Connect with us

Hi, what are you looking for?



Chevrolet Volt — Keep Your Plug-In Hybrid Out Of The Sun!

Just as your mileage varies by where and how you drive, so might the performance of the Chevrolet Volt plug-in hybrid’s batteries.
The batteries in the GM vehicle due out in a year (November 2010) will have at least 10 years of life, according to company representatives who briefed the media on Tuesday. But vehicle owners who live in temperate climates are likely to see their batteries last much longer.
According to Andrew Farah, Volt chief engineer, after many months of tweaking battery cells (provided by supplier LG Chem) to optimize performance and lifespan, the lithium ion manganese spinel chemistry has been finalized. While customers will be guaranteed 10 years of satisfactory battery performance, Volt owners in Arizona or Michigan may get considerably less out of their batteries in the long run than someone who lives in more temperate areas, such as the Pacific Northwest or Bay Area.

“10 years is the target life, but depending on where you live, you could see significantly more than that,” said Farrah. “In more benign conditions — if you do more city driving — and if you are in a more temperate area, the battery would last significantly longer.”

When exposed to extremely high temperatures for extended periods, some lithium ion batteries (such as the chemistry GM chose) will lose storage capacity. So parking an electric vehicle in desert heat for hours at a time would slowly reduce the amount of energy that can be stored, which eventually translates to fewer miles driving in between charges. “Local weather is important,” said Farrah.
GM will be very careful in rolling out these first of their kind production vehicles so that they can monitor vehicle performance and expectations. Battery suppliers whose products give any indication of underperforming may find themselves losing customers. The automotive OEMs are likely to multisource their battery contracts so that they could switch suppliers as needed.
GM has also signed off on the charging equipment that will come with the vehicle. The charge unit is recommended for ground fault protection (GFP) to prevent vehicle owners from getting shocked in places where moisture may be present.
A strong negative reaction by consumers to any model could jeopardize demand across the board for plug-in hybrid and electric vehicles. Automakers will proceed with caution, and may delay product launches if any uncertainty about reliability or safety presents itself in final testing.
The company has assembled 300 battery packs so far and has tested them without any cell failures, according to the company. GM will start taking delivery of the production cells in the beginning of 2010 and is expected to ship its first Volts by the end of the year.
Article appearing courtesy of Matter Network

Sign up for daily news updates from CleanTechnica on email. Or follow us on Google News!

Have a tip for CleanTechnica, want to advertise, or want to suggest a guest for our CleanTech Talk podcast? Contact us here.

Electrifying Industrial Heat for Steel, Cement, & More

I don't like paywalls. You don't like paywalls. Who likes paywalls? Here at CleanTechnica, we implemented a limited paywall for a while, but it always felt wrong — and it was always tough to decide what we should put behind there. In theory, your most exclusive and best content goes behind a paywall. But then fewer people read it! We just don't like paywalls, and so we've decided to ditch ours. Unfortunately, the media business is still a tough, cut-throat business with tiny margins. It's a never-ending Olympic challenge to stay above water or even perhaps — gasp — grow. So ...
If you like what we do and want to support us, please chip in a bit monthly via PayPal or Patreon to help our team do what we do! Thank you!
Written By

Derek lives in southwestern New Mexico and digs bicycles, simple living, fungi, organic gardening, sustainable lifestyle design, bouldering, and permaculture. He loves fresh roasted chiles, peanut butter on everything, and buckets of coffee. Catch up with Derek on Twitter, Google+, or at his natural parenting site, Natural Papa!


You May Also Like

Clean Transport

General Motors has a new online tool that allows anyone with a question about electric cars to get immediate, accurate answers. Bravo!


The Wuling Hongguang Mini EV made mini EVs very fashionable in China, especially in the second and third tier cities and so on. The...


Here's a good recent view of EV shopping and the writer's initial impressions of his first EV. Article by Mihai Beffa in Cupertino, California.


The Qualcomm Snapdragon Digital Chassis is under consideration by a number of car manufacturers, like Sony–Honda and General Motors.

Copyright © 2023 CleanTechnica. The content produced by this site is for entertainment purposes only. Opinions and comments published on this site may not be sanctioned by and do not necessarily represent the views of CleanTechnica, its owners, sponsors, affiliates, or subsidiaries.