Washington Auto Show To Feature Best 2016 Chevrolet Volt Ever

JAN 21 2015 BY JAY COLE 51

2016 Chevrolet Volt To Debut "In Black" This Week At The Washington Auto Show

2016 Chevrolet Volt To Debut “In Black” This Week At The Washington Auto Show

You Can Almost Feel It Intimidating The "Silver Ice" and "Summit White" Volts (click to enlarge)

You Can Almost Feel It Intimidating The “Silver Ice” and “Summit White” Volts (click to enlarge)

The Washington Auto Show kicks off this Friday to the public, and to the press this Thursday.

And while this is not normally a stop on our tour of auto shows from around the world…the 2016 Chevrolet Volt (full details) is making its second ever appearance.

But who wants to wait until Thursday to see it?  Not us.

It should be noted that Washington will be the debut of the next generation Volt in black LTZ trim – seen here as the show is being set up.

Editor’s Note: As most InsideEVs readers already know, plug-in vehicles in black are not only the best looking type of electric vehicle, but have a faster 0-60mph time and a further all-electric range (it’s science).   Other less exciting 2016 Volt trim and color combinations can be found here.


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51 Comments on "Washington Auto Show To Feature Best 2016 Chevrolet Volt Ever"

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Arg.. when you click for the full resolution shot, the image is rotated 90 degrees.

Damn, why didn’t they have the black one in Detroit!

Anybody wonder why the 2016 Volt teased at 2015 CES was Ashen Gray when that color is not being offered on the car? I thought it might be that the black had heavy metalflake in it, and the car looked gray in the heavy lighting, but clearly upon inspection, it’s Ashen gray. See here: http://s1.cdn.autoevolution.com/images/news/gallery/2016-chevrolet-volt-previewed-at-ces-front-looks-like-a-dogs-breakfast-photo-gallery_3.jpg Humor aside, I like the Ashen Gray second to the Transformer Blue. The black matches the shiny black rocker panels, Volt mirror/label area and makes the rear hatch details and shiney lower rear fascia disappear. The end effect is a more slab-sided side view, and a taller hindquarter sans design detail. Not good – but we each have subjective favorite colors, no doubt. I like the Ashen gray, close to black but not as hard to maintain. Here in rain country, people don’t do many black cars. We learn how they look muddy when the rain stops, and constant washing of black cars gives you that swirly hazing we all hate when we park the car under fluorescent lighting. Ashen gray is a new Volt color for gen1 and replaced Cyber Gray which had different flakes, and was lighter in appearance. Ashen gray looks great… Read more »

I had three black cars in a row (when I was single and had time to waste cleaning cars); they are a pain to maintain. While silver is the easiest, it is kind of boring. I wish car companies would have some more daring color choices.

Hey cool! I own a black Volt, so it is obviously the best color. =P

Does anyone know if the Bolt will be there???

The author made one small error. Black Volts ARE the best looking Volts but the Red ones are faster!
Seriously, though, I can’t wait to see this car. I wish it was a bit roomier for my back seat passengers but the Chevy engineers did a great job in most other areas.

+1 🙂

Black would raise the temperature of the air immediately around the car, lowering air density, and reducing drag. This reduction in drag would increase range and lower the 0 – 60. So Jay is actually spot on in his prediction.

On a more practical note, the black hides the (ugly) sensors in the bumpers.

But the viscosity of air increase a lot with temperature, so the warmer air around the car could actually increase the drag more than the reduction caused by local lower density at the speeds involved with a Volt.
A good academic discussion topic for the non busy.

Is that a Spark EV in the background?

Yes, you are correct, it is a Spark EV

Why would GM bring a Spark EV to DC? Does that mean they are planning to introduce it for sale in DC soon??

I’m curious about this too. Any thoughts on the speculation, Jay?

MD is a CARB state, so it wouldn’t be surprising for the Spark EV to be introduced here.

Prospective buyer: Hey, an electric Spark! Cool, when can I buy one of these?
GM spokesperson: Sorry, we have no plans to sell it in the DC area.
Prospective buyer: Then WTF is it doing here?? You suck, GM!!

