. So if you have it in sport mode and are slamming it right before you get home, it's going to be thinking that's what you always do and base it's guess accordingly. If you baby it for the last few minutes before parking it it'll think that's the norm and reward you with a much more generous guess.
 

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Hey Mike, Congrats on the Volt. What trim did you get? More importantly, do you have the Bose system or stock? The "Bose" brand would be on the front door speakers if you have it. I recall there was an issue with FM reception in the base radio.
 

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I also have a '17 Volt (which I love) but I do at times find the satellite radio reception to be questionable. There are some places where if I pull up to the side of a building (e.g. a fast-food drive-through or a drive-up ATM), the reception will start to waver and may even cut out. I haven't had that in other cars and I am just guessing that GM used a weaker/cheaper XM antenna in the car.

Nothing I am too concerned about though.
 

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I also came from a Hemi to the Volt, I had a 2006 300C. I changed my driving habits completely when I got the Volt. Cars tell you when they are happy, the 300C wanted to go 100 and it roared it's appreciation when you let it, the Volt wants to glide down country roads and it purrs it's satisfaction when it's ambling down the road at 35. Engine noise is a feature of a Hemi but in the Volt any noise is a bug because you quickly get acclimated to the quiet electric motors. My guess-o-meter is currently sitting at 70 but as winter approaches it will drop to the low 50s because the Volt needs snow tires, the 300C was AWD so it was fine on all seasons, and batteries lose range in cold weather.

Here is how I drive the Volt. I never use Sport mode, I accelerate gently, decelerate by coasting or using the regen paddle. When I can I choose back roads by selecting Avoid Highways in Android Auto. I live in Massachusetts so the back road option is vastly more pleasant than the highway options because we have long pretty roads with relatively few intersections vs horrible crowded highways. The back road option is sometimes a little slower but not always, at rush hour they are faster, and they tend to be shorter and because of the lower speeds the EV range is much longer (thus the 70 mile range vs the promised 53). When I take long trips, which I do every weekend in the summer, I use Hold mode on the highway and then switch to Normal when I get off of the highway. The Volt's engine is fairly quiet for an ICE and on a highway you can't hear a difference between the engine and the motors, but at lower speeds the noise difference is very noticeable. On my day trips I usually see around 46MPG on the engine but I've gotten as much as 53MPG, the EV range tends to be around 60 on those trips. When I'm driving through mountains I use L mode. L mode is fantastic on mountain roads, you can do almost all of your braking with the regen paddles and almost never touch the brake peddle. I've gone down Mount Washington and the Lincoln Gap (steepest road in the US) this way, the car is a lot more controllable than an ICE car that's burning up it's brakes. On my trip down Mount Washington the brakes recaptured 5KWh of electricity and the wheels were cold when I reached the bottom, I saw two ICE cars come down the road on the back of a tow truck.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
Thanks for the replies! If the guess-o-meter is going by the last few miles of driving as suggested, that could be my problem. The last few miles to my house is a state highway and I'm going 65 MPH. I have 4 miles of that before I get to any "civilization" so maybe it's going by that. No complaints really, because I know I'm getting a lot more than the 36 miles on the range display. And today I went out and looked (still on the charger but charge complete) and it is showing 41 miles so maybe it is coming around to how I actually drive.

I guess I should have mentioned the trim: It's a white 2017 LT, only added option is the heated seats and steering wheel. Not that I need that in FL but it was a used vehicle with $10k off so I'm not complaining.

