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Discussion Starter #1
I think the Bolt is even more imminent for me now. According to what I've just mapped out, my semi-regular 1,000 mile round trips will be very easy to make in the Bolt. It looks like EVGO has upgraded all of their L3 chargers along the 101 corridor to 60 kW, and they are spaced ideally for my route. Considering I already stop for gas and food at least once in my Volt, I should only have a one hour penalty each way. That's a small price to pay for going gas free.

Here's how the legs of the trip breakdown.

Leg 1: 145 miles
Being conservative and assuming the Bolt will only get 200 miles of range at freeway speeds (65 mph to 70 mph), I should be left with 55 miles of range. I will probably only charge at this location for a little more than 30 minutes, or enough to put another 100-120 miles (depending on weather and actual efficiency).

Leg 2: 159 miles
At this point, I would probably stop for a full hour, because the battery would be run down pretty low. This would be about the time I would stop for dinner if I were driving my Volt, so it makes sense. It's also worth noting that EVGO has another 60 kW charger about 30 miles earlier.

Leg 3: 114 miles
This would be the last charge stop, and it would probably be 30 minutes at most. I should still have at least 50 or so miles of charge left, and home is only 100 miles away.

A few other things to note. EVGO has additional chargers along this route; these are just the most convenient stopping points for me. In addition, this route also has multiple 24-25 kW L3 chargers and many L2 chargers in the event something goes really wrong. In fact, on trips when I am not in a hurry, I will likely only use one L3 charger because I will spend significantly more time in a town that has plenty of L2 charging available... Hello, San Francisco!

Regardless, you can probably tell that I'm fairly excited about this. Also, I'm very curious why EVGO elected to use 60 kW charging. GM did state that 50 kW would be the slowest the Bolt's L3 charging would be, but the Bolt could handle faster charging than that. Is it possible that EVGO knows something we don't?
 

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I think you would be incredibly lucky to get even close to 200 miles at 65-70 mph with the Bolt. It is not very aerodynamic and at highway speeds that is going to count hard against the milage.
 

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I think you would be incredibly lucky to get even close to 200 miles at 65-70 mph with the Bolt. It is not very aerodynamic and at highway speeds that is going to count hard against the milage.
Well if the EPA rated range for the Bolt EV ends up in the 225 to 230 range it just might do 200 in fair weather at those speeds.
 

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For long trips it's hard to beat an ICE. If you do those kind of miles and you only have one car, I'd stay with an EREV.
 

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Still need to account that both the charger is operational and not occupied upon arrival...Regardless very noble of you to get an EV despite you regularly making 500 mile trips...
 

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I think you would be incredibly lucky to get even close to 200 miles at 65-70 mph with the Bolt. It is not very aerodynamic and at highway speeds that is going to count hard against the milage.
I'm glad that I've always been fuel-conscious and generally drive on freeways at 55 to 60mph (actually 90 to 100km/h up here in Canada) when traffic permits. It's meant that I've always exceeded EPA estimates, and that I can look forward to great range in the Bolt EV.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
I think you would be incredibly lucky to get even close to 200 miles at 65-70 mph with the Bolt. It is not very aerodynamic and at highway speeds that is going to count hard against the milage.
I'm curious where you are getting your information. The Tesla forums, perhaps? We don't actually know anything about the Bolt's aerodynamics, so no one can speak with authority on that topic. For all we know, it could have a CdA of 6.

GM staff (who have been testing the Bolt in real world driving for over a year now) have stated that they were consistently getting well over 200 miles per charge. I personally saw them driving Bolts on the freeway at ~65 mph for extended distances, so I know those conditions were being tested. Regardless, each one of those legs is significantly less than 200 miles, so even if you are right (which I find unlikely), the Bolt would be more than sufficient even at freeway speeds.

