You just can't keep the Chevrolet Bolt down. Even though General Motors' original modern electric vehicle was pretty outclassed on fast charging toward the end of its seven-year production run, it presented such a great deal that it carried most of the automaker's EV sales in 2023. And it was so popular that it got itself un-canceled after a public outcry—something even the Camaro hasn't officially been able to pull off yet. 

GM axed the Bolt because it was based on older EV and battery hardware and was, for a long time at least, not profitable. But now it's due for a comeback, and it should be better than ever. Let's take a look at what we expect next from the reborn Bolt.

What Do We Know About The Next Chevrolet Bolt? 

The original Bolt EV debuted in 2016 as a 2017 model-year car, developed by GM's Korean team and built in Michigan. While it was initially compared unfavorably to the sportier Tesla Model 3—the EV field was a lot smaller back then—the Bolt EV was always meant to be an affordable, practical compact instead, and it quickly found a loyal audience of buyers. The slightly larger, more crossover-like Bolt EUV was added later for people who needed more size. 

Gallery: 2022 Chevrolet Bolt EUV: Review

By the end of its run in December 2023, the Bolt EV and EUV boasted 259 miles and 247 miles, respectively, from GM's now-retired 65.0-kWh battery pack. With deals to be had in the $20,000 range after tax credits, the car finished its production run with incredibly strong sales. But it was hampered by its lethargic 55 kW max DC fast-charging speeds; today's EVs can charge at significantly quicker rates. 

"At the time, the technology around our [outgoing] battery packs in a very small volume was tough, but we wanted to do it anyway," GM President Mark Reuss told InsideEVs recently at the Detroit launch of the Silverado EV and Equinox EV. "We beat Tesla to market with a higher-volume, lower-priced car that was very good." 

Still, killing it off was an unpopular move. Here's what GM CEO Mary Barra told Barron's about it:

“We were trying to be capital-efficient,” Barra said. “But the Bolt has great brand recognition and high customer ratings. We finally decided to do the work to move the Bolt to Ultium. Also, I was getting letters from people who were mad at me for killing the Bolt.”

GM will attempt to fix some of the original car's shortcomings with the Bolt's next go-around. The next Bolt EUV will not be a completely new car, but rather a very heavy update with Ultium batteries, the latest safety equipment and technology and Super Cruise eyes-on, hands-off assisted driving technology. By using Ultium batteries, motors and other hardware cribbed from the rest of GM's EV lineup, it should be able to keep the costs down while boosting range. 

We also know the next Bolt will only be offered in EUV form, with GM executives confirming the smaller EV model will not return. Of the two models, the EUV was the stronger seller, and Americans have increasingly turned away from compact hatchbacks, so the move does make sense. 

Additionally, as with every GM EV built from 2025 onward, the new Bolt EUV is expected to get Tesla's North American Charging Standard (NACS) port from the factory, and have access to Tesla's vast Supercharger network. 

What Will The Next Chevrolet Bolt EUV Look Like?

2026 Chevrolet Bolt Rendered

GM officials, including CEO Mary Barra, have said the next Bolt EUV will not be a clean-sheet redesign but rather an updated version of the current car with newer tech.

The next Bolt EUV's design has not been revealed, but based on what GM has said, we're expecting a subcompact crossover that's not far from how the original looked. Our artist Theophilus Chin has provided a speculative look with these images, modeling the updated Bolt EUV with design touches from the newer Blazer EV and Equinox EV.

"There are things that will be cool, styling-wise, that we've changed, and there are things that people love that we didn't," Reuss said. "They told us, when you open the back, there's a wing on there that people could hit their head on. And there were lower [brake] lamps that people didn't really enjoy at stoplights."

What Electric Range And Charging Will We Get From The Next Chevrolet Bolt EUV?

GM has confirmed that the next-gen Bolt EUV will debut a less expensive lithium-iron-phosphate (LFP) battery pack on an Ultium car in North America for the first time. That should help keep its costs down, although LFP batteries tend to get less range than other common lithium ion batteries.

The automaker has not confirmed any range estimates for the next Bolt EUV yet. Some rumors suggest around 270 miles of range, which would trump the older Bolt models while still slotting in below the Equinox EV and Blazer EV in the Chevy lineup.

What Will The 2026 Chevrolet Bolt EUV Cost?

GM has not provided any pricing estimates for the next Bolt EUV yet, except to say the goal was to keep it in line with the outgoing one. Considering that the upcoming base model Equinox EV LT is slated to start at $34,995 before any tax credits, we're predicting the Bolt EUV could start around $30,000 or less—making it yet again one of the most affordable electric options around.

"It's going to be at a similar price point than the old one going out, which is very low," GM President Mark Reuss told InsideEVs at the Detroit launch of the Silverado EV and Equinox EV. "We're going to deliver it at a profitable point."

Reuss added, "The formula works. We've got a lot of people that really like it... we're taking the formula of a really safe car that delivers huge value." 

The next Bolt EUV is due to be built in Kansas, the former home of the discontinued Chevy Malibu. Thus, it should qualify for at least some EV tax credits. 

When Does The 2026 Chevy Bolt Go On Sale?

GM is expected to debut the next-generation Bolt EUV sometime in mid-2025 or late 2025 as a 2026 model. The automaker could preview the next Bolt EUV later this year, although at present it is focused on the rollout of the Equionox EV, Silverado EV, upcoming Cadillac Optiq and others.

When the next Bolt EUV does go on sale, it will compete against a few new EV models seeking to lure in the next wave of adopters with much more affordable prices. Those include the Kia EV3, Chevy's own Equinox EV, possibly a new Tesla model or trim level and others.  

Will GM be able to recapture the Bolt's lightning-in-a-bottle sales and critical success this time? If it can keep the prices down and stay true to a proven formula that's profitable this time, the Bolt EUV's comeback could be a win for everyone.

Contact the author: patrick.george@insideevs.com

Artwork credit Theophilus Chin.

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