Some new details about the new 2013 Cruze diesel has been released.
Kicking Tires has found out from GM Powertrain spokesman Tom Read, the new engine will be a 2.0L and come turbocharged. In Europe, a turbocharged 2.0L VCDi diesel inline-four that makes 161 HP and 266 lb-ft of torque is found under the hood of the Cruze. This engine could make its way to the U.S., albeit with a few changes.
In a press release, GM says the diesel engine is currently undergoing rigorous testing in Michigan, Italy and Germany. The automaker says wants to make sure the engine can operate under a wide range of conditions - including extreme temperatures between minus 40 degrees and 158 degrees.
GM says in the press release the engine will come direct injection and a particulate-capturing filtration system to reduce emissions. GM goes on to say the diesel engine will ill offer outstanding fuel efficiency, torque figures and a quiet ride.
No word yet on the fuel economy numbers for the diesel.
Source: Kicking Tires
Press Release is on Page 2
Cruze Diesel Will Build on GM’s Euro Expertise
U.S. engine being co-developed with diesel center of excellence in Torino, Italy
DETROIT – When it comes to developing a diesel-powered Chevrolet Cruze for the U.S. market to be introduced in 2013, General Motors powertrain engineers have been there and done that – half a million times last year alone.
The Cruze diesel will leverage global powertrain expertise that has helped make GM’s fuel-efficient diesel engines popular options around the world.
GM sold more than half a million diesel-powered cars across Europe, Asia, Africa and South America last year, including 33,000 Cruzes. The introduction of a diesel option for Cruze – one of the top-selling gasoline-powered cars in the United States in 2011 – is expected to fuel GM’s diesel car sales success.
Diesel engines have long been known for their fuel efficiency and power. Due to a higher compression rate in the engine cylinders and greater density of energy in diesel fuel itself, diesel-powered engines are able to produce more power per gallon than gasoline-powered engines.
For Cruze, powertrain engineers at GM’s diesel center of excellence in Torino, Italy, are working daily with counterparts in Pontiac, Mich., to develop a world-class engine that delivers outstanding fuel efficiency and torque while providing a smooth, quiet ride. In addition, GM engineers in Russelsheim, Germany, are supporting the program by developing the accessory drive, acoustic cover and other specialized components.
“The market for diesel cars in the U.S. is small at present, but is expected to grow due to Corporate Average Fuel Economy requirements and expected increases in gas prices,” said Mike Omotoso, powertrain analyst at LMC Automotive. “So far, the German automakers haven’t had any diesel car competition in North America. GM could do well with it, particularly with younger buyers who don’t have the old prejudices against diesel.”
Future Cruze diesel engine development will benefit from GM’s recent commitment to invest 20 million Euros ($26.5 million) to add five new dynamic benches at its Torino facility for climatic, noise and vibration and chassis dynamometer testing. These additions will speed development time.
“U.S. customers are going to be pleasantly surprised when they get a chance to drive the Chevrolet Cruze diesel,” said Mike Siegrist, 2.0L diesel assistant chief engineer. “Our global team is providing diesel engineering expertise that will give U.S. Cruze customers great quality, torque and fuel economy in a car that’s both fun to drive and practical at the pump.”
Climatic tests simulate temperatures ranging from -40 degrees Fahrenheit (-40 degrees Celsius) up to (158 F) (70 C) and altitudes as high as 10,000 feet (3000 meters). Noise and vibration tests help minimize engine vibro-acoustic response. Chassis dynamometer tests measure emissions.
“We’re able to put the diesel engines through rigorous testing to ensure they operate optimally under a wide range of conditions and also can be integrated seamlessly into the production vehicle,” said Pierpaolo Antonioli, managing director of the Torino Powertrain and Engineering Center. “We’ve pushed these engines in the labs so that the customer can depend on them in real-world driving situations.”
The latest generation of GM diesels has resolved drawbacks associated with the previous engines. Precisely controlled direct-injection fuel systems create a smooth-running engine. Particulate-capturing filtration systems dramatically reduce tailpipe emissions.
“In terms of outward appearances, the difference between the diesel and gasoline engine is going to be difficult to discern,” Siegrist said. “GM’s advanced technologies provide a seamless transition from a gasoline to a diesel car. You get the benefits of the fuel economy and power while preserving a smooth, quiet ride.”
February 13, 2012 - Drew Dowdell - CheersandGears.com
Earlier in January of this year, General Motors' North American President Mark Reuss tipped his hand a bit with regards to the upcoming Chevrolet Coloroado suggesting that it would be a "lifestyle sport truck" in the vein of the Honda Ridgeline but with all of the capability a buyer would expect of a Chevrolet truck. Though the Colorado won't be released in the US until around the 2013 time frame, it has already begun being marketed in Thailand where it is available with a drool worthy 2.8 liter V6 Duramax.
Over the weekend, one of our readers, Ocnblu, sent us a tip about a few Chevy Colorado promotional videos that showed up on youtube.
We have to say, that the Colorado is clearly the best actor in these commercials, so ignore the rest of the cheese.
You might want to turn the volume down a bit on these.
Chevy Colorado - Best of the Century
Chevrolet has revealed its new Cruze station wagon today, ahead of its scheduled reveal at the Geneva Auto Show next month. Set to go on sale this summer, the new wagon (or estate, if you'd prefer) adds a third bodystyle to the Cruze lineup to go alongside the sedan and hatchback in European showrooms.
Chevy's new small wagon is 184 inches (4,675 mm) long, making it longer than either the sedan or hatch. Inside, the wagon offers 17.6 cubic feet of cargo space with the seats up and a nice 52 cubic feet with the seats folded down. Outside, new taillights flank the wagon's rear and the Cruze's new schnoz will make its official debut on this newest variant. Buyers get a choice of three different gasoline (1.4L turbo, 1.6L, and 1.8L) and two different diesel (1.7L and 2.0L) engines.
Holden will eventually get a Lion-badged version but as for us here in America? Don't count on it for the time being.
Hit page two for the press release.
World premiere for Chevrolet Cruze station wagon
• Station wagon is the third variant of world's favorite Chevrolet
• New engine line-up includes sporty turbo and frugal diesel
• Refined design and new technologies
• MyLink: cutting edge smartphone infotainment system
The Chevrolet Cruze station wagon is all set for its global premiere at the 82nd International Geneva Motor Show early next month. The station wagon, the latest bodystyle of Chevrolet's most popular nameplate, complements the sedan and hatchback versions, which together have combined sales in excess of one million vehicles globally since the carline was launched in 2009.
