Not a Plug-in Hybrid Like the Volt.. More Like the EV2So far, GM hasn't been all that enthusiastic about electric-only vehicles. They made the EV1, but it ended up in the junkyard. The Chevy Volt can run on electricity alone for about 35 miles, but there's a gasoline engine that acts as a 'range extender'. That's why the Spark EV that is being announced today is special: It will be the first GM car in over a decade to run on batteries alone. Read on for more details.
Small Urban EV
While the gasoline version of the Spark (also known as the Beat in some countries) will arrive in the first half of 2012, the electric version should only be available in 2013. It looks a bit like it aims to compete against the Nissan LEAF and the Scion iQ EV as an urban car. No word on official range yet, but I'd be really surprised if it was above 100 miles. Maybe less...
"The Spark EV offers customers living in urban areas who have predictable driving patterns or short commutes an all-electric option," said Jim Federico, global vehicle chief engineer for electric vehicles at Chevrolet. "It complements Chevrolet's growing range of electrified vehicles, including the Volt extended-range EV and the 2013 Malibu Eco with eAssist technology."
Our friends at Green Car Report claim that the Spark EV won't be sold nationwide, but will rather be focused on California and other states that follow its emission standards. Only about 2,000 Spark EV would be made per year, which isn't bad, but isn't great either. But take this with a grain of salt, as it isn't confirmed by GM yet.
A123 Systems will supply the advanced nanophosphate lithium-ion battery packs that will power the Spark EV. But we'll has to wait for details about range, quantities and pricing...
The Spark EV should go on sale in the U.S. in 2013.
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