Articles on the internet make it clear that in 2015, Chevy modified the Spark EV to put higher RPMs on the engine (drive ratio changed from 3.17 in 2014 to 3.87 in 2015 and 2016) and boost the efficiency at lower (city driving) speeds, allowing Chevy to reduce the battery capacity by 10% and make the car 100 lbs lighter. I've now directly compared the 2014 and 2016 Spark EVs, as I drove a 2014 Spark EV for two years and have now been driving a 2016 Spark EV for about a month. True to the articles, I'm seeing that the 2016 Spark EV is noticeably more efficient--at least 10%-15% higher based on my early numbers. I am getting 5 to 6 miles per kWh in the city when I drive conservatively (gentle braking and accelerating). That amounts to 170 - 200 MPGe--multiply miles/kWh from the battery (not from your wall outlet) by 33.7 according to Wikipedia. So why is Chevy claiming the same 128/109 (city/highway) MPGe numbers for the 2016 Spark EV as for the 2014 Spark EV? It has kick-ass mileage--almost twice what Tesla claims for their cars. Chevy should be advertising this excellent performance.
The 2016 Spark EV also continues to be the top-ranked budget EV according to Car and Driver (five stars). Given it's low price, I cannot understand why more people are not buying or leasing this car, whereas I see way too many of those hideous, overpriced BMW i3's driving around. I hope the Bolt can keep up the high standard that the Spark EV has set.