Plug-in cars urged to replicate all-electric feature of Chevy Volt

The Chevrolet Volt has a feature that differentiates it from all other plug-in cars – it will run solely on electricity as long as its battery has a charge. The EV design’s gas engine will not switch on even if it is put to maximum acceleration. The latest 2016 Chevy Volt possesses the same feature, and more perks as it enjoys a range expansion to 50 miles ensuring the owner a longer all-electricity drive.

Plug-in cars to minimize EV supplementary use of gas

Now the question in the minds of many owners of plug-in cars is, why hasn’t other EV brands in the market, like Ford, BMW, Honda, Audi, Porsche, Toyota, and even Mercedes-Benz – copy this same feature?

In all probability, it is because for plug-in cars to travel long distances they will require a much more powerful electric motor and bigger batteries, which unfortunately, other manufacturers currently don’t want for their EVs.

During an interview with top GM engineers, Tim Grewe, Chief Engineer for car electrification, and Pete Savagian, Director of Electric Drives & Systems Engineering, they offered a simple explanation – Volt was designed to have such a feature from the beginning.

“We sized the pack and designed the [different operating mode] efficiencies to get 50 miles of range,” according Grewe.

Top General Motors engineers design Volt to accomodate extra features

It is necessary to have a large battery pack to ensure sufficient electricity and energy storage. Grewe added that the 18.4 KWH in the Volt 2016 model battery was already a good portion of GM car’s 50 miles.  However, not many are able to discern that the power that is sustainably deliverable to the motor is in proportion to the battery’s capacity to store energy.

In other words, current technology means it is a must that the battery is of a specific size in order for plug-in cars all-electric driving to happen – one that many love to experience even on maximum demand.

He explained that the 120 KW of peak power deliverable by the 2016 Volt is by far the biggest electric output in any of the plug-in cars on the market. The powertrains of both Fusion Energi and Ford C-Max plug-in hybrids possess battery packs of merely 7.6 kWh, while maximum motor output is only 88 kw, giving them a range rating of 19 miles, which is only 40% of the Volt’s.

Advertisment - Learn more

Other EVs currently on the market limited by gas dependency

Honda Accord Hybrid’s battery holds 6.7 kWh, which means that its maximum power in sole electric mode is very limited. It also has a short range of 13 miles. Eventually, more plug-in hybrid cars will follow the Volt-like system wherein electric running is available as long as the car’s battery pack capacity holds out.

Introduced last year is the BMW Power eDrive system, which utilises a 200-kW electric motor to power up the car’s rear wheels. A mixed engine-motor-transmission provides power to the front wheels as well, while having a 150 kw motor output.

In combination with batteries of a maximum of 20 kilowatt-hours, the system output is expected to be more than 500 kW or 670 hp. This means, according to BMW, that the plug-in cars can be driven solely on electricity all throughout some two-thirds of its total usage cycle, and in effect, ensuring maximum efficiency.

Photo courtesy of C.C Chapman on Flickr

The Author

Hi, my name is Eddy and I am an editor and content creator working within the media release department at Australian Solar Quotes and American Solar Quotes. Within my work I strive to educate and inform others through my coverage of current news and events within the renewable energy field from around the world. I invite you to join the conversation by commenting below with your thoughts.

×

michael from Glencoe, New South Wales asked for 3 quotes for solar about 5 hours ago!

Kylie from Lammermoor, QLD asked for 3 quotes for solar about 20 hours ago!

John from Tanah Merah, QLD asked for 3 quotes for solar about 21 hours ago!

James from Lota, QLD asked for 3 quotes for solar about 22 hours ago!

Tony from Kensington Grove, QLD asked for 3 quotes for solar about 22 hours ago!

Michelle from Oak Valley, Queensland asked for 3 quotes for solar about 23 hours ago!

Tanya from Kingston, Queensland asked for 3 quotes for solar 1 day ago!

Tracey from Mooroolbark, Victoria asked for 3 quotes for solar 1 day ago!

Kris from Dimbulah, Queensland asked for 3 quotes for solar 1 day ago!

Barbara from Bass, Victoria asked for 3 quotes for solar 1 day ago!

GAyle from Point Cook, Victoria asked for 3 quotes for solar 1 day ago!

Sue from Witta, Queensland asked for 3 quotes for solar 1 day ago!

Cj from Toomulla, Queensland asked for 3 quotes for solar 1 day ago!

Ilyas from Narre Warren South, Victoria asked for 3 quotes for solar 1 day ago!

Lesley from Andergrove, Queensland asked for 3 quotes for solar 1 day ago!

Sailesh from Werribee, Victoria asked for 3 quotes for solar 1 day ago!

Tanya from Beaconsfield, Queensland asked for 3 quotes for solar 1 day ago!

Anna from Seymour, Victoria asked for 3 quotes for solar 1 day ago!

matti from Innisfail, Queensland asked for 3 quotes for solar 2 days ago!

Timothy from Peregian Springs, Queensland asked for 3 quotes for solar 2 days ago!