Double Stranding Leads to Replacement Battery, Software Change - 2017 Chevrolet Bolt EV Long-Term Ro

Edmunds.comEdmunds.com Member, Administrator, Moderator Posts: 10,135
edited April 2018 in Chevrolet

imageDouble Stranding Leads to Replacement Battery, Software Change - 2017 Chevrolet Bolt EV Long-Term Road Test

Though its battery pack has since been replaced under warranty, our early-build 2017 Chevrolet Bolt EV stranded two drivers and may have prompted a recall.

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Comments

  • gslippygslippy Member Posts: 514
    Just to be clear, the software patch doesn't actually fix anything except giving the driver better notice of a battery problem. The actual battery problem is fixed by having the pack replaced.
    This sort of thing shouldn't be happening in EVs today, and it really hurts the image of reliability that EV advocates promote.
    Now you guys will have to restart your battery degradation observations, etc. I recommend keeping the car longer to see how it does.
  • actualsizeactualsize Santa Ana, CaliforniaMember Posts: 451
    Exactly. The software update gives a drive more limp time should this type of thing happen, and the battery pack issue is seperate and confined to a much smaller subset of cars built very close to the car's introduction. And yes, we do plan to keep the car longer, and not just because of that. We've got other EV stuff planned for this car. I will say, some of our best range observations came late in this pack's life, so we centrainly didn't see any range degradation apart from this sudden crap-out.

    As for EVs and their reputation, I've had so many good experiences with a wide variety of cars that this really feels like the statistical anomoly that it is. Still, ramping up any new model is potentially problematic, especially one that's completely new and pushing the envelope with 238 miles of range in a low(ish) buck car. I 'm just peeved that image managament thinking stood in the way of this getting flagged and repaired before we got stranded -- twice. Hoping a thing doesn't happen doesn't make it not happen.

    Twitter: @Edmunds_Test

  • lmbvettelmbvette South FloridaMember Posts: 93
    The car should have been taken to the dealer the first time the issue happened. The issue would have probably been identified then and the second stranding could have been avoided.

    GM cars have OnStar, and your Bolt is probably still under the introductory full access subscription. If you have any sort of issue press the blue button and request them to run a diagnostic. If they pull any codes they will have them sent to your local dealer.

    Signed - Owner of 3 Volts and 1 ELR
    Don't worry about what other people think. Drive what makes you happy.
  • agentorangeagentorange Member Posts: 893
    edited April 2018
    This "non-recall" stunt (when one is clearly needed) is ridiculous, but not confined to GM. A short list:

    BMW-high pressure fuel pump failures in such numbers the dealers were running out of parking space.
    Mercedes-Benz- The 7G Tronic gearbox debacle. After redesign 11 (IIRC) they got it right.
    Jaguar-all their V6 and V8 motors up to 2015 have a fragile design of water pump. If you don't pull over the second you get a "low coolant" warning, you risk toasting the motor beyond repair. The really weird thing is that you never get any change indicated on the temperature gauge.
  • actualsizeactualsize Santa Ana, CaliforniaMember Posts: 451
    lmbvette said:

    The car should have been taken to the dealer the first time the issue happened. The issue would have probably been identified then and the second stranding could have been avoided.

    Absolutely. But at the time it really did seem possible that we might have run out, and a GM representative I called was of the same mind. The car hadn't set any codes that were visible to us, either. (That was true both times.) And subsequent talks I have had indicate that the usual OnStar scans - blue button or monthly update - are not as detailed to the point of individual battery cell voltage monitoring as the engineering level diagnostics that can be run behind the scenes on a select number of cars. It takes too much bandwidth to do that to each and every car, and it would be overkill without any real justification.

    Twitter: @Edmunds_Test

  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright Sonoma, CaliforniaMember Posts: 64,482
    Apparently, the 2018 Bolt is not affected by this potential problem.
  • okbeartoyokbeartoy Member Posts: 34
    2018 Bolt owner and got the software update recall from Onstar this past week... Another day off work, UGH
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