• Sep 26, 2008
Click above to view high-res gallery of the 2011 Chevy Volt

According to General Motors E-Flex spokesman Rob Peterson, the automaker has reached an agreement with the California Air Resources Board (CARB) that would see the 2011 Chevy Volt get a unique classification different from other current hybrids. This new classification takes into account the fact that the Volt's 40-mile battery range allows it to complete the bulk of the emissions and economy test procedure without ever running the engine, which would likely give it a mpg rating of 100 mpg or better.

This is problematic for the EPA, which considers dual-power vehicles like the series hybrid Volt no different than a parallel hybrid like the Prius. Currently the EPA is expecting the Volt to complete the test cycle with a charged battery, which means the engine would have to run a lot more and essentially kill the charge sustaining control plan. According to Peterson, GM is still a long way from reaching an agreement with the feds on how to test the Volt, despite what the Detroit Free Press says. However, having CARB consider the Volt essentially an electric car is certainly a bargaining chip in GM's favor.


[Source: The Detroit Free Press, AutoblogGreen]


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  • 53 Comments
      • 6 Years Ago
      why cant they just drive all cars from full tank/charge until it dies in city style, and then do the same thing in a freeway type situation. Then just take the number of miles driven for each and divide it by the number of gallons used. Cars with electric motors will also account for how much electricity was used. Then you have a rating like Xmpg/Xmpw (miles per watts or something). Then all cars get a simple to understand and compare, realistic mileage rating.
      • 6 Years Ago
      Ok, I'm the guy who killed the GM Impact electric car.
      At that time, gas was plentiful & cheap.
      Battery & elec motor tecjhnology have come a long way since then.
      But even moreso, I'm working on a design that uses superconductors & Farad flux capacitors that will outrun any gasoline car. It is worth well over a billion dollars like other technology in my garage lab.
      alfredschrader@aol.com
      • 6 Years Ago
      They will need to report mileage for both fuel sources: the grid and the pump.

      Miles / kWh : mileage before gas engine is engaged

      Miles / gallon : mileage when gas engine is charging

      • 6 Years Ago
      Why make this so complicated? Simply have two ratings for the car, one when running on electricity alone, and one when the gas engine needs to run. Anything else gives you arbitrary results depending on how long you test it for.

      A new type of car, a new type of rating.
        • 6 Years Ago
        Sure.

        Infinity/50 mpg

        Combined mpg: Infinity minus 50mpg (still Infinity for those not mathematically inclined).
        • 6 Years Ago
        mmmmm.... no. Howabout this;

        First 40 miles; 3 miles /kWh
        After first 40 miles; 25 miles /gallon
        • 6 Years Ago
        Injected, it's not Infinity minus 50 since you didn't drive infinite miles and you figure out MPG by taking the miles you drove and dividing over the gallons you've burned.
        Not that it matters
        • 6 Years Ago
        +1 elpep

        Calling this a 100mpg vehicle or testing it based on the standard tests really doesn't give you the story. What if you made a Volt style Hummer that used Electricity for the first 10-20 miles then fired up a big honking V12 monster engine. Should that qualify as just as efficient since it runs on electricity only for the first part of the journey? We need some way of comparing it to other similar vehicles. For instance if a plug in Prius is released or any other plug in Hybrid for that matter.

        All of these vehicles use energy one way or another be it electricity or gas and consumers need a way to compare them.
        • 6 Years Ago
        Exactly. "Miles per gallon" is at times irrelevant because there are periods when this car isn't using any gallons of anything. Different driving styles also lead to radically different fuel consumption.

        Gas-powered cars should retain MPG, purely electric cars should adopt MPkWh (miles per kilowatt-hour), and plug-in hybrids should adopt, fittingly, a hybrid rating: MPkWh for X miles on a full charge, and MPG after the gasoline switchover.

        The latter would eliminate any variables of driving distance, semi- vs. full charge, commute times, etc. Consumers will gradually adjust to instinctively understand what constitutes an acceptable MPkWh rating and electric-only maximum range for their needs.
      • 6 Years Ago
      Ugly stupid piece of crap. A true waste of time and money. I hate Lutz, he is a huge fool. GM, you could have spent your money, time, & research on a lot better things than this garbage.
      • 6 Years Ago
      In the past month I would have only used the gas once so it would be fine for me. I bet 80 percent of all drivers will fit into this. I only wonder what the air conditioning will do to the MPG's in the summer. This is pretty exciting considering that 10 years ago this was considerd imposible.
      ROM
      • 6 Years Ago
      LEAVED TO BEUROCRATS TO MAKE IT MORE COMPLICATED,./ SIMPLY DRIVE THE VEHICLES OVER A RACETRACK AND MEASURE M.P.G
      tlm
      • 6 Years Ago
      I bet the GM folks kick them selves in the ass every time they think about killing the EV1 by now they would eceeed thew expectations if the Tesla if they would have kept at it!@!!
      • 6 Years Ago
      What a box of republicon style crappp - babbling about a car they don't have, using technology they don't have that goes forty miles then either sits there dead without a plug in or turns into a gas guzzling TH!
      • 6 Years Ago
      This is a unique car that deserves unique rating.
        • 6 Years Ago
        Not really. . .

        It should say as mileage "X mpg on gas-hybrid mode and can travel 40 miles on electric mode fully charged".

        Its not a spec race, its about properly informing the consumer about their purchase. Its not really getting 100mpg+, it may even use no gas at all if the person doesn't drive over 40 miles between charges, these ratings should best reflect accurate data and specs, not a manipulation of numbers.

        In fact, the truth sounds more impressive.
      • 6 Years Ago
      My office is a 20mile roundtrip. If the Volt goes 40 miles on a charge that means I get a jillion miles to the gallon. I'm cool with that. What's the problem?If the car gets 20-25mpg when I drive on the weekend past the usual 20miles I'm still WAY ahead. Again. What's the problem?

      A lot of you nattering nabobs of negativity just love to bash American products. You practically slobber at the mention of any American car because you think you smell blood.

      The blood you smell is the dried blood on the carcass of your 80's mindset.

      Get over it.
        • 6 Years Ago
        Since you ask. I will explain the obvious.

        You are paying an Extra $20 000 (over a Honda Insight) to save about 300 gallons of gas/year.

        Fine if you have $40K to blow on the novelty of having electric drive in your economy car, but really not feasible if you are looking for something financially sensible.
        • 6 Years Ago
        Well, one reason, is lots of people drive more than 40 miles a day to get to work round trip.
      • 6 Years Ago
      For hybrids they should have a graph that plots MPG against avg commute time/distance.


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