Next-Gen 2016 Chevy Volt Teased – Debut Set For 2015 NAIAS In Detroit


It’s debut date is now official.

On the Chevy Volt owner Facebook page, Kevin Kelly, General Motors’ Manager of Electrification Technology Communications, posted the following:

Wanted to make sure that our loyal Volt owners were among the first to hear the news and get a slight glimpse of what’s to come…

Next Generation Volt to debut at 2015 NAIAS

The next generation Chevrolet Volt will debut at the 2015 North American International Auto Show in Detroit, Global Chevrolet Chief Marketing Officer Tim Mahoney said today.

The 2016 Volt will build on the award-winning original’s strong foundation of technology innovation. Volt sales were up 13 percent in July and more than 65,000 have been sold since it was introduced – making it the best-selling plug-in passenger car in the U.S. market.

“Volt is the perfect example of the ingenuity that drives everything we do at Chevrolet,” Mahoney said at the Center for Automotive Research Management Briefings. “Volt fully delivers on the promises of Find New Roads and will continue to provide consumers with the transportation solutions they need and deserve in the future.”

Volt owners are driving more than 63 percent of their overall miles in electric vehicle mode, collectively logging more than 500 million gas-free miles since the Volt’s retail debut in 2010. That has saved more than 25 million gallons of gasoline.

Kelly, as well as the Chevrolet Volt Facebook site, posted the lone teaser image seen above.

Additionally, the Chevrolet Volt Facebook site posted this:

“We have exciting news, Volt fans! Here’s your first look at the all-new Chevrolet Volt, set to be revealed at the North American International Auto Show in January. Are you ready for the new Volt?”

Earlier this year GM announced they were setting aside $449 million into both its Hamtramck, MI assembly facility and its Brownstown Battery Assembly plant to bring the next generation of Volt to market…plus two other, as yet unnamed, “future” vehicles.

The 2016 Chevrolet Volt is expected to have a range of at least 50 miles and also feature a lower starting MSRP than today’s $34,995…both of which sounds pretty good to us.

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98 Comments on "Next-Gen 2016 Chevy Volt Teased – Debut Set For 2015 NAIAS In Detroit"

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Can’t wait.

I can’t believe they completely gave away the surprise like that! I mean, now we know EXACTLY what the trunk looks like! Is nothing left to the imagination any more? 🙂

Good one Schmeltz.
We only have to wait a few more months till January to find out all that we already know.

The big surprise is that GM engineers have all silently gone mad and that is actually the front – “to heck with aerodynamics”

Haha! Clearly a failed attempt at getting back to the concept version, where Bob Lutz said it would get better aero in reverse. 🙂

I remember that one too! Ahhh the memories.

I’m pretty sure at the unveiling they’ll all be wearing pink ties.

Looks like they photoshoped a Chevy bowtie on the back end of a Nissan Leaf.

That was my first thought too.

I was thinking the same thing at first. But I don’t think the proportions fit the back end profile of a Leaf quite right.

I know, right ?

That curve is one of the things I can’t stand about the Leaf and here it looks like GM dang near copied it.

I thought the same thing, but GM seems to have toned the bubble-butt down a couple notches and it looks kind of nice.

+1 I was thinking same thing. Leaf with a bow tie.

The show is a long way out. I am surprised they already released this. It might lead to a slow fall for Volt sales.

The good news, NAIAS is going to be huge for plug-ins this year. Volt 2.0, Model X, and hopefully Outlander PHEV set to go. There is a small chance of a Model 3 prototype also. I might need to block the calendar for that week (and buy some winter clothes).

Probably too much wishful thinking, but it’s my hope that Chevrolet goes “all out” by also introducing one of the other “yet unnamed” plug-ins at the show too.

Oh well, it’s nice to dream.

I know. That’s what kills me. We’ll be 6 mo’s into re-commissioning a truck for urban duty, and they’ll be showing the relatively smaller, cheaper, EREV. It seems hard to speculate that a larger EREV/PHEV stablemate, for the Volt, is coming. Sonic rumors helped cool that idea.

