Six Months In: Chevy Volt


In August we decided to trade in our 2003 Mini Cooper S and got a 2012 Chevy Volt.   After just completing our sixth month with the car I figured I’d put down some thoughts on it.   Ours is a black / black cloth / white trim model, probably the most basic model offered.

Picking up the Volt

Turns out that even the ‘base’ model is fairly loaded, which makes sense given the relatively high price tag.  We’re extremely happy with the car so far and have given a lot of people rides in it and answered a ton of questions about it.  Rather than review it, I figured I’d just give a quick 6 month set of notes:

Total Miles: 5095
Miles Since Delivery: 5089
Total Gas Used: 21.8 gallons
Average Gas MPG:  33.83
Percent Of Driving on EV: 84.6%
Best Month EV % – September – 99.1% on EV
Worst Month EV % – January – 74.9% on EV
Most EV Miles in a Day:  94.28
Most Miles Driven Without Any Gas:  598.33
Most Miles On a Single Tank:  2542.79

Total Average Calculated MPG:  233.3

Here’s what he stack showed:


Since the car only holds 9.3 gallons and I had never run it dry, I made it through 6 months with only 2 stops at gas stations.

The car gets plugged in at night (just on 110v) and recharges easily by morning.   In the winter I can get to work and back without using any gas – but it’s close if I really blast the heat.  In the summer I can commute for 2 days on a single charge.

2012 Chevy Volt

The car will definitely draw questions;  even at a local Cars and Coffee event I’ve had to pop the hood before for curious car nerds like myself.

2012 Chevy Volt - Engine / Motor Compartment

Overall we’ve be super pleased with the car.  No trips back to the dealer, no squeaks or rattles, and no other problems to speak about.   I’ve heard these listed as common gripes:

  • Poor rear visibility (yeah, I see it – but it’s now awful – and we don’t have the rear camera)
  • Seats are firm (definitely firm)
  • The white center stack looks too ‘Appley’ – I like the gray better, but Black / Gray wasn’t an option at the time
  • The high MPG tires aren’t very sporty (Yeah – but that’s not what they’re made for)

The car is basically a gadget on wheels:   proximity locking / starting, remote start and monitoring via iPhone app, the ability to link your OnStar data to VoltStats and other services, etc.   I can see us having more EREV’s in our future after the great start on this one.

Tons more photos of our Volt here.