GM working with EPA on Chevy Volt fuel-economy rating due later this year

2011 Chevrolet Volt

Around a year ago General Motors held a big event where the Detroit automaker said that the Chevrolet Volt extended-range electric-vehicle will get a city fuel-economy of at least 230 miles per gallon. Well, that’s not the case anymore – GM is now awaiting how the government will rate the fuel-economy on the Volt, which will go on sale in select markets in November.

GM says that it is talks with the EPA about the final fuel-economy rating for the Volt and expects a final rating later this year before the vehicle goes on sale. Larry Nitz, GM’s executive director for hybrid and electric powertrain engineering, said that GM no longer plans on using the 230 mpg figure.

“It will never show up on the label,” Nitz told said. “The EPA is not close to finalizing the label. They say the end of the year, but that’s the general label. What they’ve agreed to is to work with us on a specific label.”

He said that GM has submitted a confidential rating proposal to the EPA. EPA says that it may release a draft proposal this month on calculating plug-in electric vehicle fuel-economy ratings, but won’t finalize anything until the end of 2010.

Click here to read our first drive impressions of the 2011 Chevrolet Volt.

Refresher: The 2011 Chevrolet Volt is powered by 16-kWh, “T”-shaped lithium-ion battery that powers the electric drive unit, which allows it to drive 40 miles on battery power alone. According to GM”s preliminary specs, the system puts out 150-hp and a maximum torque of 273 lb-ft, allowing the Volt to go from 0-60 mph in about 9 seconds, hitting a top speed of 100 mph. The battery can be re-charged by plugging into a household outlet and takes less than 3 hours to recharge on 240 volts, and about 8 hours on a standard 120-volt outlet. The Chevrolet Volt also carries a 1.4 4-clyinder engine that allows the five-door, FWD sedan to travel additional miles while averaging a fuel-economy of 50 mpg. A fully charged battery and full tank of gas will allow the Volt to travel 300 miles. Prices for the 2011 Chevrolet Volt start at $41,000 but with a full federal income tax credit (which range from $0 to $7,500), the Volt can cost  a total of $33,500.

2011 Chevrolet Volt:

2011 Chevrolet Volt Production Show Car

– By: Omar Rana

Source: Detroit News