"The Cruze station wagon caters to an important market segment. It ticks all the boxes for European drivers in terms of distinctive design, dynamic driving, space and economy," said Chevrolet Europe President and Managing Director Susan Docherty.
The new station wagon features generous storage space and a choice of powerful and efficient engines as well as the state-of-the-art Chevrolet MyLink onboard infotainment system.
The new and improved engines will be available on the entire Cruze line-up starting summer 2012. In addition to the current 1.6L and 1.8L gasoline engines, a new 1.4L turbo gasoline, a new 1.7L diesel and an improved 2.0L diesel engine complete the powertrain offer.
The 1.4L gasoline, 1.7L diesel and 2.0L diesel engines come with start-stop technology as standard. All engines are Euro 5-compliant.
The station wagon, at 4,675 mm, is slightly longer than the hatchback (4,510 mm) and sedan (4,597 mm) models. Load space ranges from 500 liters up to the window line in the rear to nearly 1,500 liters up to the roof top with the rear seats folded down.
Refined design and new technologies
The station wagon is immediately recognizable as a new variant of the best-selling Chevrolet Cruze. The exterior design features a tapering single arch roofline and comes with roof racks as standard, providing convenience while maintaining a poised and sporty look.
A number of exterior and interior styling changes are being introduced in 2012 for all Cruze models. These include a remodeled front fascia, modified head-lamp interiors and fog lamps, and new wheel styles on the exterior and refinements to the center console and a greater choice of seat finishes for the interior.
New Cruzes are equipped with keyless entry, allowing access the vehicle with the key safely tucked away in a bag or pocket. Additionally, the system allows the engine to be turned on or off by pressing a button without the need to insert the key into the ignition.
A brand-new Chevrolet infotainment system, called MyLink, is being introduced in higher trim levels in the Cruze line-up and in the Chevrolet Aveo as of summer 2012. It brings owners' smartphone capabilities into the vehicle.
MyLink aggregates content from the smartphone onto the seven-inch diagonal high-resolution full-color touch-screen display. Once the smartphone is connected, personal playlists, photo galleries, phone books, videos and other stored media and data, such as a special navigation app, can be accessed though the infotainment system touch-screen.
Editor/Reporter - CheersandGears.com
January 27, 2012
The Chevrolet Volt has been getting a lot of negative press over the past few months dealing with the fire that happened a month after a NHTSA crash test and ensuing investigation. Because of this, General Motors has launched a new ad campaign talking about how the safe the Volt is.
The campaign will include full-page ads in nineteen different U.S. newspapers including The New York Times, touting the safety of the Volt. Also, GM has a new television ad that calls the Volt "the car America had to build."
The launch of the ad campaign coincides with Wednesday's Volt Hearing in D.C.
Editor/Reporter - CheersandGears.com
January 23, 2012
The Chevrolet Volt has been having a tough time in the marketplace. First was the Volt missing it's goal of 10,000 vehicles sold last year (only sold 7,671 vehicles) due to the plant being shut down back in the summer. Then there was the whole NHTSA investigation into Volt's battery, which was closed last week.
Now there's another roadblock for the Volt. Automotive News is reporting that some Chevrolet dealers are turning down Volts. In New York City, GM offered 104 Volts to its 14 local dealers last month. Dealers only took 31. Even dealers that had no problem selling Volts are being more cautious.
Brett Hedrick, dealer principal at Hedrick's Chevrolet said they have turned down offers for Volts for the past two months.
Rob Peterson, a GM spokesman confirmed that "dealer ordering is down" for the Volt. He said the reason for the drop is due to the NHTSA investigation into the Volt's battery.
Editor/Reporter - CheersandGears.com
January 20, 2012
Today, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration announced they had closed their investigation into the Chevrolet Volt and the potential for battery fires after a crash.
"Based on the available data, NHTSA does not believe that Chevy Volts or other electric vehicles pose a greater risk of fire than gasoline-powered vehicles. Generally all vehicles have some risk of fire in the event of a serious crash. However, electric vehicles have specific attributes that should be made clear to consumers, the emergency response community, and tow truck operators and storage facilities," NHTSA said in a statement.
NHTSA went on to say in their statement t that it “continues to believe that electric vehicles show great promise as a safe and fuel-efficient option for American drivers. However, due to the unique nature of plug-in electric vehicles, the agency recommends educating consumers, emergency first-responders, and tow truck operators on the differences to ensure user safety. NHTSA is working with the National Fire Protection Association, the Department of Energy and other agencies and organizations to identify appropriate safety measures and recommendations for those groups."
GM in a statement said the agency's decision to close its investigation was "consistent with the results of our internal testing and assessment."
"We appreciate the confidence our Volt customers continued to provide during the investigation. Our overriding commitment will always be to provide our customers with the best ownership experience and peace of mind in the industry, and we're focused on delivering that every day," GM said in a statement.
Source: GM, NHTSA
Press Releases on Page 2and 3
NHTSA Statement on Conclusion of Chevy Volt Investigation
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
January 20, 2012
Contact: Lynda Tran, 202-366-9550
WASHINGTON, DC — The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) released the following statement today regarding the conclusion of its safety defect investigation into the post-crash fire risk of Chevy Volts (PE11037):
Today, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration closed its safety defect investigation into the potential risk of fire in Chevy Volts that have been involved in a serious crash. Opened on November 25, the agency’s investigation has concluded that no discernible defect trend exists and that the vehicle modifications recently developed by General Motors reduce the potential for battery intrusion resulting from side impacts.
NHTSA remains unaware of any real-world crashes that have resulted in a battery-related fire involving the Chevy Volt or any other electric vehicle. NHTSA continues to believe that electric vehicles show great promise as a safe and fuel-efficient option for American drivers. However, as the reports released in conjunction with the closure of the investigation today indicate, fires following NHTSA crash tests of the vehicle and its battery components — and the innovative nature of this emerging technology — led the agency to take the unusual step of opening a safety defect investigation in the absence of data from real-world incidents.
Based on the available data, NHTSA does not believe that Chevy Volts or other electric vehicles pose a greater risk of fire than gasoline-powered vehicles. Generally all vehicles have some risk of fire in the event of a serious crash. However, electric vehicles have specific attributes that should be made clear to consumers, the emergency response community, and tow truck operators and storage facilities. Recognizing these considerations, NHTSA has developed interim guidance — with the assistance of the National Fire Protection Association, the Department of Energy, and others — to increase awareness and identify appropriate safety measures for these groups. The agency expects this guidance will help inform the ongoing work by NFPA, DOE, and vehicle manufacturers to educate the emergency response community, law enforcement officers, and others about electric vehicles.
