GM: Max Range Of Chevrolet Bolt Is Less Than 200 Miles, GM Update: Whoops, Or More


Chevrolet Bolt

Chevrolet Bolt

Chevrolet Bolt

Chevrolet Bolt

It was 2 months ago when General Motors made this announcement related to the Chevrolet Bolt:

“Leveraging the industry-leading battery technology found in the Chevrolet Volt and Spark EV, the Bolt EV concept was developed as a game-changing, long-range pure electric for all 50 states, designed to offer more than a GM-estimated 200 miles of range at a target price of around $30,000.”

Update (below): GM Clarification

That “more than a GM-estimated 200 miles of range” is now “a maximum range of 320 km,” or 198.8 miles.

“Lightweight materials – including aluminum, magnesium, carbon fiber and woven mesh – add to the design while keeping down the curb weight to give the Bolt a maximum range of 320 km.”

The latest Bolt EV range announcement comes to us from Shanghai, where General Motors is showing off a bevy of plug in vehicles, including the all-new Cadillac CT6 PHEV.

UPDATE: We contacted General Motors immediately on the change of wording surrounding the range expectations of the Chevrolet Bolt from China, and they put the focus on a “incorrect” statement on the part of the “team in China”.  The press release has now been corrected to reflect GM’s earlier assumptions.

“Lightweight materials – including aluminum, magnesium, carbon fiber and woven mesh – add to the design while keeping down the curb weight to give the Bolt EV a range of more than 320 km (200 miles). 

You may be thinking that dropping from 200 miles to 198.8 is no big deal.  However, if we examine how it’s worded, then there’s a significant change.  Maximum range implies ideal circumstances.  For example, the current Nissan LEAF has a maximum range, as stated by Nissan, of “up to 124 miles:”


“SO HOW FAR CAN I GO? Every full charge will give you a range of up to 124 miles.”

Yet the LEAF is rated at 84 miles of range, per the EPA, or 40 miles less than the max.  If we speculate that a similar formula would apply to the Bolt EV, then maybe its EPA-rated range will be more in the 150-160 mile range, or well short of the “GM-estimated 200 miles of range.”

Is the 200-mile, affordable electric car not actually reality? Maybe 150 miles at an attractive price is what we should expect.

Here’s the press release from General Motors on the Bolt EV in Shanghai:

Chevrolet Bolt EV Concept

The Bolt EV concept had its global premiere at January’s North American International Auto Show in Detroit. It is a game-changing electric vehicle that signals Chevrolet’s commitment to bring electrification to today’s consumer with unexpected functionality, technology and crossover proportions.

It features Chevrolet’s classic dual-cockpit styling, while uniquely integrating user-friendly technology to offer a worry-free, delightful driving experience. Lightweight materials – including aluminum, magnesium, carbon fiber and woven mesh – add to the design while keeping down the curb weight to give the Bolt a maximum range of 320 km.

Drivers will be able to select operating modes designed around preferred driving styles such as daily commuting and spirited weekend cruising, for uncompromising electric driving. The modes adjust accelerator pedal mapping, vehicle ride height and suspension tuning. The Bolt EV concept is also designed to support DC fast charging.

The model’s technological intuitiveness can be accessed via a smartphone with the concept Bolt EV Connect app. This is designed to allow a smartphone to perform as the key fob, allow ride-sharing management, and incorporate the concept automatic park-and-retrieval technology to enable the Bolt EV concept to park itself.

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206 Comments on "GM: Max Range Of Chevrolet Bolt Is Less Than 200 Miles, GM Update: Whoops, Or More"

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Maybe it’s an under-promise, over-deliver, but I really want 200 miles on the EPA sticker.

Poor you, you will have to buy a Tesla 3 … Yuck! 😉

That is right, our “Flying Dutchman” Model 3 should be way better. What do we know about “Flying Dutchman” ?? : No confirmed apparitions.

I don’t think I can wait that long. We probably won’t see a Model 3 until 2020 or later.

You’re crazy. If you have to wait till 2020 for Model III, then there will likely NOT be a Model III. Or Tesla for that matter.

Anon, Why is that?

Because they do not make profit on Tesla S reliably.

If they can not get returns on those massive investments before 2020 company may need to be sold wholly or partially.

Also I would mean bigger issues with Gigafactory and model X.

It’s amazing how Tesla bashers have actually managed to convince some people that the company isn’t making a profit.

Here’s a fact: Tesla averages 25% gross profit on every Model S sold, which is a considerably higher margin than most auto makers. Here’s another fact: Tesla isn’t giving dividends to its stockholders, and doesn’t plan to for at least the next few years, because it’s reinvesting all profits into expanding the company’s production.

Reinvesting those profits you say they’re not making.

“it’s reinvesting all profits into expanding the company’s production.” And – Expanding Supercharger Installations almost Everywhere, AND – building a Massive Factory we all know the word Giga – means big Bucks – So -IF it din’t do all those things – it would have lots of ‘Cash’ or ‘Profit’ to measure – as in “Gee – we have all this left over money!” However – since their goals is to accelerate Electric Vehicle Adoption – the Supercharger Network is Paramount to that for the Model S, the coming Model X, and the yet to be even detailed and shown – even in prototype form – Model 3!

The April 30th Announcement of a ‘Not a Car’ is another element of Investment, for sure!

Do you know some news we don’t? Last time I checked, model 3 was scheduled for late 2017. . .

When was the last time Tesla delivered a product on time?


+1 because not everyone will get your joke


+10. LOL, awesome.

The dynamic and will is very different from Model X to Model 3. Model X was supposed to be a complementary money maker to go along Model S, but the huge success of Model S made Model X secondary, and an opportunity to perfect it even more, by the perfectionnist Musk.
Model 3 ids the ultimate goal from the early beginnings of Tesla Motors. The money will be there, the gigafactory will be ready and the massive production of an affordable long range EV will begin as soon as possible. This is THE reason why Musk wanted to play with electric cars.
He said 2017, and I would bet that early 2018 will be the latest deadline.

“ultimate deadline” should I say? Sorry again for my bad English…

Lustucc, is English a second language for you? I’m impressed, you generally write very well, even if I often disagree with the substance of what you are writing. 🙂

I agree on our disagreements…

exactly – It is interesting how the tone of a lot of these posters is negative against Tesla – which is pure crazy. Tesla in a lot of peoples eyes out there has produced the best automobile in history and has had phenominal accolades and success for a start-up car company – yes folks a start up company. The model 111 will be here maybe in 2017 may 2018 , personally I can wait- when it does arrive – watch out! It will surprise and blow away all of the other manufacturers who are already 3-4 years behind Tesla in their development cycle.

A couple of people with short positions in Tesla stock post here, which seems to increase the negativity.

Feels a little like Fox News sometimes. 🙂

More pipe dreams! First, Tesla must figure out how to stop blowing up its drive units and its ballooning losses.

Wow, we were starting to wonder where you went. We haven’t heard your love and devotion to Tesla in a while.

Well, I -hope- Tesla can deliver the Model ≡ in 2017, as planned, but they have been noticeably late with every single model so far… so if I were to bet, I’d bet it will be at least 2018 before they start delivering them.

And not so long ago, the editors of InsideEVs predicted 2019 for the debut of the Model ≡. That seems like a reasonably safe bet; the Model S was at least two years late (perhaps more, depending on when you start counting), and the Model X will be at least two years late also.

I test drove a Model S about two months ago and the salesperson told me not to expect a model 3 until 2018 but more realistically 2019. I was really hoping for 2017 since that’s when my lease on my Volt is due but if Chevy delivers on their word the Bolt will be my next vehicle.

I know they haven’t even decided what it will look like. So first they need to design it. Then build prototypes. Test. Design the manufacturing line and buy the tooling. Prove out the system. Etc.

