Chevrolet Volt Chattanooga TN

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Gentry Chevrolet Pontiac Buick Inc
(423) 265-8721
Junction I 24 & Hwy 72
Chattanooga, TN
Newton Chevrolet
(423) 266-0181
PO Box 1367
Chattanooga, TN
Conley Smith Chevrolet
(706) 657-2504
605 Kentucky Ave
Trenton, GA
Kenton Chevrolet
(731) 749-5316
201 S Poplar St
Kenton, TN
Rainbow Chevrolet Cadillac
(423) 566-1533
1916 Jacksboro Pike
La Follette, TN
Mountain View Chevrolet
(423) 266-0181
310 E 20th St
Chattanooga, TN
Walter Jackson Chevrolet
(706) 935-2381
5340 Alabama Hwy
Ringgold, GA
Graves Chuck Chevrolet-Oldsmobile-Cadillac Inc
(731) 784-3931
3523 Eastend Dr
Humboldt, TN
Ronnie Smith Chevrolet-Chrysler Plymouth Dodge Inc
(731) 925-9016
1350 Wayne Rd
Savannah, TN
Smith Ray Chevrolet-Buick-Pontiac Inc
(731) 584-6141
260 W Main St
Camden, TN

2011 Chevrolet Volt Review

2011 Chevrolet Volt
Several months ago I had the opportunity to spend enough time with a Chevrolet Volt to get a good first impression of GM’s entry in the high-tech automotive field. Based on that, I wrote a first-drive driving impression, not expecting to find one available in the local press fleet.

Never say never in this business I’ve just spent a short, interesting week with a Volt at home, with a 300-mile roundtrip road trip — to, amusingly, the regional launch of someone else’s new hybrid — for part of the driving experience. It was a good showcase for the strengths and weaknesses of the Volt and its “extended-range EV” electric-gasoline drivetrain.

Weaknesses first: GM calls the Volt an “extended-range electric vehicle”. Plug it in for a full charge — which takes about eight hours on 110VAC or four at 220 — and it will run between 30 and 50 miles as an electric vehicle. At all speeds, with all accessories on. No compromises. And when the EV battery reaches a minimum point, the gasoline engine turns on and (partially) charges the battery, which powers the traction motor, so electric power still the main propulsive torque source.
(A full battery charge can only be obtained by plugging into an external source of electricity.) Occasionally the motor-generator will be driven by the gasoline engine, generating electricity, and connected to the drivetrain directly via clutch as well, meaning that some small amount of internal-combustion torque reaches the driving wheels. You, as driver or passenger, will never notice, and it’s a bit of engineering trivia meaningful only to the most persnickety automotive taxonomist. If the Volt isn’t an “extended-range electric vehicle”, it’s the first production plug-in hybrid, and, as either, its drive system is the most advanced currently in production.

The only real weakness is in the charging infrastructure. Yes, the Volt recharges on regular 110/120VAC house current, but the charger is picky about being attached to a well-grounded circuit and won’t work if it isn’t. It didn’t like my 1943-spec house wiring. Nor was there a conveniently-located outlet in the hotel parking lot. With a pure EV, these would have been major problems; with the Volt, no worries, just put a little unleaded regular in the tank and drive. And if I was considering purchase, I’d upgrade my house and garage wiring. Although it was originally available only in California, Texas, Michigan, and parts of the Northeast or DC, GM has just announced that the Volt can be ordered throughout the country. You may have to wait a while for delivery, but not as long as previously.

Strengths? See above. It’s a fully-functional automobile, and also a showcase for GM’s engineering, design, and construction abilities. It’s not inexpensive — new technology rarely is — and the 2011 Chevrolet Volt at $40,280 ...

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