The Chevrolet Volt is amazingly efficient, it completely eliminates range anxiety and it’s comfortable and relaxing to drive. It’s cheaper than the Vauxhall Ampera, too.
It’s far from cheap to buy, and there’s huge uncertainty over its resale values. The cabin plastics aren’t particularly appealing and rear visibility is rubbish.
On the road
What it’s like to drive, and how quiet it is
The 148bhp electric motor gives a stonking 273lb ft of torque, all of which is available the instant the car starts moving. As a result, the pickup feels instantaneous, brisk and linear – everything you want, really. Because the wheels are always driven by the electric motor, it feels no different with the petrol engine running.
Ride & Handling
The Volt has a comfortable ride most of the time. Things can feel a little jittery at low speeds, but it soaks up bigger bumps brilliantly and feels settled on the motorway. There’s some body lean to be felt in bends and the steering could do with more weight and feel, but the plentiful grip means the car always feels secure.
Efficiency aside, this is the Volt’s biggest strength. The drivetrain is silent most of the time, and even when the petrol engine is called into action, it stays impressively hushed unless you really push it. The switch between the two modes is almost imperceptible. Road and wind noise is very well contained, too, so the Volt is an extremely quiet, relaxed way to travel.