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Next Holden Volt Will Get A 'Significant' Driving Range Boost, GM Boss Says Photo:
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Trevor Collett | Aug, 13 2013 | 1 Comment

General Motors boss Dan Akerson has said this week that the carmaker plans to “significantly” extend the electric-only driving range of its next-generation Volt electric vehicle.

Currently, the Volt is geared towards the 80 percent of Americans who drive less than 40 miles (64km) a day, with a battery-only range of up to 87km.

In an interview with Bloomberg, Mr Akerson said that GM hopes to significantly extend that range with the next generation EV.

“For something to be significant, that needs to be at least a 20 percent improvement in performance,” Akerson said.

“If we can get up to 50 or 60 miles (80 to 96km), or more, we will but that’s going to be another three to four years out.”

Based on Holden’s claim that the Volt can achieve up to 87km of driving from one charge, a 20 percent improvement would see a new maximum range of around 104km.

Mr Akerson said that GM was working “feverishly” on battery technology, saying that he hopes for more breakthroughs with battery performance and cost over the next few years.

As for the 2014 Volt , the EV will get a US $5000 price cut in the US but no extension to the current battery-only range.

Mr Akerson said cheaper batteries meant that the carmaker could lower the EV’s price.

“Previously the largest cost was the battery. Price has continued to drop with volume and technology improvements,” Akerson said.

No word yet on whether that price cut will filter down to Australia showrooms, but with only eight Holden Volts sold in July, it would certainly help.

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