by EcoDoc from Naperville, IL on Sun Nov 11 2018
This purchase took me from a 2009 Honda Civic Hybrid into full electric mode. The Civic and a 2012 Acura TSX are my principal points of comparison. I was very excited to move to an electric vehicle. Given my relatively long commute (about 60 miles and 2.75 hours roundtrip), the Bolt with its considerable range was an immediate consideration. Other than the Bolt, I had considered a Tesla. (The range on the Nissan Leaf was insufficient to meet my needs, but it might work for those driving shorter distances.) The narrower width of the Bolt made it a more feasible fit for the narrow openings in our garage. Moreover, the cost of the Bolt made it a better value than the Tesla, which was further amplified by the fact that the Bolt was still eligible for the full federal tax credit. There are clearly compromises with regard to materials and styling compared to the Tesla, but on balance, the value of the Bolt was obvious. As a result of this consideration, I purchased a 2109 Bolt Premier and now have about 700 miles worth of experience with it. Over this time, I've been quite impressed. The ride of the Bolt is quite comfortable, and the high riding position (compared to a sedan) offers an excellent view of the road and a sense of safety when surrounded by SUVs. The instant torque from the electric motor ensures immediate acceleration; this responsiveness makes the car really fun to drive. It's also enjoyable to use one-pedal driving to maximize the regenerative braking, which is robust. The safety features on the car, including forward collision warning, blind spot detection, and lane keep assist are all great. The lack of adaptive cruise control, however, is a disappointment. The rear- and frontview camera, surround vision, and rearview mirror camera are all good. This was a great improvement over my last car. The mirror takes a bit to get used to (especially when wearing progressive eyeglasses), but the wideview lens is helpful for eliminating blindspots while driving. The camera mirror is, however, fantastic when the hatch is filled with stuff that obliterates the view from the traditional mirror. There are some critiques online about the narrowness of the seats, but I have not noticed a problem. To save on weight, the Bolt does not have powered seats, but positioning the seat to a comfortable place does not seem to be an issue. In general, the Bolt's build quality is excellent. The door to the charging port could be a bit more clicky, however. There are a few important logistical issues that warrant special consideration. First, in discussions with our insurance agent, the cost of insuring an electric car may be greater than a non-electric. The rationale he provided was that any damage to the powertrain cannot be repaired at a standard shop; as such, they are more likely to be "totaled" after a significant accident. It's likely worth shopping around to truly assess this issue. Second, charging the car on a standard 110 V outlet is certainly slow (about 4 miles per hour). If you travel longer distances, it's absolutely worthwhile getting a Level 2 Charger (240 V), which provides approximately 25 miles per hour. The cost of the Level 2 Charger is about $500-$600. This does not include the costs of the electrician or the potential cost of running a high voltage line to the garage. Depending on where you live, if you don't have the high voltage line, it may be necessary to contact your municipality to ensure such access can be obtained. Practically, it's important to remember that the range of an EV is shortened in cold weather. Using the heated seat and steering wheel allows the cabin temperature to be set lower to preserve driving distance. This is another reason the greater range of the Bolt is an advantage; it provides buffer for environmental effects on driving distance. Another point to consider is that the Bolt's range is better in traffic than on a traffic-free highway due to the regenerative braking. The motivation for my shift to the Chevy Bolt was driven by a desire to both reduce my contribution to local air pollution that promotes respiratory and cardiovascular disease as well as to lower my contribution to global climate change. The Bolt certainly meets these goals, but it's also a well-built car with ample technology that's fun to drive. This car gives me hope that we're moving to a world in which environmental stewardship and enjoyable driving coexist.
Purchased a New car
Uses car for Commuting
Does recommend this car!!
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