Statement on NHTSA Closure of Volt Investigation
The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration’s decision to close its investigation is consistent with the results of our internal testing and assessment. The engineering enhancements that General Motors announced on Jan. 5, 2012 will provide additional protection for the battery, minimizing the risk of a post-crash fire in the days and weeks after a severe crash and rollover.
The voluntary action that GM is taking is intended to make a safe vehicle even safer. In fact, the Volt has earned top safety ratings from key third-party organizations such as the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety, which designated it a Top Safety Pick.
GM is proud of the technological innovation the Volt represents. We appreciate the confidence our Volt customers continued to provide during the investigation. Our overriding commitment will always be to provide our customers with the best ownership experience and peace of mind in the industry and we’re focused on delivering that every day.
Editor/Reporter - CheersandGears.com
January 19, 2012
It’s been a long time coming, but the day has come. The next generation Corvette has been caught on camera, undergoing some testing in Canada.
The heavily camouflaged prototype reveals some details on what to expect on the C7 Corvette. Designwise, the C7 Corvette will retain the classic long-nose, short-deck configuration of its predecessors, but have a distinct wedge shape. Also, the C7 Corvette will keep the front-engine layout, squashing rumors of mid-engine car for now.
There is still a lot of speculation on what will be powering the next generation Corvette. Rumor has it that a 5.5L twin-turbo V8 is in the cards, along with a seven speed transmission.
When will we see the next generation Corvette, sans camouflage? Rumors point to next years Detroit Auto Show.
Source: Inside Line
Editor/Reporter - CheersandGears.com
January 17, 2012
Mark Reuss, GM’s North America President recently dealt some dirt on the next generation Chevrolet Colorado, due out in the U.S. sometime in either 2012 or 2013.
Reuss revealed the Colorado’s main target is the Toyota Tacoma.
“Tacoma is the volume leader. We know that there’s a buyer for a really good Chevrolet lifestyle sport truck that’s quite different than the Tacoma,” Reuss told Car & Driver.
How much different are we talking? Reuss and his colleagues didn’t say. Most likely Reuss brought up the Tacoma in reference to the Colorado being extremely capable in addition to it competing in the mid-size truck segment. Although mid-size is a bit of a misnomer; Reuss said the new Colorado will be something like 90 to 95% of the size of the Silverado full-size truck.
And of course since we are talking about Chevrolet Colorado, the question was brought up if GMC would get a version. Reuss said it’s possible that GMC could get a version of it. If it does happen, the GMC version would be significantly differentiated from the Chevrolet. GM isn’t saying anything about it at the moment.
Reuss also talked about how the Colorado will have better fuel efficiency and a “powertrain change” versus the Silverado. Most likely, this means the Colorado will pack a four or six-cylinder engine, but a diesel engine could be in the cards with a diesel Cruze being introduced next year.
Source: Car & Driver
Editor/Reporter - CheersandGears.com
January 12, 2012
General Motors is doing something special for the 60th Anniversary of Chevrolet Corvette. The company is marking the occasion with a special 2013 Corvette 427 convertible, complete with some hardware from the mighty Z06 and a 60th Anniversary Corvette package for all models.
Under the hood of the special 2013 Corvette 427 convertible lies a 427-cubic-inch LS7 V8 producing 505 HP and 470 lb-ft of torque, making this the most powerful Corvette convertible ever built. A six-speed manual will be the only transmission option available. The 427 convertible will also have the same rear axle as the Z06, and magnetic ride control.
The special edition Corvette convertible will utlize many carbon fiber components including including a raised hood, fenders and floor panels. A carbon-fiber front splitter and rocker panels are optional.
GM says the 60th Anniversary Corvette convertible can hit 60 MPH in 3.8 seconds, reach the quarter mile in 11.8-seconds, and a top speed of over 190 mph.
Also, GM will offer an 60th Anniversary Corvette package for all models. The package includes an Arctic White exterior with a Blue Diamond leather-wrapped interior with suede accents, ZR1-style rear spoiler, special badging, gray-painted brake calipers and some 60th anniversary badging.
The very first 60th Anniversary Corvette 427 convertible will hit the auction block at the upcoming Barrett-Jackson classic car auction in Arizona this month.
Album: 2013 Chevrolet Corvette 427 Convertible
Press Release is on Page 2
Corvette Marks 60 Years of Performance with 427 Convertible
DETROIT – Chevrolet today unveiled the 2013 Corvette 427 Convertible Collector Edition – the fastest, most capable convertible in Corvette’s history – as well as a 60th Anniversary Package that will be available on all 2013 Corvette models.
“The 2013 model year will be historic for Corvette, marking its 60th Anniversary and the final year for the current ‘C6’ generation,” said Chris Perry, vice president, Global Marketing and Strategy for Chevrolet. “We couldn’t think of a more fitting way to celebrate these milestones than bringing back one of the most-coveted combinations in the brand’s history – the Corvette convertible and a 427 cubic-inch engine.”
The 60th Anniversary Package and 427 Convertible will make their public debut at the Barrett Jackson collector car auction in Scottsdale, Ariz., on Jan 21, and will arrive at U.S. Chevrolet dealers early this summer.
Corvette 427 Convertible Collector Edition
The Corvette 427 Convertible blends elements of the Z06 and ZR1 models to create the fastest and most-capable convertible in Corvette’s history.
Its heart is the 427-cubic-inch (7.0L) LS7 engine from the Corvette Z06. Rated at 505 horsepower (377 kW) and 470 lb.-ft. of torque (637 Nm), it is the most powerful engine ever installed in a production Corvette convertible – and, like the Z06, the 427 Convertible is only available with a six-speed manual transmission.
The LS7 was co-developed with the Corvette Le Mans-winning GT1 engine and features lightweight titanium connecting rods and intake valves, as well as racing-inspired high-flow cylinder heads and a dry-sump oiling system. It is assembled by hand at GM’s Performance Build Center, where customers who purchase the 427 Convertible Collector Edition can purchase the Corvette Build Experience option and assemble the engine that will power their new car.
Supporting performance elements in the Corvette 427 Convertible include the driveline and rear axle system from the Corvette Z06, a rear-mounted battery and standard Magnetic Selective Ride Control. The standard 19-inch front and 20-inch rear wheels are wrapped in ZR1-style Michelin PS2 tires. Lightweight machine-face Cup wheels – introduced on the 2012 Corvette Z06 with Z07 and Corvette ZR1 with PDE performance packages – come standard and include unique gray-painted pockets. Black Cup wheels or chrome ZR1-style wheels are also available.