If you think that will all happen in less than 2 years, I think that is crazy.

I wouldn’t be so sure that “they haven’t even decided what it will look like.” In January, Musk did indicate that the design wasn’t finalized: “”[The Model 3] will be way different from any other car on the road,” says Musk. But, “in a way that’s really useful and just doesn’t feel like a weird-mobile.”

Reading between the lines, I’m thinking the Model 3 will look like a 20% smaller Model X, with of course only two rows of seats. That would fit the “really useful” part of Musk’s comments.

I see a few possibilities here regarding model 3, either Tesla really is in a very early development stage of the model 3 so that would indeed push release until quite late (after 2018 ?). Either they are much more advanced but do not release any info fearing it could canibalize P70D sales. There is the Giga Factory issue also. It seems they would need a substancial amount of fresh cash to have it completed. Tesla’s future may depend on how good they are at raising this cash.

I don’t think Tesla’s future is in doubt, but this article proves the theme of Model 3 being behind. Take it with Musk saying “200 miles” have to be a minimum, and you don’t have distraction, mission creep with MS variants, but instead a deliberate decision made not to introduce too expensive a car, for too little money, too early.

Tesla will be around for a long time, but they aren’t in the business of fool’s errands.

Got to 2:30 into the video. Elon’s response when asked about the reveal of the Model 3. “We actually don’t have the schematics for the Model 3”. His *plan* is to reveal the CONCEPT next year. Then he goes on to say they are still debating how “adventurous” they want to make the design (meaning nothing is designed yet). He *thinks* they will try do something “more radical”. Going from this point, to me being able to buy one in 2017 isn’t going to happen IMO.

Wonder what the 20% mean, is it weight or lenght. Weight that is ok but lenght would put it at 4 m, which is shorther than the Prius. A micro Tesla should not be confused with an affordable Tesla.
On the more radical claim, this is a bit scary because falcon wing doors immediately come to mind.Actually it is frightening because there will be no alternative for the foreseeable future. In that sense a smaller Model S scenario would be more reassuring, or then have two cars, a smaller Model S and the Model radical. Both cars could probably use most parts in common.

” Then he goes on to say they are still debating how “adventurous” they want to make the design (meaning nothing is designed yet)”
It’s highly unlikely that that’s what it means.
Odds are they have a shortlist of different general designs, and need to decide between them (quite possibly, they’ll need to reach the prototype stage with several of the designs).

Don’t you think that after all the fuss about the X’s delays, Musk would prefer to announce a later date than a too soon one? Also this video is 4 months old. And also if the model 3 is already in developpement, Tesla prefer to keep it secret for the competition?
If it will be unveiled next year, it doesn’t mean that it is not already decided internally.

I’m amazed on how people can be so scared about doors that nobody has never ever been seen or tried…

He did follow up later at the earnings call and say they are going with the conservative design. I think the Bolt pressured them. Probably just a mini Model S, which is a good idea.

On my phone, I’ll find the link later.


The Mercedes Gullwing had falcon doors a long time ago and was part of the inspiration why Elon choose those since he said it used to be his childhood favorite car.

In any case the falcon doors trough the years have not spread to the general cars because they are complicate and more costly than standard doors. This is a good reason not to use them on a cheap Model 3, especially since they don’t have the easy access purpose need that may be justifying them in the Model X which is also a much more expansive vehicle.

@Josh. I do recall him saying the will be most likely be going w/the more generic design which makes me sad. I really don’t want just a smaller Model S. I hope it has at least some distinguishing characteristics. (and no nose cone)

kdawg said:

“I know they haven’t even decided what it will look like. So first they need to design it. Then build prototypes. Test. Design the manufacturing line and buy the tooling. Prove out the system. Etc.

“If you think that will all happen in less than 2 years, I think that is crazy.”

Well, my understanding is that it has happened that an auto makers went from start of design to production in only 18 months… but it seems questionable that an auto maker as new as Tesla could pull that off.

OTOH, my calendar says it’s still April 2015. If they want to deliver by September 2017, they still have more than two years. I think the odds are low that they -will- deliver by end of 2017, based on Tesla’s history of chronic lateness, but it’s not impossible.

With SpaceX building a ‘Printed Inconel’ Rocket Motor for the Dragon 2 Capsule – I would not put it past the Tesla Team to have Access to similar technologies, and my CAD Browsing shows up some pretty impressive tools use by Tesla – such that they can build a dozen Virtual Models – all before 3D Printing some scale samples for a better look at a few elements, and with 3D Printing of Inconel in their SpaceX Repertoire, I am pretty sure they have access to some excellent 3D Printing Tools – that can even be used to design/Build whole cars for ‘Concept’ Car level builds in under a Week – based on what I saw with 3D Printed Cars at Detroit – NAIAS!

See: SpaceX Reveals 3D-Printed Rocket Engine Parts – – “Using 3D printing reduced lead-time by an order of magnitude compared to traditional machining: from first concept to first hot-fire test took slightly more than three months.”

The maximum Volt range is about 80 EV miles so who knows. I’m guessing the next Leaf will have an EPA of 165 and the Bolt 175….

i would be happy at 150 miles EPA it stil twice the distance i get with leaf and that still works for me.Commercial application needs at least 200 miles EPA.progress is progress!

+1 on being happy enough with 150 miles.

IMHO something around 150 miles EPA range will be a long-term price/performance “sweet spot” for BEVs.

Given even halfway-reasonable QC infrastructure, there’s no reason for most households to need anything more, except on very rare road-trip outings.

I disagree, though, regarding “commercial applications”. That depends upon which ones. Companies in Europe are now gobbling up the Nissan eNV-200 with <80 miles range and a QC plug.

For urban/suburban deliveries, taxis, etc., even the current Leaf/eNV-200 are often sufficient. Don't forget at some point the driver needs to take lunch, meanwhile the vehicle can QC to 90% without losing any downtime.

Surely 150 miles range BEV taxis will make ICE taxis obsolete. The few remaining longer-range needs can be served with PHEVs or ICE-hybrids.

Aren’t many taxis driven 24 hours a day? With drivers trading off, for different shifts?

No way current plug-in EVs are going to be a replacement for a gas guzzler under that business model. I think it was JB Straubel (Tesla’s Chief Technical Officer) in a video linked in another article current here on InsideEVs, who pointed out that the average car spends only 4% of its time being driven; the rest of the time, it’s parked somewhere.

Taxis are in use much, much more than the average! That means they should need many, many more hours of charging per day… and unfortunately, days will continue to only have 24 hours in them, even when the EV revolution is complete. 😉

Now, there -are- taxi fleets which use BEVs, including some reported to be using the Tesla Model S. But are those Model S’s being used as ordinary taxis? Or are those reserved for limousine type rentals, which means they’re not in service that often? I’m guessing the latter.

Lensman says: “Aren’t many taxis driven 24 hours a day?” – True – Many are, BUT – Many – are not!

When I go to guy Groceries, I see from 2 – 6 of the Same Brand of Taxis Sitting – Parked, at the edge of the Grocery Store Parking Lot – And they could easily be charging, at anything from a NEMA 14-50 Plug / 10 kW Charging Station +/- to a simpler 20 – 25 kW DC QC! Second – Not All Cities are like NYC – and NYC – is not the necessarily best place to start All Electric Taxi’s with under 200+ Miles per charge Range! (However – a Soul EV might be Better than a LEAF for Taxi Service, until these 200 mile [150 – 160 Mile EPA] Range Cars make it out!

From the article: ‘That “more than a GM-estimated 200 miles of range” is now “a maximum range of 320 km,” or 198.8 miles.’

Am I really reading this right Eric? A Shanghai press release converted the 200 miles to 320km, and we’re releasing “breaking news” that 320km = 198.8 miles which fails to meet expectations? Because it also says maximum in their press release? Really?? REALLY?!

