What would you say if we told you that you can have an electric that has a driving range of more than 200 miles and can be bought for less than the price of the average new vehicle? Your first inclination would be to say “that’s impossible because the Tesla Model S is quite expensive and the Tesla Model 3 is not even out yet.” Well, we’re not talking about Tesla Motors here – we’re talking about Chevrolet.
That’s right, Chevy has built an electric car that is actually fun to drive, quick on its feet, offers a pretty outstanding driving range, and won’t break your bank account. Meet the 2017 Chevrolet Bolt EV.
The Chevrolet Bolt EV has been in development for quite some time. The idea was originally conceived when Chevy was working on the Volt plug-in hybrid, but the automaker felt that the technology wasn’t exactly ready for mass production and it also wanted to work on lowering the final price tag. While I had my reservations about getting behind the wheel of the Bolt EV, once I gave it a chance, I was completely blown away.
Yes, the 2017 Chevrolet Bolt EV isn’t as stylish as a Tesla Model S, but it is definitely practical. Fitting in the EPA class of a ‘Small Wagon’, the Bolt EV competes with the likes of the BMW i3, Kia Soul, Mercedes-Benz B-Class, Ford Focus, and the Volkswagen Golf.
There’s not much to say about the exterior of the 2017 Chevrolet Bolt EV besides it was developed and built upon the exterior of the Spark. It is every bit of a hatchback/box-shaped vehicle like the Kia Soul and Nissan Cube and it definitely has its market. However, it’s the electric-car part that really helps the Bolt EV stand out.
One of the things we noticed was that, while it is quite different from other Chevy vehicles, the designers did a great job of making it look like a part of the brand’s family. The Chevrolet signature touches can be seen in areas like the grille, headlamps, and the taillights.
To give you an idea of how big the 2017 Chevrolet Bolt EV is, let’s discuss the measurements. The Bolt EV sits on a wheelbase that measures 102.4 inches with an overall length of 164 inches. The width comes in at 69.5 inches and the height stands at 62.8 inches. While the length may not be as impressive, the height and the width of the Bolt EV makes you realize that this car is definitely slightly larger than other vehicles in its class.
The interior is where all the fun is. The major highlight of the 2017 Chevrolet Bolt EV’s interior is the large 10.2-inch color touchscreen display with ‘flip-board’ operation. The screen houses everything from your climate control, audio info, navigation, and the overall electric drive displays that show you how efficiently you’re driving. There is also an 8-inch driver information display that keeps all vital information in front of the driver.
The 2017 Chevrolet Bolt EV also comes with a long list of standard features including OnStar 4G LTE WiFi, push button start, dual USB ports, Bluetooth (phone connectivity and audio streaming), a rearview camera, remote start, and much more. Our Chevrolet Bolt EV Premier test model came with all the bells and whistles including heated front and rear seat, heated steering wheel, surround vision camera, a Bose sound system, and a range of driver assist technologies that we’ll get into the late part of this review.
Dimensions-wise, the 2017 Chevrolet Bolt EV offers 41.6 inches of legroom for front row passengers and 36.5 inches for rear passengers.
The 2017 Chevrolet Bolt EV is powered by a permanent-magnet synchronous motor that is fueled by a 60 kWh lithium-ion battery. The setup produces a total of 200 horsepower and a maximum torque of 266 lb-ft. That massive amount of torque allows the Chevrolet Bolt EV to run from 0 to 60 mph in just 6.5 seconds with a top speed that is limited to 93 mph.
The best part about the 2017 Chevrolet Bolt EV is that while you’re driving one of those fuel-efficient cars – it is extremely fun to drive. The acceleration is surprisingly quick and it also handles quite well.
When it comes to being fuel efficient – the 2017 Chevrolet Bolt EV gets an EPA-estimated fuel economy of 128/110 MPGe* (city/highway). The total driving range comes in at 238 miles and Chevy says that is more than enough for the average commuter that drives a 40-mile road trip.
Overall, the driving experience of the 2017 Chevrolet Bolt EV is something you should experience for yourself. You’ll definitely be surprised.
The 2017 Chevrolet Bolt EV comes with 10 airbags and – depending on the model and options you pick – a range of driver assistance technologies are available. The features include lane departure warning, lane keep assist, rear cross traffic alert, rear parking assist, rearview camera, surround vision camera, and much more.
Overall, the 2017 Chevrolet Bolt EV has really won the game of producing an electric car for the mass market at an affordable price. The 2017 Chevrolet Bolt EV carries a starting price tag of $37,495**. If you’re in the market for an electric car, make sure you visit your local AutoNation Chevrolet dealer today for a test drive.
*Based on EPA mileage ratings. Your mileage will vary depending specific vehicle trim, how you drive and maintain your vehicle, driving conditions, and other factors.
**MSRP excluding tax, license, registration, destination charge and options. Dealer prices may vary.