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Volt (and other hybrids) for newspaper delivery

3508 Views 17 Replies 11 Participants Last post by  TheYonderGod
Does anyone have experience with the Volt for newspaper delivery or anything similar? Basically its a lot of accelerating and decelerating/stopping at each house, and a lot of idling when we have to porch some papers.

I'm looking at a used 13/14 Volt.

I figured a hybrid would be amazing for this kind of driving, since it should regen a lot of power from the slowing and stopping, but I asked a co-worker about his Prius and he only gets ~27mpg during a Sunday delivery session.
Although, now that I'm doing the math, this doesn't seem correct. That's like 55% the rated mileage.
My other friend in his newish Corolla gets ~22mpg while delivering, for like 70% the rated mileage.
My 1999 Chevy Prizm is old and doesn't have an automatic mpg calculator, but looking at the numbers when I fill up, I get around 25mpg overall. Seems about right comparing with the Corolla.

I thought a hybrid should do better in lots of stop-n-go, not worse. :confused:

Anyways, does anyone have an idea how many miles I should be able to do in a Volt? My typical work day is about 50 miles, with about 15 of them being on the highway to work, so I was figuring 15 miles on gas and 35 on electric would be about right. Here in California, summer nights should be perfect weather for the battery.
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Best way would to put it in hold mode on the highway, then when you start the paper route, switch to normal (electric). Normal is the most efficient mode for start/stop, and the gas engine will be OFF the whole time you are in normal mode. Should you run down the battery, no worries, the engine will start automatically and you will keep on driving on gas.

My 2013 Volt, after driving 15 miles in HOLD mode, would be good for about 40-45 miles on battery (in Houston, with the A/C running), but constantly starting and stopping will demand more power than steady driving. Even though you gain some due to regen when stopping, accelerating from a stopped position takes more power (try pushing your car from a stop and see how hard it is to get up to speed). So I would guess you might lose 10 miles of range on a stop-start paper route. You MIGHT make the whole 35 mile route on battery, then would use some gas for the 15 mile drive home.

The Prius, like any other car where the gas engine runs all the time, will get its worst mileage if constantly stopping and starting. The Volt should be better overall due to all the start-stop driving being in electric (normal) mode.

(from a former bicycle paperboy)
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