Translogic, a sister site to Autoblog, recently tested the series hybrid Chevy Volt. It’s good to know that they got from zero to sixty in about eight and a half seconds and discovered that the Volt gives you a “Mountain Mode” to build up a reserve charge for mountain driving. Translogic drove the Volt for 59.7 miles, and used just 0.59 gallons of fermented dinosaur. Using those numbers, the Volt yielded an impressive 101.19 miles per gallon of gas, which makes it the poster child for being both green and practical.
Dig a little deeper and you find out that the Volt travelled 43.6 miles on battery power alone, which means that the last 16.1 miles were driven with the motor running to supply power to the Volt’s batteries. If 0.59 gallons of gas were used to travel just 16.1 miles, that yields a mere 27.29 miles per gallon, roughly on par with a contemporary midsize sedan. For Volt money, there are a lot of midsize sedan choices that will return comparable or better fuel mileage.
I’ll reserve judgement until I have a chance to drive the Volt myself. Maybe there was a math error, maybe the Volt wasn’t really full of fuel at the start of the test or maybe the trip computer isn’t accurate in regards to fuel consumption. I really want to embrace the series hybrid technology behind the Volt, since I think it represents the best compromise between environmental consciousness and practicality. Let’s hope I can give you better news when I get my turn behind the wheel.