I’ll be there. Pictures are OK, but nothing like seeing all the new cars in person (and even getting to sit in a few of them).

PS: the models are nice to look at too 🙂

I have been to SEMA several times, but never NAIAS. Been wanting to make the trip. Houston is right after NAIAS, so it is terrible. I don’t even bother attending.

I doubt they are worried about a fall in Volt I sales.

It has done its job and established the technology and introduced it to people.

As they said they made a loss on each one, why worry about a tail off in sales?

If GM have done their job right on Volt II this should be the one which is not only saleable, likely through better 5 seat accomodation, but because the costs have been cut enough for them to loose less or break even, and later in the production run to make money.

This is the one they are hoping for volume on, not Volt I

The loss is from the R&D costs, not the car itself. The more they sell, the more they recoup R&D costs.

Price > Materials/Labor

I am going to correct your math
Volt price > materials + labor

If you divide materials by labor it is kind of cheating 😉

It reminds me of somebody back-dooring Brembo parts, from Taiwan. That was definitely price = materials/labor.

It depends how costs are allocated, which is not only complicated but varies from company to company.

An easier way of looking at it is that you don’t make money out of a low volume car with several specialist parts, which is the first of a new technology.

Overall however the pudding is sliced they will have lost money on the Volt I.

Unless they have screwed up their sums the losses should be way less or they should show a profit on the Volt II.

So the margins per car will be better than on the Volt I, and perhaps even in the black.

Simply they would rather sell a Volt II than a Volt I, and so probably are not bothered by some fall in sales, particularly if it is people delaying their purchase to buy a Volt II.

Dr. Kenneth Noisewater

Marginal cost to manufacture a Volt is estimated to be on the order of $26k as of about a year ago. The more Volts they sell (and the more vehicles Voltec R&D and tooling/manufacturing, such as the battery plant, can be spread across) the less “loss” per vehicle sold.

Either the margins on the Volt II are higher than on the Volt I or it is dead duck technology.
Sales were way lower than they forecasted, which costs big money.
Low production runs on a vehicle set up for much higher sales cost big money, and even
on the relatively high sales they initially forecast they would still have lost money overall, which is OK on a brand new technology and product.

They would rather sell a Volt II than a Volt I so won’t be bothered if sales fall off for the moment.

Every sale of a Volt I is of at most marginal help to the sunk costs.

Just running a production line costs money, and isn’t worth it for the sales figures the Volt gets.

50 miles *true* AER sounds very good!!

Dr. Kenneth Noisewater

I want 50mi EV range, 50mpg range extender, and 50A L2 charging.

Awesome. Add a heated steering wheel, and no ERDTT above zero degrees Fahrenheit, please.



Even more important: please include a dual voltage 120/240 V portable EVSE with the car, like the AeroVironment TurboCord.


PS. While 15 A is ok for the portable EVSE, a 30 A capable charger (6.6 kW) would be *great* for public charging. Thanks in advance. 🙂

…Lets NOT forget a POWER SEAT!! 🙂

Uh, fast charging, Folks!!! Let’s get with the program and bump things up to a 20-30min charge. It’s gonna become the trend very quickly as battery technology goes exponential next year.

Wait a second…Do I see some Nissan LEAF design influence there?

I wanted to say “Nope” but now I’m seeing it too. Ewww, make it stop!

Don’t worry Clarkson.
kdawg just photoshopped it on a Leaf photo.

I thought the same, with the large lip between the back bumper and the hatch.

I’d get excited if they announced something larger than a Volt.

What about a larger Volt? (the Volt 2.0 is supposed to be a bit larger BTW)

Me too. But I think we are going to be disappointed on that front. I think the car will be practically the same proportions it is now, (unfortunately).

I think he is referring to a Voltec CUV to compete with the Outlander PHEV.

