Inside these posts: Chevy Volt

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Volt misses Top 10 in ranking of ‘green’ cars

The Chevrolet Volt didn’t rank as one of the 10 “greenest” cars in America, coming at no. 13, according to the American Council for an Energy-Efficient Economy’s annual list.

The fully electric Nissan Leaf ranked second among all 2011 model year cars on the list. First place went to the compressed natural gas powered Honda Civic GX. Get the full story »

GM’s next Volt challenge: cut the price

The Volt has won nearly every major award offered and stirred up tons of interest, but one criticism persists: It’s too expensive.

The next-generation Volt will almost certainly cost less than the $41,000 list, GM spokesman Rob Peterson said. And the  changes that make it cheaper should make it better, too. Get the full story »

GM to put Volt technology to wider use

General Motors Co. is looking to apply the technology of its Chevrolet Volt to a wide array of vehicles, potentially including a Cadillac SRX plug-in, Chief Executive Daniel Akerson said Tuesday.

The automaker is developing a hatchback and a crossover that could use the Volt technology, Akerson said during a speech at the Automotive News World Congress. Get the full story »

Chevy Volt, Ford Explorer take Detroit’s top honors

The Chevrolet Volt plug-in electric car, the centerpiece of General Motors’ comeback, was named North American Car of the Year Monday. Ford Motor Co.’s latest incarnation of its Explorer sport utility vehicle was named 2011 Truck of the Year, edging out the Jeep Grand Cherokee and the Dodge Durango. Get the full story »

Chevy Volt to get lighter, more powerful batteries

A licensing agreement among LG Chem, Argonne National Laboratory and General Motors will result in lighter, more powerful lithium-ion batteries for the Chevrolet Volt.

The deal, announced Thursday, gives LG Chem and GM U.S. access to Argonne’s patented lithium- and nickel-manganese-cobalt cathode combination that will be used to extend range between charges, increase battery life and improve the safety of lithium-ion cells.

“This is cutting-edge technology that is going to improve future electrified vehicles — pure electrics, extended-range electrics and plug-in hybrids,” Jon Lauckner, president of GM Ventures, said of the second generation cathode material. Get the full story »

Chevy ships first 160 Volts to dealers

Five trucks carrying Chevrolet Volt extended-range electric cars left General Motors Co.’s Detroit-Hamtramck plant Monday, marking the first shipment to dealers after nearly four years of expectation.

GM said it expected 160 Volts to ship this week to its initial markets: California; Austin, Texas; New York City; and Washington, D.C. Get the full story »

GM hiring to push electric effort beyond Volt

The Chevy Volt. (Bill Pugliano/Getty Images)

General Motors said on Tuesday it would hire 1,000 engineers and researchers in Michigan over the next two years to develop more electric cars and hybrids as it launched its battery-powered Chevrolet Volt.

“Volt clearly demonstrates that we are well on our way and it is especially true when it comes to the electrification of the automobile,” GM Chief Executive Dan Akerson said at a ceremony marking the start of production of the plug-in hybrid.

The Volt, which tops the Toyota Prius for fuel economy, is a first-of-its-kind vehicle that GM has touted as a symbol of its commitment to pushing for gains in fuel efficiency and developing new technology. Get the full story »

One more hurdle for Volt: EPA mileage rating

General Motors has begun commercial production of the Chevrolet Volt, producing cars at the automaker’s Detroit plant  intended for sale or lease to consumers.

But there’s one final problem, one that’s been dragging on for years, that needs to get cleared up. Get the full story »

GM’s Chevy Volt named green car of the year

(Bill Pugliano/Getty Images)

The Chevrolet Volt plug-in electric car, the centerpiece of a revitalized General Motors, was named 2011 Green Car of the Year on Thursday.

The highly anticipated Volt received the industry’s top environmental honor the same day GM shares began trading on the New York and Toronto stock exchanges.

