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Will the Chevy Volt Succeed?

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  • gagricegagrice Pahrump, NevadaPosts: 31,223
    I can see myself in the Volt at the end of one year with the original tank of gas still in it.

    That presents another problem. Gas does not do well sitting in the tank. Will it gum up the engines that rarely run to recharge the batteries?
  • bobw3bobw3 Posts: 2,992
    dmathews3...Exactly my point. If you're looking for something strictly for a commuter car only, then a smaller 2-seat, electric only vehicle that could be made for about $20K would be the perfect fit. I just think if the Volt or Leaf are being marketed as the 2nd car used for commuters, they could have made them smaller at a lower price. Based on your driving, it seems like the Leaf would fit your driving style more.

    So to me, the Leaf makes the better commuter only car, while the Prius makes the better commuter/highway/road trip car. To me the Volt is too big/expensive for commuter only car, but doesn't work for an overall multi-purpose car.
  • dmathews3dmathews3 Posts: 1,739
    No way on the Prius as it is made in Japan with NO American content and I don't like supporting other counries when ours needs/deserves all our support.
  • bobw3bobw3 Posts: 2,992
    "No way on the Prius as it is made in Japan with NO American content and I don't like supporting other counries when ours needs/deserves all our support. "

    Tell that to the American dealer that I bought the car from ;) He was glad I bought from Japan. Plus by buying a Prius, you're letting American manufactures understand better what the public wants and needs in a car in terms of quality, reliability, features, interior space, etc.
  • fushigifushigi Chicago suburbsPosts: 1,407
    The Volt will periodically run the gas engine to maintain lubrication. That will use a tiny bit of gas. This idea of one-and-done for a tank of gas is nice but doesn't reflect the reality of maintaining the ICE/range-extender.

    I'm not sure how much gas/month, say, is consumed. But if someone plans on running in EV mode the majority of the time they'd do fine, I'm sure, with just putting in 2 gallons or so every few months.
    2017 Infiniti QX60 (me), 2012 Hyundai Elantra (wife)
  • fushigifushigi Chicago suburbsPosts: 1,407
    The Volt is not being marketed as a second car. From the Chevy site: "Powered by electricity without being tethered to electrical outlets, the Volt does everything a great car does .."

    Why do you think the Volt won't work as an all-purpose car? The price may prove too big of a barrier for most folks, but usability is up with any other compact 4 door sedan.
    2017 Infiniti QX60 (me), 2012 Hyundai Elantra (wife)
  • bobw3bobw3 Posts: 2,992
    I was responding to another poster who was indicating that 99% of the time it would be used as commute car, but in general, while I think it could be used as an all-purpose sedan, from what I've read the gas engine isn't very efficient, so for the long weekend trips, extended road trips, that require most of the power coming from the gas engine, it's not much more efficients as a Prius, which costs more but only has 10CuFt of cargo space (21CuFt in Prius) and less space in the 2nd row as compared to the Prius.

    So while it can be used as a multipurpose vehicle, I wouldn't want to pay $10K more than the Prius for less space and marginally better MPG (or $/mile driven) for mixed use driving.
  • fho2008fho2008 Posts: 393
    The reviews say that the car wants/asks you if its ok to turn the engine on periodically so you burn a tank of gas in a year.

    If its like the Prius, in northern climates it will run for heat/charging....and I've seen a Prius do this on a cold winter day.
  • dmathews3dmathews3 Posts: 1,739
    supposedly it runs a tank a year through it according to motor trend
  • morin2morin2 Posts: 399
    Considering the shelf life of E10 is no more than 8 weeks, I hope people stabilize the gas or they will have some nice varnish.
  • fushigifushigi Chicago suburbsPosts: 1,407
    No more than 8 weeks? Citation, please.

    I leave E10 in a gas can and trickle it away over the course of 6 months running my lawn mower. What's left over gets dumped in my car. I've never had any problems starting/running the mower nor with my cars.

    The worst thing I can see happening is the alcohol evaporating, turning 10 gallons of "gas" (90% gasoline, 10% ethanol) into 9 gallons of gas. Alcohol is non-residual; that's why it makes for a good cleaner for things like electronics.
    2017 Infiniti QX60 (me), 2012 Hyundai Elantra (wife)
  • morin2morin2 Posts: 399
    Phase separation is a serious problem with ethanol fuels. It has been the greatest problem with boats because they are not used frequently enough to use all the fuel. The alcohol does not "evaporate" - it absorbs water from condensation and the atmosphere and separates from the gasoline. Don't believe me? Put a little water in a jar with E10, mark the water level with a scratch or a marker, shake it up and see what happens.

    Professional loggers who are in regions where they cannot obtain pure gas (www.pure-gas.org), do not keep E10 fuel for more than 3 or 4 weeks for their expensive 2 stroke chainsaws. For 4 strokes, 8 weeks is the accepted shelf life unless the fuel is stabilized.

