Pre-Production 2016 Chevrolet Volts Now Being Built – Pricing Announcement Expected Next Month


2016 Chevrolet Volt

2016 Chevrolet Volt

2016 Chevrolet Volt From Chicago (Image: Mike Anthony/InsideEVs)

2016 Chevrolet Volt From Chicago (Image: Mike Anthony/InsideEVs)

It’s been confirmed that General Motors has started building pre-production 2016 Chevrolet Volts at Detroit-Hamtramck Assembly.

These pre-production builds will be used to evaluate both the vehicle and the overall production process.  Within a couple of months, production models will roll off the lines.  Deliveries are expected to begin by this Fall.

It’s believed that a pricing announcement for the 2016 Volt will be made in late April.  Production of the 2015 Volt ends mid-May.

Additionally, Bill Wallace, General Motors’ director of global battery systems engineering, told Automotive News about how GM developed the battery pack for the 2016 Volt:

“…using data gained from examining the batteries in about 300 first-generation customer-owned Volts, engineers increased the amount of power the 2016 Volt’s electric motor drains from the battery pack by 9 percent before the gasoline engine kicks in.”

“The result: Two of the new cells have the same power as three of the old cells, and the 2016 Volt’s battery pack weighs 31 pounds less than the 2015 car’s pack.”

Wallace discussed weight reductions for the 2016 Volt, buy says that the increased electric-only range comes mostly from work done on the battery pack.

Lastly, here’s an interesting tidbit:

“Volt customers told GM they wanted to go farther on a single charge. GM tested the new Volt’s batteries in the Chevrolet Spark EV, he said.”

“The experience from the Spark EV gives us exceptionally high confidence.”

Source: Automotive News

Categories: Chevrolet


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73 Comments on "Pre-Production 2016 Chevrolet Volts Now Being Built – Pricing Announcement Expected Next Month"

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Interesting. Anyone want to make any educated guesses about the price? Think it will be higher, lower, or stay roughly the same as now?

I think the LT version will be lower, something like 30,995 to 32,495. The LTZ version would then be 34,995 to 36,495.

29,995. Book it.

It’s gotta be a number that starts with 2.

That can be anythinh between 2 cents and 2,000,000 dollars!

Volt sub $30k base model, leaf sub $25k. Iran to bomb Saudi before Christmas.

Just re-read my post, I am absolutely not suggesting that Iran should bomb Saudi Arabia or that it would be good if they did. My post relates purely to the fact that I believe that the oil price is too low to be sustained and that greed will win in the end with Iran being the most likely aggressor as they have an existing gripe with Saudi Arabia and would probably get support from Russia in the UN. Russia are also feeling the pain of low oil. I am sure the western nations will do everything they can to make a lot of noise but do nothing as they are also feeling the pain of low oil prices. Why is any of this relevant, because I think disruption to oil supplies will play heavily on the minds of those who sell cars and hence they are likely to be more aggressive in selling/expanding the line up of low consumption models in the next 6 to 18 months even though it appears on the surface not to make a lot of sense. In short, before the Christmas tax panic buying season I predict: Volt – sub $30k Leaf – sub $25k… Read more »

I like your ideas on pricing, but I think the Saudis would hand the Iranians their butts on a platter if the Iranians tried to use aircraft to bomb Saudi Arabia. Plus the Saudis have a fairly decent air defense network.
But the Iranians could very well push a proxy war on the Saudis, probably in Yemen but possibly in one of the Gulf States as well, or the Iranians could use their allies Hezbollah to attack Israel or Hamas to attack Egypt. Plus Iran is knee deep in the anti-ISIS campaign. They are supporting Iraqi Shia militia units which aren’t very effective but there are a lot of them. Those militia units are supported by the Iranian Quds Force which can actually fight pretty effectively.
But the idea that the volatility of the mid-east could force gas prices up is a solid one.

“I am sure the western nations will do everything they can to make a lot of noise but do nothing as they are also feeling the pain of low oil prices.”

Russia and Iran don’t like it for sure, but you have it exactly backwards when it comes to Western nations. Low oil prices are a big boost to our economy. Sure, our oil companies might not like it, but they represent a small part of the overall economy.