The road is mostly coastal, so the weather tends to be very stable (50-80 F) The main concern in regards to weather is wind, and on occasion, I might have to deal with 20-30 mph cross or head winds.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
I'm glad that I've always been fuel-conscious and generally drive on freeways at 55 to 60mph (actually 90 to 100km/h up here in Canada) when traffic permits. It's meant that I've always exceeded EPA estimates, and that I can look forward to great range in the Bolt EV.
Obviously, I won't be able to confirm this until I get my hands on a Bolt, but if I hypermile under the right conditions, I'm reasonably certain I could make that 500 mile trip with only one stop.
 

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I'm curious where you are getting your information. The Tesla forums, perhaps? We don't actually know anything about the Bolt's aerodynamics, so no one can speak with authority on that topic. For all we know, it could have a CdA of 6.

GM staff (who have been testing the Bolt in real world driving for over a year now) have stated that they were consistently getting well over 200 miles per charge. I personally saw them driving Bolts on the freeway at ~65 mph for extended distances, so I know those conditions were being tested. Regardless, each one of those legs is significantly less than 200 miles, so even if you are right (which I find unlikely), the Bolt would be more than sufficient even at freeway speeds.
GM has not published any aerodynamic data yet but Car&Driver reported the Bolt EV Cd as .318 in an online article and said the frontal area was 25.8 thus leading to an overall CdA of 8.05. They have previously reported the LEAF to have a CdA of 7.8. That would make the Bolt EV have slightly worse aerodynamics but pretty close and that seems like a plausible result. Other differences in motor or inverter efficiency could easily compensate. Other similarly shaped GM vehicles like the Trax have roughly similar CdA values. The Model S CdA is reportedly 6.7 and the Model 3 could be closer to 6.

That makes the 2016 30 kWh LEAF a useful comparison car. It gets a combined EPA rating of 104 miles but it's highway estimate is more like 95 (I forget the exact number). If you double that to model a 60 kWh Bolt EV you get 208 combined and 185-190 highway.

Like I said, GM can optimize the powertrain a bit better than the LEAF and the usable battery size might actually be slightly bigger than twice the 30 kWh LEAF so maybe it can get a better EPA range than 208. Based on the very meager data and tumors we have today, however, I'm inclined to use the "twice a LEAF" analogy until better data comes along.
 

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Obviously, I won't be able to confirm this until I get my hands on a Bolt, but if I hypermile under the right conditions, I'm reasonably certain I could make that 500 mile trip with only one stop.
I think it's plausible you could get 250 miles of range at 50 mph with cooperating weather conditions. In order to do 500 miles with one charging stop the charger would need to be ideally located just where the car runs out of battery power.
 

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The road is mostly coastal, so the weather tends to be very stable (50-80 F) The main concern in regards to weather is wind, and on occasion, I might have to deal with 20-30 mph cross or head winds.
Yeah, wind is a real wildcard. A 20-30mph headwind can turn 55mph into an effective 70-75+mph, and that's a big range hit.
 

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Discussion Starter #13
GM has not published any aerodynamic data yet but Car&Driver reported...
... completely unfounded B.S.

Car & Driver is one of the least reliable automags, and they basically made that number up. They neither tested the Bolt nor had access to GM's Bolt testing data, so I will categorize that article under: "Unsubstantiated." One of Car & Driver's former writers helped me do some modifications on one of my cars, and when I asked him about some questionable content, he explained to me that Car & Driver instructs their writers to make articles up if they have nothing to write about.

Regardless, basic observations of the Bolt seem to counter Car & Driver's numbers. The Bolt should have a similar frontal area to the Sonic (~24 sq/ft), and its overall shape is similar to the Prius (Cd ~ .26). Now, even GM has found Toyota's wind tunnel data to be suspect, so I doubt the Bolt's coefficient of drag will be that low. However, I doubt it will be much worse than the Volt. My guess is somewhere around .28 by GM's testing, but maybe we should all just wait for that testing to be done and published before making assumptions.
 

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GM has not published any aerodynamic data yet but Car&Driver reported the Bolt EV Cd as .318 in an online article and said the frontal area was 25.8 thus leading to an overall CdA of 8.05. They have previously reported the LEAF to have a CdA of 7.8. That would make the Bolt EV have slightly worse aerodynamics but pretty close and that seems like a plausible result. Other differences in motor or inverter efficiency could easily compensate. Other similarly shaped GM vehicles like the Trax have roughly similar CdA values. The Model S CdA is reportedly 6.7 and the Model 3 could be closer to 6.
Do you have the CdA number for the 1st Gen Volt?