This is a bit ludicrous. It really sounds like a fishing attempt to claim that GM is failing. “BREAKING NEWS! CONVERSION TO METRIC WITH ROUNDING RESULTS IN RANGE LOSS! GM DISAPPOINTS EVERYONE!”

Maybe there is another press release or inside information to back up the breaking news here, but if not, this is just reaching for crumbs.

GM still hasn’t stated the circumstances by which they expect 200 miles of range. Is it the 5 cycle EPA test? Driving at 20 mph steadily, downhill?

Nissan’s Ghosn believes the Leaf v2, with roughly 48 kWh of battery will have longer range than a Bolt, which probably puts the Bolt at 120-140 miles of EPA range.

We’ll see, but GM can put this to rest by stating the circumstances and the battery pack capacity.

Hi Tech, I don’t know if GM stating batter capacity would help much either. I say that because GM traditionally has more buffer in their batteries than other manufacturers. Between that and Cd differences, it’s still hard to discern.

We’ll know once the EPA rating is finalized. But any honest person, whether they like GM or not, would find this article falls far short of substantiating the accusation the title proclaims.

When did Ghosn state that Leaf 2.0 would have a 48kWh pack? I can’t recall any such specific statement.

At any rate, such a pack would get you 168 miles EPA, with current bad cd of 0.28. An improvement to say, 0.26 could easily push that over 170 miles. Why then the Bolt would have just 120 to 140?

I’m not sure how numbers have to be breaking down.
But if doubling the capacity of the battey is done by higher energy density, then it’s fair to say some calculation has to come in play.
Same weigh, twice the capacity means you have better regen capability for the same amount of kinetic energy available, less loss in the battery and the same friction from tire and if combine with less aerodynamic drag and other gain on inverter and motors that would all together get the car doing more than twice the distance.
Can’t wait!

Pretty sure Nissan spokesmen have just said “double the range” for the next-generation Leaf. Double the kWh in the battery pack is merely an inference.

Maybe if you read the entire article, rather than quoting a single statement to support your pro-GM viewpoint, in order to understand why GM fails (yet again) in this EV PR…

EL was very clear: “You may be thinking that dropping from 200 miles to 198.8 is no big deal. However, if we examine how it’s worded, then there’s a significant change. Maximum range implies ideal circumstances.”

Londo: Even stating maximum, this is a foreign press release, and a mild change in wording on a foreign press release is insufficient to declare the Bolt’s range is less. And Eric Loveday himself focuses on the 198.8 mile figure.

Unless they have other evidence in addition to a foreign press release, this is all speculation at best. Definitely not “Breaking news”

Not sure if you are arguing here just for the sake of argument (in defend of GM), or you just don’t get it.

Forget about the NUMBER itself, i.e. forget about whether its 200 mi, or 198.8km. You are the one that’s sticking to it at all cost, from my pov.

THAT’S NOT THE POINT, as EL has pointed out in the article.

It’s the change of wording from “more than GM estimated…” to “a maximum of…” between the 2 PR that caused the major breaking point of the article.

I see EL’s pov as a breaking story, since it WAS a breaking story from GM for the BOLT to be a 200 mi EV at a relatively affordable price (relative to Tesla).

And now it’s been confirmed that the wording was just a translation error between countries, as I stated above. So no, I wasn’t arguing to argue, but because I believed the evidence strongly suggested just that, and that’s exactly what had happened.

In Eric’s defense, GM has related efficiency statements in China, to Chinese standards. Here, the word “maximum” says something else. It was at this time in the Tesla Model S delivery that everyone had “300 miles” on their lips.

I really don’t think the big PHEV news is the every-man EV. It’s the luxury sellers responding to lost market share, and gravitating to it…because its better. That’s the unstoppable momentum of goodness.

I will pay You at least 30 000 dolsars.

I will pay You no more then 30 000 dolars.

Which one would You like to hear? And why?

Neither, dolsars and dolars have no value. 😉

Agree this is much ado about nothing. Without a specified drive cycle range claims are meaningless. Is there even a concept of a “maximum range”? Maybe in China there is something like a US06 cycle that’s called maximum? No idea. I’ll just note that in the CT6 press release 60 km was converted to 32 miles, and I hope no one decided the metric system had changed.

What’s actually pathetic is that they missed the more interesting piece of the press release, that having to do with the use of mixed materials.


Let’s talk about that!

So GM is now talking about light-weighting with aluminum and carbon fiber. This is a big deal to me because not only will the car be lighter, but it will be less susceptible to rust/corrosion from road salt. I hope this becomes a wider trend in automobiles in general.

I found this on the China website: “…■Charging the Volt’s battery is simple and intuitive, and can be done through household electrical outlets, which only takes 6.5 hours to complete….”

They must use the same charger brick as the Holden, with switching between 6 and 10 amp rates.

Aluminum and road salt…not a good combination. Aluminum planes, boats, and bicycles have been around for decades. Normally they don’t corrode. But the hard oxidized surface, which normally protects aluminum, can be scratched. And if it then gets salt water on it you can get aluminum bloom. It can make steel corrosion look good!

100% with you on this ClarksonCote. This is a sad excuse for breaking news, sorry. I’m embarrassed that I clicked on it. Reading way too much into the precise wording of a press release for a foreign market.

When Bolt production was confirmed for Canada, the press release said that the Bolt would have a range of “more than 300 kilometres” which is only 186 miles.

Agreed, ClarksonCote, my friend. Shouting headlines grabs eyeballs and clicks!

Below is the current press releases by GM coming out of Shanghi Motor Show. I see no mention of the Chevy Bolt BEV press release that Eric quotes.

surprisingly, this article, there is no link to press release.

Link Goes To GM Media China News-

What I do find absolutely facinating, however is the release of the Chevrolet FNR (Find New Roads) concept at Shanghai!

Link Goes To Totally Insane Looking Chevrolet BEV Concept- 04.19.2015-


Thomas J. Thias

Sundance Chevrolet Inc.



Hey Thomas,

Good to see you. Yes, we should probably also include the link into the story (which we have done now) as well as copy and pasting the statement.

Here is the press release (link) from GM – details the FNR, Bolt and Malibu releases for China.

Link added

Not to pick on him, but Poor Eric has more trouble with this kind of thing than the other writers for insideEV’s.

My favorite was when he said more or less, We all know that a Roadster can go more than 60 miles….

I’ve owned a Roadster for almost 4 years, and ‘we all KNOW that’? hehe.

I don’t know why nobody seems to realize this but the range also depends on your driving

Battery pack size estimaiton: 50 kWh

more likely 45

I wouldn’t get too concerned *yet*. GM-under-Barra seems inclined to under-promise and over-deliver. They want their owners to be impressed, not disappointed. Let’s hope this is one of those cases.

Yep. That’s the kind of stuff that makes the current leadership wince. They know they have a lot to overcome. Hence my cautious optimism.

The EPA-rated range might actually be 135 miles if you take (84/124)=(x/198.8)… assuming that the formula is actually correct.

Using a calculator is cheating, just wing it!

The Focus group was told 205 miles EPA.

Which focus group? When? Where?

Reported on this site numerous times.

320km is just a nice round number just like 200 miles, and they can’t use exactly same wording each and every time they talk about Bolt. No news at all.

These pointless GM bashing articles are really shamefull for insideEVs, which otherwise is very good EV news site.

This is how slippage usually occurs, with slight wording changes in press releases. If you follow the industry as we do, then this is how you get ahead of the game. BMW did the same with the i3. Initially promising 100 miles. Slowly but surely the wording in the press release changed ’til we got to where we are today: i3 EPA rating – 81 miles. Well short of BMW’s promised 100.

