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Old 04-14-2009, 04:42 AM   #1
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chevy volt mule

the "mule" isn't to be offensive, it explains it out in the article


http://money.cnn.com/galleries/2009/...ive/index.html

there are links at the bottom for the actual test drive.
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Old 04-14-2009, 07:15 AM   #2
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Good find. I'm glad to hear they're still charging ahead with the work on it in spite of their financial troubles.

There's not much about the actual drive in that writeup. I suspect that's because the Volt-powered test mule drove pretty much like any other car, except for the things they mention as being different.
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Old 04-14-2009, 07:53 AM   #3
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The Volt's electric motor is sized to provide performance comparable to a 250-horsepower V6, said Posawatz, and that seemed about right.

I hadn't read much about the Volt and didn't realize how high a performance level it was at. I guess given its price they want it to have driving satisfaction. Definitely not the car for me.
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Old 04-14-2009, 08:14 AM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by maximilian View Post
Definitely not the car for me.
Why not? Unlike a gasoline engine, you don't have huge efficiency drops from using an oversized electric motor.

Most AC motors keep their high efficiency ratings at relatively low load levels. When you start changing AC frequency and voltage that efficiency peak moves as well.

An electric motor pulling 1hp at 100% load will generate more heat than an electric motor pulling 1hp at 75 or even 50%. That's especially true if you start over-volting the smaller motor to try and make more power than originally specified.

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Old 04-14-2009, 08:22 AM   #5
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While the electric motor's partial load performance is quite good, it's still heavier than needed if lower power driving is your desire. Also, the transmission components, generator, and backup gasoline engine will all be larger to support that more peppy driving style they've settled on. The battery pack will also be larger and heavier than needed, and while that would give more electric only range if driving frugally, I wouldn't value it. Of course, I'm not the intended market by a long shot since I am focused on TCO.
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Old 04-14-2009, 08:26 AM   #6
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I'd love a volt but I get this feeling the apartment complex won't like an extension cord from my 3rd floor apartment to the parking lot. It's actually the perfect car for me, other than lack of utility. I rarely drive over 40 miles a day and when I do it's for long trips out of town where the gas engine comes into play.
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Old 04-14-2009, 08:30 AM   #7
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The trick is to figure out how to take it from one of the first floor apartments!
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Old 04-14-2009, 08:37 AM   #8
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I can't imagine worrying about the weight of extra performance equipment if it's producing results. That makes it seem like you're morally opposed to the mere concept of weight, rather than interested in it as a means to an end.
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Old 04-14-2009, 08:46 AM   #9
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isn't it still running around $40k?

that is the biggest factor for me.

make a $20k plug in hybrid and I am all over it.
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Old 04-14-2009, 09:05 AM   #10
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From that article (last page):

While GM hasn't said, officially, what the Volt will cost, it also hasn't batted aside the common prediction that it will cost about $40,000. Buyers should be eligible for a $7,500 tax credit, so the real cost for most people will be about $32,500.
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