The 427 Convertible also features several carbon-fiber components that help reduce weight, including:
Carbon fiber raised hood (introduced on the 2011 Z06 Carbon Edition)
Carbon fiber Z06-style fenders
Carbon fiber floor panels
The “CFZ” carbon fiber front splitter and rocker panels are optional on the 427 Convertible, and included with the 60th Anniversary package
The weight reduction brings the 427 Convertible’s curb weight to 3,355 pounds (1,522 kg). Combined with its 505-horsepower LS7 engine, it gives the 427 Convertible a power-to-weight ratio of 6.64 – or one horsepower for every 6.64 pounds of vehicle mass. That’s better than:
Porsche 911 Turbo S Cabriolet – 6.90
Audi R8 5.2 RSI Spyder – 7.58
Aston Martin DBS Volante Convertible – 7.82
Ferrari California Convertible – 8.31
The combination of low mass and high output will make the 427 Convertible one of the fastest convertibles in the world, delivering estimated 0-60 performance of 3.8 seconds, quarter-mile performance of 11.8 seconds, lateral acceleration of 1.04 g and a top speed of more than 190 mph.
The 427 Convertible is available in 2LT, 3LT and 4LT trim levels and will carry a unique vehicle identification number sequence, similar to the Corvette ZR1.
Corvette 60th Anniversary Package
All 2013 Corvette models, including the 427 Convertible, will be available with a 60th Anniversary Package, featuring an Arctic White exterior with a Blue Diamond leather-wrapped interior with suede accents. Convertible models will have a blue top.
Additional content includes a ZR1-style rear spoiler, special badging, gray-painted brake calipers and the “60th” logo on the wheel center caps, steering wheel and seat headrests. An optional graphics package adds full-length racing stripes in Pearl Silver Blue, including a tonal stripe stitched into the convertible top, extending the graphic theme over the roof.
For 2013, all Corvettes will feature 60th Anniversary badges on the fascias and the “waterfall” panel on convertible models, as well as 60th logos in the instrument panel gauge cluster and on the sill plates.
Charity Auction at Barrett-Jackson Scottsdale
The first Corvette 427 Convertible offered to the public will go to the highest bidder at the Barrett-Jackson Scottsdale collector car auction, on Saturday, Jan. 21. Proceeds from the sale will benefit the Drive to End Hunger food relief program.
Chevrolet and Hendrick Motorsports are teaming up for the auction, including Hendrick team driver and four-time NASCAR Sprint Cup Champion Jeff Gordon. Team owner Rick Hendrick helped launch the Drive to End Hunger program with AARP and the AARP Foundation.
The Drive to End Hunger is part of a multi-year sponsorship for Gordon’s No. 24 Chevrolet. It calls on racing fans, corporations and charitable organizations to raise money, build awareness, and engage Americans who face the threat of hunger.
A legacy of 427-powered Corvettes
Early 427-powered Corvettes, particularly convertibles, offered from 1966 to 1969 are some of the most-coveted and collectable Corvettes ever produced.
The first 427-powered Corvette rolled off the assembly line for the 1966 model year. Two performance levels of the 427 were initially offered – an “L30” version rated at 390 horsepower and the “L72,” which cranked out 425 horsepower. Both were rated at 460 lb-ft. of torque.
The range of 427 engines grew in 1967, with the addition of the “L71” and “L88” options. The L71 added a unique triple-carburetor induction system that helped boost output to 435 horsepower. Known to collectors as “427/435” cars, these ’67 models – especially the convertibles – are especially sought-after collector cars.
The “L88” delivered 430-horsepower (with a single four-barrel carburetor) thanks to racing-tuned aluminum heads. Intended for customers who would immediately transform their new Corvette into a race car, the L88 was installed in just 216 production Corvettes between 1967 and 1969.
In 1969, a special “L89” 427 engine combined the L71’s induction system with the L88’s aluminum heads, offering maximum horsepower with an approximately 100-pound weight advantage over the standard iron heads. Also in 1969, Chevrolet built two “ZL1” 427 Corvette coupes. The ZL1 engine was essentially an all-aluminum version of the L88, with the aluminum cylinder block and heads offering a tremendous weight advantage for racing. More of the engines were sold as crate engines to racers.
By 1970, the big-block engine grew to 454 cubic inches, just as the trend in high-compression, high-performance engines was beginning to wane. The four-year run of 427 Corvettes was already established as the golden era of performance
Commemorative Collector Edition and Anniversary Edition models
Rare and low-production examples of the Corvette have been around since its 1953 introduction, but Chevrolet didn’t begin building commemorative models until 1978, when the 25th Anniversary model – also known as the Silver Anniversary Corvette – was offered. The Corvette was in its third generation then and at the close of that epoch in 1982, a Collectors Edition was offered, as well.
Those special models launched what has become a tradition for the Chevrolet Corvette, which has offered milestone anniversary and generational collector-edition models ever since. The 2013 Corvette 427 Convertible represents the first time a Collector Edition and Anniversary Edition are being offered in the same year – and available on the same car.
Below is a list of the Collector Edition and Anniversary Edition models, as well as production numbers and their distinguishing features.
Two-tone silver exterior with gray leather interior
Silver-beige exterior color with lower graphic accent; silver-beige leather interior; bronze-tinted roof panels; cast aluminum “fin” wheels and unique VIN identification
White lower body with white 17-in. wheels, with black roof and dark removable roof panel; special badging and embroidered seat logos; all-white leather interior
First anniversary model offered in coupe and convertible body styles; Ruby Red exterior with special badging; Ruby Red leather-covered seats
Sebring Silver exterior with special badging;
silver 17-inch ZR-1-style wheels;
“Collector Edition”-embroidered seats; optional LT4 5.7L engine with 330 hp
Special 50th Anniversary Red exterior; specific badging and champagne-color five-spoke wheels; Shale leather-trimmed interior
Coupe and convertible models in LeMans Blue with Shale leather-trimmed interior; Z06 model in LeMans Blue with silver stripe graphics and carbon fiber hood
427 Convertible Collector Edition
Arctic White with Blue Diamond leather-wrapped interior and blue top (convertibles); special badging; optional stripe package; 60th logo gauge cluster and sill plates
427 Convertible Collector Edition with LS7 engine; carbon fiber hood, fenders and floor panels; 19-in./20-in. wheels with Michelin PS2 tires; std. Magnetic Selective Ride Control; 427 hood badges
Editor/Reporter - CheersandGears.com
January 5, 2012
Today, General Motors announced structural and cooling system "safety enhancements" for the Chevrolet Volt to better protect the batteries in a crash.