    Ask any mechanic about ethanol fuel and fuel systems. Every marina near me has "help wanted" signs for marine mechanics. One shop has gone from doing 3 or 4 carbs a year to a long waiting list in the hundreds. My own boat is in the shop for clogged fuel injectors due to ethanol fuel - the only fuel available in my area.

    You are entitled to your own opinions - but not to your own facts.
  • dmathews3dmathews3 Posts: 1,739
    I agree but would put some stabil in tank anyways .
  • fushigifushigi Chicago suburbsPosts: 1,407
    Still no citation. So I went searching. http://www.fuel-testers.com/expiration_of_ethanol_gas.html gives a lot of lip service about a 60-90 day shelf life, but it's entirely based on the assumption that E10 will somehow find 3.8 tsp/gallon of water. So a Volt with 8 gallons of gas would have to have over 5 ounces of water before separation would even begin. The data says 100 days @ a constant 70% humidity. I would fall apart under those conditions before my gas did.

    But it's simply not gonna happen. The Volt's gas tank is sealed: http://www.biofuelshub.com/features/4-features/1075-does-e10-have-a-shelf-life

    And here's the Volt's chief engineer on the subject: http://gm-volt.com/2009/05/26/volt-chief-engineer-on-chevy-volt-gas-tank-size-an- d-stale-gas-management/
    2017 Infiniti QX60 (me), 2012 Hyundai Elantra (wife)
  • morin2morin2 Posts: 399
    Read the articles you cited!

    ALL cars have sealed fuel tanks - this is not unique to the Volt.

    You really think 3.8 tsp of water is an unreasonable assumption? How do you think it was calculated? You don't believe in condensation?

    Chemistry and physics only apply to the rest of us - I'm sure you are exempt.
  • gagricegagrice Pahrump, NevadaPosts: 31,223
    In most parts of the country you will suck in a lot of moisture when you open the tank to fill it will gas. That is part of the swooshing sound when you remove the cap. I would think 70% humidity would be a low average for most of the USA. Especially in the summer.
  • bobw3bobw3 Posts: 2,992
    Based on what I've read, if you commute 30 miles round trip to work (about 7500 miles per year) and have long road trips of 5000 miles per year, the total cost on Volt will be about $720/year based on 4cents per mile on electric on the Volt and 35 mpg on the long road trips using the gas engine at $3/gal. A Prius doing the same thing would cost $750 in gas.

    So it's almost the same, but if you do a lot more road trips then the Prius wins and if you do a lot less, then the Volt wins. Also, the Volt only as 10CuFt of cargo space (21 in the Prius) and a pretty small back seat. Based on this, it seems like the Volt is good for a commuter car, but as a full-time family car it would be better to have a Prius, again, depending on your driving style and cargo needs.
  • puffin1puffin1 Posts: 276
    edited November 2010
    Hard to believe you have to put stabil in a Volts gas tank and when do you charge it and how did you get the figure of 4 cents a mile on electricity?
    Going green seems to cost alot of money.I would think natural gas cars would be more affordable.
    My wifes has found green religion lately and it scares me.40k for a volt not a price for the middle class I say. :lemon: I took her to get a Prius @28K and she couldn't use the rear camera. She has a IS Lexus.I think the Nissan leaf is for her and keep the IS.Green is trendy now.We will see how long. :sick:
  • fushigifushigi Chicago suburbsPosts: 1,407
    3.8 tsp per gallon; well over 5 ounces would be required for the Volt's 9.3 gallon tank. A full Volt gas tank will not suck in lots of air as there's simply no room for it. There won't be any condensation beyond a trivial amount along the filler neck.

    Since you seem to know about this better than the engineers who designed the car, why don't you enlighten us as to where the water-laden air will come from? The tank is sealed and the car barely uses any gas. Thus the tank is rarely opened for refueling. There's no air entering the tank (as it's full there's no room for it and it's sealed anyway) so where's the water coming from?

    I'll add that while opening an empty tank to refuel lets air in, that air is pushed right back out before condensation can occur as the tank is filled with gas.

    BTW, when you make statements like "You are entitled to your own opinions - but not to your own facts." and "Chemistry and physics only apply to the rest of us - I'm sure you are exempt." you don't help your cause. Insulting others instead of stating your case and providing examples with supporting arguments - which you've yet to do - hurts your credibility far more than any honest mistakes on my part might hurt mine.
    2017 Infiniti QX60 (me), 2012 Hyundai Elantra (wife)
  • fushigifushigi Chicago suburbsPosts: 1,407
    That moisture-laden air is pushed right back out when it's displaced by the gas you pump in. Net effect: virtually no added moisture to the fuel system. If this weren't the case, vehicles running on E10, E85, and non-ethanol gas, diesel, and any other fuel you pump would always over time develop problems with water in their tanks.
    2017 Infiniti QX60 (me), 2012 Hyundai Elantra (wife)
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