Thats what I worry about. If its just a minor body change on the Volt, sales won’t change much. They need a more spacious taller vehicle getting the battery out of the passenger area, such as moving it under the floor.

Dr. Kenneth Noisewater

D2XX is underpinning the next compact CUV as well, a Voltec Equinox would be nice.

Sorry.. for those saying this looks like a Leaf. I own a Leaf and I am not seeing any similarities.

I think they are just talking about the swoopy part. I don’t think it’s as pronounced, and hard to tell w/out seeing the whole package. Also the Volt appears to have a spoiler, which the Leaf does not.

I don’t think it will look like the leaf at all.

But this pic from kdawg is exactly what I was thinking when I saw the teaser shot. I think this is an aero feature to build a strong vortex on the back of the car.

I own a Leaf and I see similarities. But as I stated above, I don’t think the proportions fit. Kdawg’s right, the swoopy part is what made me think it was similar to one at first.

The 900 pound Gorilla in this plan is will Nissan release the 150 mile leaf at this point? In that a 50 or 60 mile range volt could do a lot of damage to the Nissan leaf if they added a DC quick charger port to it that could allow it to charge up in ten minutes.

Highly doubt it will come with a QC port. I’d just be happy if it came with a 6.6kW charger.

I really just don’t think range in a PHEV is that big of a concern. Look how well the Ford energi models are selling, with half the range of a Volt.

I think the issue is, faster charging (especially DC fast charge) is really aiming towards the BEV customer. Yet, a lot of BEV purists don’t want any car with an ICE.

I just don’t think the Volt is really aiming for that segment of the market. The Volt should be aiming at the people who currently drive an ICE car and are looking to move towards a plug-in but aren’t willing to make the leap to a pure EV.

I agree. I think MSRP starting with a 2 and seating for 5 are their biggest targets to expand the market.

6.6 kW charging is very important for public charging also. I am not sure DC charging matters as much. DCQC stations will charge rates close to the cost of gas. But 6.6 kW cuts the cost in half at hourly public charging stations.

Totally agree, the volt really needs to win on price and packaging this time around. Having 50 miles and a gas motor doesn’t make a whole lot of sense if the price stays in the 30K range. Get the Volt down to high spec Chevy Cruze prices 22-27k and then chevy has a real contender. It would go up against short distance Leaf owners who want only one car, against the Prius and Ford PHEV, as well as attracting more mainstream buyers looking for lower running costs.

I am not sure Nissan would use NAIAS as their platform for an announcement. The original LEAF was announced in a press release. I am guessing they will do that or use a Japan show.

Normally I would say we would be on the scene if they do release it in Japan (we have made it to all the big autoshows around the world in person the past 15 months), but the Tokyo show is a bi-annual event…so we aren’t planning to be back in Japan until Oct of 2015. Hard to say when/how they will put news out on the longer range LEAF as they have to be mindful of the current model; and as they have said in the past a battery upgrade of some ilk is coming ahead of the gen 2’s arrival. How much the bump is (or if could end up getting the full Gen2 bump)…who knows? Could be a big reveal event on next model, could be just a ‘longer range’ option press release, could be nothing. I don’t think we are likely to see anything. As a WAG, I imagine if they were wanting to make a big deal out of it in the next model year or so, the places to be would with be in Detroit in January or Geneva in March…lines up well with MY production schedules. Tokyo 2015 would be a good place for… Read more »

Ah, thanks for the insight. I guess it won’t be a Japan Show. I wonder if the lizard pack was the “new battery” ahead of Gen 2?

I am not convinced we will see a LEAF with more kWhs before Gen 2.

I share your skepticism, (=

“and as they have said in the past a battery upgrade is coming ahead of the gen 2′s arrival”

Is this something newish or rather old ? AFAIK, they haven’t talked about a longer range Leaf in any other context than Gen 2 Leaf in the past few months.