The enhancements include strengthening a portion of the Volt's vehicle safety structure, add a sensor in the battery coolant system reservoir, and add tamper-resistant bracket to the battery coolant reservoir.
GM North America President Mark Reuss said that GM is treating this as a voluntary customer satisfaction issue, and therefor it's not a recall. But it feels like a recall due to the process to fix the roughly 12,000 Volts either at dealers or with owners taking 2-3 hours to fix.
“The Volt has always been safe to drive. Now, we will go the extra mile to ensure our customers’ peace of mind in the days and weeks following a severe crash,” said Mary Barra, GM senior vice president of Global Product Development.
GM also revealed today that out of the 8,000 Volts sold, 250 have either have requested either a loaner vehicle or a potential buyback. Reuss says the number could change in light of the news.
Press Release is on Page 2
GM Announces Enhancements to Chevrolet Volt
Changes follow NHTSA investigation into post-severe crash battery performance
WARREN, Mich. – General Motors today announced enhancements to the vehicle structure and battery coolant system in the Chevrolet Volt that would further protect the battery from the possibility of an electrical fire occurring days or weeks after a severe crash.
The enhancements come in response to a National Highway Traffic Safety Administration Preliminary Evaluation to examine post-severe crash battery performance.
NHTSA opened its Preliminary Evaluation on Nov. 25 following a severe-impact lab test on a battery pack that resulted in an electrical fire six days later. The test was conducted to reproduce a coolant leak that occurred in a full-scale vehicle crash test last May that resulted in an electrical fire three weeks later.
The Volt is a Top Safety Pick by the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety and has earned other safety awards from key third-party organizations. Through the first 11 months of 2011, Volt owners accumulated nearly 20 million miles without an incident similar to the results in the NHTSA tests.
“The Volt has always been safe to drive. Now, we will go the extra mile to ensure our customers’ peace of mind in the days and weeks following a severe crash,” said Mary Barra, GM senior vice president of Global Product Development.
GM will conduct a Customer Satisfaction Program to further protect the Volt battery from the possibility of an electrical fire occurring days or weeks after a severe side crash. Modifications will:
Strengthen an existing portion of the Volt’s vehicle safety structure to further protect the battery pack in a severe side collision.
Add a sensor in the reservoir of the battery coolant system to monitor coolant levels.
Add a tamper-resistant bracket to the top of the battery coolant reservoir to help prevent potential coolant overfill.
GM conducted four successful crash tests between Dec. 9 and 21 of Volts with the structural enhancement. The enhancement performed as intended. There was no intrusion into the battery pack and no coolant leakage in any of the tests.
“These enhancements and modifications will address the concerns raised by the severe crash tests,” Barra said. “There are no changes to the Volt battery pack or cell chemistry as a result of these actions. We have tested the Volt’s battery system for more than 285,000 hours, or 25 years, of operation. We’re as confident as ever that the cell design is among the safest on the market.”
Volt customers will be individually notified when the modifications are available for their vehicles. The enhancements are being incorporated into the Volt manufacturing process as production resumes this month.
“We’re focused on one thing right now: doing what’s right by our customers,” said GM North America President Mark Reuss. “We’ll live up to our commitment to make sure our customers are delighted with their purchase.”
Vehicle electrification technologies are important to future of the automotive industry, which is why GM will continue its leadership role in helping the Society of Automotive Engineers develop standards that will help tow truck operators, salvage yards and vehicle recyclers in the proper handling of electric vehicle components. GM will help develop educational materials that can be used by these stakeholders in the future.
If there's one car that's been crucial to GM's recent sales success, it's the Chevrolet Cruze. Since it's global introduction in 2008, the compact Chevy has had healthy sales worldwide and has also handily outsold its competitors at times here in the U.S. market. GM is obviously intent on keeping the momentum going and knows that the only way it'll keep making sales progress is to update the Cruze for the immediate future. So, it comes as no suprise a spy photo of the Cruze's upcoming refresh has already surfaced over on Czech auto website AutoForum.
The spy shot reveals that the shape of the grille opening will be modified slightly and the inserts will change from the current honeycomb-style pattern to ones with bold horizontal slats. The fog lamp openings are also changed to ones that are a little more Ford than Chevy in their design.
It's unclear if overseas markets will see this facelift a significant time before we do, but when it does show up here we can count on a diesel version appearing and possibly the snazzy five-door hatch as well.
Editor/Reporter - CheersandGears.com
December 30, 2011
Today, General Motors issued a recall for 4,873 Chevrolet Sonics due to missing front brake pads. The Sonics in question were built between June 2 and November 21 at GM's Orion Township plant. GM says that out of the 4,873 Sonics, only 20 to 30 have no brake pads.
Having no brake pads on your car doesn't mean you can't stop, it means the braking performance will suffer and could cause damage to other parts of the braking system.
GM says they will notify all potentially affected Sonic owners and install any missing pads and, if necessary, replace any calipers or rotors free of charge.
Decemeber 21st, 2011
There's reason to believe that the folks over at Chevrolet may have a huge New Year's party soon. The storied marquee turned 100-years old this year and, proving that age will not slow it down, is within reach of surpassing it's all time global sales record. At the end of November, 4.8 million cars worldwide were sold wearing the Bowtie badge and December doesn't show any signs of that pace slowing down.
It's very impressive, no doubt, but the gravy train doesn't stop there. All of those sales equaled up to Chevrolet increasing it's global market share by one half of a point and sixty percent of all Chevy models are now sold outside of the United States. It's a major step forward for a brand that's now finding itself stepping up to become GM's major global brand, a distinction that was once held by Opel. Growth has been seen in Chevy's newer markets -- China, South Korea, Vietnam, and Europe -- as well as in more familiar markets like South America.
Back at home in the U.S., Chevrolet's market share is only behind Ford's at 13.7 percent. But with sales nearing an all-time high and dealers only having a 17-day supply of the Chevrolet Sonic on hand, there's a chance Ford may find itself trailing Chevrolet soon.
(Source: The Detroit Bureau)
We’ve told you about the Chevrolet Malibu’s engine lineup; a 2.4L mild hybrid system in the Malibu ECO producing 180 HP and a 2.5L inline-4 producing 190 HP. Now, there’s a third engine coming to the new Malibu.
