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General Motors Chevrolet Volt Concept 2007

Bob Lutz, Vice President of General Motors introduced the Chevrolet Volt Concept at 2007 Detroit Motor Show. . "The Chevrolet Volt Concept, declared Bob Lutz, is a new type of electric vehicle. It addresses the range problem and has room for passengers and their stuff. You can climb a hill or turn on the air conditioning and not worry about it"

The Chevrolet Volt is a lithium-ion battery powered, four passenger electric vehicle that uses a gasoline engine to create additional electricity to extend its range. The Volt can be fully charged by plugging it into conventional power grid outlet for approximately 6 hours. When the battery is fully charged, the Volt can deliver city 64 km (40 miles) of pure electric vehicule range. When the battery is depleted, a 1,0 litre three cylinder turbocharged engine spins at constant speed and operate a generator to create electricity and replenish the battery.

The 136 kw battery pack powers a 120 kW permanent magnet electric motor which drives the wheels.

"If you lived within 48 km (30 miles) from work ( 92 km or 60 miles round trip) and charged your vehicle every night when you came home or during the day at work, you would get 150 miles per gallon", Lutz said.

The Chevrolet Volt is a series-type hybrid configuration, that means that the gasoline engine has no mechanical connection to the drive axle and does not propel the vehicule.

The internal combustion engine is also capable of operating with E85 fuel that contains 85 percent ethanol and 15 percent gasoline. The economy will translate into more than 525 miles per petroleum gallon.

The Chevrolet Volt is also presented with a hydrogen fuel cell as an alternative to generate the electricity.

The Chevrolet Volt styling represents a compact sedan with exterior proportion of a classic sport car. Most body components have been produced using General Electric new composite materials. The roof, side glass and belt line are constructed of GE Plastics transparent, glazed polycarbonate material that delivers the scratch resistance and gloss surface appearance of glass, combined with the formability of a plastic composite.

Dimensions: length 432 cm, width 179 cm and height 134 cm.

A technological breakthrough required to make this concept a reality is a large lithium-ion battery. This type of electric car, which the technical community calls an "Electric Vehicle range extender" would require a battery pack that weighs 181 kg (400lb). Some experts predict that such a battery - or a similar battery- could be production-ready by 2010 to 2012.

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