2013 Chevy Volt Battery Pack and Drivetrain Disassembly – Video

AUG 4 2014 BY MARK KANE 14

Chevrolet Volt drivetrain

Chevrolet Volt drivetrain

A wrecked plug-in car is always a good opportunity to check what the drivetrain and battery pack consists of and maybe even to reuse some parts.

Exactly this was the case for the 2013 Chevy Volt, which ended its life early.

d55guy, author of the video, disassembled the battery pack up to internal modules.  However, this job is only for people with strong nerves, as there was still some blood red cooling fluid leaks on the table.

In the second video, we see part of the drivetrain, which with a certain amount of luck will go into another car.

“In this video I show the EV drive drain from a 2013 Chevy Volt that was removed from a wreck with only 7,000 miles. The traction pack is disassembled down to the individual 24V and 48V modules.”

“A quick overview of the motor/gearbox as well as the inverter and a few of the EVs in the new shop.”

Categories: Chevrolet


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14 Comments on "2013 Chevy Volt Battery Pack and Drivetrain Disassembly – Video"

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David Murray

Quite interesting. I think he got a few minor things wrong, though.


This just shows how “simple” the Voltec powertrain is.

The typical myth is Voltec powertrain is supper complex. But it is really a simple design.


Having a triple-clutch configuration isn’t what I would call “simple”. Simple is the reduction gear the i3 uses. No clutches.

George Bower

There is a lot of bang for the buck in those Volt parts. It will be very interesting to see what kind of project car he makes from the parts.

On the battery disassembly:

You can see the complexity of the battery cooling system “repeater frames” in between each individual cell.

Although the Volt’s cooling scheme is very efficient from a heat transfer point of view, the new Spark cooling scheme is much simpler and lower cost than the Volt’s.

The Spark puts all the cooling a a battery “tray” that the modules sit on. The i3 uses this scheme as well. I am sure we will see this new tray cooling scheme carry forward into GM’s next generation of EV’s.

Matt Doude

AAaahh… this guy was scaring me to death, working with no gloves and slinging metal bolts around everywhere.
The Volt cooling is much more advanced than just a single cold plate that the modules sit on. If they thought they could have gotten away with that, they would have done it. As we all know, GM has been hyper conservative with battery cooling on the Volt.
Also, the actual cooling plates that go between the cells use a pretty common manufacturing method and I doubt represent a significant portion of the pack cost.


I thought the diameter and length of those cooling tubes goes to show why heating the interior of the Volt can be an energy hungry chore. All that coolant has to heat up first. If you do it with the engine, its coolant loop will tie in but that defeats the purpose when going sub-30 miles.


The battery and cabin heating are on two different loops. They can be shared once the valves are open. But it is true that it needs a lot of heating if the both the battery and cabin needs heating. Volt electric heater is about 6KW. That is why it drains a lot of power.

George Bower

so your saying Gen 2 Volt will retain the Gen 1 cooling scheme?????

I don’t think I’d make that bet but if you want I’ll put up whatever you want cuz you gonna’ lose.


Volt cooling system is more complex but it also has higher performance in terms of temperature gradient.

GM is going for the conservative approach here.


That guy has a lot of unfinished projects.

Bill Howland

I was rather surprized he didn’t know about the 2 motor/3 clutch “Synergy Drive” made by the Toyota subsidiary that makes the SD for the Prius.

THe clue was he said he didn’t know what the gear ratio is, but its of course dependent on the relative speed of the 2 motors with each other that determines the overall reduction and in that “sense” its a CVT.

But this is quite common knowledge at this late date. News to me was it appears the charger is built into the VOltec box, whereas I thought this was a separate assembly. That is unless the 30 amp fuses he was talking about work on pulsating dc and not line frequency ac.

Kacey Green

On the 2011&12 it’s behind the passenger side headlight,II don’t think they changed this for 13+ my 13&12 are similar enough that I didn’t bother to check. I can if you need to though.


Toyota’s Synergy drive doesn’t use 3 clutches b/c it doesn’t have 2 EV mode. Neither does the Honda system which doesn’t have 3 clutches either.

They are both 1 clutch system.

Minor details makes a large block diagram and control difference.

Jeff N

I’m guessing that you think the Volt transmission is made by Aisin, which is a major Japanese auto parts supplier to Toyota and other companies.

Many people have assumed this since Aisin manufactured the first generation Prius transmission and the first Prius-like Ford hybrid transmissions and the Volt “Monroney” EPA window sticker says the Volt transmission is from “Japan”. Both Toyota and Ford now manufacture their own transmissions.

Actually, the sticker says “Japan” because the highest value parts in the Volt transmission come from Hitachi Automotive which makes the 2 electric motors and the AC/DC interver and control circuitry for them. The Volt transmission is actually assembled in Ramos Arizpe, Mexico at a GM plant which is also presumably where the planetary gears, metal outer casing, and other parts are made.

Nothing in the Volt transmission has ever been made by Aisin or any Toyota subsidiary to the best of my knowledge.