General Motors has shared a few details about how well testing goes for the company’s first fully electric vehicle, the Chevrolet Bolt, claiming the prototypes have met their initial estimates for a range of 200 miles on a full charge.
The carmaker has 55 test vehicles on the roads already, with the battery electric vehicle in testing at the factories where it would be produced – in Seoul, South Korea, and Orion Township, the US. Engineers said that after being tested to the limit throughout GM’s Milford Proving Grounds, early results are positive. “We have experienced 200 miles. We’re pretty confident in that,” commented Pam Fletcher, GM executive chief engineer for electrified vehicles. “You can imagine we’re going to eke out every mile of range we can.” GM is trying to address the newly established consumers’ anxiety about getting stranded on the side of the road without the possibility to reach a charging station – a complex that has been developing since electric cars have appeared on roads. This is why the development phase had a goal of 200 miles between charges for the Bolt.
That would be very close to what the current champion offers – Tesla’s luxury Model S sedan will have between 208 and 270 miles, with four variants the consumer can select. But the price bracket is nowhere near the one envisioned for the Bolt – of around $30,000 after a federal $7,500 tax credit. The Model S can vary between $65,000 to more than $100,000. Chevrolet, the mass-market brand of GM, is now talking about entering a phase of “democratization of technology” thanks to its second generation 2016 Volt extended-range EV and the upcoming Bolt, or even the hybrid option for the new Malibu sedan set for introductions sometime next year.