Chevrolet Volt Down under in 2012  

Posted by Big Gav in , ,

The SMH reports that the GM Volt is also headed for Australia - First drive: Chevrolet Volt.

With an innovative plug-in electric car set-up, the Chevrolet Volt could have as much of an impact on General Motors as it does on the planet.

The Chevrolet Volt may not be able to save General Motors financially but it could restore its reputation for engineering quality and vision and is a viable yet flawed small car proposition.

A first drive this week around the lumpy concrete streets of GM's Warren technical centre in the suburbs of decayed, deteriorating Detroit is a cause for rejuvenated hope at a company in bankruptcy just a few months ago.

The Volt – which will be sold in Australia wearing a Holden badge from 2012 - is a plug-in electric car with an innovative twist. While its front wheels are always driven by electricity, a 1.4-litre petrol engine generates power for a powerful lithium-ion battery pack when required.

GM calls it a range extender, but it’s effectively a miniature onboard power station or generator. It means the end of the range anxiety that bedevils electric cars. When the battery pack runs low the petrol engine will ensure it won't run out, guaranteeing a fuel-tank-like 500km range.

Want to refuel? Then top up the fuel tank just likes a normal small car. Or be new age and plug in to a powerpoint overnight to replenish the battery pack.

"It's the only electric vehicle that can be your only vehicle," was how the Volt's chief engineer Andrew Farah summed it up.



The SMH also reports that Citroen will be selling a rebadged Mitsubishi MiEV - Citroen plugs in to electric craze.
Citroen has unveiled its re-badged version of the Mitsubishi I MiEV electric car ahead of its public debut at the Brussels Motor Show.

The battery-powered C-ZERO is a sister car to the Peugeot iOn that debuted at the Frankfurt motor show last September. Both cars are built on the Mitsubishi platform.

The 'zero' suffix stands for zero fuel use, zero carbon emissions, zero decibels from the electric powerplant.

The 47kW motor is powered by lithium-ion batteries, and produces 180Nm of torque. According to Citroen, the batteries can be charged using a household socket, while a higher voltage electricity supply will charge the batteries to 80 per cent in just 30 minutes. A single charge will be good for range of 130km.

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