Chevrolet Volt Review

The Volt is a bit of a different animal. It's a relatively new plug-in hybrid that relies almost entirely on electric power, switching to gas power only when the battery runs low, and occasionally for a little extra power boost.

Chevrolet Volt reviews have been generally positive. An expert from Autoguide says the Volt is smooth and quiet when running on the electric motor. However, the gas engine is pretty noisy when it kicks in. A review from Automobile magazine also complains about the Volt's loud gas engine, but another editor on the site reasons that this won't be a serious problem for most Volt drivers, who will use the car primarily as a short-range commuter vehicle and won't need to draw on gas power very often. As a review at Edmunds points out, drivers who commute 15 miles or less each way may never have to stop at a gas station if they plug in the Volt in every night. Double that, though, and they'll still have to hit the pump regularly, due to the car's relatively short electric range. The experts at Edmunds are impressed with the Volt's snappy acceleration and responsiveness.

Thanks to the plug-in hybrid technology, the estimated fuel efficiency of the Chevrolet Volt is an eye-popping 95 mpg city/93 mpg highway. Keep in mind that those numbers are heavily influenced by how far the owner typically drives in a single trip.

The Chevrolet Volt performs better than most in J.D. Power and Associates' Initial Quality Study and rates among the best for overall performance and design. With a starting price of $31,645, the Volt costs quite a bit more than our top picks. But buyers can claim a federal tax credit of $7,500, and those who stick to short commutes can definitely save a significant amount on gas.

Michael Sweet

Michael Sweet writes about consumer electronics. If something runs on electricity or ones and zeroes, he's interested in it. Sweet has written about PC technology and consumer electronics for 14 years.

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