People don't believe me when I tell them I can get 25 mpg out of my '92 Jeep Wrangler. Sure, it was all highway mileage, and the speedometer never crept over 55 mph… but I still did it. It just goes to show that often, the most important factor when it comes to gas mileage isn't the car, but the driver. A light foot means more mileage, while a heavy foot means, well… less mileage.
GM seems to have reached this understanding as well. On Thursday, they revised the Chevy Volt's expected all-electric range from 40 miles, to between 25 and 50 miles. Sounds better to me, though some people might accuse GM of the ol' “bait and switch.”
This new information was revealed in filings with the Securities Exchange Commission regarding GM's upcoming IPO. The reasons for the 40 mile range are many. GM claims that 80% of commuters drive 40 miles or less to work every day. Thus, GM could market the Volt as a commuter car that takes away the need for frequent fill-ups. Just like any car though (electric or gas-powered included), the range of the Volt can be dramatically affected not just by how you drive, but where you drive and the weather as well. Instead of sticking with the absolute 40-mile range, GM has revised the Volt's electric range to between 25 and 50 miles.
Personally, I have no problem with this. It is just like fuel economy ratings. Just because the Prius is rated at 50 mpg, doesn't mean you will always get 50 mpg. The same can be said about the Volt. If its the middle of winter and you're driving up the Rocky Mountains as fast as you possibly can, don't expect to go 50 miles without the range-extender kicking in. This revision will also cover GM's rear end when the inevitable angry customer comes back claiming they only got 39 miles of all-electric range, rather than 40.
Does this in any way change your opinion of the Volt?