Mike Stevens | Nov 15, 2011

The upcoming Holden Volt has taken a major step towards its local debut, with the first engineering test car arriving in Australia.

For now, Holden's development Volt retains the left-hand-drive layout of its Chevrolet-badged sibling, but the carmaker says a number of modifications have been made to suit Australian roads.

The Volt has already been sent on a run of evaluation trips around Australia, including a jaunt from Holden's Melbourne offices to Sydney and Canberra.

“The engineering department will use these validation exercises to ensure the electrical infrastructure around the country supports the Volt and that the recharging process is as seamless as possible for customers,” Holden's Electrical Engineering Director, Paul Gibson said.

The Volt draws power from a lithium-ion battery pack; a sophisticated 111kW/368Nm electric motor system providing the Volt's primary means of motivation.

The Volt’s liquid-cooled battery pack contains over 200 individual lithium-ion cells mated to an advanced computer for maximum efficiency.

It can travel up to 65km before a conventional 60kW 1.4 litre petrol engine kicks in to recharge the battery.

GM estimates that the Volt will save motorists up to 1892 litres of fuel each year compared to similar sized petrol vehicles.

Holden has also launched a new local Volt website at www.holden.com.au/volt.


Australian Launch

Holden says it is on track to give the Volt an Australian debut in late 2012, putting it up against the all-electric Nissan Leaf and Mitsubishi i-MiEV offerings.

Pricing won't be revealed until closer to launch, but as a unique and premium offering in the Holden range, we can likely expect it to come close to the Caprice's $61,990 starting point. For now, only time will tell.


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