You make a good point Eric, but in this case a GM response after a firm InsideEVs interrogation is needed to be sure it wasn’t a metric rounding error by an overseas marketing department.

If GM can’t provide the right response, then it’s time to go nuclear on false promises. And I’ll be right there with you! But we need to be sure first.

Absolutely. We’re reaching out to GM for comment.

We’re talking about a foreign press release and a conversion to metric. Did you really expect the Shanghai press release to say 321.869km instead?

How about 325 km?

Yes, other numbers are certainly possible too. But some copy intern probably did the conversion and rounded to the nearest round number.

Oh come on bad faither, the Word “maximum” is much more important than the conversion . Don’t you know anything about diplomacy, politicians and corporation’s P.R.?

Then the title should say “200 miles now reported to be maximum” instead of “Bolt now has less than 200 miles”

The former agrees with what your point of view, the latter is capitalizing on an extraneous rounding issue due to unit conversion.

With all due respect Eric, sometimes “getting ahead of the game” just looks like very poor and very sloppy reporting. Relying on one word in a foreign press release for a “breaking story” is more than a stretch.

Especially since “maximum range” is a meaningless concept. The problem here is you don’t seem to understand what you’re writing about. To state a range you need to specify a drive cycle. In this regard, and contrary to what you’ve just written, the BMW i3 may in fact have a range of 100 miles — on the European or Japanese drive cycle. Quite possible. (For example, the Nissan Leaf does in fact have a range of 103 miles — on the LA4 drive cycle.)

In this regard, it’s possible that “maximum” refers to a drive cycle rather than miles. And of course it’s possible that the battery chemistry used in China may not be the same battery battery used in the US (GM and LG Chem hold licenses to NMC from Argonne but the IP for NMC in China is held by 3M).

I have to support Eric on this. There is a lot of very good information on this website and it is clear to me that the writers do know what they are writing about.

The important words here are “maximum range” which imply an upper value on what was stated in January to be an EPA rating.

Maybe this is not the final word from GM, but it shows that many are interested in news from GM on this subject.

There is NO need to impugn the writers integrity in the discussion.

DonC, when someone tells you their opinion is judgement based on experience, which is what Eric is telling you…

Then perhaps you should actually pause and consider the possibility that perhaps, just perhaps… you do -not- really know more about the subject than they do. And maybe, just maybe, you should pay attention to what they’re saying.

OK. So I’m looking at the GM website and the press release says:

“It features Chevrolet’s classic dual-cockpit styling, while uniquely integrating user-friendly technology to offer a worry-free, delightful driving experience. Lightweight materials – including aluminum, magnesium, carbon fiber and woven mesh – add to the design while keeping down the curb weight to give the Bolt EV a range of more than 320 km (200 miles).”

And the “Breaking News” is what, exactly?

That’s pretty much what I was thinking. Since they use the Metric system, they wanted a nice round number so 320KM sounded good. Sort of like how they do acceleration tests from 0 to 100 kph. Technically that would be 0-62 mph, but we usually round it down to 0-60.

Next article: “BREAKING NEWS! 0-60 times for Volt in USA deceive customers by making it seem faster, instead of focusing on 0-62mph times.”


I’ll have to support the side in this debate that states Eric tends to lead with “stories” that tend to be either, A) light in actual facts B) One nit that is stretched into an entire “story” C) Some headlines take on a negative slant to major players in the EV industry, including Tesla and GM. It is hard for auto journalists to not play favorites. Look at the major players in the industry who also hail BMW as nearly a god of autodom. This site seems similarly swayed. But as I say, it is not uncommon. We should remember InsideEVs is a relatively new player in the auto info world, and we are fortunate to have Lyle and Jay’s contribution to EVdom. It may not always be crack journalism, but it does give us a place to gather and stay up to the minute on the worldwide scene. I have had my run-ins with the peeps too. Altogether, I’m more thankful they’re here, and I think they will mature to fill the role of a truly respectable, primarily unbiased , true news reporting entity. It will just take time. When anyone complains too much – just ask yourself if… Read more »

Overall, I’m glad to support InsideEVs. I understand that nobody is perfect.

Oh wait! – I forgot….I AM PERFEKT!

🙂 Good job, we all have room for improvement.

Well, that is one concurrent less. That leaves the Tesla III and the Leaf II in the ring for affordable true-200-miles EV in 2017/’18.

Why do you count GM out so quickly, but let Nissan off the hook? IIRC, Nissan only promised to “double” the range of the Leaf. That is 168 EPA miles.

Yeah Loveday doesn’t seem to take statements of the various automakers into account. All others, including Tesla, exaggerate. GM to their credit has been modest in their assertions. The worst they’ve stated to date is that the volt gets 230 mpg. Since I’m in the snow belt, I get 130. I’m getting my Tesla repaired at the local Nissan/Lotus dealership, and there the service manager admitted the Leaf only goes 40 miles in the winter ‘if you are lucky’. One of their customers wears a snowmobile jacket in the winter time to increase the car’s range. Whereas with my ’35 mile’ volt, its not difficult at all to drive around town up to 50 mph and get 42-43 miles range. A 50 mile volt, with an equally conservative rating, would get me 60 miles. I don’t think GM is given enough credit for their to-date conservative rating policy. Also, the cars usually charge in less time than they’ve advertised.. Usually 3 1/4 hours instead of 3 1/2 hours as advertised, and that’s at 207 volts (which, granted is as low as you can go with the 2011 volt and still get the fastest charge).

” One of their customers wears a snowmobile jacket to increase the car’s range…”

ROTFLA – L 🙂 L That is perfect!

BillR, thanks for that – it literally made my day!

If you think that -any- nominally “200 mile” EV will actually be produced with an EPA rating of 200+ miles of electric range… then you have not been paying attention.

Tesla -not- excepted. They advertised the Model S as having a 300 mile range, remember? And of course, the EPA range rating is 265 miles.

170 would be double most EVs and seems like it will increase sales 10 fold….

History says GM always gave minimal numbers for their EVs, the Volt, ELR, Spark were all rated below what actual owners actually reach on one charge and they are pretty much alone in doing so.
I’m very confident that the Bolt will easely reach the magical 200, no worries, unless Gm goes the way Nissan witch would be sad, indeed.

Do you work for a GM dealership?

Some of us haven’t forgotten this:

Can the GM Volt really go 230 miles on just one gallon of gas, as GM clearly advertised? I’m guessing “No”.

If GM was as honest as you claim, then when the EPA gave the Volt that mind-boggling and utterly absurd MPG rating, then GM not only wouldn’t have promoted the claim, they would have issued a press release pointing out that rating was very misleading.

it can go more than that if you keep charging it….ha

I’m still “sold” on getting one. Anything north of 140 EPA and the interior comfort/space utility of the i3 and I’m happy. And my local Chevy dealers won’t have to work very hard to improve on the appalling experience I had at the BMW store in attempting to buy the i3.

Are you referring to the “BMW Store” in Cincinnati, Ohio?

I’m still confident GM will hit an EPA-rated 200 miles. I can’t imagine the CEO of a company would personally introduce a vehicle and state specific figures ($37.5k price, 200 miles EV range) without being confident the production version of the car won’t be able to hit those numbers.

It’s not like it was an anonymous engineer that made those comments. Not hitting the 200 mile range mark with the Bolt would be a huge PR disaster for GM.

GM has given very few technical details about the Bolt so far. No battery pack wattage. No weight. No performance or efficiency stats. No confirmation of range given in NEDC/JEDC/EPA or whatever. A number of companies have promoted NEDC/JEDC or some sort of drive at 30-40 mph range figure. (Kia Soul EV, that’s you)

So it’s still incumbent on GM to clarify what the Bolt really is in terms of range, energy capacity, and efficiency. We have really have almost no real information. 200 miles of range quoted by an automaker could easily mean 120-140 miles of EPA range if the automaker doesn’t provide specific details. We don’t know how effective the heating or cooling in this new battery chemistry or pack, so we don’t know the winter or summer effects.