That makes sense too – they can change the shape of the pack – may be make Leaf a little bigger to accommodate a bigger battery, multiple battery options etc. Difficult to do that in current gen Leaf.

We haven’t really heard much in the way of the battery of late. Last time we heard of the longer range battery in ‘this’ LEAF was at the Frankfurt show last year.

But the quote was wishy-washy or from a low-level exec…which is the only reason we still hold onto that chestnut. It was 120+ miles of real world range, “for sure” on current gen and from Andy Palmer. So…well, what can you do? lol

There were also some statements made to the leaf owners in a SF meet or in Pheonix (may be both). I think that is now old news and in the past few months we have Andy talking about 2016 Leaf Gen 2, Infiniti and some thing about long range. Recently there was something about Infiniti in 2017. So, recent statements point to a gen 2 longer range Leaf. Anyway – we are talking about just one more model year between the current ’15 and the next gen ’17.

What we have on record “for sure” is that the Infiniti LE (with new battery) is in the current Power 88 plan, which ends March 2017.

On the ‘loosey-goosey’ side we have the quote that the Infiniti will arrive ‘just before’ the 2nd gen LEAF and will be first with the new chemistry on board.

Personally, I think any statements involving the Infiniti LE, especially in relation to the LEAF, have to be taken with a grain of salt, considering the track record on it. It seems like if you wait long enough you can hear whatever you want to hear from Nissan about when something is or isn’t coming, or what it will feature.

As a WAG, I’m leaning to the 2nd gen LEAF being a 2017, out in the winter of 2016/2017. We know its not a go in 2015…so that really gives us as much as we need to work with for now I suppose.

You’re forgetting about the LA Auto Show Nov 21-30, 2014. This has traditionally been the show where PEVs are introduced to North Anerica. The GM EV1 was announced in LA … that was 1996, 20 years before the Gen2 Volt is to appear in 2016.

The LA Auto Show is all about the future and next generation automobile designs, so would expect to hear a few significant announcements.

I’m guessing it will have an 18-20kWh battery and they’ll open up a larger usable window like in the ELR…

There is definitely something too them opening up more reserve capacity, which will be easier to do with a larger pack, because the miles/cycle increase thus decreasing the total cycles. Less cycles and you can use more of the battery while maintaining lifespan. I’d like to see them go down to maybe a 15% reserve or perhaps a 20% reserve with a momentary “override” function making another 5% available to the driver.

Dr. Kenneth Noisewater

An “honest” (EPA combined) 50mi EV range would require about 18kWh usable battery. So, GM would likely need 25kWh to offer that unless they’ve been able to reduce the ‘reserve’ sizes.

I calculate 21.7 kWh to get 50 EPA miles.

16.5 kWh * (50/38) = 21.7 kWh

It likely will be even less than that due to a more efficient drive unit (like the Spark EV has) and maybe using a wider SOC range.


I’m thinking a 16 kWh usable window out of 19-20 should get you to 50 miles… leave only 3 or 4 kWh total as a buffer. 10% on either end….

3 – vehicles. This is probably the cheaper of the ‘Voltec’ variants, with the odds-on 200-mile BEV reducing the mystery car to one. Correct? What will the 3rd EREV/PHEV be? Buick Verano? Equinox? Will the bean-counters think it is too early to insert such a low margin PHEV within the ranks of main stream Chevy products? If so, I’d be happy with an SRX EREV, priced to make money and grow Cadillac’s foot traffic.

I would not have been surprised if ‘Volt’ were retired, no matter how much the resemblance carries forward. So much for that. The specs may not even be announced at NAIAS, which is the teaser that could change plans.

It is the engine and transmission config that I am most interested in finding out about. I think mrenergyczar has it right on the battery…..fairly simple change in DOD with a modest increase in AER.

…but there was talk that they might go with a regular Hybrid tranny like the piP or Ford.

..and the ICE is a big question mark also.
….a turbo 3??, or a naturally aspirated 3 cyl. ???