IMO, oil is the gold standard energy source, the price of everything else is set by it, the price of every energy source is directly (like nat gas) or in directly (like wind power which is partially linked to nat gas) affected by the price of oil. Oil being this low puts real pressure on all energy companies, energy is big and influential in pretty much any nation. I don’t buy into conspiracy theories but I do believe politicians and there backers take opertunieties, if letting Saudi and Iran knock ten bells of sand out of each other boosts the oil price and saves the shale gas industry in the US even your darkest republican will respect another nations boarders and scamper for moral high ground.

As for Iran winning a war against Saudi no idea but they only need to destroy the export terminals, block the shipping lanes or destroy the pipe network to boost oil prices. Let’s face it Saudi bombing Yemen added $6 a barrel imagine what would happen if this spilled into an oil producing nation.

1) Iran hasn’t started a major offensive war against its neighbors in roughly 200 years, since the 1821 Ottoman–Persian War. They aren’t going to start a war in the Persian Gulf now just to raise the price of oil, when they wouldn’t be able to ship a single drop of oil out the gulf themselves under war. Tankers have insurers, insurers don’t insure against acts of war, tanker operators don’t operate in war zones without govt’s providing indemnity, Iran can’t afford to provide indemnity. 2) The price of oil is low when measured in dollars in part because the dollar is very strong right now. The Euro is closer to dollar parity than it has been in the last decade. 3) GM is de-contenting the LT while contenting the LTZ, and at the same time cutting production costs. GM will keep most of the production savings for themselves for now, waiting until the $7,500 tax incentive runs out to play out the rest. LT will start at $31,500, and LTZ will be $36K+ 4) California volume dealers will soon throw $4K on the hood. By next Spring or Summer GM will throw another $2K on the hood. More sooner if… Read more »

Saudi Air Force > Iranian Air Farce

I bet they will crack the 30k barrier. Some version at $29k to match the LEAF.

David, I hope that you are right! GM has stated over and over again the Gen II was built from the git-go with reducing price in mind. They are only adding 1.3 kWh to the new pack over the current one. And there is increased use of Voltec parts in the Malibu coming down the pike as well.
If they can get the MSRP down below $30k that would be huge. I think sales of Volts would rise in a very nice fashion. I think 4,000 a month is not unreasonable to envision.
Unfortunately, I think the people predicting $31k to $32k for the base model are probably closer to the probable price.

The rear camera is now standard, which may increase cost a bit. Along w/other things like larger screens, etc, but I think all of these smaller costs will be offset by GM using Voltec parts in the Malibu Hybrid (and possibly the Cadillac CT6 plug in). The extra volume may have allowed GM to get better pricing from suppliers on the Voltec drivetrain components.

GM’s use of the Voltec Transmission in the Malibu hybrid is a stroke of genius.

Standard backup camera, $700 of value for a $35 parts bill.

$5 dollar parts bill. It already has the screen from the GPS system to use. It is just the cost of the camera, and you can get a webcam off of ebay starting at $1.60, shipped. GM’s price for hundreds of thousands of units across all their lines of cars can’t be too far off.

Labor on installing it is probably more. Software to run it is a sunk cost, because you don’t have to re-program every car. Write it once, and how many cars you use it for just lowers the cost per car.

kdawg, Taser, I think you all are right about the Malibu Hybrid’s use of the 5ET50 being big news. IF they price it reasonably enough that it is selling in decent numbers within few months of its introduction.
Interesting days.
The Bakken rig count just dropped below 100 active for the first time in years, but their production is still going up. And if Iran gets out from under the sanctions we could see more Iranian oil on the international oil market, driving the price of crude down a bit more.
I can’t believe that I am saying this, but slightly higher oil prices would probably be in the best interests of the US. As long as the price of oil rises relatively slowly with no huge surges in price.

Don”t forget that Iraq is also increasing production after many years of sanctions.

Unfortunately ISIS is lighting oil wells on fire to try and defend against air attacks. Double bad. If oil is going to be pumped from under ground, some value should at least be derived from it while it pollutes. ugh.