EV sleuths that we are:

MD is also in the ZEV MOU, as a geographically odd duck. They are several states away from either the Pacific cluster (CA, OR, WA), or the northeast cluster (NY, RI, MA, CT, VT). I suppose the same goes for CO. These would be the states looking for 3.3mm “ZEV”s, by 2025. I put quotes on ZEV, because unlike CA, I don’t think the “memorandum of understanding” will exclude PHEV/EREV.

WA state is not in the CARB club, so we don’t get compliance cars, despite having the highest per-capita EV adoption rate. It doesn’t get us a complete EVSE network either, though that’s at least being worked on several fronts….

I stand corrected. WA not in MOU, either. Just the other 8.

CARB states – Arizona, California, Connecticut, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, Vermont, Washington, District of Columbia.

CARB-ZEV – California’s ZEV program has now been adopted by the states of Connecticut, Maryland, Massachusetts, New York, Oregon, Rhode Island and Vermont. These states, known as the “Section 177 states,” have chosen to adopt California’s air quality standards in lieu of federal requirements as authorized under Section 177 of the federal Clean Air Act. Additionally, California’s GHG standards are now federal law. Maine, Washington DC and New Jersey are participating with ZEV initiatives, but are not signatory CARB-ZEV states.

“California’s GHG standards are now federal law.” Not sure what you mean by this? If CA’s GHG rules were the law of the land, CO2 would be $10-12/ton ($.10/gallon), nationally.

EPA borrowed some ideas from CA, and RGGI, but its “Clean Power” plan exists only as a proposal, at this point. It is not federal law, any more than Section 111d (of the CAA) applies “outside the (utility) fence”. That legal challenge, as well as a Congressional Review, awaits.

I like what EPA is doing with the states. They are getting them to act, independent of federal law. That’s the idea. They’re blunt, and effective. It beats the BS of knocking down majority rule, with a moneyed group of 40 Senators (Waxman/Markey’s defeat).

The state plans look very different, for those choosing to submit.

in its proposed “Clean Power Plan”, but it has a long road before being allowed to stand.

Good info.


+1 Thanks that explains everything and some things I didn’t know. Good job.

Come back to the site about 12:01 tonight we might have some information about something or other

You were totally holding out on us! =P

Indeed, well…what can you do?

Chevrolet Spark EV Goes On Sale In Maryland This Spring!

Well, we understand, with all that embargo stuff. I’m guessing you purposely included a shot of the Spark EV badge so people like me could connect the dots. 🙂

Just to show the politicians that they do have a pure electric car?

I wish they would broaden distribution but it doesn’t look likely, IMHO. 🙁

Spark EV to DC….get it? *chuckle*

The Spark EV is there to make the new Volt seem more attractive. Like putting Rosie O’Donnell next to … well … anyone.

based on the GM CEO’s comments in detroit, i suspect that the Bolt will be the first national roll-out BEV that GM will offer (although i very much doubt that it will be marketed under that name).

They showed the Spark EV in last year’s (or was it the year before) Detroit Auto Show; even though it’s not available in MI.

Filled w/diesel, this morning. $2.89 versus this Volt’s ability to use regular, which I note was $2.07.

At 20k Volt miles/year, I’ve only bought 200 gallons, anyway. But for unwashed PHEV shoppers, who can’t help but focus on mpg, here’s one more way the Volt can get you “in the black”.

….the fleet managers are going to love this thing.

So many of you, and shockingly the author of this piece are totally delusional. The best/ideal Volt color is the metallic red.

Everyone (except these deluded few here) realizes that truth.

Must agree, black is not a color.

Red makes it look like you’re traveling slowly. Blue Topaz was the best (like the Blue Ribbon Prius) and the fastest (it’s fizzicks innit) but fashion (I.e. whimsical people who are almost always wrong) dictated a change to paler blues, gray and brown. Brown!?

You can’t go into “Ninja mode” unless you have a black Volt. =P

Now now. Blue is the best colour. GM brought back the Blue to show in Detroit because they knew after eliminating the Blue Volt on the Gen 1 is when sales started to decline.

Cyber grey, which is no longer offered, is still the best (non) color.

The new red looked great in the one picture I saw, but it was from a weird angle. I will be impatiently waiting to see some of the new colors in person.

