GM has finally announced the pricing for its plug-in hybrid, which has been redesigned and upgraded for the 2016 model year. The Volt will now have a 50-mile electric range before the gasoline backup kicks in, and it will get 102 MPG-equivalent. All that can be yours for $33,995, which after the $7,500 federal tax credit is $26,495, and if you live in a state that has incentives too, like California, you could save a bit more (final sticker price in California is $24,995).
How is the 2016 Volt different from the outgoing model?
For a start, there's a new two-motor drive unit that is 12% more efficient and 100lbs lighter, while providing 19% faster zero-to-30 mph acceleration (2.6 seconds) and a 7% improvement from zero-to-60 mph (8.4 seconds). The first motor can generate 149-horsepower and the second 60-hp, for a combined 294 lb-ft of torque.
The battery capacity has also been boosted from 17.1kWh to 18.4kWh (now divided among 192 individual battery cells, which is 96 fewer than the current generation). The chemistry has been revised and the batteries are made by LG Chem. The battery is also lighter by 20lbs, and the warranty on it is an impressive 8 years or 100,000 miles (10 years / 150,000 miles in ARB states).
The gasoline engine that kicks in when the battery is depleted was also upgraded to a new 1.5-liter model that gets 41 MPG when powering the Volt. The overall fuel economy (electric + gasoline combined, using the EPA methodology) is now 102 MPG-equivalent, compared to 98 MPGe for the previous model.
Combine the higher battery capacity with the more efficient drivetrain, air drag and weight reductions and the 2016 Volt can now drive 50 miles in electric mode, compared to 38 miles for the previous model (that's a 31.5% improvement!).
Last summer, Volt owners passed the 500 million electric miles mark, equivalent to not burning about 25 million gallons of gasoline.