I’m hoping they keep the existing trans and go to a turbo 3 but this wouldn’t allow alot of cost reduction

Oh that’s right I forgot we will have 2 versions. A regular Volt and a Volt lite.

Hard to tell, but I wonder if the Volt no longer has a split glass hatch? I don’t look through the bottom portion of mine much.

So who will be the first to post a photo of rear boot of a 2014 Volt from same angle for side-by-side comparison?

A wide angle view of current generation Volt.

Ideas of fantasy:

Volt needs to come down to the $20-25K base price range, average equipment being $30K, to appeal to the common buyer. The person buying a nicely optioned Cruze/Jetta/Civic/Focus/Prius.

The range extender won’t be a turbo. It’s just too expensive unless the engine was also destined for more vehicles. And needlessly powerful a Turbo 3 would be 100-125HP. The i3 only has a 34HP generator. It would seem the Volt could get along just fine with 65 to 85hp which is reasonable for a non-turbo 3 cyc.

Charging is less important. No fast charging. Just a reasonable 6-7kw charger. Volts shouldn’t be gumming up the charging networks, they’re hybrids after all.

I don’t know, Andrew. If the Gen II Volt has an MSRP of $29,900, I think it will sell really well. When the tax credits run out (2017?), though, the MSRP had better be closer to $25k, though.

True, I wasn’t thinking about the tax credit still being available to the Volt. It seems like PHEVs keeping the credit is unlikely once it runs out. And maybe a reduced $1500 to 4000 credit could be kept for BEVs. Of course all of that is dependent upon the political climate in DC after 2016. Especially the congressional climate.

Mods, please remove this if referring to another site is a problem, but BoulderVolt just posted a dozen pictures of the Swirly Gen II Volt in the wild on GM Volt dot com and they are pretty nice. Both of them have cladding on both the front and back, but the rest of the car is pretty clearly what we will see in January, and it looks pretty good.
Still no views of the back seat situation, but the cars definitely look larger than our current Volt.

Heck no, it is not a problem…especially from GM-Volt, I personally have a soft spot for them being Lyle and myself’s old stomping grounds. In fact here is the link to check it out, (=

I don’t know. The pic above appears to have more of a “shelf” below the trunk than the car in those pics. Also, the top of the trunk lid appears to protrude out past then end (maybe it’s a spoiler?) while these pics show a clear drop off from the top.

In picture 10 if you zoom in you can see the trunk profile is similar to the PR picture.

Huh, I think you’re right. I guess the black & white patterns did it’s job of skewing my dimensional perceptions.

Thanks, Jay! I didn’t want to step on any toes.
I think the new Volt is going to have a noticeably different look and I think I am going to like it. Current Volt lease ends in June of 2016 so I should be able to get a 2016MY Volt for a decent price by then!

Thanks for the link. Too bad that didn’t get a pic of the back seat 🙂

Anyone know what the Stop sign is for on the driver’s window?

Hey Josh, here’s an aerial spy shot of the 2016 Volt clearly showing the 3-across bench rear seat.

To Bill: Some current Volt owners attended a GM-sponsored focus group wherein they were shown 2 versions of gen2 Volt: One ( Econo-Volt ) with 20 mile AER and Prius-like pricing, and one ( MaxiVolt ) with 40+ mile electric range and current 4 passenger status.

My hope is that your dealer was right – as I believe Volt needs seating for 5 to be relevant to current Prius owners and prospective conquest sales for Chevy to Volt.

I’m not sure I fancy the chances of a 20 mile AER Volt against the umpteen models of 22-ish AER Golfs, A3’s and Passats that the VW group will be bringing to bear in that time frame.

It depends on the price of course, but the Volt’s USP is the 40 mile AER, at 20 they have competition.

Thanks for the pic… Nothing’s set in stone, but per the latest news as of this morning the 5 points I mentioned are the current plans.

