PHOTO CAPTION: GM EV1 Electric Car with Chevy Volt at recent AltCarExpo in Santa Monica, California

Chevy Volt Seen As Car of the Future

National Post financial columnist David Booth Pictured looks at the promise of GM's new electric car. Pictured are original GM EV1 along side it's new range-extended electric Volt from Chevrolet.

Published: 06-Oct-2008

Well, this certainly is different. Usually, I'm on the other side of the table deriding environweenies for their unrealistic prognostications of what a gasoline-free automotive future looks like. Now, I find myself about to defend the practicality and, even more of a surprise to me, the salability of an over-priced, under-powered (quasi) battery-powered car. Surely, it is the end of days. At the very least, we should be on the lookout for locusts.

Said car is Chevrolet's new Volt and the reason I'm defending it is that one of your esteemed columnists, Peter Foster, flubbed it off most recently as "revolting," a pun all we auto journalists have been assiduously trying to avoid. Mr. Foster, being out of the loop, obviously didn't get the memo.

Mr. Foster's denigration of General Motors' battery-powered Electric-Extended Range Vehicle (for those not familiar with the designation, the Volt is an electric car with a range of 64 kilometres on battery power alone after which a small gasoline engine kicks in to recharge the batteries, but not, it should be noted, drive the car) was based on two basic points. First, he thought that the Volt was too expensive at an estimated price range of between $35,000 and $50,000 when it goes on sale in 2011. More damning, however, was his contention that General Motors was fooling us and, worse, itself into thinking that it can actually produce the Volt.


Powered by advanced lithium-ion batteries and two 67bhp (50kW) electric motors to drive the front and rear axles, the Mixim is a four-wheel-drive car with a theoretical top speed of 112mph and a potential maximum range of 156 miles.

Dodge ZEO is 2+2 electric muscle car for the 21st century powered by 200kW electric drive with 0-60 mph in less than 6 seconds and range of 250 miles.

The Air Car may do better than fuel-cell cars, but experts say that using grid power to charge a battery-powered electric vehicle is much more efficient than using electricity to compress and store the same amount of energy in a tank.


blog comments powered by Disqus