Being the first in the auto market to produce a quality electric vehicle, GM could have built a strong foundation in the alternative fuel and energy efficient car market years before the competition. Unfortunately General Motors was left to compete with other auto makers years later after the Toyota Prius gained undeniable popularity. At last GM is making an effort with adding a hybrid option to several of their current vehicles and plans to start new hybrid car and truck lines as well.
Chevrolet Volt Joins the Hybrid Car Market at the End of the Year
The Volt will have the ability to be recharged from standard household power in about 12 to 14 hours with the on-board 110-volt charger. It will only take four hours to recharge if a 240-volt charger is used. Once fully charged the Chevy Volt’s capable of driving 40 miles on electric power alone. When the lithium-ion battery is low the gasoline-fueled/generator will add an additional 300 miles of driving range. Similar to the Toyota Prius, the Chevrolet Volt’s gas engine will not drive or power the wheels, but instead replenish the battery.
The new 2010 Chevy Silverado Hybrid is a full-size pickup is base priced at $38,340 (plus freight) for the two-wheel drive HY1 model and $41,490 for the four-wheel drive HY1 version. It will only be available in the crew-cab configuration with a short bed at this time. The same two-mode hybrid drive system is currently used in the GM full-size SUVs; GMC Yukon Hybrid, Cadillac Escalade Hybrid and Chevrolet Tahoe Hybrid. The Chevrolet Silverado Hybrid includes a fuel-management system to improve highway cruising. When on level ground or a slight downhill grade a cylinder-deactivation system cuts out four of the eight cylinders.
Future plans of GMC:
A mid-size crossover of a compact and mid-size SUV, the GMC Terrain currently offers customers a fuel efficient alternative to traditional SUVs. GMC might give the Terrain a high-end Denali version in 2012 with a design freshening in 2013. By as early as 2014 the GMC Terrain may have a hybrid version.
Yukon and GMC Yukon XL
The van gets compressed natural gas capability in the 2011 model year.
Karl Stracke, General Motors VP of global engineering, acknowledges that a Corvette hybrid is a possibility for the sports car and since competitors are going that way it wouldn’t be out of place.
GM dives into the electric delivery van market with a recent announcement of a $5 million investment and partnership with Indiana-based Bright Automotive. Capable of traveling up to 38 miles on electric power before switching to the gasoline/electric hybrid mode, the Bright IDEA will get up to 36 miles per gallon, according to Bright Automotive.