I can do 60km at 100km/h(GPS speeed) on a highway with my 2012 Ampera, so 200 miles should be doable with the Bolt.
 

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Discussion Starter #15
Do you have the CdA number for the 1st Gen Volt?

I can do 60km at 100km/h(GPS speeed) on a highway with my 2012 Ampera, so 200 miles should be doable with the Bolt.
The CdA for the Gen 1 Volt is about 6.9.

While aerodynamic drag will comprise roughly 80% of the Bolt's energy usage at 70 mph, it's the overall energy consumption that matters. If the Bolt's overall energy consumption is anywhere close to my Gen 1 Volt (17-18 kW at 70 mph), the Bolt should be able to travel at least 210 miles while driving 70 mph, and possibly as much as 225 miles or more.
 

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The CdA for the Gen 1 Volt is about 6.9.

While aerodynamic drag will comprise roughly 80% of the Bolt's energy usage at 70 mph, it's the overall energy consumption that matters. If the Bolt's overall energy consumption is anywhere close to my Gen 1 Volt (17-18 kW at 70 mph), the Bolt should be able to travel at least 210 miles while driving 70 mph, and possibly as much as 225 miles or more.
You do understand that as you increase the speed you quadruple the drag? I don't think you can even come close to what the volt numbers are as all you have to do is look at the Bolt and see you are moving a lot more air as the volt looks like a knife compared to it.

What you are telling us is that you believe the Bolt will get 210 miles of range out of it even though the EPA model which doesn't even get to 70MPH in any of its testing and does a lot of slow speed testing to simulate city driving will show the same or less? That is just ludicrous as you most definitely could achieve better than the EPA at 50mph with steady driving and little elevation change but add another 15 to 20 mph to the mix you would be smoking crack to believe that you can exceed the combined range of what the EPA publishes.

I drive my volt to work which is 25 miles away and if I to 58MPH I will have about 20 to 25 miles left depending on the weather when arriving. If I go over 65 with some push to 70mph I will usually have about 15 to 18 miles left. That is a huge hit for such a small increase in speed and the volt has better aerodynamics than the Bolt.

If you want to get your 200 mile range I would stick closer to 50.
 

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GM invested a half Billion into Lyft, decided not to build a charging network, intentionally decided to omit ACC from the start and has repeatedly stated the Bolt was built with car sharing in mind...So that's the plan for the car, its predominately a city/suburban car...If the Bolt has a similar Cd to the Volt, you'd think they'd employ these improvements over to the Sonic hatchback which they haven't...
 

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Discussion Starter #18
You do understand that as you increase the speed you quadruple the drag?
Maybe I'm more familiar with it than you are? Drag increases with the cube of speed. Read more here.

I don't think you can even come close to what the volt numbers are as all you have to do is look at the Bolt and see you are moving a lot more air as the volt looks like a knife compared to it.
Drag can be deceptive, especially if you are basing your determination only on appearances. Many people think that a bullet is more aerodynamic than a drop of water, but they would be wrong.

What you are telling us is that you believe the Bolt will get 210 miles of range out of it even though the EPA model which doesn't even get to 70MPH in any of its testing and does a lot of slow speed testing to simulate city driving will show the same or less? That is just ludicrous as you most definitely could achieve better than the EPA at 50mph with steady driving and little elevation change but add another 15 to 20 mph to the mix you would be smoking crack to believe that you can exceed the combined range of what the EPA publishes.
Wait. You've seen the EPA numbers? I didn't know they published them yet. I want to see. Also, the EPA tests with climate control settings higher and tire pressure lower than what most people use in the real world, and that would result in mileage worse even than 70 mph steady state driving.

Regardless, because you've chosen to broach the topic of what I can and cannot do in terms of beating EPA estimates... In my estimation, my typical range in the Bolt will be about 250 to 260 miles per charge. On highway trips, I'm not going to push anywhere close to that until I have an established pattern of energy usage and the conditions are right.

