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Chevy To Back The Volt Battery With 100,000-Mile Warranty

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On: Thu, Jul 15, 2010 at 11:32AM | By: Chris Weiss

Chevy To Back The Volt Battery With 100,000-Mile Warranty

If you are a little hesitant to buy into hybrid or electric vehicle market because of the unproven nature of the technology behind these vehicles, GM has just made your decision a little lighter. The automaker announced today that it will extend an industry-leading 8-year/100,000-mile warranty to the lithium-ion battery used in the Volt. Not only does GM stress that this is the longest, most robust battery warranty to be offered on any electric vehicle, it states that the warranty is transferable, at no cost, when the Volt is sold. The newly announced battery warranty is also better than the 5-year/100,000-mile warranty Chevy offers on its gasoline engines.

GM's new warranty covers not only all battery components—numbering 161 in total—but also extends to the thermal management system, which is used to warm or cool the battery depending upon outside weather conditions, the charging system, and the electric drive components. It should deliver extra consumer confidence in the integrity of the new electric drivetrain being used within the Volt.

While the new warranty delivers extra protection, GM is confident that its battery offers the on-road performance needed to stand up to daily driving. The battery has been developed to hold up under extreme temperatures, rough terrain, and other rigors of everyday use. According to GM's own numbers, testers have put one million miles and four million hours into testing every aspect of the batteries including short circuiting, corrosion, water submersion, and extreme temperature shifts.

The 2011 Chevy Volt is GM's first extended-range electric vehicle due for release this November. It features a drivetrain that pairs the 16 kWh lithium-ion battery with an engine generator, which combine to power the electric motor. On a full charge, the Volt drives 40 miles on emission-free, all-electric power and the gasoline generator kicks in the moment the battery drains to provide an additional 300 miles worth of range on a full tank of gas. Chevy indicates that the 40 miles is enough to get 75 percent of the U.S.'s population to work each day without using a drop of gas. The Volt is expected to cost in the $35,000 range when it debuts toward the end of 2010.

GM's battery plant in Brownstown, Michigan is getting ready to begin production on the Volt batteries next month. According to plant manager Nancy Laubenthal, the plant is moving quickly to ensure that the Volt launch remains on schedule.

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