Further, we don’t know the DC charging specifics either. Can it do more than 200A or will it be limited to 80kW or lower? How much damage to the new battery chemistry would charging at 80 kW cause? Will GM push 80+kW CCS to make it viable?

Next will be the price…$37,500 won’t be achievable. Really this is a bummer. IF Tesla can deliver on the Model 3 with range and price I believe the Bolt is DOA.

That’s the magic “IF”. Right now we know less about the Model 3 than we do about the Bolt.

I don’t buy that comment… a shell of a car is a piece of cake for GM… Tesla is STILL the only manufacturer who has demonstrated the tech to actually make a car go 200 miles. While we have a shell of a Bolt, GM isn’t anywhere close to demonstrating they can produce a car that can go 200 miles, let alone at the targeted price.

Well, yes and no. They do have the Spark EV for more than $10k less ($26,820 MSRP). It can go 82 miles in a charge. Sure, GM hasn’t built a car yet that can travel 200 miles, but I have some level of confidence that they can buy enough batteries for $10k to travel 118 miles on a charge. So while they haven’t done it yet, they certainly have shown that they can build inexpensive EVs.

On the other hand, Tesla can build an EV that travels 200+ miles. In fact, that’s every EV they’ve ever built. But they have yet to show they can build one and sell it (profitably) for less than even $60k. Again, that doesn’t mean it’s not possible, they just haven’t done it yet.

I will also point out that GM could technically sell the Bolt at a loss. It would help them earn enough credits to continue selling their gasoline/diesel cars. Tesla cannot do that unless they are selling credits to other companies, like GM. But GM has a plan which doesn’t require them to buy credits from anyone…

Tesla has not demonstrated they can produce a car that goes 200 miles for less than $70k. That’s not to say they can’t, but they haven’t….yet.

Besides, anyone can build a 200 mile BEV without regard for price by simply stuffing enough batteries into it. You have to remember that much of what Tesla has done technically is not as significant as the fact that they actually did it in the first place, which disrupted the norm.

So far GM has not shown much either, but it’s enough to be believable. And more importantly, they have committed it to production, which in the auto world is an extremely significant step that impacts supply chains, factory allocations, production engineering as well as product engineering.

The rule is this: As a plug-in EV approaches actual production, the claimed range creeps down and the estimated price creeps up. This is true of -every- EV maker, GM certainly included.

If you can name even one single exception to this rule, please respond.

Right now I drive a Leaf and with one bar missing. At 80% full I get a range of less than 50 miles!

So if 124 rated miles give me 50 actual miles then 200 should give me about 80. Nothing to write home about!

Wait for the Model 3. Elon usually delivers what he promises.

You mean he delivers what he promises except for unimportant things like deadlines and prices.

Low battery density and bad image. That’s the way I see GM problems (until proved wrong).
Tesla has both the badge value and high battery density design. However is Tesla really committed in respect of Model 3 ? Being an early Tesla fan I am quite disappointed of direction Tesla seems to go. That recent announcement for the 0.2 sec improvement to 0-60MPH, probably exciting to many but to me, just Antonio Vivaldi turning Justin Bieber.

Tesla is very, very committed to building the Model ≡. Their $2 billion (or more!) investment in the Gigafactory is putting their money where their mouth is in a very big way, insofar as commitment to actually making and selling long-range EVs in large numbers.

Now, that’s not to say that the Model ≡ will be delivered at the touted price of $35k, or with an actual real-world range of 200+ miles. Tesla, just like every other EV maker, over-promises on range and lowballs early estimates of price, for every new model. (And to be fair, Tesla spokesmen generally say “$35k-40k”, but this generally gets shortened in media reports to merely “$35k”.)

Personally, I think too much is being read into this. I have seen the gen 2 Volt talked about in this way by GM folks. “Gets up to 50 miles EV.” No one seems to take that statement literally, as not being able to do more than 50 EV miles under the best of circumstances. I think it is just their way of talking about the subject cautiously so not to be accused of overpromising in the future.

The title should be Op-Ed, not “BREAKING” There is no evidence yet that the range is less than 200 miles, as the title so casually declares.

This seems to be much ado about nothing. Range numbers are highly fickle, depending on conditions. The various test cycles will all give the same car very different numbers. And then any one person’s data point will give yet another number.

200 miles sure does sound good, but so what if the car only goes 190 miles? Or even 160 miles? That’s still DOUBLE what you can buy today for under $75k.

It would perhaps be more valuable to have the after ten years of aging and on a snowy freeway at 75 mph range indication, so that any other conditions being better, you know for sure that you will always have that range. If they then still say 200 miles, buy it.

Corporate promises, are the best kind. 😉


Some on here are going to burst a blood vessel if they’re not careful !

Well done Eric for spotting an opportunity to get GM to clarify a few things.

The doctors are treating me as I type this! 😉

My beef is that there are generally guidelines on the site for what is an Op-Ed, what is “Breaking” etc. and with the sources cited, this just isn’t anything more than an Op-Ed. How can the site/author definitively declare this with so little to go on?

Ultimately, the credibility of the site suffers, and I don’t want to see that.

I recommend lots of S X E for your condition !

The site is much less dull with the odd “Breaking” thrown in to get everyone talking ?

Plus, there is a psychological barrier to break through in affordable EV’s at stake here !


I guarantee that there would never be a Breaking news article on the Leaf if a press release said 198.8 miles and “maximum” instead of 200 miles and “at least”

There would need to be far more separation in the numbers, and the title would be far less authoritative in the diminutive claim.

And that’s why it frustrates me. I’m not pro-GM, I’m pro-plugs. And I don’t know why some of the articles on a Pro EV site look so quickly to tarnish the image of a particular manufacturer’s offerings over another.

I’m also pro plugs especially as here in the UK it’s around $8 a gallon !

My Outlander PHEV arrives on Thursday but would love the next car in 3 years time to be all battery, will have 8kw solar pv system on the house by then and need minimum 160 miles at an affordable level to be available here.

Clarkson Cote said, “My beef is that there are generally guidelines on the site for what is an Op-Ed, what is “Breaking” etc. and with the sources cited, this just isn’t anything more than an Op-Ed. How can the site/author definitively declare this with so little to go on?”

Heya, we are working on a quote from GM.

However, op-ed is opinion – this is not that. The source here is printed press release from General Motors. While this may be an error on GM’s part by someone who is paid to only do this particular job, this information is VIA GM, to say op-ed would be disingenuous.

Part of being a good/reputable news site, is to just report what is out there and “give benefit of the doubt” or ignore news that isn’t great.

Do I want the Chevy Bolt to have more than 200 miles of EPA range? Yes, for sure – we all do.

If GM responds to their own published data, then we will follow up. There is no conspiracy here…someone was remarking the other day how all 4 featured stories were positive ones about GM.

Jay, I love you man, and I like this site reporting all facets of news. But this Shanghai press release just does not equal the title proclaiming the Bolt is no longer a 200 mile range EV. That proclamation is an opinion, unless we’re going to literally talk about the rounding error of going from 200 miles to 320 km.

Definitely love that we can have this debate though and still not hate each other. 😉

No hate my friend, all good. Agree or disagree, any debate is okie-fine, (=

One way or the other, GM has conflicting quotes now, so it will get straightened out shortly I’m sure. I’m in the ‘hope someone made a mistake camp’

ps) this story would appear for the LEAF (or any EV), there is no bias…as for the LEAF, remember we were the first to publish the range losses/battery capacity problems in Arizona with Tony Williams when Nissan still was saying there was no problems

I don’t doubt it would appear if there was a 10 or 20 mile discrepancy for the Leaf, but I don’t believe it would appear if there were a 1.2 mile conversion discrepancy for the Leaf in a PR like this with nothing else to go in.

