1.3.2012 Chevrolet Volt now ready to order in UK
Order books are now open for the revolutionary Chevrolet Volt in the UK, and it has been confirmed that only one trim level will be available but it will be packed with features.
Furthermore, Chevrolet has announced the first two dealerships that will sell the Volt and confirmed that the on the road price will be £29,995 after the government's £5,000 Plug-in Car Grant discount.
Together with its twin, the Vauxhall Ampera, the Chevrolet Volt is the world's first E-REV (Extended Range Electric Vehicle) to reach the mass market. Its technology removes any trace of 'range anxiety' as it will never leave the driver stranded – as is the fear with some pure battery electric cars that have a limited range between charges.
This is thanks to an onboard petrol generator, which sustains battery power when the range is depleted so that the car can still be driven, with the wheels powered by its electric motor until it can be recharged. The drive train used in the Volt is exactly the same as that used in Vauxhall's Ampera, which officially achieves 235.4 mpg and emits just 27 g/km according to the New European Drive Cycle.
Initially, the car will be available through two dedicated Volt centres – Cambridge Chevrolet in Cambridgeshire, and Phoenix Chevrolet in Wimbledon, London.
"We chose these two dealerships to appeal to the broadest reach of Volt buyers," said Chevrolet UK Managing Director, Mark Terry. "Cambridge is a city geared toward the environment and new technology, as well as being home to the Faraday Institute, named after the inventor of electricity, while London is clearly where many existing users of electric vehicles reside, as well as where the industry sees the potential for the biggest initial growth in sales of electric vehicles and their derivatives, such as E-REV."
The final UK specification of the Volt has also been announced, to include such premium features as heated leather seats, Bluetooth with voice recognition and embedded phone, electronic keyless ignition with touch button start, 17-inch alloy wheels, ambient LED-based interior lighting, solar absorbing glass, DAB Digital Radio and an energy-efficient six-speaker stereo system that uses minimal electricity to operate.
Other specification highlights include fully programmable door locking, cruise control, air con, a 7-inch LCD screen with Driver Information Centre, touch-sensitive controls on the centre console, a pedestrian alert system, rear camera and front and rear park assist and a leather-wrapped steering wheel.
Options include a high tech audio system featuring sat nav, DVD-ROM and MP3 playback facility, seven energy-efficient BOSE speakers with sub-woofer, voice recognition and a hard drive with 30Gb of music storage priced at £1,745, 17-inch polished alloy wheels at £490 and a range of special and metallic paint options, from £495.
Before options are added, the Volt's singular trim level, packed with the above specification, will all be available for £29,995 – the same cost as the most basic of three trim levels to be offered on the Vauxhall Ampera. The higher specification Ampera costs £33,995, after the grant, which would be more comparable to the Volt – meaning that you will get better value for money with the Volt. This is thought to be partly due to Vauxhall's wider dealership and customer support network.
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