Mpg volt certification gm says it is possible

100 Mpg Volt Certification? Gm Says it is Possible!

The most anticipated all-new vehicle in years is arguably the Chevrolet Volt, a rechargeable electric car that General Motors expects to sell to the driving public beginning some time in 2010. Even before the year ends, GM will have pre-production test Volts on the road, some fifty models which will be put through the paces to see how the car performs in all road and weather conditions.

Now, GM is working hard to make sure that the Volt achieves a previously unreached threshold: the company is working with California officials to ensure that the car gets a fuel economy rating of at least 100 mpg when it is released, a feat that would bring the car a lot of attention and help the automaker meet lofty Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) fleet mandates.

According to published reports, GM has reached a preliminary agreement with the California Air Resources Board about how to assign its Chevy Volt in terms of emissions standards. This move will allow GM to make a case for the car’s unusual fuel mileage, especially as the Volt will run on all-electric power for 40 miles before an economical 1.4L gas engine kicks in.

Determining a measuring standard for any hybrid is difficult enough, but for plug-in hybrids — which get a significant portion of their energy from the electrical grid — the standards are a bit more complex. For example, unlike the Toyota Prius which relies on regenerative braking and the gasoline engine to recharge the battery, the lithium-ion pack powering the Chevrolet Volt must get its “juice” from electrical outlets.

In a best case scenario, owners of the Volt would never need to rely on the gasoline engine, driving their fuel consumption down to zero. California, which will be the first state to certify the Volt and have an impact on how the federal EPA certifies the car, is working on a formula which will properly reflect the car’s ability to travel great distances on a single gallon of gasoline. GM wants that number to be high and it looks like the state of California agrees and will issue a policy report within the next few months to help GM determine the car’s fuel economy.

GM says that the Volt will take eight hours to fully recharge when plugged in, but that it could take as few as three hours with a 240-volt outlet. The company is working with state and local governments as well as private industry to develop dedicated electrical stations so that owners can recharge their Volts while on the road. If the technology is a success, GM could be at the vanguard of an effort to change the way that people drive and what fuel sources they rely upon.

(Source: The Detroit News)

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