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2015 Chevrolet Volt Performance Review

Note: This performance review was created when the 2015 Chevrolet Volt was new.


Performance: 7.8

Most auto writers say the 2015 Chevrolet Volt delivers a very enjoyable driving experience, thanks to its nimble handling and an extremely responsive electric powertrain. They add that the Volt runs quietly in electric mode and transitions seamlessly between gas and electric power.

  • "The 2015 Chevrolet Volt is surprisingly rewarding to drive." -- Edmunds
  • "The acceleration contributes to making this car positively fun to drive. The Volt's ride is smooth and quiet, especially in all-electric mode, and the changeover to generator mode is almost seamless, preserving a ride that feels refined in most driving conditions." -- Autotrader
  • "The Volt is no sports car, but it blows Toyota’s plug-in Prius away (9.8 seconds to 60 mph), and runs neck and neck with a 2.4-liter Malibu in acceleration and handling tests." -- Motor Trend (2011)
  • "Its performance, handling, braking and comfort all rated high." -- Detroit Free Press (2011)

Acceleration and Power

The 2015 Chevrolet Volt is powered by two electric motors that produce 149 horsepower combined. The Volt also has a 1.4-liter four-cylinder engine that acts as a generator for the electric motors when the batteries are depleted. According to the EPA, the 2015 Volt has an electric-only driving range of 38 miles, which is farther than most plug-in hybrid cars can go on electricity. The Volt achieves 98 mpg-equivalent, which is higher than the ratings of competitors like the Ford C-Max Energi. When running on gasoline, the Volt gets 35/40 mpg city/highway, which is lower than what most plug-in hybrids get.

Automotive journalists report that the 2015 Volt feels extraordinarily potent when pulling away from a stop and it earns praise for its strong highway passing power.

  • "The most noticeable thing about driving the 2015 Chevrolet Volt is its superb off-the-line acceleration. This is a common trait among electric vehicles due to their high torque output at low engine speeds. For the same reason, the Volt is an assertive left-lane passer." -- Autotrader
  • "It has an effortless wave of torque typical of electric power and behaves like a more potent hybrid when the all-electric mode runs out." -- Edmunds
  • "Avoiding gas stations is great, but we still think one of the best things about EVs like the Chevrolet Volt is low-end torque you get from a dead stop. The Chevy Volt offers enough thrust to push you into your seat as it silently whisks to 50 mph." -- Kelley Blue Book
  • "When driving in electric mode, Volt operates with a single-gear transmission. As such, power is delivered immediately, providing plenty of pep from a stop." -- Consumer Guide (2013)

Alternative Fuels/Charging

Chevrolet says it takes 10 to 16 hours to charge the 2015 Volt using a standard 120-volt household outlet. With the available 240-volt home charging station, charging time is about four hours. The Volt’s charging progress can be monitored with a smartphone app.

Handling and Braking

Reviewers write that the front-wheel drive 2015 Chevy Volt handles surprisingly well, with impressive cornering grip and sharp, nicely weighted steering. Auto writers report that the Volt’s regenerative brakes offer strong stopping power, but can feel a little grabby until you get used to them.

  • "Its well-tuned suspension makes it a capable handler, able to take corners with confidence. Road grip is good, and body roll is minimal. Despite its hefty weight, the Volt feels reasonably nimble at virtually all speeds. The only peculiarity is the twitchy feel of the Volt's brake pedal, which can be attributed to the car's regenerative braking technology." -- Autotrader
  • "The brake pedal can be difficult to modulate until you acclimate but stopping distances are very good." -- Edmunds
  • "It offers a comfortable ride, and it corners better than you'd think. The electric power steering feels responsive and properly weighted, without being vague on the highway or too heavy in a parking lot." -- Kelley Blue Book

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