This week, General Motors announced a 2.0L Turbo-4 would be available a year after the Malibu goes on sale. GM hasn’t said anything about the engine, but we can take a guess as to what could lie under the Malibu’s hood. The Buick Regal offers two variations of a 2.0L Turbo; the Regal Turbo with 220 HP and 258 lb-ft of torque and Regal GS with 270 HP and 295 lb-ft of torque. Most likely, the Malibu will get the Regal Turbo’s setup or be somewhere in the middle.
The decision to offer a turbo-4 seems to following in the footsteps of Hyundai and Kia which both offer turbo-4s instead of V6s.
We’ll learn more about the turbo engine in the coming months.
Source: Automobile Magazine
How Much For The Chevrolet Malibu ECO?
With the current NHTSA investigation into the Chevrolet Volt's battery pack, GM decided to use a different battery chemistry for its upcoming Chevrolet Spark electric vehicle.
GM announced today the Spark EV will use lithium phosphate batteries for its Spark EV rather than the lithium metal oxide batteries used in the Volt. The lithium phosphate batteries store less energy and require more space than lithium metal batteries. However, lithium phosphate batteries are more stable than lithium metal batteries.
“Lithium phosphate chemistry looks like it could be more friendly in terms of heat management.But it stores less energy. There is a tremendous amount of new discovery. This is new territory for lithium batteries,” said James Hall, principal of consulting company 2953 Analytics Inc.
A123 Systems will provide the lithium phosphate batteries for the Spark EV, which will arrive to showrooms in 2013.
December 1, 2011 - Drew Dowdell
Of Volt owners surveyed by Consumer Reports, 93% of them replied that they would "definitely" buy another Chevy Volt. However, considering less than 6,300 Chevrolet Volts have been sold so far, that number could change.
Another issue with the number is that the survey was complete prior to the NHTSA announced an investigation into potential Volt battery fires that can possibly occur in the weeks following a severe crash. Chevy announced a remarkable goodwill program to Volt owners offering them the option of a free loaner car, even a Corvette, while the NHTSA completed its investigation.
Chevrolet had originally announced a goal of 10,000 Volt sales by the end of 2011. In a conference call today, they announced they would miss that goal, but that they would hit 10,000 Volt sales in January 2012.
The other cars at the top of the Consumer Reports Survey are the Dodge Charger and Porsche 911 both at 91%.
Chevrolet is adding new models of the Cruze left and right. Earlier this year, CEO Dan Akerson announced a clean-diesel version of Cruze was on it's way next year. Now, we've learned about another high-mileage Cruze.
Jim Federico, GM's Executive Director, Group Vehicle Line Executive/Vehicle Chief Engineer for Global Compact, Small, Mini and Electric Vehicles told Australia's GoAuto, “The plug-in Cruze has a place and it will be a hybrid.”
Federico went on to say, “Plug-in Cruze doesn’t make Volt redundant at all. Plug-in Cruze would have a different powertrain. Plug-in hybrids use both the engine and motor all the time.”
GreenCarReports says the Cruze Plug-In Hybrid will use a front-wheel drive version of GM's Two-Mode Hybrid system, which is currently offered on GM's full-size trucks and SUVs.
A source tells GreenCarReports the Cruze Plug-In Hybrid is due out in 2014.
The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration said today it's opening a formal safety investigation into the Chevrolet Volt after further tests sparked fires and raised more questions about the safety of the Volt's lithium ion battery packs.
Back on May 12th, NHTSA performed a side pole impact test, on a Chevrolet Volt at a testing facility in Wisconsin. Three weeks after, the Volt caught on fire with the battery being the cause of the fire.
On November 14th, NHTSA performed three follow-up battery-level tests to simulate the incident. Two out the of three tests produced thermal events, including fire. Because of the results, NHTSA has opened an investigation.
GM said they've learned about the NHTSA investigation today and supports the ongoing testing.
"The move to take this formal, procedural step is not unexpected as GM has worked closely and cooperatively with NHTSA over the last six months on a part of a broader program designed to induce battery failure after extreme situations. The Volt is safe and does not present undue risk as part of normal operation or immediately after a severe crash," said GM spokesman Greg Martin.
Martin went onto to say "there have been no reports of comparable incidences in the field. With Onstar, GM knows real time about any crash significant enough to potentially compromise battery integrity."
At the time of May crash test, GM had no crash protocol for dealing with a battery that may have been damaged in a crash. Since July, GM has implemented a post crash protocol that includes the depowering of the battery after a severe crash, returning the battery to a safe and low power state.
So far, no fires among consumer-owned Volts have been reported and no complaints of fires have been made. Also, NHTSA hasn't asked GM to put a stop on selling the Volt while the investigation is ongoing.
Source: The Detroit News
Press Release from GM & NHTSA, and the Investigation Resume is on Page 2
GM Supports Ongoing Testing With NHTSA
Statement attributable to Jim Federico, General Motors chief engineer for electric vehicles
2011-11-25 - The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) informed GM today that it will begin a preliminary evaluation of Chevrolet Volt battery assemblies. The move to take this formal, procedural step is not unexpected as GM has worked closely and cooperatively with NHTSA over the last six months on a part of a broader program designed to induce battery failure after extreme situations.
The Volt is safe and does not present undue risk as part of normal operation or immediately after a severe crash. GM and the agency's focus and research continues to be on battery performance, handling, storage and disposal after a crash or other significant event, like a fire, to better serve first and secondary responders. There have been no reports of comparable incidents in the field.
With Onstar, GM knows real time about any crash significant enough to potentially compromise battery integrity. Since July, GM has implemented a post crash protocol that includes the depowering of the battery after a severe crash, returning the battery to a safe and low-powered state. That is why the ongoing collaboration between GM and NHTSA is so important and stands to benefit the industry.
As leaders in bringing electric vehicles and advanced technology to market, GM's aggressive testing with NHTSA to determine the operating limits of this technology under extreme conditions can help set battery performance standards for the industry going forward.
Statement of the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration On Formal Safety Defect Investigation of Post-Crash Fire Risk in Chevy Volts
For Immediate Release
Friday, November 25, 2011
WASHINGTON, DC — The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) issued the following statement today announcing the agency will be opening a formal safety defect investigation to assess the risk of fire in Chevy Volts that have been involved in a serious crash:
The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration is deeply committed to improving safety on our nation's roadways. As part of our core mission to reduce traffic injuries and fatalities, NHTSA is continually working to ensure automakers are in compliance with federal motor vehicle safety standards, culling information to identify safety defects, and ensuring manufacturers conduct any necessary safety recalls. The agency has also developed a robust New Car Assessment Program (NCAP) to test the majority of the vehicle models introduced to consumers each year.
