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2021 Chevrolet Bolt Interior Review

Scorecard

Interior: 6.8

 The 2021 Chevrolet Bolt has a well-built cabin, but it has several downmarket plastics that hamper its appeal. Cargo capacity is large, and passenger room is decent, but the seats aren't very comfortable over long trips. The infotainment system is intuitive, if a bit slow.

  • "Soft-touch plastics are in the right places and build quality appears solid." -- Autotrader
  • "The Bolt EV’s interior is modern, minimal, and practical all at the same time. And adorned with less-than-classy plastic." -- Kelley Blue Book
  • "Chevy's desire to save weight and cost with the interior is obvious. The carpet feels thin, and the easily dirtied left footrest is unprotected. The interior panels don't even attempt to disguise that they're made of hard plastic. For a car in the Bolt's price range, it's disappointing." -- Edmunds (2019)

Cargo

This car has 16.9 cubic feet of space behind the rear seats and a total of 56.6 cubic feet behind the front seats. Those figures overshadow what you’ll find in many other hybrid and electric cars. A hands-free power liftgate is available.

  • "The hatchback design and aforementioned high roof give the Bolt EV a generous amount of luggage space behind the rear seats: 16.9 cubic feet, or about as much as a full-size sedan. Folding the 60/40-split rear seats increases that space to 56.6 cubic feet." -- Kelley Blue Book
  • "The Bolt is nearly as practical as an average-size small crossover, with enough cargo space to hold five carry-on bags behind the rear seat." -- Car and Driver (2020)
  • "At 16.9 cubic feet with all seats in use, the Bolt's cargo area is usefully sized. The available floor panel cover can either be left in place for hidden basement storage or removed to carry bulkier items. Fold one or both parts of the 60/40-split back seat to open up a bigger space." -- Edmunds (2019)

Seating

The Bolt seats five people. Cloth upholstery comes standard. Leather upholstery, heated front seats, heated rear outboard seats, and a heated steering wheel are available.

There’s ample head- and legroom for two adults in both rows. However, the seats aren’t well cushioned and can feel uncomfortable after a while.

For installing child safety seats, there are two complete sets of LATCH connectors for the rear outboard seats and a tether anchor for the rear middle seat. The lower anchors are set deeply in the seats and require significant force to attach.

  • "Being a subcompact, it’s far from palatial, but the high roof translates to ample headroom, even for taller drivers and passengers. In theory, the Bolt EV is a 5-seater, but fitting three adults in the back is a serious squeeze. The story is a little better up front, but the cabin is still quite narrow. The front seats could also use more padding and the option for power operation, as is the case with the competitors like the Hyundai Kona EV, Nissan Leaf Plus, and Kia Niro EV." -- Kelley Blue Book
  • "Generous front and rear passenger space make the Bolt very comfortable for four and even decently spacious for five." -- Car and Driver (2020)
  • "A range of our drivers found it easy to settle in behind the wheel thanks to the Bolt's height-adjustable driver's seat and the generous adjustment range of its telescoping steering wheel." -- Edmunds (2019)

Interior Features

In addition to features like push-button start, remote start, and automatic climate control, the base 2021 Bolt comes with the Chevrolet Infotainment system. It’s loaded with features, including a 10.2-inch touch screen, Apple CarPlay, Android Auto, satellite radio, a six-speaker stereo, two USB ports, Bluetooth, and a Wi-Fi hot spot.

For the most part, using the infotainment system is easy. The touch screen is large and has clear graphics. Menus are well-organized, and the setup is customizable. There are also functions for monitoring EV performance. However, the system can occasionally be slow to respond.

A rearview camera comes standard, as does Teen Driver, which lets you do things like set audio volume and speed restrictions for secondary drivers. Several driver aids are available, including a surround-view parking camera system, forward collision warning, automatic emergency braking, pedestrian detection, blind spot monitoring, rear cross traffic alert, lane keep assist, lane change alert, lane departure warning, rear parking sensors, a following distance indicator, and a rear camera mirror.

See 2021 Chevrolet Bolt specs » 

  • "The standard 10.2-inch touchscreen is crisp and easy to use. However, the gear selector takes some getting to grips with – especially the part about moving it up and to the left to get into reverse." -- Kelley Blue Book
  • "Its large central touchscreen is well organized and easy to operate, but it isn't as quick to respond to user inputs as we'd like. Built-in navigation isn't available in the Bolt. You'll have to rely on your smartphone for directions; luckily, Apple CarPlay and Android Auto capability is standard. Several useful EV-specific menus allow you to delve deeply into information such as battery-energy usage and remaining range." -- Car and Driver (2020)
  • "The controls are thoughtfully arranged and separated by function, with a handy volume knob and tune buttons below the touchscreen. Climate controls are also prominent and self-explanatory. The instrument panel can be configured three ways; we like the Enhanced setting's range-coaching features." -- Edmunds (2019) 
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