If you’re in the market for an electrified daily driver that manages near-Tesla driving range without the Tesla price tag, the 2020 Bolt may be your ride.
The engineers at Chevrolet and their technical partners have managed to squeeze an additional 34 kilometers (21 miles) from a single charge, rendering the Bolt one of the longest legged electric cars on the market. The Bolt can now travel a total of 417 kilometers (259 miles) before plugging in.
The technical advancement was limited to the battery’s cell chemistry, which allowed Chevrolet to improve the vehicle’s range without having to change the design of the battery pack itself, or the way it’s packaged into the vehicle. This, in turn, mitigated R&D costs that would have pushed the price tag higher, and closer to competitors.
For comparison, the 2019 Nissan Leaf PLUS model, which features an enlarged battery for added range, can travel 363 kilometers (225 miles) on a single charge.
As far as performance, the Bolt can make the trip to 60 mph (96.5 km/h) in 6.5 seconds. Its top speed is quick enough to get you in trouble with local law enforcement.
Pricing starts at $44,800 CAD in the Canadian market, and at $36,620 USD in the States.
“The Bolt EV set the bench-mark for long range, affordable electric vehicles and we’re excited to raise the bar by offering nearly 10 percent more EPA-estimated range for the 2020 model year,” said Tim Grewe, Director of Global Battery Cell Engineering and Strategy.
“At Chevrolet we’re constantly listening to customer feedback and we heard the desire for more range. The team worked diligently to find ways to improve battery energy, giving customers the confidence to go more than the extra kilometre.”
If you’re cross-shopping for an electric vehicle with decent cargo space and haven’t quite decided, you’d do well to add the Bolt to your test-drive list.