Chevrolet Bolt EV Will Be Put Into Production In 2016
Amidst all of the performance cars that debuted at the Detroit Auto Show, Chevrolet was also bolstering its green-car cred with the redesigned 2016 Chevrolet Volt and the 2015 Chevrolet Bolt Concept. The new Volt will go on sale later this year, but there was no word as to what plans Chevy had in store for the diminutive all-electric concept. It now seems that Reuters has dug up some potentially interesting details about the car’s future.
According to information obtained by two suppliers, the report says that the Bolt will go into production in October 2016 for the 2017 model year, and it will be built at GM’s Orion assembly plant, where Chevy hopes to produce between 25,000 to 30,000 units per year. This “underused small-car plant north of Detroit” currently builds the compact Buick Verano and the subcompact Chevrolet Sonic, and the addition of the Bolt will help improve the production capacity, which has fallen off as the demand for small cars plummeted along with gas prices. From the report, the Bolt will ride on the Gamma II platform shared with the Sonic, Buick Encore and Chevy Trax.
Perhaps equally big news, GM might also have plans to introduce an Opel version of the Bolt for European sales in a similar move to what it did for the Chevy Volt and Opel Ampera.
Click past the jump to read more about the Chevrolet Bolt EV.
Why it matters
There are EVs that currently cost about $30,000 and some (just Tesla, really) with a driving range of more than 200 miles, but so far, no automaker has managed to combined these two crucial elements into one vehicle. If produced as this report would indicate, the 2017 Bolt will take a huge step toward helping electric vehicles become more mainstream.
The 2015 Chevrolet Bolt EV was unveiled at the Detroit Auto Show, and during the concept’s introduction, Chevy said that the Bolt was designed for use in all 50 states along with “many global markets,” which helps make this particular report even more credible. If it does become a production vehicle, the Chevy Bolt would likely debut well ahead of the Tesla Model 3, which it will go head-to-head with, and it will offer a far superior range to the current lineup of EVs that are all restricted by a driving range of less than 100 miles.