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Shocker: Chevy says Volt's gas engine can power the wheels, it's just a hybrid after all
Engadget ^ | 10/11/10 | Tim Stevens

Posted on 10/11/2010 12:10:12 PM PDT by dangerdoc

Interesting news from General Motors today that's resulted in some puzzled expressions at Engadget HQ. We've learned that the Volt, which Chevrolet has been making quite a fuss about calling an "extended range electric vehicle," is actually just a traditional hybrid with some... potentially misleading marketing behind it. Since the concept stage the company has been saying how the onboard internal combustion engine was just to charge the batteries, that only the electric motors (there are two) are actually connected to the drivetrain. Indeed that's what we were told in person when we test drove the thing back in March. We're now learning that is not the case, that the Volt's gasoline engine can directly provide power to the wheels in concert with the electric motors.

Is that a problem? In terms of efficiency the answer is "apparently not," as we're guessing the car would not have been designed this way if it weren't the most frugal way to go. So, why all the deception? Why insist this isn't just a hybrid when it apparently is? When the company went looking for a government bailout it was in part awarded one because of the innovation shown in the Volt. Now that we're learning the Volt is basically just a plug-in hybrid with a bigger than average battery pack (Popular Mechanics is finding 30-odd miles of purely electric range), we're left wondering: where's the innovation?


TOPICS: Conspiracy; Travel; Weird Stuff
KEYWORDS: bailout; bankruptcy; battery; efv; energy; hybrid; michigan
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Barry's car, not quite what was promised.
1 posted on 10/11/2010 12:10:17 PM PDT by dangerdoc
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To: dangerdoc

So the Nissan Leaf is the only real electric automobile from a major manufacturer?


2 posted on 10/11/2010 12:12:11 PM PDT by 2ndDivisionVet (Palin/Bolton 2012)
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To: 2ndDivisionVet

Did I read that Tesla was being purchased by a major asian car manufacturer, if so, that might be two.


3 posted on 10/11/2010 12:14:19 PM PDT by dangerdoc
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To: dangerdoc
Meanwhile, refineries are cryin' "..demand is down 10%."

Gee, 10%, like 10% corn sqweezin's that's added?

Sounds like that program needs ending ASAP!

One less drain on our taxes(we pay for corn , lock, stock and barrel).

4 posted on 10/11/2010 12:21:26 PM PDT by yesca (..belief is the enemy)
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To: dangerdoc

What a surprise - Government Motors being less than honest.


5 posted on 10/11/2010 12:22:38 PM PDT by Pecos (Liberty and Honor will not die on my watch.)
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To: dangerdoc

>>...we’re left wondering: where’s the innovation?<<

That’s easy. It’s in the marketing.


6 posted on 10/11/2010 12:24:35 PM PDT by RobRoy (The US Today: Revelation 18:4)
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To: dangerdoc
Here's a link to Motor Trend explaining exactly how it works. It uses a sun/ring gear system just like the Prius, but connects the parts differently.

Chevy Volt Drivetrain Explained

7 posted on 10/11/2010 12:31:08 PM PDT by CharlesWayneCT
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To: dangerdoc

I’d rather ride a camel.


8 posted on 10/11/2010 12:33:57 PM PDT by Niteranger68 (A check is worthless until you actually cash it......VOTE!!!!!!!!!!!!)
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To: dangerdoc

Just wait until you have to pay to get one of these cars repaired. They will become very expensive lawn ornaments.


9 posted on 10/11/2010 12:34:54 PM PDT by faucetman (Just the facts ma'am, just the facts)
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To: dangerdoc

Some plug-in hybrid...if you want to recharge your Volt at home, you can’t plug it into a standard outlet. You’ll need to rewire your garage with an outlet that can accomodate the car and its requirements. And good luck finding a charging station on the road—they don’t exist. So, Volt owners will be running their cars on good ol’ gasoline most of the time. What a surprise.

Here’s my question: with the huge battery array, the Volt has to weigh more than the Chevy Cruze, the platform it’s built on. The standard Cruze (gas engine only) delivers at least 35 MPG on the highway—better than the Volt on its gas engine, I’ll wager. And you can buy a Cruze for only $17,000, versus $40,000+ for the Volt.

I predict the Volt will last until the government sells its last share of GM stock.


10 posted on 10/11/2010 12:41:05 PM PDT by ExNewsExSpook
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To: Niteranger68

Id rather take the bus into east L.A.


