However, when I got in and booted up the car (I still prefer saying that to starting) I was met by a surprise. It still showed only 9 miles of EV range were available. Apparently, I hadn’t pushed the charging coupler in hard enough. Even though there is a green light and horn chirp confirmation when charging commences, I probably ran into the house without waiting for it.
This had happened to me several times during the year I drove the MINI E, and when it did my heart sank each time as I had to take my backup car for the day. But with the Volt, all was well. Though I had to burn gas, going about my day’s driving was not going to be any kind of problem at all.
In fact, I figured I’d use the opportunity to see what kind of gas mileage I could get on my significant highway-mostly drive to work.
After leaving home, the car switched to engine mode after 7 miles, and then I reset the MPG meter. As usual the switchover was silently feathered in.
I arrived at my first destination, 15.7 miles from there with a very respectable 45.5 MPG. This was at 49 degrees using 72 degree cabin ECO conditioning and at mostly highway speeds of around 65 MPH. I drove somewhat conservatively but not extremely so at all.
The next leg back to my office was another 7.4 miles at mixed city and highway conditions. I arrived there having completed a total of 23.1 miles in charge-sustaining mode for a final fuel efficiency of 42.8 MPG (not including the EV miles).
Though I had installed and configured the iPhone app, I hadn’t yet configured the plug-in reminder text alert. Needless to say, after this experience I set that up.
Another first happened. On this particular morning journey a fellow driver on the road finally noticed and acknowledged the car and gave a friendly tap of the horn and wave. I felt a bit of pride. People were recognizing this American car, that I played a role in birthing, as a hero of sorts.
In my office I showed the car to two women who work there, one of our nurses and a billing person. They were completely blown away by the design and the interior, and even more amazed by the iPhone app. One reflected how this was a car like no other, and they didn’t even get a chance to drive it.
Another person in my office parking garage came over while I was taking out the charger to see the car. He knew about it and recognized it, and was very interested and asked a lot of questions. I gave him the little flyer that GM provided a stack of, making us CAB members a sort of a group of traveling salespersons. Not that I mind.
I charged the car at my workplace at 120-v from 9:30AM to 4:30 PM during which time it accrued 25 miles of EV range. My return trip home included a stop to see my daughter in her gymnastics class and a stop at a restaurant for dinner with my family. After 23.6 miles the engine came on and I returned home for a total of 30.3 miles and 168.1 MPG.
For the entirety of this day that I had not gotten an overnight charge, I drove a total of 60.4 miles, 30.6 of which was electric, using 0.72 gallons of gas. Total fuel economy for the day was thus 83.9 MPG.
For the three days I have driven the car 183.2 miles and acheved overall 176 MPG.
Today I will be traveling down to Montclair New Jersey, about 30 miles, to meet up with the other three New York Volt CAB members and any GM-Volt readers who happen to make it to Tom M’s restaurant. Our own Dave G will be coming and will take some good video for us. It should be a lot of fun, I hope you can make it.
Here’s the address:
Naunas’s 148 Valley Road, Montclair, NJ
This entry was posted on Saturday, November 13th, 2010 at 8:32 am and is filed under Charging, Driving Experience, Efficiency. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. Both comments and pings are currently closed.