I drive my volt to work which is 25 miles away and if I to 58MPH I will have about 20 to 25 miles left depending on the weather when arriving. If I go over 65 with some push to 70mph I will usually have about 15 to 18 miles left. That is a huge hit for such a small increase in speed and the volt has better aerodynamics than the Bolt.
That is another assumption. We don't know what the Bolt's aerodynamics are. While you're right that increasing the speed is a huge draw on power, it doesn't mean that the Bolt can't drive 200 miles at close to 70 mph.

Another assumption you are making is that the Bolt is only as efficient as a Volt in all the other areas (besides drag), which would be an incorrect assumption. Being a pure EV, the Bolt will have a more efficient drivetrain. Possibly as much as 10-15% more efficient. Again, this is all just guess work until we start to see real numbers.

If you want to get your 200 mile range I would stick closer to 50.
First, if you were paying attention to my original post, each leg only requires me to go about 150 miles. Second, it's a matter of energy usage, which we won't know until we have the Bolt in our hands. I just know that my Gen 1 Volt typically uses 17-18 kW to maintain 70 mph, which would result in between 210 and 220 miles of range in the Bolt. Third, if I stuck closer to 50 mph, I'd likely end up with nearly 260 miles of range:

IMG_20160129_085505.jpg

GM invested a half Billion into Lyft, decided not to build a charging network, intentionally decided to omit ACC from the start and has repeatedly stated the Bolt was built with car sharing in mind...So that's the plan for the car, its predominately a city/suburban car...If the Bolt has a similar Cd to the Volt, you'd think they'd employ these improvements over to the Sonic hatchback which they haven't...
That tells me that it wasn't built solely for car sharing. Also, I don't see what the omission of ACC has to do with it not being a long-range vehicle. They have been slower to implement ACC than other manufacturers, so GM might be omitting ACC on the first generation of the Bolt for simplicity's sake.
 

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My personal experience with eVgo's DCFCs has been extremely positive. Their chargers are rarely down (or ICEd) at locations in the SF Bay Area that I used. They seem to have a contract with a local company to maintain the chargers, mainly involves making sure the filters and fans are working properly. At least that was my impression when I talked to a technician who was doing the servicing while I used their DCFC with my LEAF. So far, I have used the various DCFCs a total of 86 times with my LEAF. The amount of DCFC usage will drop as I stop driving the LEAF for longer trips to San Francisco, and instead rely on my L2 in the garage.

Early on, my major gripe with eVgo was their website and billing statements. It was difficult to change one’s account (credit card input) without a big hassle. The statements they sent by email looked like a kindergarden student designed it.
 

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Discussion Starter #20
My personal experience with eVgo;s DCFCs has been extremely positive. Their chargers are rarely down (or ICEd) at locations in the SF Bay Area that I used. They seem to have a contract with a local company to maintain the chargers, mainly involves making sure the filters and fans are working properly. At least that was my impression when I talked to a technician who was doing the servicing while I used their DCFC with my LEAF. So far, I have used the various DCFCs a total of 86 times with my LEAF. The amount of DCFC usage will drop as I stop driving the LEAF for longer trips to San Francisco, and instead rely on my L2 in the garage.

Early on, my major gripe with eVgo was their website and billing statements. It was difficult to change one’s account (credit card input) without a big hassle. The statements they sent by email looked like a kindergarden student designed it.
Thanks for the review! Right now, I only have a ChargePoint membership because a majority of the L2 chargers in my area are ChargePoint. With the Volt, I haven't had the need for an EVgo membership (even though a 60 kW station is literally two blocks from my apartment). I'm assuming from your post that they've improved their billing/payment site.

My main concern with the EVgo network right now is that they typically only have one or two plugs per site. I can't blame them right now because, from what I've seen, the L3 chargers are rarely used. I have to imagine that as the usage at each site increases, they will add more. Also, the chargers I would rely on the most appear to be fairly remote, so I doubt there will be much competition from the current generation of short-ranged EVs.
 
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