With demand for electric vehicles growing and global automakers announcing more electric platforms, Chevrolet is focused on the forthcoming 2017 Bolt EV. Recently, the EPA estimated range of 238 miles was announced, the distance owners can expect to travel with regular charges.
This is ahead of the original 200 miles Chevrolet promised. In addition to range, engineers focused on cargo capacity, ride quality, technology, connectivity, and safety.
“While range is important, we knew Bolt EV owners would want more – more space and more power – and the Bolt EV delivers,” said Bolt EV Chief Engineer Josh Tavel. “Our team took special pride in optimizing every aspect of this vehicle, especially its impressive range and ride dynamics.”
Potential customers expressed to Chevrolet, during a round of interviews, their fondness for one-pedal driving. The feature in the Volt, now incorporated on the 2017 Bolt EV, uses regenerative braking to further optimize battery charge. One-pedal driving employs the highest available levels of regenerative braking, transforming otherwise lost energy from deceleration. That energy is sent to the battery pack, helping to increase range.
“Bolt EV customers who want an engaging driving experience will love the thrill of one-pedal driving,” Tavel said.
The degree of regenerative braking is determined through four different selectable modes. The first level provides the lowest amount of regenerative braking, while higher levels produce a progressively stronger regenerative braking force. In these higher modes, with additional software controls, regenerative braking can actually stop the vehicle without using the brake pedal, depending on the driving conditions.
Customers can use the different modes as they see fit.
“They will be able to tailor the vehicle to their preferred driving style and maximize their range,” Tavel said.
It should be noted one-pedal driving does not eliminate the need for braking altogether, especially during emergency situations.
GM testing determined one-pedal driving increases range by 5 percent.
Overall, the 2017 Chevy Bolt EV is an attractive option for electric vehicle customers. Its MSRP is below $37,500 and a federal tax credit of up to $7,500 is available.
“The Bolt EV is a game changer for the electric car segment,” said Alan Batey, GM North America President.
It joins the aforementioned Volt and Malibu Hybrid in Chevy’s electrified line. The 2017 Chevy Bolt EV arrives at dealerships later this year.
Carl Anthony is Managing Editor of Automoblog and resides in Detroit, Michigan.