Two years ago this month, GM launched its Chevrolet Volt extended range plug-in hybrid. During this period, it faced some issues but now it is happy to announce that Volt owners have collectively surpassed 100 million all-electric miles (160 million km).
According to the company, the average Volt owner drives more than 65 percent of the time in all-electric mode with the internal combustion engine, which doesn’t drive the wheels but acts as a generator, being activated only for longer trips.
Moreover, by charging their car’s battery regularly, trips to the gas station are quite rare as they need a fill-up every 900 miles (1,440 km), or nearly a month and a half on average.
Some, like Andrew Byrne from Los Angeles, do much better than that: “Since my daily driving is all-electric, I only need to buy gas for long road trips”, he says. “I drove over 1,900 miles (3,000 km) on my last tank of gas,” Byrne's told GM.
That’s a remarkable achievement, although it’s true that it all depends on the kind of driving one does. GM claims that, according to the EPA-estimated 35 mpg city and 40 mpg highway fuel economy, the typical Volt owner saves around US$1,370 each year in fuel costs compared to the average new vehicle sold in the U.S. market.
The 5 million gallons of gas saved during this two-year period is equivalent to US$21 million in gasoline costs based on $4 per gallon of premium, or more than two supertankers.
You can roll down to see a Chevy-supplied infographic that shows some of the things Volt owners can buy with their savings, though, one should keep in mind that while cheaper on the pocket to run, the Volt also costs a lot more than a same size vehicle with or without a regular hybrid powertrain.
By Andrew Tsaousis