But one thing I know for certain: I’ve been wrong before, and I will be wrong again.

Simply reporting and accurately quoting the latest GM announcements is now perceived as a form of Chevy-Hate or “Pro-Tesla” rallying by some readers of this site.

Hilarious. 😀

Historically, GM tends to be it’s own worst PR Enemy. It’s by no means the fault of the messengers simply reporting on it. The trend of slowly slipping lower expectations over time in sequential press releases, is pretty standard; as Eric explained earlier in this thread.

“Historically, GM tends to be it’s own worst PR Enemy.”

I can’t really disagree with you there. 😉

“someone was remarking the other day how all 4 featured stories were positive ones about GM.”

Haha! Yes, indeed. 🙂

Clarkson, hehe this is an Eric Loveday article. Don’t tell me you’ve never read any of his stories before, hehe.
I’m not sure I understand why you are so upset; I think its funny.

Its right up there with the Governator’s Hydrogen Highway speeches.

Eric gives his source and reasoning, the reader can make up their own mind. I think the credibility of the site is still intact.

I disagree.

We have DOUBLE the performance for LOWER price in FEW YEARS time.

In car industry?

That is revolution!

Also do note that Bolt is really in league with Tesla 3… which is not on the market for next 3 years still.

Lets not expect that others will beat Tesla to market with better vehicles out of the blue.

Much as I love Tesla Motors, I’d bet real money that the GM Bolt (I guess they really are gonna call it that?!) will be on the market before any Model ≡ is actually delivered to anyone who doesn’t work for Tesla. GM has been designing and building new cars for decades. For Tesla Motors, it’s still a fairly new thing.

But that doesn’t mean I think the Bolt will cut into the market for the Model ≡. I predict that Tesla will continue to sell every car it can possibly make. Not forever, of course, but for at least the next few years.

What do you think about battery size, 40 kWh ?

I’m going to go with 47.5kWh

Just don’t come back in a month saying 170 megajoules or somebody will have a conniption fit! 😉

Yeah but it sounds bigger and sounds more metric system. 0,17 GJ?

For the coming crop of nominally “200 mile” EVs, I’m guessing approximately twice the size of the Leaf’s battery pack, or about 48 kWh. Obviously that will have to be bumped up for larger-than-compact EVs, but I don’t think we’ll be seeing any of those with a 150+ mile range, in production within the next 5 years, from anyone except Tesla.

The EV range is a slippery slope. I drive quite conservatively and get over 100 miles on my LEAF in the city (my record is 111 miles).

People used to gas cars and varying the position of the accelerator up hills and accelerating quickly from lights will get far less range. For the regular public (Wal-Marters as I like to call ’em), this is a recipe for disaster.

“My Bolt only got 140 miles range while driving 85 MPH into a 40 MPH headwind! What the actual f—? I’m gonna sue!!!”

Funny that this is big news to some. The fact that GM is releasing what may be “updated” figures on range at least tells me that the Bolt is on track for production and will be at or extremely near their targeted range. As said above more than once, GM has undepromised on range with the Volt and Spark. Assuming that they follow the same pattern, I think we can fairly expect that the Bolt will be a 200 mile EV. Of course, the entire concept of “200 mile EV” is open for interpretation. I doubt the Bolt will be a 200 mile EV in 5 degree weather and the heater on full blast, on I95 at 75 MPH. So what? In the late Spring that 200 mile EV might give you 225 or better(my 2012 Volt is giving me 50+ miles now, and is rated only at 35 miles). So it’s all relative. What matters is that they are moving this car forward. I hope, sincerely, that the Model III is moved along as well. Not only is there room for more than 1 200 mile EV, we NEED them. I am the kind of guy who will buy… Read more »

Yes, the fact that the Bolt is committed for production should not be lost in this discussion.

I can’t wait for a car company to come out and say they will make an affordable $30K EV with 130 mile range then have EPA give it 180 mile rating. Not only would they confuse the competition buyers would be enormously pleased.


This could be poorly worded or an epic fail

Specifying a nominal value is much different than specifying a maximum value. That said, the key issue is that it will have much longer range than the currently available affordable cars. It would be enormously helpful if some independent, respected organization (car magazines, consumer reports, whoever) of side-by-side tests at a test track for true range at 70 mph sustained, climate control off. That would eliminate some of the conjecture and guesswork as to how range will be effected by sustained freeway speeds.

I think this is all just a case of stuff being lost in translation.


If anybody thought that the Bolt would get 200 miles range, your smokin crack laced with D-Con.

Model S P85 was supposed to get 300, gets 253
LEAF was supposed to get 124, gets 84
Volt had a huge announcement for 230 MPG, gets less than a Prius.

I’ll wait for the EPA numbers…….lol

“Volt had a huge announcement for 230 MPG, gets less than a Prius.”

Cheryl, you still fail to grasp the difference between MPG and MPGe.

I use no gas daily in my Volt. Never true for the Prius. The fact that the engine runs at some specific MPG after the battery is drained is irrelevant without factoring in the context of gas-free driving for 40 miles a day first.

Keep burning gas in your Prius though, us EV and PHEV owners will not try to sway you. We’ll even wave to you while you’re gassing up at those gas stations we no longer or very rarely stop at.


It was an example of the absurdity of expectations before any EPA metrics.

I wasn’t flaming on the Volt.

Actually, it is a sign of reading comprehension failure. Tesla never said the P85 would get 300 miles of range on the current EPA test cycle. Tesla said the Model S would go 300 miles on the pre-2011 EPA 2-cycle test, before the current test was finalized. Tesla published this 300 mile range number BEFORE the new test cycle was developed. This Model S STILL gets 300 miles of range if tested on the old test cycle (like CARB does for determining ZEV credits). The test has changed, not the actual range of the Tesla. The same goes for the 230 MPGe claim for the Volt. This number was determined based upon a preliminary EPA test BEFORE the current MPGe test cycle was finalized. GM NEVER said that the Volt gets 230 MPGe on the finalized test cycle. The Volt does still indeed get 230 MPGe if tested on the old test cycle. The test is different, not the results. The 124 number also was never advertised as the EPA rating on the EPA test cycle. It was always a best case number, and it was also published prior to the EPA creating the current test cycle. Again, the range… Read more »

Nix said:

“You were unwittingly flaming yourself, because you opened your mouth and proved you didn’t know what any of those numbers represented.”

Nix, you’re doing precisely what you’re accusing someone else of doing. You are asserting things that are factually incorrect in the middle of accusing someone else of not knowing what they’re talking about.

Not just the one photo I posted, but a second one now, has been posted here of the actual advertising banner GM used in the early days of touting the Volt. It says “230 MPG”. Not “MPGe”; just “MPG”.

Lensman, you’re similarly asserting that MPG implied engine-only MPG, which it does not. Travel 40 miles on electricity, 6 miles on gasoline… 230MPG for that trip. Average of well over 100MPG, with some people achieving 10,000MPG.

This is an accurate measurement of gasoline usage, and it’s the point GM was trying to get across with 230MPG: A large reduction in gasoline use.

I’ve (I don’t think) ever had CHeryl_G respond to a comment. But you just did. Initially I was supportive of her, but then she seemed to be an Industry Spokesperson, I’m just not sure for which industry.

Perhaps you can find out.

Hi Bill, I think that’s been asked a few times but we’ve never had an answer. 😉

Absurdity of pre-EPA estimates I can agree with. But saying the Volt gets less MPG than a Prius following the 230MPG statement is misleading.

In other words, GM never said the engine-only MPG would be 230MPG, which would be absurd. They were merely equating miles driven and gasoline used, and that number is still about right.

