Although there are more and more EV charging stations being erected across the U.S. these days, getting more miles out of a full charge is still one of the best ways to get customers to buy an electric vehicle.
For potential EV buyers looking at the Chevrolet Bolt, they’ll be getting exactly that for the 2020 model. Chevy announced Friday that the newest edition of its Bolt EV will travel 259 miles on a full charge — a 21-mile increase over previous models.
“The Bolt EV set the benchmark for long-range, affordable electric vehicles, and we’re excited to raise the bar by offering nearly 10 percent more EPA-estimated range for the 2020 model year,” said Tim Grewe, director of Global Battery Cell Engineering and Strategy.
“At Chevrolet we’re constantly listening to customer feedback and we heard the desire for more range. The team worked diligently to find ways to improve battery energy, giving customers the confidence to go more than the extra mile.”
Chevrolet’s battery engineering team added miles to the new model by improving the energy of the cell electrodes through changes to the cell chemistry. This approach allowed the team to implement the range increase without needing to change the physical battery pack and the way it is integrated into the vehicle structure.
“The Chevrolet Bolt EV has been changing consumer perceptions of electric vehicles since its launch in 2016,” said Steve Majoros, director of Chevrolet Passenger Car and Crossover Marketing.
“Great range — now even more — is the foundation of the Bolt EV’s success, and when paired with features like one-pedal driving, Regen on Demand and the instant torque of the EV motor, the vehicle delivers an exceptional driving experience.”
General Motors isn’t just tinkering with battery cell chemistry to make driving an EV a more practical experience. Like other auto companies, it’s partnering up to expand the national network of EV chargers.
Earlier this year, it announced a partnership with architecture and construction firm Bechtel to grow the network. Chevy is also searching for ways to make it easier. “Chevrolet also is helping to encourage EV adoption by providing customers the necessary tools and services to make EV ownership more convenient,” Majoros said.
Original buyers of Bolt EVs can access to Chevrolet’s exclusive Energy Assist feature through the myChevrolet mobile app. Energy Assist allows customers to view and search for charging stations, plan a trip with multiple waypoints and charging stops, monitor their route, and receive alerts if their destination becomes unreachable, the company noted.
Last year, the app was updated to enable smartphone projection of the Energy Assist feature to the vehicle’s infotainment system via Apple CarPlay and Android Auto for drivers with model year 2017 or newer Bolt EVs.
Additionally, Chevrolet recently announced a partnership with Qmerit that will enable EV owners a seamless way to find and obtain quotes from certified electricians to install at-home charging equipment.