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New Volt owner, South Florida

1142 Views 9 Replies 7 Participants Last post by  hellsop
Good evening all,

I picked up my 2017 Volt on 20Jul, Premier, Pepper Dust Metallic, black&brandy leather, Driver pkg 1 & 2, Navigation, floor mats. Have 917 miles on it so far. 36 mile round trip commute. Battery range started at 53 and has slowly krept up to 68 and has seemed to peak out there. Heavy AC use this time of year, flat Florida, no hills. When I get home from work there is 27-30 miles left. Have not run the battery "out" yet.

I have read that the ICE will occasionally run by itself but hasn't yet. This past Friday I decided to try the "hold mode" and could hardly tell the difference. I could feel a clutch going in and out occasionally. Watching the "Flow" screen, the Volt seems to start from a dead stop on battery power and goes to ICE power at about 16-18 mph. When I got home from work and plugged in, the charge light went solid green in a very short period, so obviously the ICE-gen was replacing battery usage for the entire trip.

This is my first new car in 12 years. Last new car was a 2005 VW Golf TDI, 113,000 miles, 35.8 mpg lifetime, most on surface street, stop and go driving, same commute. The electronics in the Volt is culture shock compared to the Golf, which basically had none. One feature the Golf had that I miss is the ability to raise all the windows with the key in the door, if you forget to raise a window before getting out of the car. Of course, the Volt doesn't use a key, but the remote can lower all the windows but cannot raise them. If I forget to raise the window before getting out, I have to get back in and turn everything on to raise the window. A very small item but I miss it. Is there any way to configure the remote or the outside lock button to raise all the windows if held for 5 seconds?

My Golf diesel had good low rpm torque, but the Volt has MUCH more. This is a fun car to drive.

Still learning to use all the Volt features and hope to learn tips from others through this forum.

Everyone be safe looking at the eclipse tomorrow.

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You are correct, you can configure the Volt to enable the key fob Unlock button to lower the windows by holding the Unlock button but you cannot use the key fob to raise the windows.

Congratulations on your new Volt. Florida's climate and terrain is ideal for maximizing the Volt's EV range. If you drive at a constant 30 - 35 mph (but who does that?) you could get more than 70 miles of EV range, especially on flat roads. When using gas the Volt will meet or exceed its EPA rating of 41 city, 42 combined, 43 highway MPG using 87 octane unleaded fuel. If you watch your speed you could exceed 50 mpg when using gas.

If you don't regularly use the gas engine the Owner's Manual recommends keeping the Volt's gas tank 1/3rd full, about 3 gallons. The Volt will manage the gas engine and the fuel in the fuel tank with two separate programs. The Engine Management Mode (EMM) will start the gas engine every 6 weeks for a short time to circulate the engine oil and the other fluids. This maintains the engine seals and ensures that the internal engine parts are lubricated. The second program is Fuel Management Mode (FMM). If you don't use the gas in the tank, after ~12 months, the Volt will enter FMM and start to use up the old gas. You can let FMM burn all of the old fuel or you can add some fresh fuel to extend the time until the next time FMM runs. The Volt will compute the average age of all of the fuel in the fuel tank; i.e, if you have 1 to 2 gallons of old fuel in the fuel tank and only add a small amount of fresh fuel this won't suspend the FMM program for very long but adding an equal amount of fresh fuel to whatever old fuel is in the fuel tank will extend the time until the next time FMM runs for ~ 6 months.

Feel free to experiment with Sport Mode, Mountain Mode and Hold Mode. It is a safe bet that you will never need to use Mountain Mode in Florida. Mountain Mode will build up and maintain a 20% battery reserve so that the Volt's two electric motors can tap this battery reserve and help the gas engine when ascending or passing on long mountainous roads.

One of the Volt's best features is being able to precondition the Volt's cabin when the weather is warm or cold. You can use the key fob or the MyChevrolet App on your smart phone to precondition the Volt. Preconditioning also warms the battery if the Volt determines that the battery temperature is too low, i.e. colder than 40 F then the Volt will use some power to raise the battery temperature to between 40F and 65F. (A scenario where the Volt needs to precondition and heat the battery during preconditioning is not likely to occur in Coral Springs.) Each preconditioning cycle lasts 10 minutes, you can precondition 2X before you have to start the Volt using the Start button on the dash.

Also, you can leave the Volt parked and powered on with the AC running for several hours (more than enough time to leave someone in the Volt with the AC on while you run an errand.) Note: The Volt will automatically power off in 2 ~ 2.5 hours if you forget to turn off the vehicle. The AC is not a huge drain on the battery the way that the electric resistance heat will noticeably affect your EV range. There is a thread on window tinting on the forum, you may decide to have your Volt's glass tinted as this will make a difference in how hard the AC needs to run to keep the cabin cool.
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