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ABC news has just posted another video discussing the Chevy Volt. As expected, it's basically a puff piece with nothing particularly earth shattering being revealed as far as technical details. Car and Driver editor Csaba Csere expresses his skepticism that GM can make the Volt happen on target. However GM exterior design executive director Michael Simcoe does peal back the cover off the latest production styling buck and reveals some new details. Compared to the version that we saw in the studio back in December, the current version doesn't appear dramatically different but GM has refined some details. The shape of the lower edge of the headlight cluster has changed with a step up in the middle and the trailing section with the turn signals now being narrower and stretching further back. In a side view, it's clear that the whole nose is now far more sharply swept back than the concept. As we saw in December the whole Chevrolet signature grille area is now closed off with all air coming through the opening below the bumper. There is also a prominent splitter that didn't exist on the concept. Even with the cover on the buck, it's apparent that the car retains the up-swept belt line and high rear deck of the concept but the green house is significantly taller. The increased rake of the windshield compared to the concept is also apparent in the side view as are the more subdued fender flares. We'll be getting our definitive view of the Volt soon enough but for now we'll just have to keep settling for these teases. You can check out the video after the jump. Thanks to Jacob for the tip!


[Source: ABC News]



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    • 1 Second Ago
  • 22 Comments
      • 6 Years Ago
      It's about time somebody completely blanked off the unnecessarily huge grilles that today's cars are saddled with. That grille is nothing more than a brand identifier, a three-foot-wide extension of the badge in the center. A smooth trim piece is fine, there's no reason to put a big, air-catching hole in the front of the car. I've seen half-attempts to fix this on cars like the Civic hybrid. Now Chevy got serious enough about aerodynamics to go all the way.
        • 6 Years Ago
        The grille opening can be affected by the cooling requirements of the engine. Smaller IC engines don't need as much cooling, therefore can use a smaller opening. Electric motors are extremely efficient and need relatively littel cooling. H2 Fuel cells are efficient but are also sensitive to high temperatures, so need the largest cooling radiators of all.

        One approach being considered by some automakers is a louvered grille that closes when the engine is cold, and opens up as needed to cool a hot engine.
        • 6 Years Ago
        You mean like every car in the 80s, led by the Ford Taurus?
        • 6 Years Ago
        Actually, if you look closely at most modern cars, you'll find that most of the grille area is already covered. It's just that the part that is covered is usually molded in a darker plastic that doesnt look like it's closed. The actual open area tends to be pretty small most of the time.
      • 6 Years Ago
      Since the Volt is still a few years out, how about LED headlights?

      The efficiency has improved markedly (and still going) so it should be possible to get high flux warm white low beams (CCT 3500K+) and use a slightly cooler neutral white for the high beams (3700K+)
      http://www.cree.com/products/xlamp_mce.asp

        • 6 Years Ago
        HIDs are more efficient than white LEDs.
        • 6 Years Ago
        Right now. But in about two years, I'd put my money on LEDs

        and it would be nice to have something less blue than HID headlights.
        HIRs are nice, but not energy efficient enough for the times. 2010 and beyond.
      • 6 Years Ago
      I think the news piece was pretty good. They got the story right and the graphical embellishments help explain the technology pretty well. An ABGer might think it's puff, but I just sent the link to friends and relatives. Hopefully they'll at least root for it.
      • 6 Years Ago
      "However GM exterior design executive director Michael Simcoe does peal back the cover off the latest production styling buck and reveals some new details. "

      It's "peel" not "peal" not to mention the syntactical gyrations.

      Who the hell is editing this stuff? Nobody, I guess.
      • 6 Years Ago
      They've had a front quarter ready since January, is there any more to it?
      • 6 Years Ago
      Doesn't look like the one they just showed on a commercial during the Olympics.
        • 6 Years Ago
        Not suprising, the ads were filmed months ago, before the newer prototype was ready. I imagine that we'll see more of prototype 2 next year.
        • 6 Years Ago
        I noticed that too. Kind of odd they would show the version of the car they know they aren't going to offer in these very high profile ads.
      • 6 Years Ago
      "Sam Said: "Actually, if you look closely at most modern cars, you'll find that most of the grille area is already covered. It's just that the part that is covered is usually molded in a darker plastic that doesnt look like it's closed. The actual open area tends to be pretty small most of the time."

      You said that it is usually closed, but then you finished by saying that it's partially open. You probably know more about cars than I, but I hang around auto modders and it's rare that we come across cars with a true false front. It's especially rare that we come across one with a smooth front, like the Volt's.

      • 6 Years Ago
      The shape looks a lot more aerodynamic than the car show prototype. IMO much more "prius like" and saleable to the mass market. I am becoming less cynical about the GM effort.

      As usual the media bufoons huffed and puffed about the high price north of 35K, without mentioning the thousands you will save on gas while owning this car. GM volt division will have to work on "cost of ownership" marketing education to make this suceed. It will be a sensitive issue for them to make COO comparisons while other divisions are still pumping out inefficient vehicles.
        • 6 Years Ago
        You don't want them to do that calculation on air. The average person will have to own this car well past warranty to get a ROI in gas savings.
      • 6 Years Ago
      I'll take two.
      • 6 Years Ago
      Looks like one has a top-mounted spoiler? Could be weird.
        • 6 Years Ago
        Judging by shape under the cover, I think that's actually a box sitting on the rear deck.
      • 6 Years Ago
      To me, that isn't a real production car, it's a clay model. The headlights look flat, and the grill gaps are just too damn tight and perfectly fit. That would also eplain only showing a corner (too much reveal would show it's a model, and the interior is still a cut away section that is still unfinished.

      They are running out of time.
      • 6 Years Ago
      It looks like the Volt is going to have one of those spoilers on the rear part of the roof.

      http://www.lltek.com/images/riegertek/A3_8P/A3_8P_5dr_Hi_RearSpoiler_RIEA38P_07_Zv.jpg

      I wonder if GM is going to make it look good. God, I am hoping that GM has their most talented exterior designers working on the Volt project. I want it to be aerodynamic but not so much that it makes it not look, well ... uncool. I hope the designers are being inspired by some of the most aerodynamic (yet still cool looking) cars of the past 50 years. Cars like the Ferraris, Porsches, Lamborghinis, etc. I want people to buy the Volt for how it looks alone.

      I'm sure they'll like the revolutionary E-flex powertrain under the hood soon enough. The Volt should have pretty good performance as well as fuel economy. I hope the engineers can somehow program the Volt to have a "performance mode" where it can go 0-60 in 7 seconds. It should also have a "fuel economy mode" where you can get as many "all electric miles" as possible. People will want both.

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