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Volt People, Where You at?

Discussion in 'Electric Vehicles' started by Mad Hungarian, Jan 13, 2017.

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  1. Mad Hungarian

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    I'm going to go ahead and guess that there's a fair number of Chevy Volt owners on this forum as there seem to be legions waiting to make the jump to Model 3. And I am here to ask if you'd randomly share any tidbits/wisdom on how to properly care and feed for one, as I am now the proud (and somewhat accidental) owner of a 2013 Premier. Arrives next week.
    Story: My original plan was to continue ICE'ing my way until the 3 arrives early next year but then fate decided otherwise and someone rear-ended my A4 HARD just before Christmas and it was declared a write-off. Thankfully we were OK, with my better half suffering only a mild concussion and me nothing at all. We even drove the car to the hospital immediately afterwards, with only the occasional clunk coming from the dragging right rear muffler. The CRV that hit us was unrecognizable.
    However that left me without wheels for another 15 months or so, but as it turns out the Missus already had planned to flip her vintage Corolla for a mildly used Volt in the spring, so we decided to get one now and I would drive it 'till the M3 arrived. I'm surprised how much I like it, nice build quality, drives beautifully, just not the quickest thing on the road. From my research they seem pretty bulletproof, and I've a good overall technical grasp of the car, features, modes, etc. just wondering what particular advice the veterans might be willing to share.
     
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      Was that the same accident you told me about at dinner?
       
    • Dan Detweiler

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      I have been driving my Volt for 4 years now and have overall been thrilled with the car. The only slight disappointments I have had are 1) I hate the center console layout. Cup holders are awkward for me and get in the way when in use. Armrest is so far back as to almost be useless for me. That little storage area behind and underneath the infotainment system is all but useless (very difficult and awkward to get your hand back there to get anything). 2) The infotainment cluster is awkward and not very intuitive. I still have to search for the buttons I want sometimes after 4 years of ownership. 3) Battery degradation is making itself known. I started out getting 38-40 miles of charge on a regular basis. That is now down to about 27-32. Still adequate for my daily needs but a bit disconcerting. Hhopefully I have seen most of this and it will level off now.

      Having said all of the above...I have loved owning and driving the car. I have done 85% of my driving all electric and have not had to worry about longer trips that I want/need to take. When driving on gas I have gotten about 37-40 mpg which was better than I expected. I have said this elsewhere but if the Model 3 was not in the picture in the near future, I would not hesitate to get another Volt. I would certainly get another Volt before getting a Bolt.

      Hope this has helped. Let me know if you need any more info and I'll try to give you my thoughts.

      Dan
       
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      • Mad Hungarian

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        Yes, at the time we had dinner I was still under the impression they were going fix it. But then the final estimate came in at around $13K, more than book value. This of course right after I had put in about $4K in fresh paintwork and mods... :mad:
        At least the upside is they cut me a pretty decent cheque for it, likely more than I would have gotten selling it next year, and I get to dip my feet in the EV waters much sooner than expected.
         
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        • Dan Detweiler

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          Sorry to hear about your accident. Glad everyone is OK.

          As to the Volt, as long as you keep in mind what it is (and more importantly what it isn't...i.e. it's not a Tesla!) I think you will find it enjoyable to drive and able to meet your needs.

          Dan
           
        • Mad Hungarian

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          Dan, very much appreciated!
          I had sold the better half on getting one after I had the chance to drive a few of the Gen 2 Volts when we've had them at work for measuring and evaluation and was pleasantly surprised with the overall feel and performance. Too bad they're still so new/pricy on the used market. The Gen 1 is still a very nice car, my only complaint being it offers nowhere near the same acceleration. However it would appear that's fixable, an outfit in Indiana called WaitForMe Perfomance offers tunes that apparently will easily put it in the same performance range if not a little better than the Gen 2. Still investigating that one.
          Odd that you're seeing range degradation, in the (addmittedly limited) research I've done on the car I haven't seen too many instances of it and thought that since they do cool/heat the pack and capped the usuable capacity to around 70% it would be pretty resistant to range loss. The 2013 I bought has 55K miles on the clock and still shows 37 miles when fully charged, and that was on a 50 F degree day.
          The only things I saw that seemed like widespread issues were: electronic door handle release buttons acting wonky, electronic latch for the chargeport door acting erractically (why then went to a mechanical system in 2014) and the connector itself developing hairline fractures that allow moisture in and cause intermittent charging failures. Have you experienced either of those?
          I'll let you know if I can think of any questions.
           