11 posted on 10/11/2010 12:46:07 PM PDT by max americana (Hoax and Chains, Dopeychangey)
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To: dangerdoc
Perhaps someone should tell gm-volt.com they don't know their own car.

Q: How is the Chevy Volt different than today’s hybrids, like the Prius?
A: Today’s hybrids are called parallel hybrids. They use a small electric motor for low speed driving, but switch to a regular gas engine for acceleration and faster speed driving with the electric motor providing enhancement, hence both engines work side by side or in parallel. The Volt is a series vehicle meaning only the electric motor power the car at all times, the gas engine is just a generator, making electric to keep the batteries in a steady state of charge after 40 miles.

http://gm-volt.com/chevy-volt-faqs/

12 posted on 10/11/2010 12:56:06 PM PDT by thackney (life is fragile, handle with prayer)
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To: thackney

No only did they lie (and this is an outright lie), their result is pretty pathetic when we look at the recent mileages available with common-rail diesels out of VW in Europe - and these cars don’t have all the hybrid complexity. I’m talking of cars that get 45+ MPG on the highway - significantly more than the Volt.

Add the upcoming diesel hybrids in the European market with 80+ MPG... and the Volt looks like what I’ve said it was all along: another stupid distraction, brought to us by the mental masturbators who obsess over plugging in their cars.

I want a federal law passed at some point. Anyone who doesn’t have at least a BS in engineering and experience bringing products to market - they don’t get to tell us how to solve problems. They can say “We think X is a problem.” That’s OK. The public can tell engineers “We need problem X solved, please.”

But all the liberal arts majors must STFU when it comes time to decide HOW to solve the problem.


13 posted on 10/11/2010 1:04:33 PM PDT by NVDave
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To: dangerdoc

didn’t the US government give Tesla a quarter of a billion in the stimulus package?

I guess that made it attractive to foreign buyers?


14 posted on 10/11/2010 1:10:05 PM PDT by GeronL (http://libertyfic.proboards.com <--- My Fiction/ Science Fiction Board)
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To: ExNewsExSpook

I bet you are 100% correct


15 posted on 10/11/2010 1:12:49 PM PDT by GeronL (http://libertyfic.proboards.com <--- My Fiction/ Science Fiction Board)
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To: dangerdoc
Did I read that Tesla was being purchased by a major asian car manufacturer

It's been reported that Akio Toyoda enjoyed his Tesla test drive.

16 posted on 10/11/2010 1:13:36 PM PDT by cynwoody
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To: ExNewsExSpook
Except for the fact....I will never buy a new GM product.

Never.........

17 posted on 10/11/2010 1:15:43 PM PDT by Osage Orange (MOLON LABE)
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To: dangerdoc

I remember a lot of heated arguments here on FR when the Volt came out. I argued that even if everything that GM was saying was true, the volt was not economically viable. You were thousands of dollars better off over the life of the car if you just bought a conventional car and used many of the claims from GM were just marketing hype. So now the Volt is neither economically viable, no technologically innovative. What a joy.


18 posted on 10/11/2010 1:16:34 PM PDT by GonzoGOP (There are millions of paranoid people in the world and they are all out to get me.)
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To: CharlesWayneCT

That diagram shows drive by an 85-hp gas engine and a 98-hp gas engine. I don’t get that.


19 posted on 10/11/2010 1:23:26 PM PDT by decimon
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To: CharlesWayneCT
It uses a sun/ring gear system just like the Prius, but connects the parts differently.

The bottom line here is that I can purchase two Toyota Priuses for the price of one Chevy Volt.

20 posted on 10/11/2010 1:25:09 PM PDT by Hoodat ( .For the weapons of our warfare are mighty in God for pulling down strongholds.)
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To: decimon

THe left side was the Volt, and the right side was the Prius. They were showing how the two cars use the same gearbox but in a different fashion.


21 posted on 10/11/2010 1:51:02 PM PDT by CharlesWayneCT
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To: CharlesWayneCT

Ouch! Guess I should have read the bold print.

Thanks.


22 posted on 10/11/2010 1:58:40 PM PDT by decimon
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To: Hoodat
The bottom line here is that I can purchase two Toyota Priuses for the price of one Chevy Volt.

The bottom line here is that you can purchase three Honda Civics (the regular, not hybrid versions) for the price of one Chevy Volt. Civics get close to 50 MPG with a regular gasoline powered internal combustion engine.

Of course, all high MPG cars are basically beer cans with wheels. I prefer to keep driving my 2006 (pre-government takeover) Chevy Suburban.