I actually really like this vehicle, even after owning the Challenger SRT! Yes, I'll miss the occasional romp on the go pedal but the Volt is quick enough to take you by surprise off the line. The Challenger is just a brutal automobile and thus was just not easy to drive smoothly. Yesterday I was turning onto a short road out of a parking lot and I saw the turn signal was green. I gave it a little mash to not miss the light as I knew it was safe, and that little Volt took off like a bat out of hell (and no, I didn't even floor it)! If I had accelerated to the same degree in my Challenger, it would have turned heads for 3 blocks and possibly garnered the attention of the law... even though I wasn't technically doing anything wrong: went up to about 30 which was the speed limit. I really like that you can accelerate aggressively and not have it appear as if you are "racing". :)

Mike
 

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Fairly new to Gen 2 Volts here (I owned a Gen 1 for 2 years, 22k miles). Our 2017 has 4k miles or so, mostly with my wife behind the wheel. Last week I had occasion to drive it 1000 miles and some questions came up. I drove in "hold" mode on the highway to reserve the battery for off-highway miles. Is there a technical reason to do this (or not do it), or is it a just matter of personal preference?
I used the Regen paddle for slowing down in the mountains. When in "hold" mode and I depress the paddle to slow a little, the ICE surges or races for a fraction of a second. It's not much, but it's as if the throttle and clutch aren't perfectly coordinated and the clutch disengages an instant before the throttle shuts down. My question is, is this a feature or a flaw? Should I be concerned?
 

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Fairly new to Gen 2 Volts here (I owned a Gen 1 for 2 years, 22k miles). Our 2017 has 4k miles or so, mostly with my wife behind the wheel. Last week I had occasion to drive it 1000 miles and some questions came up. I drove in "hold" mode on the highway to reserve the battery for off-highway miles. Is there a technical reason to do this (or not do it), or is it a just matter of personal preference?
I used the Regen paddle for slowing down in the mountains. When in "hold" mode and I depress the paddle to slow a little, the ICE surges or races for a fraction of a second. It's not much, but it's as if the throttle and clutch aren't perfectly coordinated and the clutch disengages an instant before the throttle shuts down. My question is, is this a feature or a flaw? Should I be concerned?
The reason to use Hold on the highway on a long trip is because the highway is where the ICE is most effecient and the electric motors the least. As I said in an earlier post you can get up to 70 miles of range if you are traveling at 35-40 on a back road or a street but at 75 the range is less than 50. At lower speeds you really notice the difference between electric and gas modes because you can hear the engine, on the highway you will hardly notice any difference which is why I always choose to use Hold on the highway for long trips. On the return trip, when the battery is depleted, I use Mountain Mode which will recharge the battery to 2 bars which will give you about 10 miles of electric range when you get off of the road. If you don't have 10 miles of street travel after you get off the road then stick with Normal rather than Mountain. In the Mountains you should use L rather than D, it gives you stronger regen which is really helpful when going down a mountain road, on the flat lands the use of L vs D is personal preference, a lot of people like one peddle driving so for them L is the better choice, I prefer D because it allows me to coast to stops which seems like it should me more efficient.
 

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So far I love the car but I do have a couple intro questions. First, I've been driving in Sport mode exclusively just because I like the throttle mapping in that mode. I still drive normally and not lead footed, I just like the feel of the Sport mode. The past two trips I've started on a full charge and gone 30 miles round trip and upon pulling into the garage, the battery meter was on 50% both times and showing between 26 and 28 miles of eV range remaining. Seems pretty good. My question is: when I charge it overnight and it is showing a full charge, the range always shows 36 miles on a full charge even though I seem to be getting well beyond that. Why is this?
"It just does that" is an answer to an annoying number of Volt questions. The real answer is that the range estimate ("Guess-o-meter") sometimes gets slowly more and more pessimistic until you do a drive that actually uses up the entire charge and kicks over to "Charge Sustaining" mode. Then, it will remember that it actually CAN go a long way, and after the next charge, will show a more reasonable estimate for range.
 

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As many of us have experienced, it's better to use Hold on the highway and always keep some battery left in your car. Because once you drain the battery and have to do all driving on ICE, you are likely to experience the 2017 backfire at every throttle tip in. You want to have enough batter so that each start (even in Hold mode) takes off on battery and then switches over to ICE.
 
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