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          • Mad Hungarian

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            Thanks, we were indeed lucky.

            Like I said above, I'm quite happy with what it offers as an interim solution with the sole exception of get-up-and-go, but then I'm pretty demanding on that front, I've been driving sub 6 second 0-60 cars for the last 15 years. The best thing is the limited 37 mile range is still fine for me most of the time, I'm only 5 miles from work and I mad sure to have our Prez put in four Level 2 charging stations when he built our new facility earlier this year (not a hard sell here, Quebec will pay half the bill for this on comercial installations - with the caveat that you have to offer the charging to employees for free :)).
             
          • Dan Detweiler

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            Yes, my charge door has stuck perodically. More of a nuisance than anything. Dealer fixed it under warranty. There was an issue with the original early chargers. My dealer replaced it with an updated model when it became available at no charge. No issues since.

            Dan
             
          • Mad Hungarian

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            Well, I didn't get very far before my first breakdown... 10 days in my new little friend decided to eat its regenerative motor stator bearing. From what I've read on GM-Volt.com this is a known issue that seems to affect somewhere around 5% to 10% of owners polled there. Naaaassssty sound, somewhere between Luke Skywalker's land speeder and a table saw being turned on and off. Luckily it's covered under the 5 yr powertrain warranty and remains drivable in that state so I was able to get it to a dealer for a free repair. Haven't gotten a straight answer yet if the 8 year Voltec component warranty covers it though, so hopefully the new upgraded bearing will live a long happy life.
            Other than that it's been great, even goes well in the foot of snow we got yesterday.
             
          • Routybouty

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            2012 Volt owner here since 2014, bought with 66k on it. I'm at 102k now and it's still running great except for the compass and Bluetooth are not working. I believe they are in the same module. I haven't cared enough to replace it. I love the car otherwise and when the 3 comes home the woman is selling her Corolla and taking the Volt!

            I haven't noticed any reduced range in mine. Although, the previous owner never plugged in. So when I bought it, there was this pristine unused battery sitting there. I easily get 40-45 miles in the summer without trying on my normal routes. I also (puts on flame suit) do some mild towing with my motorcycle. Still gets really good mileage 30+mpg when towing.
             
          • Dan Detweiler

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            Been driving my 2012 since new. I have loved the car and it has performed as advertised. I have lost about 20% of electronic range since new. It will become my son's transportation when the Model 3 arrives.

            Dan
             
          • Mad Hungarian

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            So:

            You ride.
            You've ordered a Model 3.
            When 3 arrives your Gen 1 Volt will go to your spouse.
            Who currently drives a Corolla.

            If you confirm you have two cats, some eastern European heritage and an untreated addiction to Five Guys burgers I'm gonna call proof of the Multiverse theory.
             
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              Oh that's nasty. At least it will be fixed under warranty.
               
            • Mad Hungarian

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              It was, with the only hitch being I had to go to a U.S. dealer as GM Canada will only honour balance-of-warranty on cars imported from the U.S. after they've been here 6 months and accumulated at least 20,000 kms. So I bought it down to Frenchy's Chevrolet in Massena N.Y., about an hour from my place. Really nice folks and great service, gotta love the small town dealers.
               
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              • Routybouty

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                Tried a cat, it attacked the woman when she tried to pick it up and that didn't go well. Yes on the heritage. Yes on the Five Guys. So close!

                Since I've bought my Volt, and offered rides and explanation of it's inner workings, one guy at work has bought a copy of mine. My friend got one (although it was recently smashed from the rear) and his family-in-law bought 2 collectively. Another friend's brother bought one also. I should get commission for these 5 Volts!
                 
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