23 posted on 10/11/2010 2:02:38 PM PDT by Bubba_Leroy (The Obamanation Continues)
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To: ExNewsExSpook; GeronL

>Some plug-in hybrid...if you want to recharge your Volt at home, you can’t plug it into a standard outlet. <

You should research before you post falsely. From the GM-Volt site:

“The 240-v charger is optional as the Volt can be recharged using the standard 120-v wall socket charger that comes with the car.”


24 posted on 10/11/2010 2:09:09 PM PDT by SeeSac
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To: dangerdoc

Not true. The Prius has a gas motor with substantial electric assist. The Volt has an electric motor with nominal gas assist above 70mph or in the event of depleted batteries.


25 posted on 10/11/2010 2:13:54 PM PDT by naturalized
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To: Bubba_Leroy

Point well made. When gas was at $4/gal, I was in the market for a used fuel-efficient car. I crunched the numbers on a Prius v. a Corolla. The Corolla was definitely the better buy. For highway driving, I get 35 mpg with my Corolla (as opposed to 50 for the Prius). Even at $4/gal, it would have taken me over a decade to recover the initial cost differential.


26 posted on 10/11/2010 2:18:03 PM PDT by Hoodat ( .For the weapons of our warfare are mighty in God for pulling down strongholds.)
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To: SeeSac

bump

I imagine that would take LONGER with a 120


27 posted on 10/11/2010 2:27:02 PM PDT by GeronL (http://libertyfic.proboards.com <--- My Fiction/ Science Fiction Board)
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To: naturalized
The Volt has an electric motor with nominal gas assist above 70mph or in the event of depleted batteries.

As I understand it, at that speed, the energy lost by using the engine to recharge the battery is greater than simply using it to drive the wheels directly. Makes sense to this non-engineer.

That said, I wouldn't buy one if you (or the federal government) paid me.

28 posted on 10/11/2010 2:40:44 PM PDT by BfloGuy (It is not from the benevolence of the butcher, the brewer, or the baker, that we can expect . . .)
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additional:
http://www.freerepublic.com/focus/chat/2605463/posts


29 posted on 10/11/2010 3:03:06 PM PDT by SunkenCiv (The 2nd Amendment follows right behind the 1st because some people are hard of hearing.)
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To: GeronL
I imagine that would take LONGER with a 120

Overnight ... but who drives while sleeping ...

30 posted on 10/11/2010 3:18:59 PM PDT by SeeSac
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To: BfloGuy

10 to 15 percent assist. This is an electric vehicle with a bonus. That’s what GM has consistently maintained.


31 posted on 10/11/2010 3:21:08 PM PDT by naturalized
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To: Hoodat

At one time I drove over 30,000 miles every year and a high MPG vehicle might have made sense. Now I live and work in a small town (my house is a mile from my office). I average less than 12,000 miles a year.

Last year I used a total of 600 gallons of gas to move my butt around in a nice, comfortable Suburban. I might be able to cut that down to under 300 gallons of gas if I traded my Suburban for a hybrid beer can on wheels. At current gas prices of under $3 per gallon, it would save me less than $1,000 per year in gasoline cost. If gas shoots up to $5 per gallon, it would save me $1,500 per year.

I can drive a really nice SUV for a lot less than the cost of a hybrid.


32 posted on 10/11/2010 3:29:11 PM PDT by Bubba_Leroy (The Obamanation Continues)
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To: thackney
Perhaps someone should tell gm-volt.com they don't know their own car.

Perhaps you don't know all the facts either!

"GM-Volt.com is not affiliated with General Motors Company"

33 posted on 10/12/2010 9:17:57 AM PDT by SeeSac
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To: NVDave
No only did they lie (and this is an outright lie),

What was the lie and who is 'they'?

34 posted on 10/12/2010 9:19:52 AM PDT by SeeSac
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To: SeeSac

I did not mean to imply they owned the car. But they put this web site around a specific to get out info and their info is contradicting itself.


35 posted on 10/12/2010 9:21:05 AM PDT by thackney (life is fragile, handle with prayer)
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To: dangerdoc

Interesting that Engadget offers no source for their allegations and, if fact engages in their own form of deception!


36 posted on 10/12/2010 9:25:02 AM PDT by SeeSac
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To: SeeSac

GM

http://m.chevrolet.com/Volt_Technology?id=1901&feature=1&md2psid=-1

First sentence.