This past May, NHTSA crashed a Chevy Volt in an NCAP test designed to measure the vehicle's ability to protect occupants from injury in a side collision. During that test, the vehicle's battery was damaged and the coolant line was ruptured. When a fire involving the test vehicle occurred more than three weeks after it was crashed, the agency concluded that the damage to the vehicle's lithium-ion battery during the crash test led to the fire. Since that fire incident, NHTSA has taken a number of steps to gather additional information about the potential for fire in electric vehicles involved in a crash, including working with the Department of Energy and the Department of Defense — in close coordination with experts from General Motors — to complete rigorous tests of the Volt's lithium-ion batteries.
In an effort to recreate the May test, NHTSA conducted three tests last week on the Volt's lithium-ion battery packs that intentionally damaged the battery compartment and ruptured the vehicle's coolant line. Following a test on November 16 that did not result in a fire, a temporary increase in temperature was recorded in a test on November 17. During the test conducted on November 18 using similar protocols, the battery pack was rotated within hours after it was impacted and began to smoke and emit sparks shortly after rotation to 180 degrees. NHTSA's forensic analysis of the November 18 fire incident is continuing this week. Yesterday, the battery pack that was tested on November 17 and that had been continually monitored since the test caught fire at the testing facility. The agency is currently working with DOE, DOD, and GM to assess the cause and implications of yesterday's fire. In each of the battery tests conducted in the past two weeks, the Volt's battery was impacted and rotated to simulate a real-world, side-impact collision into a narrow object such as a tree or a pole followed by a rollover.
NHTSA is not aware of any roadway crashes that have resulted in battery-related fires in Chevy Volts or other vehicles powered by lithium-ion batteries. However, the agency is concerned that damage to the Volt's batteries as part of three tests that are explicitly designed to replicate real-world crash scenarios have resulted in fire. NHTSA is therefore opening a safety defect investigation of Chevy Volts, which could experience a battery-related fire following a crash. Chevy Volt owners whose vehicles have not been in a serious crash do not have reason for concern.
While it is too soon to tell whether the investigation will lead to a recall of any vehicles or parts, if NHTSA identifies an unreasonable risk to safety, the agency will take immediate action to notify consumers and ensure that GM communicates with current vehicle owners.
In the meantime, the agency is continuing to work with all vehicle manufacturers to ensure they have appropriate post-crash protocols; asking automakers who currently have electric vehicles on the market or plan to introduce electric vehicles in the near future to provide guidance for discharging and handling their batteries along with any information they have for managing fire risks; and engaging the Department of Energy and the National Fire Protection Association to help inform the emergency response community of the potential for post-crash fires in electric vehicles.
NHTSA continues to believe that electric vehicles have incredible potential to save consumers money at the pump, help protect the environment, create jobs, and strengthen national security by reducing our dependence on oil. In fact, NHTSA testing on electric vehicles to date has not raised safety concerns about vehicles other than the Chevy Volt.
NHTSA's current guidance for responding to electric vehicles that have been in a crash remains the same. The agency continues to urge consumers, emergency responders, and the operators of tow trucks and storage facilities to take the following precautions in the event of a crash involving any electric vehicle:
Consumers are advised to take the same actions they would in a crash involving a gasoline-powered vehicle — exit the vehicle safely or await the assistance of an emergency responder if they are unable to get out on their own, move a safe distance away from the vehicle, and notify the authorities of the crash.
Emergency responders should check a vehicle for markings or other indications that it is electric-powered. If it is, they should exercise caution, per published guidelines, to avoid any possible electrical shock and should disconnect the battery from the vehicle circuits if possible.
Emergency responders should also use copious amounts of water if fire is present or suspected and, keeping in mind that fire can occur for a considerable period after a crash, should proceed accordingly.
Operators of tow trucks and vehicle storage facilities should ensure the damaged vehicle is kept in an open area instead of inside a garage or other enclosed building.
Rather than attempt to discharge a propulsion battery, an emergency responder, tow truck operator, or storage facility manager should contact experts at the vehicle's manufacturer on that subject.
Vehicle owners should not store a severely damaged vehicle in a garage or near other vehicles.
Consumers with questions about their electric vehicles should contact their local dealers.
Chevrolet has announced pricing for the new Malibu ECO due out in the first quarter of next year. The 26 City/38 Highway MPG Malibu will carry a base price of $25,995 including a $760 destination charge.
The Malibu ECO is Chevrolet's first vehicle equipped with GM's eAssist mild hybrid system. The system uses a lithium-ion battery and electric motor to provide regenerative braking, electric assist and start-stop functionality. The system is coupled with a 2.4L Ecotec four-cylinder producing 180 HP and a six-speed automatic. Other changes to the Malibu ECO include active grille shutters, aluminum hood, aluminum rear bumper beam, lower final drive ratio, and low-rolling resistance tires help the Malibu get 550 miles on a single tank of gasoline.
The Malibu ECO is generous in standard features which include Chevrolet MyLink, CD/MP3 stereo with seven-inch touch screen, USB, SiriusXM satellite radio, dual zone automatic climate control,cruise control, power windows and locks, tilt and telescopic steering wheel with built-in audio controls, projector-beam headlamps, heated and power adjustable exterior mirrors, acoustic-laminated glass to reduced wind noise, and 17-inch wheels.
Press Release is on Page 2
2013 Chevrolet Malibu Eco Priced Under $26,000
Hybrid-like fuel efficiency for a non-hybrid-like price
DETROIT – The all-new 2013 Chevrolet Malibu Eco midsize sedan will start at $25,995 when it arrives in dealerships in the first quarter next year, reinforcing the value proposition of the midsize segment’s longest-running nameplate.
The suggested retail price includes a $760 destination charge but excludes tax, title, license and dealer fees.
The 2013 Malibu Eco is Chevrolet’s most fuel-efficient Malibu ever. It is the first Chevrolet to feature General Motors’ eAssist battery electric/gas propulsion system, which uses a state-of-the-art lithium-ion battery and an electric motor-generator to enable regenerative braking, electric assist and start-stop functionality. That helps deliver a GM-estimated 26 mpg in city driving and 38 mpg on the highway.