A 50 mile range volt and that all important 3 person rear seat will probably make a much larger segment of the driving public (along with competitive pricing) get interested in seriously considering the VOLT. BRAVO GM.

Amen, Bill! You’re preachin’ to the choir on that one. Audi, VW and vaporware PHEVs will be costly and most are still vaporware. We read a lot of hype on those future PHEVs – mostly European cycle AER numbers. Cut those by about 33% and you have reality to the EPA and what you’ll likely see on the road in real world use. The real competitors are Prius hybrid and Prius Plug In. Why? Those are the models with momentum in the marketplace, the names people know. It’s Prius(s) vs. Volt(s). GM has a good strategy moving forward, although more pragmatic than most of us would wish. Once they duke it out in the Prius space, they are on the way to MAINSTREAM. Price is crucial, thus the need for the 20 mile Volt. If the new ( now delayed – maybe because of Volt news leaks ) Plug-In Prius sees a 15% increase in AER – you’re still talking advantage 20 mile Volt. Volt’s EREV still allows full electric cruise up to 70+ mph – whether up hill load or full throttle. Volt also glides electrically on it’s buffer at parking lot speeds – something Toyota’s HSD does not… Read more »

The 22 mile AER I gave is real world, not the NEDC.
I compared them to the projected lower AER Volt mentioned, not a ~40 mile AER Volt.

Vapourware? Some models are on the road and for sale in Europe, whilst the Volt II is a future model not on the road yet.

So which is more vapourware, cars in production or cars just being tested now?

Not much of a news release, sorry to say…

My Chevy dealer told me more, namely that the stock battery will be 40 mile range with an extra cost option of a 50, and also that the back seat will be a bench meaning it will carry 5 passengers. and that’s just accidentally stopping in at the dealership 3 weeks ago.

Thanks for passing that along. They might as well have given you pricing and availability too 🙂

There will be a price reduction from the $34,995 or whatever exactly the list price is now.

Two: New Engine, 1000 cc, 3 cylinder.

Three: 40 mile range standard, 50 mile opt.

Four: More total range.

Five: 3 passenger rear bench seat.

I wouldn’t think of asking any Chevy dealers around here. They know so little about the current Volt after 4 years, I’m sure they’re completely clueless about what’s coming next year.

But it wouldn’t surprise me if your dealer was right – those sound like reasonable specs.

The question

Doesn’t beat the Tesla, sort of looks like the leaf LOL, hopefully it doesn’t, but i can tell it kind of looks better already than the current volts rear end, which needed work.

Tim Mahoney needs to check his history a bit. The Volt was introduced during the “Chevy Runs Deep” campaign. That by the way was a far better slogan for the brand as it communicated something that is void with the impersonal and vague “Find New Roads”. It communicated the sense of belonging, the established tradition, and the deep emotion associated with the brand. “Find New Roads” is the opposite, to me it says “Get Lost”.

I think Chevy should do a marketing campaign based on “Generate”. Generate power. Generate fun. Volt motors reGenerate battery energy. Have a grandfather, son, & child w/their Chevy’s… Generations. Generate the future.

(disclaimer: I’m an engineer, not a marketer)

They need a more comfy back seat if they are going to sell the Volt on the grounds that it is a suitable place to get down to generating the future!

Not even at a drive in movie!

Just fold the seats down and put on some Barry White.

Nothing to disclaim about, as an engineer you are doing a far better job marketing the Volt 🙂

Volt owners are driving more than 63 percent of their overall miles in electric vehicle mode, i think GM should be trying to get that higher, but i guess if someone takes 2 long tips a year then maybe most days they drive on 100% electricity so i guess that 63% number is ok,

i live in australia so i hope the next gen isn’t priced to high like the current one is and then they make all electric version and then another one with a range extender.

also looking at the photos do you think the back tail lights are, down ways or like the current one.

also would like the option of 2 colour paint jobs like the current i3

also here is the video announcement

chevy should just change their logo to a cross and have jesus be their mascot cause that is the demographics they attract