Morning Briefs

The Volt Is a POS

So says various automobile experts cited at AOS HQ:

In August of last year, we heard GM’s then-CEO Fritz Henderson claimed with all the marketing might it could muster at a Detroit-area press event, that the Chevy Volt would get 230 MPG in city driving conditions. Now, as the Volt’s being tested by the auto trade press, we’re seeing some surprisingly low fuel economy figures amid the expected lavish praise buff books are heaping upon the Volt.

Let’s see what they’ve found out. Popular Mechanics saw just 37.5 MPG in city driving. Car and Driver apparently didn’t choose to use their wheel time for any city driving — but found with all-electric driving:

“…getting on the nearest highway and commuting with the 80-mph flow of traffic-basically the worst-case scenario-yielded 26 miles; a fairly spirited back-road loop netted 31; and a carefully modulated cruise below 60 mph pushed the figure into the upper 30s.”

Motor Trend, like the rest of the trade press other than Popular Mechanics, didn’t appear to do any testing in city conditions, but did find that:

“Without any plugging in, [a weeklong trip to Grandma’s house] should return fuel economy in the high 30s to low 40s.”

They also parrot GM’s new line of 25-50 miles of all-electric — a far cry from the 230 MPG they originally marketed — that the “Volt provides 25-50 miles of real-world electric operation no matter how hard you flog it.”

And one of Ace’s brilliant commenters summarizes it thusly.

What you have is a $35-40K compact hybrid with about the same design and performance of a $15K gas-powered compact car. In other words: you have a car designed by and for the government.

It's a conspiracy to get us onto public transportation, I tells ya.

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