The electric vehicle marketplace is quickly filling in with battery-powered cars and crossovers that boast road trip-friendly driving range at affordable prices, but Chevrolet and its Bolt will forever hold the honour of being first to market with a car that combines those traits.
When it arrived as a 2017 model, the Bolt’s $43,000 price was hardly cheap, but its promise of 383 km of range was still an enticing proposition.
For 2019, there’s no difference in how far a fully-charged Bolt will take you, but this compact hatchback does get a few small updates. There’s a new tire fill alert system for all trims, and buyers of the entry-level LT model can add the driver’s confidence II package, which was previously only available in the top-end Premier trim. (For the record, that’s where the Bolt’s active safety features live, like forward collision alert with low-speed automatic braking and front pedestrian braking, lane keep assist with lane departure warning and automatic high beams.)
What is about to change more significantly is the Bolt’s competition. Chevrolet can still out-drive the Nissan Leaf and Hyundai Ioniq, but Hyundai’s next EV, the Kona Electric crossover, promises 400 km, and a forthcoming all-electric version of the Kia Niro will probably list a similar capability.
You won’t mistake the 200-hp Bolt for a Corvette, but that is enough to scoot this little hatch from 0-100 km/h in a claimed 6.5 seconds. The Bolt's body is underpinned by that battery, whose flat design lives under the floor where it contributes to a low centre of gravity, lending the car tossable handling.
Chevrolet's energy consumption estimates work out to 1.8/2.1 Le/100 km (city/highway).
Chevrolet would have you think the Bolt is a crossover, but it’s not. This is a strictly front-wheel drive car, although cargo space of 478 L with the rear seats in place -- and more than 1,600 with them folded flat -- is closer to a crossover statistic than that of a small car.
LT trim comes with items like 17-inch wheels, HID headlights, LED daytime running lights and taillights, 10.2-inch infotainment touchscreen with Android Auto and Apple CarPlay functionality, automatic climate control, digital instrument cluster, passive keyless entry, remote start and six-way manual front seats with cloth upholstery.
Premier trim brings body-colour side mirrors, chrome exterior trim, 360-degree backup camera, blind zone monitoring and lane change alert.
This vehicle has not yet been reviewed