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Don’t Curb Your Enthusiasm: the Chevy Volt’s Latest Powertrain

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Chevy Volt 2017
Photo: Mariordo

There’s no doubt that the Chevrolet Volt is more energetic than ever thanks to a second-generation powertrain. Its improved vivacity earned it a spot on WardsAuto’s10Best Engines” list.

As Drew Winter, senior content director at WardsAuto, articulates, “The Chevy Volt…has a torquey, fun-to-drive personality. It offers impressive electric-only range…and efficient gasoline-powered range whenever you need it for anxiety-free driving. That is flexibility unequaled in the automotive world. And despite imitations, it continues to be one of the most unique and innovative propulsion systems ever mass produced.”

Exactly what’s so great about the second generation powertrain? For starters, it features an 18.4 kilowatt-hour battery pack that dishes out 10% more power despite its lower cell count. This, in turn, enables the Volt to achieve an EPA-estimated 53-mile range. As recently as 3 years ago, the Chevrolet Volt had a 38-mile range.

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2017 Volt

2017 Chevy Volt
Photo: KelleyBlueBook

This revamped power source also resulted in better efficiency than ever. The Volt currently achieves an EPA-estimated 42 mpg combined, a significant improvement from the 2014 model’s combined mpg rating of 37.

The Volt also has a quieter engine thanks to technical tweaks from the manufacturer. As Barry Walkup, GM Global Vehicle Chief Engineer, puts it, “We didn’t want clunks or bumps or any indication that it has started. We torque-match the electric motor to the gasoline engine and pre-fill the cylinders with gas during stop/start, which allows the engine to start quickly.”

Despite the Volt’s impressive credentials, it is rumored that it might be replaced by a crossover version. Even if that proves true, however, the Chevy Volt’s second-generation powertrain has equipped it to be a solid launching pad for this new and bigger form.

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News Source: GM Authority, The Car Connection, GM Authority