Watt a Concept

One of the hundreds of wire stories on the new GM Volt range-extended electric car.

Published: 08-Jan-2007

With the Chevrolet Volt concept that appears at the Detroit auto show media preview today, General Motors Corp. attempts to take the title of environmental technology leader from Toyota by resurrecting the electric car.

The four-door Volt uses electricity as its main power source, with a small gasoline engine that powers a generator rather than the vehicle's wheels. GM engineers say while the Volt concept can travel 640 miles on 12 gallons of fuel, about 53 m.p.g., many drivers would rarely use gasoline at all, and some could get 150 m.p.g. in regular use.

After years of failing to deliver on promises of high-technology concepts, and antagonizing environmental groups by fighting tougher fuel economy rules, GM executives say they're determined to reclaim an environmental mantle by putting the technology from the Volt in dealerships.

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