2016 Chevrolet Volt: Trying Out the EV Life
by Dan Frio, Vehicle Editor on January 20, 2017
I live pretty far from the office, so my M.O. when driving the 2016 Chevrolet Volt is to milk the charge as far as I can, then run it off the engine until the next time I can get it back to the Edmunds garage charger. Driving the Volt primarily like a hybrid, running solely off the gas engine, isn't really in the spirit of the thing, but I don't have a Level 2 charger at home and I suspect the next-gen Volt would be here by the time I could replenish the battery from the garage outlet.
The other day I needed to get out of the house for a bit, so I tossed the laptop in a bag and headed to a nearby church of consumerism. I figured I'd add some charge to the Volt while having coffee and doing some work — see how the clothes of EV life fit me. The closest ChargePoint was across the street from the mall, in a corporate parking garage.
I couldn't get an app going to monitor the Volt's charge (someone has since told me you can do it on the Volt's OnStar site), so after an hour and 20 minutes, I packed up and headed back to the car.
The Volt had stored up just 13 miles of EV range, which was disappointing. It was enough to get home on electric power alone (8 miles). Although when I headed out for a drive the next day, the meter showed just 3 miles remaining, which dropped to 2 miles almost as soon as I left the driveway. Oh well. It cost about $1.25 for 80 minutes on the charge and 10-ish miles of range.
Dan Frio, Vehicle Editor @ 19,408 miles