Gen 1 Volts are being advertised for less than 30k now, before haggling. I’m betting 29,995 for a base ’16

I would rather die than buy a volt GM screwed us 15 years ago they won’t get a penny from me the trick for them however is to get it below $30,000 without counting the subsidy because unless you make $60,000 a year you’re not getting the subsidy. you have to make $60,000 a year to owe enough in taxes to get the tax rebate. unless you lease it and the dealer absorbs the rebate but then you have other costs so I don’t know if you benefit or not.

Sorry to hear you are so bitter about GM, but it is your loss as I am very impressed with it and the Volt is a very solid car.

Perhaps I’m being overly optimistic, but this pricing announcement feels like it could be a landmark event in the development and growth of the US EV market.

I’m NOT predicting that GM will shock the world with a price $5k below what most of us are expecting — not that I’d complain if that happened. But the potential is there for the EV offerings to take a step from the current status quo halfway to the EV Singularity, i.e. the arrival in 2017 of (nearly) 200-mile, mass market, EVs.

GM has a chance to do something great for themselves, their shareholders, their customers, and, yes, the world, when you consider the benefits of electrifying transportation. Speaking as a devoted Leaf driver, I sincerely hope GM doesn’t miss an opportunity with the Volt pricing.

EV Singularity. I love that phrase!

I hope the base is 29k but my guess is 32,500 base…

Price will be higher at first to gouge the early adopters and first gen owners wanting to upgrade. Price will come down when sales taper off.

I thought the GEN 1 Volt owners WERE the early adopters. GM will find a way to gouge then TWICE.

If they have a choice between lowering the price more vs increasing dealer’s ability to make money selling Volt’s and marketing budgets, I hope they prioritize the latter. The Volt will continue to be relegated to the same or similar small corner of the market until the dealers and GM are actively selling the product.

It’s such a shame that one of GM’s most acclaimed vehicles goes virtually unnoticed and unloved by its maker. There are plenty of “non-Volt” that could truly benefit from it if GM made a good effort to reach them.

Agreed. Profit has gotta be there to motivate sales personnel to sell the Volt, especially at smaller, lower volume dealers.

If the new Volt proves out to be a substantial leap over the first gen Volt in areas like performance and driveability, when that is combined with the obvious improvements in range, fuel economy, dashboard layout, etc., the gen 2 Volt may not need any price drop in order to achieve sales success.

Chevy may be realizing that the Volt is an image builder for the brand, and if it is able to favorably compare to similar sized models from BMW, Audi, Lexus, M-B in media comparisons, and if Chevy starts getting serious about marketing the Volt, I don’t think Chevy will need to lowball its pricing in order for it to sell.

While we are all awaiting pricing on the Chevrolet MY 2016 #NextGenVolt EREV, it is most interesting to note the resale value standing that the Chevrolet #FirstGenVolt Extended Range Electric Vehicle maintains.

US News rates the Chevy Volt EREV used car as an upscale midsized car.’

This is the rating given as each successive model was released as new from 2011 and on through most of the 2014 Model year.

Us News rates the used MY 2011 Chevy Volt EREV as number one Best Cars, Upscale Midsized Cars, Used!

Link Goes To US News – Used Upscale Midsize Cars under $20K-

Insane retained value verses Replacement Value, new!


Thomas J. Thias


Again, a small criticism, but its indicative of Chevrolet’s loose language during these press releases. Especially since overall the releases are very vague, here they say “9% more power”, when by the context they obviously don’t mean that, but rather mean 9% more energy, and are using the word ‘power’ for ‘juice’.

Their PR people, are not engineers…



I think he meant the “their”. Their PR people as opposed to my PR people. Note the sentence would be very awkward as: “They are PR people, are not engineers…”.

The comma would be superfluous, though.

Their chief engineer never gives many specifics as well as also uses ambiguous, loosely worded answers.

You can’t blame it on public relations.

according to the dictionary the use of the word of power here is correct if it was an engineer talking to an engineer then maybe not the correct word but as a lay person talking to a lay person power is defined in the dictionary as the ability to do something go look it up if you don’t believe me go to Google type in definition space power. the word is fine

I would still rather die than buy volt or bolt or a spark or anything from GM they screwed us 15 years ago screw them

What small potatoes for the 35K? From:

“The second generation Volt was officially unveiled at the January 2015 North American International Auto Show. Its improved battery system and drivetrain increased the Volt all-electric range to 50 mi (80 km), and its fuel economy in charge-sustaining mode to 41 mpg-US (5.7 L/100 km; 49 mpg-imp).”

