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2011 North American Car of the Year – Chevrolet Volt

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The Chevrolet Volt is the 2011 North American Car of the Year.

The business’s most prestigious product award was introduced at the North American Worldwide Auto Present in Detroit January 10, 2011. Almost 50 unbiased automotive journalists, representing dozens of separate media retailers in the U.S. and Canada, New Car Check Drive amongst them, forged a collection of votes to find out the winner of the title.

We voted for the Volt, however deciding amongst the candidates for 2011 North American Car of the Year was troublesome. The Hyundai Sonata, one of the three finalists, was our decide amongst, nicely, regular automobiles, providing a broad lineup of excellent fashions sporting progressive know-how.

The Nissan Leaf is a compelling selection as the first all-electric car bought in America in vital portions. It drives nicely and would work nicely as a commuter car, although house owners should plan a bit extra.

The Chevrolet Volt appears the best reply for the occasions, nevertheless. The Volt works identical to an all-electric car for the day by day commute and many homeowners might solely North American Car of the Yearnot often need to put fuel in it. But, when wanted, the Volt has an engine and a fuel tank, so it is going to by no means depart its driver on the aspect of the street because of a scarcity of conveniently situated electrical retailers. The Volt looks like a premium product. It’s remarkably refined and straightforward to function.

Volt gained the ultimate vote by a large margin. The Volt gained with 233 factors adopted by the Hyundai Sonata with 163 and the Nissan Leaf with ninety four. Every of the forty nine jurors forged 10 factors, although they might be distributed to multiple car.

Right here’s what different jurors stated about the Volt:

“The Volt seamlessly bridges the gulf between at the moment’s liquid fueling infrastructure and the plugged-in electric future,” wrote Lindsay Brooke for the commerce journal Automotive Engineering Worldwide. “It doesn’t fear the proprietor about range, and may simply function your solely vehicle.”

“The Chevrolet Volt is a breakthrough vehicle that exhibits that an electrically pushed car may be completely sensible, and extra importantly, the solely car a household wants,” wrote John Davis from “Motor Week,” which airs on Velocity and PBS. “It offers the typical commuter with tailpipe emission free journey to work and residential once more, whereas counting on an environment friendly gasoline backup system for emergencies and longer journeys. The Volt can also be exceptionally nicely executed, particularly on the interior. The design is futuristic, but smart and downright easy in operation. Additionally, there are sufficient digital shows and devices to maintain any tech-savvy driver glad, in addition to assist consumers get the most effectivity out of the car.

John Gilbert, editor of, stated, “The Volt was value the years of anticipation and advertising hyperbole, with good efficiency, the safety of a fuel engine to increase the range of its plug-in electric energy, and glossy, modern styling.”

Conceived as the Common was failing, developed when the firm was preventing for its very survival, the Volt is a exceptional achievement,” stated Ken Gross, who writes about automobiles for Playboy. “Overlook range nervousness. Its intelligent mixture of an electric motor and a small, fuel-environment friendly gasoline engine embraces the common commute handily, or takes you over 300 miles on a tankful. The Volt seems to be, feels and drives like a contemporary sedan, not an odd-wanting hybrid. One of its improvement engineers proudly said, ‘it’s not a science challenge; it’s an actual car.’ Amen, brother.”

Jim Mateja from The Chicago Tribune stated the Chevrolet Volt is the “best of each worlds, a battery powered car that may run with out contributing to MidEast shiek’s 401k plans, but nonetheless succesful of touring on fuel when wanted to make sure limitless range and the capability to not solely get to Grandmas’s home for Christmas, however to get again once more earlier than Easter.”

“The Chevy Volt eradicated my continual ‘range nervousness’ in the Nissan Leaf and is the proper subsequent step,” wrote Jayne O’Donnell, who writes about automobiles for USA At present. “Positive, it’s expensive, nevertheless it’s value it. Let’s speak about the Leaf when there are charging stations.”

Mark Phelan of the Detroit Free Press stated, “The Volt solves the two shortcomings that bedeviled electric automobiles for a century: range and charging time. Most house owners will almost by no means use gasoline, however the onboard generator supplies juice for drives past its all-electric range.”

“The introduction of the Chevrolet Volt marks a historic change in the basis of the modern passenger car, introducing a drive practice that permits widespread use of electrical energy slightly than gasoline as the main power supply,” famous veteran automotive journalist Dan McCosh. “It’s a easy, however elegant idea, backing up a battery-powered electric motor with a secondary, gasoline-fueled energy plant that operates after the battery is depleted. The backup eliminates worries about what occurs when the main battery runs down whereas on the street. What makes the Volt a pivotal car, nevertheless, is just not the idea, however the execution. The system is easily built-in, working seamlessly in a fashion that matches neatly into the ingrained habits of any common driver. It’s tooled on a scale giant sufficient to test the market demand for this type of various. It’s pricey in comparison with typical automobiles with comparable efficiency and capability, however not unreasonable in the higher-center phase of immediately’s car market. It thus makes the quite giant leap from an intriguing prototype to a totally developed, very sensible various to dependence on petroleum-based mostly fuels.”

Paul Weissler of the business journal Motor stated, “We’ve debated the ‘what’s it’ topic, and my conclusion is that it’s a plug-in hybrid with sufficient all-electric range to fulfill many one-car-proudly owning commuters. Is the price larger than the most value-efficient approaches to a commute? Properly sure (though mitigated by a Federal rebate), however a brand new automotive buy is usually past pure value-effectiveness. A car can fulfill a spread of emotional wants, and other people spend greater than the minimal (typically much more) to acquire them. For some consumers, it’s excessive G-pressure dealing with, for others it’s a leather-based and wooden interior that looks like a Fortune 500 firm boardroom. And for Volt consumers it’s the probability to at the least make a brief commute every day with out the buy of gasoline. The Volt is the first plug-in hybrid, with a novel energy stream, and for a car producer that emerged from a lot turmoil, that’s noteworthy certainly. If gasoline costs spike, following the current development of crude oil costs, Volt gross sales might exceed expectations.

Gary Witzenburg, who writes for, stated, “As a result of it may well run on battery energy from the grid for the first 25-50 miles, then so far as wanted on electrical energy generated by its range-extender engine, it’s a non-fuel-burning, tailpipe-emissions-free EV for the first half of every day’s drive, then a fuel-environment friendly compact sedan the relaxation of the approach. Most significantly, it’s an electric-powered vehicle minus EV ‘range nervousness,’ that sweaty-palm worry of operating out of volts earlier than you run out of journey. Neither a pure EV nor a Prius-like parallel hybrid, the Volt is a recreation-altering range-extender EV that ought to take pleasure in a rosy future, particularly if GM can get its price down and quantity up over the subsequent a number of years.


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