The 2011 Chevrolet Volt, an innovative plug-in hybrid, received not one but three different mileage ratings from the U.S. EPA Wednesday.
On electricity alone, the Volt achieves the equivalent of 93 mpg (2.5 liters per 100km).
Powered solely by the gasoline engine, the Volt gets 37 mpg.
Running on a combination of electricity and gasoline, the Volt generates the equivalent of 60 mpg, the EPA determined.
General Motors Co. has been touting the Volt for four years now and often refers to it as a technological showcase. GM's European unit has started taking reservations for the Opel/Vauxhall Ampera -- a rebadged Volt. Deliveries will begin in October 2011.
The four-passenger car can travel on battery power alone and offers additional driving range when assisted by a 1.4-liter gasoline engine.
The car has already received numerous awards, including Green Car Journal's Green Car of the Year. The EPA said the Volt has a 35-mile (56km) range on electricity alone and a range of 379 miles with gasoline and electricity. GM had been saying that the Volt had a range of 35-50 miles on one full battery charge.
“We have said that the range is variable on how you drive,” Doug Parks, GM's vehicle line executive in charge of the Volt, said during a conference call Wednesday with the press.
The Volt falls into the EPA compact vehicle segment, which includes models such as the Ford Focus, Chevrolet Cruze and Toyota Corolla.The Volt's mpg rating was rated as best in the compact class by the EPA.
Since the Volt is using technology that no other automaker currently offers, a new mileage label was created by the EPA with input from GM.
“The label helps customers understand the uniqueness of the Volt and how it applies to their routine,” said Scott Miller, vehicle performance manager for the Volt.
Label unique to Volt
The Volt is the only 2011 vehicle that will use this label. However, although it has not been determined by the EPA, the label is expected to be used by other automakers that offer similar powertrains, Parks said. The label is not expected to be used for just one model year, discarded and replaced with something different for 2012.
“We are quite pleased with the numbers and the label,” Parks said. “If there was a simpler way, we would have done it.”