With the Volt, some people travel 60 miles on 1 gallon of gasoline, others travel 6,000 miles on 1 gallon of gasoline.

So for gasoline usage, their 230MPG number is not unreasonable. If we want to factor in energy equivalence, we’re still looking at values from 60MPGe to 100MPGe, all of which exceed a Prius.

So I guess it was that second part of your sentence that sounded like you were flaming on the Volt, but I do agree with you that pre-EPA estimates are all hand-waving until the official numbers come in. 😉

CherylG, I initially was supportive of you, but you to these eyes are a Shill of some sort.

Its fun to play with numbers and hope that an insouciant public doesn’t catch on, isn’t it?

Incidentally, I’ve had my VOlt for over 4 years, I drive it pretty normally including vacations and road trips, and I get 130 miles per U.S. gallon. Not as good as a Prius?

“GM never said the engine-only MPG would be 230MPG, which would be absurd. They were merely equating miles driven and gasoline used, and that number is still about right.”

You’re actually trying to -defend- the absurd “230 MPG” claim?

Correct me if I’m wrong, but the Volt gets (as rated by the EPA) ~38 miles on its battery pack; its MPG is rated at 35 city / 40 highway.

So at best for real-world driving, that’s 38 + 40 = 78 miles. So how the -hell- do you get up to 230 miles? I don’t think even the most extreme hypermiler could do that!

“So at best for real-world driving, that’s 38 + 40 = 78 miles. So how the -hell- do you get up to 230 miles? I don’t think even the most extreme hypermiler could do that!”

Why are you adding EV miles to engine MPG? That “estimate” you are trying to claim would only be valid if a person traveled that distance every day, yet the overwhelming majority of Americans travel much less than 78 miles per day.

The reality is that many people travel less than 40 miles a day on most days, rarely needing gas. The resulting MPG (as a measure of GASOLINE used) is much higher, many times around the number GM originally cited. Your metric, on the other hand, assumes they always burn a gallon of gas with the EV miles consumed. Not true, and in fact, rarely the case.

By the way, the number they originally cited wasn’t made up out of thin air, it was based on EPA’s proposed testing methodology at the time. GM was just following that method.

My prediction:

It will get 200 miles of range on the old EPA test, which California uses for determining ZEV credits. That will translate to 165 miles of EPA range (give or take a few miles.)

The price will be 38,150, plus delivery charges. This will be just over $30K with fed. incentive. Close enough for them to say it is a 30K car.

!! That sound you just heard was someone range bubble popping.

Remember folks … it’s all (marketing) rumors until a vehicle is given independent testing, or GM commits to exceeding certain specs under defined testing conditions.

Most automakers publish their own EPA ratings. Sometimes they get verified when enough ppl complain.

What a shock, GM was stretching the truth.

The car will be EPA rated 150 miles to a charge.

To pound this point home, it makes no sense to rate this cars by mileage. All that does is compare various manufacturers’ lies.

The most sensible way to rate the car is battery capacity. And everything I have seen says it will be a 50KWH car.

Lightening the car would certainly help, but if GM really wanted a lighter car, they would introduce as much aluminum as possible. Ford is doing it with pickups. Its not rocket science, nor is it (apparently) that expensive.

“Lightening the car would certainly help, but if GM really wanted a lighter car, they would introduce as much aluminum as possible.”

But, the article cited (and even the InsideEVs article) talks about using Aluminum and composites etc. to lighten it, is that not serious? Did you read the article?

“Lightweight materials – including aluminum, magnesium, carbon fiber and woven mesh – add to the design while keeping down the curb weight”

1. Yes I read it.

2. If YOU had actually read up on the subject, you would know they are not talking about moving the body panels to AL from steel. That is the most significant weight savings to be had, as in what the Ford F-150 did.

I’ll let it slide this time.

Haha! Very smug. Please cite in the article where it mentions they are not using AL for the panels, or where in your post it says that they should. I think you’ll find both sources are devoid of any mention of that until your reply, so you need not tip your nose so high.

You can’t just rate cars by battery capacity. Aerodynamics plays such a huge role in EV range.

I also have been hoping that GM will report the kWh rating of the battery pack. We only need that number and the number of passengers to car will hold, to be able to make a pretty close guess about what the EPA’s range rating will be. A guess that will almost certainly be a lot closer to real-world range than the touted “200 mile” claim!

The Shanghai Daily wrote back in January during the original Bolt reveal, when 200 miles of range was given in all the press releases, that the Bolt will go 320km on a single charge. So, the Shanghai Daily translated 200 miles as 320km. Because it’s cleaner than writing it will have a range of 321.8688km. The same thing the GM press release is doing? GM has always used 200 miles as their stated range goal for the Bolt since the beginning. So, even if we’re to believe it’s 198.8. (I can’t believe anyone would) Not much has changed. You’ve built an article on semantics. Where you have dissected and made sweeping assumptions over 1.2 miles, the use of maximum as it relates to Nissan’s and GM’s usage, and a press releases from Shanghai. Also, Nissan says the Leaf can go 124 miles @ 38MPH at 20 celsius no heat/AC on the NEDC cycle. But you neglected to point that out. Why? Per Bolt Website: With a targeted range of 200 miles† (Based on GM estimates. EPA estimated not yet available) They also state that it will offer over 200 miles range in two places here. Wether it’s… Read more »

The i3, the Bolt, or a Tesla Model 3, if it too is a small crossover, will never get better than 220 Wh/mile EPA. No OEM is going below 85% DOD. So an EPA 200 mile range requires 52 kWh of battery. None of them can build a small crossover with 52 kWh, and make money at $30K…probably not at $40K.

There are already one-off cars on the road that get 150-175 Wh/mile, so 35-41 kWh could do it, but in something “more radical” as Elon said. Think small, low, fastback…not a crossover.

Anybody remember the “230 MPG – 10/’11” with the little logo of the electrical outlet as the zero in 230 – GM promoting the
Volt back in 2009? That became what was the first debacle in the fumbling, bumbling release of Volt gen1.

oops, picture failed
***mod edit (Jay Cole)***
***mod edit***

– but if you remember, GM put it’s foot in it’s mouth promoting the “future” Volt by saying it would get 230MPG and having to retract it. Is it possible we’re seeing history repeat itself?

Can they be that dense?

Can GM NOT KNOW that the PR value of “200” miles electric range is SO MUCH better than “198.??? Maximum* ” * all results may vary”…etc etc etc???

The 50 mile Volt range is solid, sounds good and is a number people can wrap their heads around – a vague number like “198*” is close, but no cigar…Like Volt, not quite getting the 40 miles AER every media outlet was told before Volt was EPA tested.

Yes, they did fail with 230mpg… There are people getting 10,000mpg. 😛

Big thanks to Jay for adding the photo!

Cutesy ads I don’t believe increase customer desire for a new product. I almost didn’t see the 230 and thought they meant 23 miles per gallon when plugged in which I thought was confusing.

The bigger issue with me was their previous lying about the powertrain. The ONLY ones they told the truth to were FORTUNE and MotorTrend.

But Mary Barra apparently has changed the “GM Culture” a bit, or someone has at least, since they don’t seem to be lying anymore. Its a good thing while it lasts.