37 posted on 10/12/2010 9:26:30 AM PDT by thackney (life is fragile, handle with prayer)
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To: thackney
I did not mean to imply they owned the car. But they put this web site around a specific to get out info and their info is contradicting itself.

Let's try this again

"This site was founded by Dr. Lyle Dennis in January 2007. Dr. Dennis is an advocate for the electrification of the automobile and is not affiliated with the auto industry. This site is not affiliated with GM and is wholly owned and operated by GM-Volt.com, LLC. "

38 posted on 10/12/2010 9:28:26 AM PDT by SeeSac
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To: dangerdoc

GM labeled several vehicles “hybrid” sometime back, and they were NOT hybrid.

GM continues to view their customers as being idiots.


39 posted on 10/12/2010 9:34:56 AM PDT by truth_seeker
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To: thackney

Your ‘link’ puts me to chevrolet.com.


40 posted on 10/12/2010 9:40:54 AM PDT by SeeSac
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To: dangerdoc
The Awesome Chevy Volt Dance!
41 posted on 10/12/2010 9:44:26 AM PDT by dead (I've got my eye out for Mullah Omar.)
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To: SeeSac

Select Volt. Select Technology.

First Sentence:

The Volt propulsion system is powered exclusively by electricity.


42 posted on 10/12/2010 9:47:58 AM PDT by thackney (life is fragile, handle with prayer)
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To: SeeSac

GM was talking of the Volt being a “all electrically driven” and “revolutionary” blah, blah, blah.


43 posted on 10/12/2010 9:51:39 AM PDT by NVDave
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To: thackney
Select Volt. Select Technology. First Sentence: The Volt propulsion system is powered exclusively by electricity.

I looked at all 17 frames but couldn't find your sentence.

44 posted on 10/12/2010 9:56:16 AM PDT by SeeSac
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To: NVDave
GM was talking of the Volt being a “all electrically driven” and “revolutionary” blah, blah, blah.

Source for your quote "all electrically driven"?

45 posted on 10/12/2010 9:58:52 AM PDT by SeeSac
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To: SeeSac

Since I’m on a BlackBerry I’m using GM mobile site.

It must be different than what you see on a PC.


46 posted on 10/12/2010 10:02:07 AM PDT by thackney (life is fragile, handle with prayer)
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To: SeeSac

http://www.motortrend.com/photo_gallery/112_0809_2011_chevrolet_volt_photo_gallery/official_press_release.html

Under “New era in automotive transportation”

2nd Paragraph starts:

The Volt uses electricity to move the wheels at all times and speeds.

- - - - - -

The Chevrolet Volt is not a hybrid.

http://media.gm.com/media/us/en/vehicles/chevrolet/volt/2011.html

The Volt proves electric driving can be spirited. Not only does the Volt reach a top speed of 100 mph, the electric drive unit’s excellent low speed torque of 273 lb.-ft. (368 Nm) takes it from 0 to 60 mph in less than 9.0 seconds and the quarter mile in less than 17.0 seconds.


47 posted on 10/12/2010 10:13:33 AM PDT by thackney (life is fragile, handle with prayer)
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To: SeeSac

Their press release:

http://media.gm.com/content/media/us/en/news/news_detail.brand_gm.html/content/Pages/news/us/en/2010/Oct/1010_volt_launch

Applicable quote:

“The Chevrolet Volt is not a hybrid. It is a one-of-a-kind, all-electrically driven vehicle designed and engineered to operate in all climates.”

GM’s response as of yesterday is: “There is no direct mechanical connection (fixed gear ratio) between the Volt’s extended-range 1.4L engine and the drive wheels.”

Uh... in engineering, we don’t draw distinctions between fixed and variable gear ratios when we talk about “mechanical connection.” Does the force being applied to the drivetrain originate only in the electrical motor? Then it is an “all electrical drive.” Does any of the force being applied to the drivetrain originate in anything other than the electrical motor(s)? Well then, it isn’t “all electrically driven.”

That word “all” means that there is “nothing else.” And there, they’re not telling the truth.


48 posted on 10/12/2010 10:29:13 AM PDT by NVDave
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To: thackney

“The Volt uses electricity to move the wheels at all times and speeds.”

True.


49 posted on 10/12/2010 10:29:24 AM PDT by SeeSac
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To: NVDave
Does the force being applied to the drivetrain originate only in the electrical motor? Then it is an “all electrical drive.”

Under about 65 mph that is true.

50 posted on 10/12/2010 10:34:35 AM PDT by SeeSac
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