Reviews

2018 Chevrolet Volt Driving Impressions


The electric Volt not only keeps up with traffic in the city and suburbia, it zooms around it. On and off the freeway for short trips. There is a mode that reduces the juice in order to extend the range, but even in that mode the Volt stays quick and smooth. And unlike some plug-in hybrids, the engine delivers full power from a low speed. Standing start to 30 mph is impressive.

The Volt lost a couple hundred pounds with this generation, but it’s still far from lithe. It feels heavy for its size, however the center of gravity is low so it corners flat. The feel of the electric power steering is decent.

It’s lively, and enjoyable on twisty roads, but it’s not sporty, it’s simply easy to drive, making it calming.

The powertrain allows both motors to power the front wheels together, or one motor to drive the car while the other recharges the battery; sensors tell it to do what’s needed, or what’s most efficient, so smoothly that the driver can’t feel it and never knows, unless he checks the power-flow diagram on the display screen.

Another thing you can barely feel is the regenerative braking, which is really good. With some electric cars and plug-in hybrids it’s so strong it’s intrusive.

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