After the Volt’s tiny charge runs out, the gas mileage is still about 37 MPG blended, after the first 40 miles. Your commute better be just 20 miles, or I am still saving more gas, buying a new or used Prius Hybrid that averages 50 MPG.

“Your commute better be just 20 miles, or I am still saving more gas, buying a new or used Prius Hybrid that averages 50 MPG.” Guess what? Most American’s commutes are just 20 miles one way. from the Department of Transport’s 2009 National Household Travel Survey (NHTS): “Of the 106,681 survey participants who drove to work every day in a car, 95 percent of them travelled less than 40 miles to work, with the average commute distance being 13.6 miles.” And beyond just commuting to work: “The average daily drive total for urban-based cars was just 36.5 miles, while rural-based cars drove an average of 48.6 miles.” So 50 miles AER will cover most people’s daily usage. Also with the 2016 Volt the combined mpg is 41 mpg not 37. Also GM has clearly stated that the base 2016 Volt will start at a lower MSRP than the current $34,345. So if you combine the first 50 miles of all-electric in the Volt with whatever extra miles you need at 41 mpg vs. 50 mpg starting with mile number one in the Prius you would have to be commuting 100 miles or more a day for the Prius to be… Read more »

I am Not sure if that is correct I believe the car gets 37 miles per gallon and 41 miles per gallon blended meaning those factor in the electric range if you measure the MPG with zero electricity from the battery is it not around 30 miles per gallon? so if your commute is 60 miles you’ll get 50 miles electric and 10 miles at 30 miles per gallon? of course in the winter that 50 miles is 25 miles.

also this information about 95 percent coverage average commute is total bullshit the value they need is the commute distance of the average buyer of the volt not the average driver of all cars since typically the people who will buy a volt are those who have a much longer commute and can actually benefit from volt in theory.

for me the Volt is an $80,000 car I Drive 40,000 miles a year so the Volt will be cover me for about 40 percent of my driving on a daily basis after that its gas this is why I bought A Nissan Leaf.

I really push the limits but 0 gas ever on my 62 mile per gallon geo metro is my backup

What are you talking about Jim?? If my range is 50 and I get better than 40 mpg after the ‘tiny range’ is gone I still EASILY beat the Prius even if my commute is 90 miles. Prius would use TWO gallons and the Volt would use one. Drive another 50 miles and the prius is at three gallons used and the Volt is at 2.2 gallons. I still win at a 150 mile commute. My volt gets nearly 50 mpg on the highway whereas the Prius gets 55-55. It’s very close percentage-wise.

Jim, Sivad and Ozz just destroyed your snippy little slap at the Volt, and to add a little to their factual rebuttal, can a Prius get 690 mpg? My Volt does, albeit using 50 cents of electricity a day.

But the fact is that my total fuel bill is around 3.25 cents per mile, a little less than even the greenest Prius at $2 a gallon (which we won’t see again for a long time, if ever), and I am driving a fairly sporty Volt, and you are driving a couch on wheels.

That having been said, I am glad that Toyota is pushing the efficiency of ICE vehicles. More options are better than fewer options. And now that you can get a base Gen I Volt for less than $30k, it is looking much more likely that the Gen II will be priced well, as well.

Jim – I’m assuming you’re actually asking a viable question and not trolling.

OK, so here’s your video. This specifically answers your questions regarding Prius hybrid vs. Volt EREV/PHEV.

Video entitled: Prius Challenge Pt. 1 Prius vs. Volt

Naturally, your assessment seems based on the current Volt, not Gen2 which is the subject of this article. As others have stated, gen2 Volt will offer a 41MPG Combined city/hwy as per the EPA. So the results experienced by the VIA guys will see a notable improvement for the Volt, come late 2015.

Rumors are flying around that Prius gen4 will see 60MPG Combined, and that is purely wild speculation at this point. On top of all the rumors on 2016 Prius is that Toyota plans a sportier driving dynamic for the future hybrid. That remains to be seen. What we know now is that the current Volt’s driving dynamics, i.e.: handling, road feel, quietness and smoothness are definitely a cut above the current gen3 Prius.