I like Ashen Gray that replaced Cyber Gray. It’s darker and doesn’t wash out like Cyber gray does in direct sunlight due to different color metallic specs.

The new blue is brighter and sportier than the dark blue, “Blue Topaz”, which isn’t actually topaz… The new blue looks just like that Volt that appeared in the Transformer movie long before the Volt was introduced.

I feel like I’m missing out on an inside joke with all the references to black being the best color for EVs. For the record, I drive a black Model S, so I don’t necessarily disagree.

Inside joke it is. In today’s environment, there is so much to report on with EVs. I have only worked with the editor-in-chief since he launched this site in 2012. Back then, you sometimes had to scrape to keep it interesting. Under the staff button, note his bio. “Jay is a noted writer and is recognized for his remarkable talent for extracting the truth behind automotive news and delivering it with an incredible flair of humor”. Is that like Ric Flair? WOOOOO Sometimes when the news needs more sauce he goes on the “black binge” You just can’t get reporting like this on any other site!

Hey John,

I guess it is a bit of an inside joke, although I tried to not word it as such.

There has been discussion about the sanity/reason behind so many “robin’s egg blue” EVs being offered (and featured) by OEMs in the past. And past that, which is actually the most preferred/best color.

The fact that every EV I have personally owned (of which there has been admittedly too many) have been black, in no way puts bias on my opinion, (=

ps) I didn’t even realize what my bio even said, lol (and no, I did not write it)

Thanks for clearing that up, guys. I thought on some level it might have something to do with the tendency of automakers to showcase green/blue colors on environmentally friendly cars.

Take note that the entire Monthly Sales Scorecard features all black versions of the cars…giving away the E-I-C personal bias 🙂

Is that right? Never noticed that…clearly must be a coincidence. (=

The problem with black color is that it is only looking good for about 2 minutes after a car wash and then it gets dirty and shows all the dirt and looks bad…

Yes, it looks good for about 2 minutes after a car wash…

The new shiny black details of the rocker panels, rear hatch and lower rear fascia just disappear with a gloss black body color. If you don’t like the detailing, get black and deal with that slab-sided look. This was noted on black gen1 Volts, but the chrome strip that separated the controversial black area under the windows looked balanced on those cars. Since GM did away with the chrome strip and black stripe, and added gloss black rocker panels and rear bumper – the gloss black Volt2 looks plain to my eye. On a side note: I was following some generic Mazda product yesterday and my eye immediately caught the Volt rear fascia resemblance! Designers evidently felt the up-line over the license plate area broke up too many horizontal lines and made the rear of the car, which is very high for aerodynamics and rear cargo room – look less chunky. Truly, that Mazda looked exactly like the Volt below the rear bowtie! I’m mixed on that detail – but it is growing on me over time. Sad that it’s not an original design element. If you don’t like that rear detail on Volt2, get the black – it disappears… Read more »

Guys like Jay who are enamored with black cars and don’t mind the constant washing and cut-and-buff to remove those nasty paint swirls… The slab-sided effect can be broken up with a nice stripe job. I had a slab-sided pickup truck once and a nice pinstripe of silver cut up the vast expanse of territory on the side that made it look bad.

Anyone else miss the horizontal black section that runs below the side-windows? I like how that black section aligns with the front and rear lights to create a unique site-line and feeling of continuity down the side of the vehicle. It reminds me of the original concept and I think it gives Volt-1 its unique look. To me, Volt-2 looks nice but is pretty much like every other sporty sedan. Sort of average.

I do like that they finally got rid of the gray plastic around the bottom. Never liked its choppy discontinuity at the wheels and doors. My 2013 is Cyber-gray since I think that color best blends in with that plastic and hides it.

Good call. It’s why I like Ashen Gray as well. I seriously am surprised that I have seen no other Volt owners who put an adhesive gray strip on the bottom edge of their gen1 doors to align them straight across and get rid of that goofey misalignment effect. The OCD in me is always trying to come to grips why the line doesn’t just form one horizontal line across and not make those doors look like they are hanging in space.

Quick GM – get a copy of the Rendered Opel ampere of this site to make the 2016 Volt look decent.
…oh and fire the Detroit dumbass over that lower grill and rear lights please.

Can someone snap some more photos of the red 2016 Volt right behind the black one?