The Volt really did get off to a bumbling, fumbling beginning…I agree Clarkson – people do get much better MPG, but I am referring to GM’s public relations and published EPA results which go on the window sticker, print and TV advertising. Even worse that GM cannot reign in the dealers – advising them to change their internet Volt ads at,, , etc. etc. stating the Volt’s specs as “38 MPG”….. Not MPGe, or even accurately stating transmission type. Many say, “CVT” or “Auto Trans”. This is laziness on the dealer’s part – AND on GM’s part for not knowing dealers do this. When people are shopping Prius vs. Ford Energi vs. Volt – what do you suppose they think when dealers list Volt as “38mpg”? They think – “Geez, for less money, the Prius is 50mpg!” – End of story. GM drops the ball a lot. Take the introduction of current-gen Malibu. Remember that? GM put out the Eco Malibu first… ( ?!! ). While it under-performed vs. Camry, Fusion and Altima hybrid, there was no option to buy the gas Malibu, mass-market car for eight to nine months. This meant bad press for the Eco,… Read more »

During the first 1 1/2 years CHEVY lied to their dealers and their chief service technicians, or at least they did to the dealership where I bought my car: Billy “HUGE” Fuccillo. He do the ‘huge’ thing is Syracuse and Florida?

James, the unfortunate part was that the 230mpg number was based on proposed EPA testing at the time. GM was following EPA methodology, but it wasn’t nailed down yet.

It’s hard to fault GM for being the first out of the gate and having to use proposed test methodologies for advertising. But, as usual, many naysayers (not you) choose to fault GM and move along.

James, Really? Still harping on that old 230 MPG thing? All anybody does when they bring that up is prove they know nothing about the history of EPA MPG ratings. GM did nothing wrong. They didn’t hype anything. They just applied the EPA’s original proposed MPG test rating system for PHEV’s exactly as it was at the time. In the process GM exposed the weakness of the proposed rating system, and the EPA (late as always) fixed it after GM had already put out these numbers. Very, very late in the game, the EPA changed the rating system, leaving GM literally sitting with cars parked in lots waiting for official window stickers so they could be sold! GM had Volts built and literally sitting waiting for a window sticker so they could be sold, while the EPA was still finalizing what GM could put on the window stickers. It wasn’t until late Nov 2010 that the EPA FINALLY issued official window stickers with the new methodology and the finalized numbers. But that photo comes from summer of 2009 event, well over 1 year before the EPA finalized how the Volt would be rated. How is this GM’s fault? Are you… Read more »

200 maximum miles is fine by me. I don’t need more than 72 winter miles for my one particular drive which isn’t really a common commute. Otherwise, 50-80 random miles is about right. Don’t even need DC FC – but would love 6.6 KW charging.

and having done 40-50 miles in the 2011 Volt – I can believe that they can put in 30 kWh into the Bolt and make it a very viable car, with 40 kWh as an optional larger pack.

Well I’d hope they offered 6-7 kw at least as an option, if they decide to make 3.3-3.6 kw standard.

Just don’t price it like the 6.6 kw LEAF. I couldn’t believe they want $1780 for their ‘charger package’ over and above the base 3.6 Kw (I thought it was 3.3 but the sticker says 3.6. I guess that includes Brian’s 300 watt pump).

Anyone who actually thought the coming nominally “200 mile” EVs will actually have 200 miles of real-world driving range, is someone who doesn’t realize that -every- EV maker inflates its EVs’ electric ranges. For example, Tesla advertised the Model S as a “300 mile” EV, and Nissan -still- describes its Leaf as a “100 mile” EV at automobile shows.

So, this isn’t actually news for those who follow the EV revolution. We’ll have to wait for an EPA range rating to reveal the approximate real-world driving range. GM certainly won’t provide it!

Yes – true. And GM should darn well do it’s due-diligence in testing and quantifying so that the 200 mile range is an underestimation and EPA results exceed this.

Why? 200 is a powerful number, psychology-wise. 190 or 198 says, “it didn’t make the cut”. It’s image we’re speaking of here – and first impresstion – especially in media. Look at the flack Hyundai, Ford and KIA got by overstating EPA mileage and taking heat, bad press and government spanking because of it. IMHO, GM needs the 200 mile AER performance and possible an EPA sticker of slightly more than that just for good measure.

Real world performance definitely needs to exceed EPA findings.

Remember Volt1’s “40 mile AER” number they gave us for three years leading up to it’s launch? For it to come in at 37MPG was a downer. It’s why ( to our chagrin ) everyone sells their wares for “$19.99; or $59.99”. Umpteen sales surveys have shown this increases sales as $20.00 or $60.00 creates a mental image that scares off many as, “too expensive”.

Just because the EPA says the Volt1’s battery is good for 37 miles doesn’t make it so. My 2012 Volt, with the original battery pack, routinely gets 41 to 44 miles on it. As far as I’m concerned, GM delivered on its original promise for Volt range.

That experience inclines me to think that the Bolt will do better than the EPA number in real life.

This is the reason why I didn’t buy a Volt. A fan base that is hyper sensitive to any possible criticism of GM or its products.

GM over promise? Any remember the ELR? Their answer to Tesla?

We should all be familiar with manufacturers which over promise. The LEAF promised 100 mile range and 80% battery life after many years. Most EV manufacturers want to inflate their range numbers. EPA values are the level setting measure.
Given the practice, it makes a huge difference if GM says its a “maximum” range vs. “a least” that many miles.

Hopefully GM will respond and clear this up since this is the prime selling point for the vehicle.

+1 Absolutely.

MSRP for CT6 PHEV needs to be lower than expected also. Hope ( ELR ) learned that lesson.

I didn’t buy it because I need the full 5 places. 4 is a non starter.

By the way I won’t buy a Bolt since it is a 4 seater even if it has 600 miles of range.

The Bolt/Volt/Bolt/Volt naming decision doesn’t give me a whole lot of confidence.

The products with a plug and the Voltec-based
hybrids do – show me GM has learned from it’s mistakes.

Let’s hope marketing is also revamped for the 2016s

“Say it in Kilometers, it sounds like more!”

Furlongs would give an even more impressive number.

And speeds should be expressed in furlongs per fortnight. Zowie! that’s fast. 🙂

GM has modified the press release. Now it says: “range of more than 320 km (200 miles)”.

Precision should not be increased in unit conversion. It is absolutely correct to round 200 miles target range to 320 km, and vice versa.

“More than” was propably added due to public reaction.

Having worked in marketing, I’m going to wager that this is much ado about nothing and that a sloppy copywriter mischaracterized what GM was saying about the Bolt range. For all we know, the “team in China” reference in their correction may be alluding to someone who doesn’t speak English as a primary language.

I think, if you display a car in china, you should use the chinese cycle to calculate the displayed range. As we all know the chinese cycle overestimates the range. So a 200 mile chinese cycle tested car wouldbe a 160 mile EPA car…

Is GM saying the EPA number will be ~160 miles? Or did they forgot about the opportunity to presented a 400 km (250 miles) car in Shanghai?

I think it’s just sane decision to use only one range number in marketing until the car is ready, and gets actually tested according to various test cycles. Ideally that single number should be as close as possible to typical real world range.

I’m going with the bold idea that if GM says they will build a car with more than 200 miles range, that it will have more than 200 miles (EPA) range. Seems counter-intuitive, I know.

I’m going with the same bold idea that if GM says the car has more than 200 miles of range, then it will. GM earned that credibility with the EV range of the G1 Volt, and until GM goofs up with a future EV/EREV, they get to keep that credibility.

I remember the Volt being promoted at 40 miles of range and EPA turned out to be 35. While that’s close, it shows it’s not unreasonable to expect the Bolt to come in at under 200 miles EPA range (although close), despite GM’s claims.

Yay update. “More than 200″… ah I feel better now.

(Should put this back up at the front of the queue of articles since many probably won’t check back)

So the truth comes out in the update…. It was a metric conversion rounding error by a regional marketing team.

A little extra research/investigation before publishing would have avoided stirring the pot and generating 200 uneccessary posts.

I’m still a supporter, but InsideEVs gets a black mark for dispensing hysteria instead of knowledge.

On the positive side, GM will probably be more careful with proofing press releases. But errors will always occur and it is much more productive to use investigative journalism to resolve them than to just point and shout about it.