The "father" of the Chevrolet Bolt speaks out in regard to its design, development process and more.
Stuart Norris is the managing director for General Motors Korea. He's the main man behind the development of the Chevy Bolt, but he gives all credit to the 180-person team who worked alongside him to create the Bolt.
Chevy Bolt Interior
Ward's Auto recently interviewed Norris. Here's some of what he had to say:
“Developing the Bolt EV in three-and-a-half years is pretty amazing."
“We developed a unique architecture, a unique and brand new 60-kW/hr battery, drive unit, the vehicle’s functionality, aluminum doors and liftgate, electronic shifter, touchscreen display system, all launched with great quality in the United States in just three-and-a-half years.”
Actually, Norris was transplanted to Korea in 2012 to get ready for design and development of the Bolt. Work began shortly thereafter.
Inside the Chevrolet Bolt
“It’s quite challenging when you design in Korea and launch production in Lake Orion, Michigan. There’s a 13- or 14-hour time difference, different languages (except for himself and one Japanese-Brazilian designer who does not speak Korean, all members of the design studio are Korean), and different geography. But we get a massive wealth of knowledge from the global organization.”
“We used to separate exterior and interior design, but we decided to merge the two."
“We were given very wide responsibility to design both the interior and exterior, including colors, materials, user interface. We strove to keep every part of it unique.
“We wanted to create proportions for the vehicle as a future state of the family car; how the Bolt EV would fit into family life.
“We pushed the windshield as far forward as we could, and lowered the beltline to maximize all-around visibility.”
2017 Chevrolet Bolt EV
Norris seems especially proud of the Bolt. It's open, spacious interior seems to be his biggest brag-worthy achievement. Quoting Norris:
"Indeed, sitting in the driver or front passenger seat, the view forward and to both sides is wide open, imparting a feeling of security."
“The interior has a really unique feel. There’s a very spacious, open feeling inside the car."
“C-segment spaciousness in a car with a B-segment exterior.”
“We took advantage of electrification of the vehicle to develop this very low, flat floor, giving us a really open-space feeling."
You can read the full interview with Norris here. It includes a mention of price. According to Norris, the goal seems to be to drive down the price of the Bolt to extend its appeal:
“What’s great about the Bolt EV is that, as we bring the price down it will have very wide market appeal. The styling is very on point to where the market is going and it has a 235-mile (378-km) range."
“All these things are bringing down the barriers to ownership.”
Source: Ward's Auto