Dr. Miguelito Loveless

According to the the DoT, 89% of drivers travel less than 35 miles daily. So what’s the problem?

the people with an incentive to buy a $30,000 volt are in 11%…….

I Drive 40,000 miles a year that IS why I bought an electric car.

Using the above 50mpg and 41mpg numbers:

X/50 = (X-50)/41 Solve for X.

X = 278 miles. The distance you would have to drive for the Volt and Prius to have used the same amount of gas. That’s a helluva commute!

The price really needs to be $29,995 or less to get potential buyers to notice when searching for vehicles on web sites like and autotrader. Seems like a crossover point, beyond which people will simply write it off as too expensive.

That said, since GM appears to still think they should market it where they believe the buyers are (e.g. California), I’m thinking they won’t be aggressive on price. I hope to be wrong.

Is it still a hatchback? Just curious if it will be larger than gen 1 and have more storage in the cargo area?

Still 10.6 cubic feet of storage space according to Motor Trend.


So, if they discharged 65% to start with, Volt is now up to 74% DOD. I think we arrived at ~75% once, already. This is confirming. 1.3kwh more storage than 2015, and (.09)(18.4) = 1.6kwh of additional reach into the battery totals ~2.9kwh. This achieves the 50 miles of EPA electric range (~80 miles NEDC, if you are equating to VW/Audi specs). That’s the good news. If Spark EV was the test bed, and testing was at all extensive, someone would have noticed if this car ventured away from the warm climes where Spark EVs are sold. To me, this also affirms GM didn’t care so much about improved cold weather efficiency. GM’s Farah was on auto-line, effectively bragging about how much faster the Volt’s new heater will eat power. He was talking about better interior heat, to which this will be the cost. So, then can we ask “Will Volt 2 experience a larger winter / summer range swings, than the outgoing model?” If focus grouped on “Which would you rather, 32 winter / 60 summer, or 40 winter / 50 summer EV miles?”, my answer would be option 2. That answer also repeats what Sivad re-posted about NHTSA’s… Read more »

I really ought to record both my predicted and real world range this year. Both winter and summer, my predictive is usually a bit optimistic. 9 months out of the year my predictive fluctuates between 47 and 49 with occasional 50’s, but the actual miles driven before the pack is exhausted varies between 44 and 48 with occasional days of 52-53.
My winter miles predicted varies from 28-34 and real miles can be as little as 24 but usually 26-34.

Even if the Gen simply tacks 9-10 miles onto my real world range, I would still be getting 35-44 miles in the winter and 53-58 most of the year, with occasional days with 63 miles of range.

I would kind of like those numbers.

I typically don’t use my cabin heater until it’s 15 degrees or less. And then, I’m only using it because the ICE is forced on at that point.

On the days above 15, when I don’t use my cabin heater, the range on the Volt is still much less in cold temps. The cold weather just kills the range, regardless if you blast the cabin w/warm air or not. Cold weather also affects ICE cars too.

The heated steering wheel will be a huge help to those of us who prefer dressing warmly over using cabin heat.

Glad to hear GM talking about increasing the electric range of the Volt. Sorry to see it’s not going to be that big of an increase.

I’d really love to see a Volt EPA rated at 70 miles of range, even if it’s only for an optional larger battery pack. Maybe in 2017?

Anyone else think this looks like it was broadsided. Painted grey the side character groove looks very bad. It barely showed on the original gorgeous blue. Not a great angle on the pre production silver one.

I’d also bet they are gonna shoot for under 30k even if they take a loss to deprive Nissan LEAF and Toyota Prius of sales.

At least now we know why they really never wanted to sell Sparks… they were only a Volt battery test. Nice car otherwise if a bit smallish.

I think it looks great. I’ve always been a black car person, but the Heather Gray is starting to grow on me, especially from this angle.

Regarding losses, GM removed a lot of cost, I don’t expect them to be taking losses on the Volt, especially now that they are sharing the drive-train with other car(s).

I know I have said it before, but I really miss the cyber grey. My neighbor has one, great color.