The Volt edged out the Nissan Leaf, Ford’s Fiesta, the Hyundai Sonata Hybrid and the Lincoln MKZ Hybrid to win the award. Get the full story »

Citing strong demand, GM steps up Volt production

A model stands next to Chevrolet's new Volt at the Orange County Auto Show on Oct. 7, 2010. (Mark Ralston/AFP/Getty Images)

General Motors is stepping up production of its new Chevrolet Volt electric vehicle to try to meet “huge demand,” a top executive said on Tuesday.

Speaking at an event where the Volt was named Motor Trend magazine’s 2011 Car of the Year, GM product chief Tom Stephens said: “If you look at where we were originally, in terms of what we thought the volume would be, we have stepped it up.”

Stephens declined to give a new production forecast. Most recently, GM, the world’s No. 2 automaker, had said it planned to build 10,000 Volts in 2011 and 45,000 in 2012. Get the full story »

Chicago among first to get Ford Focus electric car

Ford has chosen Chicago as one of the initial markets for its electric Focus, due to hit showrooms late next year.

Ford based the rollout markets on commuting patterns and hybrid purchase trends, among other criteria. The other first markets are Atlanta; Austin and Houston, Texas; Boston; Chicago; Denver; Detroit; Los Angeles; San Francisco; San Diego; New York; Orlando, Fla.; Phoenix and Tucson, Ariz.; Portland, Ore.; Raleigh/Durham, N.C.; Richmond, Va.; Seattle; and Washington, D.C.

The Focus Electric will be powered by a 23 kWh lithium-ion battery with a system that uses a liquid heating and cooling system to maximize battery life and driving range. Get the full story »

GE to buy 25,000 electric cars, including GM Volts

A 2011 Chevrolet Volt charges at a station in Rochester, Mich., , October 10, 2010. (Rashaun Rucker/Detroit Free Press/MCT)

General Electric Co. plans to buy 25,000 electric vehicles from makers including General Motors over the next five years, in a move it said could spark demand for the charging equipment it sells.

The largest U.S. conglomerate aims to swap out half its fleet of 30,000 cars — used by sales people and technicians, for instance — with electric vehicles and to start shifting customers who lease fleets of vehicles over as well.

GE, which over the past five years has made a major push into green businesses, said Thursday it hopes the move will speed acceptance of electric cars by getting more of them on road more quickly and prompting investment in the equipment that users will need to charge them. Get the full story »

Power says electric cars just don’t have the spark

A well-known auto industry forecasting firm on Wednesday suggested that the heavily promoted battery-powered vehicles about to appear  are headed for a much slower takeoff then some auto makers and industry analysts expect.

In a new study, J.D. Power & Associates said sales of electric cars are likely to remain low for  several years and won’t make up more than a small slice of the global market even 10 years down the road. Get the full story »

BMW exec: Alt-fuel cars to stay niche

Ask Jim O’Donnell, president and chief executive of BMW North America, about the automaker’s plans for alt-fuel vehicles, and he assures that the  luxury nameplate will be there — with the 5-Series passenger cars and X3 crossover front and center.

But he also is convinced that hybrids, electrics and any combination will remain niche markets rather than supplant internal combustion for autos for some time.

“The price of gas in Newark (N.J.) was $2.38 a gallon when I left to come here this morning,” said O’Donnell, in town for the BMW Golf Championship this week at Cog Hill in Lemont. “Without a substantial increase in that, the U.S. market is not going to turn to alternative fuel vehicles.” Get the full story »

Chevy prices Volt at $41,000

The Chevy Volt.

General Motors Tuesday set a price of $41,000 for its electric Chevrolet Volt — $8,000 more than its nearest competitor, the Nissan Leaf.

GM also said Tuesday that it has begun taking orders for the Volt and would offer a $350 per month lease option for the much-anticipated vehicle as it launches in a handful of U.S. markets beginning with California. Get the full story »