Three more miles of range, and 4 more MPGe is what Chevrolet states the 2013 Volt will achieve. Total range on both electricity and premium gas has also increased to 380 miles.
GM engineers have tweaked the composition of the battery cell chemistry, which has resulted in improved performance and durability.
Manganese spinel chemistry remains the foundation for the Volt’s battery system, but the amount of each material has been slightly modified to provide better life performance.
“The best way to explain what we’ve done at the cell level is to compare it to a cake batter recipe. Sometimes if you use more sugar and less vanilla you get a better tasting cake. We’ve done some work at the cell level to modify the ‘ingredients’ to make a better end result,” said Bill Wallace, GM director of Global Battery Systems Engineering. “This attention to detail will allow our customers to experience more pure EV range, which is the true benefit of owning a Volt.”
What this means is that the total capacity of the pack has also increased, and now clocks in at 16.5 kWh. This translates to a state-of-charge window of 10.8 kWh, opposed to 10.3 kWh used in the 2012 model.
Naturally, more capacity means longer recharge times, but we think that is a pretty nice trade-off. .A full recharge on 120V takes 10.5 hours and 4.25 hours using L2-240V.
The only negative that can be seen from today's press release is that despite earlier projections that the cost of producing the car would come down, and that those savings would be passed along to the customer, the 2013 MY Volt has kept the same starting $39,995 pricetag. Perhaps next year.