On the question of why GM increased the range, a manufacturer gets double the ZEV credits for a range 50 miles as opposed to a range of 49 miles. I’m thinking rule had just a tiny bit to do with the increased range.

The Volt is a nice car. Way nicer than most ICE vehicles. I can’t see why they’d price it below $34K. In CA after rebates that’s $25K. Nothing close to the value proposition it offers at that price.

So while BMW is crippling the i3 REx to get more ZEV credits, GM is improving the Volt to do the same?

GM needs to hit some volume with the Voltec drivetrain to keep driving costs out. A MSPR starting with the number 2 will get a ton more people to check it out.

They need to break the stigma that it is a “$40k car”.

As kdawg mentioned, the fact that the Malibu uses the same transmission will help with production volume on that part at least.

I’m hoping they will use this transmission in other lines as well. It could even be scaled up to an EREV truck size.

With its motor linking it would be less expensive that a pure series version.

I’m looking forward to a heather gray Gen 2. Perfect timing. My lease is up at the end of May.

Oh and PS> I’m very glad we have more Volt enthusiasts commenting here at IEV’s. Very few dumb anti GM comments today. That is good.

George, I have a Volt and have been following the technology for almost 8 years. And I have been known to make an “anti-Volt” comment or two when I am irritated with GM. 😉
Sometimes I feel like Volt drivers like the technology more than the top execs at GM do.
I really hope that Chevy can turn Volt sales around and turn it into a sales success, but GM has screwed the pooch so often in the past that I am trying not to get my hopes up.

I have a Leaf and a Volt. The Leaf is a downscale and cheap exercise in cost cutting. Nice electric drive but basic transportation. The Volt is a nice car, comparable — better in some way worse in others — to the luxury car it replaced.

Not surprisingly given this difference, the Volt has much higher customer satisfaction numbers than the Leaf. Hard to see why GM would want to follow the Nissan route and elevate cost cutting to the number one priority. Wouldn’t make for a very good long range strategy, especially when GM has a limited number of tax credits available and a 200 mile BEV in the pipeline.

I have always found the comments like this fascinating it reminds me that my view is not the world view by any stretch at all. I bought a 2012 leaf in September it is the most luxury car I’ve ever owned in my life it’s the most comfortable* the most well built and has the most features and creature comforts of any car I’ve ever owned and I have owned a lot I currently have 6 cars the leaf also cost more than all the cars I have ever owned combined. Ouch at $17,000. I have to remind myself that I feel this way because of my perspective from the cars I have owned I remind myself other people have a much nicer cars so their point of comparison will be quite different from mine I compare this car to my Geo Metro to my Geo Tracker to my grand Voyager which is also a very nice car just prone to rust. GM however has a special place in hell to me. they put electric cars behind it by 15 years we should be driving 500 mile range $10000 cars today. I will never forgive them for that they did… Read more »

I forgot to note my * the most comfortable vehicle I have ever owned I have ever driven ever ridden in is my 92 Ford Club Wagon alas 19 miles per gallon is really painful.

absolutely no other vehicle is more comfortable to drive. no argument possible in my book. But damn that 19mpg. Ouch.

$29,995 would be a pretty good balance between getting the price down and keeping EV advocates from screaming about decontenting/more AER/6.6kW charging/etc.

I can’t even imagine how they could get the base MSRP to $24,995, but if they somehow did, Toyota/Honda/Ford/Nissan are all in big trouble. The lease price for a $25k Volt (with federal subsidy) would blow up the economy car market.

dude $25,000 is not even remotely close to the economy car market.

your basic $12,000 40 mile per gallon economy car crushes of alt

$25000 – $7500 – $1500 (in CA) = $16000.

Dr. Miguelito Loveless

I would also point out the used market that folks tend to forget. I am seeing premium line 2012 models with 30k miles going for $18K, basic models going for for $15K.

The 2nd gen models arrival will probably drive those prices down further. These are prices regular folk can afford.

I don’t see much mention about the very limited amount of room in the backseats of the Volt. The Volt would have otherwise made so much sense for my driving profile. But 4 adults in the car from time to time makes it a show stopper. I’m 6’4 so I can’t scoot my seat very far forward. And when I did attempt to sit in the back I found it very difficult to get out!
Such a shame …. it would have been a great car for me otherwise.