Malibu Eco’s highway efficiency is comparable the segment’s popular full hybrids and diesels, but delivered at a lower price:
2012 Ford Fusion Hybrid – $29,395 / 36 mpg
2012 Volkswagen Passat TDI SE Diesel (with automatic) – $27,895 / 40 mpg
2012 Toyota Camry Hybrid – $26,660 / 39 mpg
2012 Hyundai Sonata Hybrid – $26,545 / 40 mpg
Malibu Eco is part of the all-new, 2013 Malibu lineup – Chevrolet’s first global midsize sedan – designed to give customers more style, fuel efficiency, content and features, along with the craftsmanship and dynamic capabilities rivaling high-end sedans. It has a more powerful engine – 182 hp / 134 kW – than the Fusion (156 hp / 116 kW), Camry (178 hp / 132 kW) or Passat (140 hp / 104 kW).
Product highlights for North American models include:
Expressive exterior designed to stand out, with a wide, athletic stance
Aerodynamically optimized exterior, including underbody aero enhancements and electronically controlled shutters in the lower grille that close at higher speeds to push more air over and around the vehicle
All-new, Chevrolet-signature dual-cockpit interior that is more spacious, features premium materials and is engineered to be the quietest in the midsize segment
First Chevrolet car to offer new Chevrolet MyLink connectivity, which integrates online services such as Pandora® Internet radio and Stitcher SmartRadio®
European-influenced ride and handling traits
More safety features and technologies, including eight standard air bags, ultra-high-strength steel and rearview camera system.
Additional fuel-saving features include:
Eco-specific lightweight components and systems, including an aluminum hood, aluminum rear bumper beam, low-mass carpet and dash mat and more, which save approximately 130 pounds (58 kg) over a comparably equipped non-ECO model
An Eco gauge in the cluster that continuously responds to driving behavior, encouraging fuel-efficient driving. An Auto Stop Indicator on the tachometer informs the driver when the engine is in start-stop mode
Seventeen-inch low-rolling-resistance all-season Goodyear tires
The eAssist system mated to a fuel-efficient 2.4L Ecotec direct-injection four-cylinder engine and next-generation six-speed automatic transmission. The 2.4L engine, a variant of the same engine that was recognized as one of Ward's Ten Best Engines in 2010, is lightweight and features dual-overhead cams, direct injection, continuously variable intake and exhaust timing and electronic throttle control. It also has a lightweight aluminum cylinder block and cylinder head.
A five-year/100,000-mile powertrain warranty, as well as a three-year/36,000-mile bumper-to-bumper limited warranty is standard on the Malibu Eco. Certain eAssist components are covered by an eight-year/100,000-mile warranty, including the electric motor generator, three-phase electric power cables and high-voltage lithium-ion battery.
The Malibu Eco is offered with cloth or leather seats in eight exterior and three interior color choices. It is well-equipped in standard form and available with four equipment packages: Package 1 – Power Convenience; Package 2 – Premium Audio; Package 3 – Leather; and Package 4 – Navigation.
Standard powertrain and chassis content:
Ecotec 2.4L direct injection with continuously variable valve timing and eAssist technology, rated at 182 horsepower (135 kW)
Six-speed automatic transmission with tap-shift control
2.64:1 axle ratio
Four-wheel disc brakes with ABS
Grade braking control
Panic brake assist
Electronic park brake with push button
StabiliTrak electronic stability control system
Electric power steering (rack-mounted)
MacPherson strut front suspension
Four-link rear suspension
Seventeen-inch five-spoke aluminum wheels
P225/55R17 all-season low-rolling-resistance Goodyear Assurance Fuel Max tires
Standard exterior content:
Active front lower grille aero shutters and aerodynamic underbody panels
Projector-beam headlamps with automatic exterior lamp control
Heated, power-adjustable outside mirrors (body color)
Fin-type combined OnStar/SiriusXM Satellite Radio antenna (body color)
Acoustic-laminated, solar-absorbing glass
Intermittent windshield wipers with structureless blades
Standard interior content:
Six-inch-deep illuminated (when headlamps are on) hidden storage behind articulating touch screen radio face
Air conditioning – dual zone automatic climate control with odor filter
Audio system: AM/FM stereo with CD with MP3 playback and auxiliary input jack
Seven-inch-diagonal color touch screen for the audio system
USB port for the audio system
SiriusXM Satellite Radio
Six-speaker sound system
Bluetooth phone and audio connectivity
Remote keyless entry
Power windows with express down feature
Power door and window locks
Driver information center
Tilt and telescopic steering column
Steering wheel audio and cruise controls
Ice blue ambient lighting
Two auxiliary power outlets
Rear center armrest with storage
Standard safety content:
OnStar with six months of Directions and Connections plan, including Automatic Crash Response, Crisis Assist, Stolen Vehicle Assistance, Remote Door Unlock, and more.
Dual-stage frontal air bags
Driver and front passenger thorax side-impact air bags
Driver and front passenger knee air bags
Head curtain side-impact air bags (front and rear outboard seating positions)
Safety belt pretensioners
Tire pressure monitoring system
Package 1 – Power Convenience includes all standard equipment plus:
Eight-way power driver’s seat with lumbar control
Rearview backup camera system
Auto-dimming inside rearview mirror
Universal garage door opener
Package 2 – Premium Audio includes all content in Package 1 plus:
Pioneer nine-speaker audio system with high-output amplifier
Leather-wrapped shifter knob and steering wheel
Package 3 – Leather includes all content in Package 2 plus:
Eight-way power-adjustable front passenger seat with lumbar control
Heated front seats
Package 4 – Navigation includes all content in Package 3 plus:
Memory seats and mirrors
Auto-up driver’s window
A power-operated sunroof is available on Packages 1, 2, 3 and 4.
Exterior Color Choices:
Silver Ice Metallic
Black Granite Metallic
Crystal Red Tintcoat
White Diamond Tricoat
Taupe Gray Metallic
Steel Blue Metallic (late availability)
Champagne Silver Metallic (late availability)
Interior Color/Trim Choices:
The Eco is the first trim level of an all-new Malibu lineup to launch in the United States. Other Malibu trim levels including LS, LT and LTZ are scheduled to begin production next summer in Fairfax, Kan. and Detroit-Hamtramck. The 2013 Malibu will be sold in nearly 100 countries on six continents and will serve as a flagship Chevrolet midsize in many parts of the world. The Malibu is built in multiple locations including the United States, China and Korea.
The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration has opened an investigation into the safety of lithium-ion batteries in electric vehicles after a Chevrolet Volt caught on fire after a crash test three weeks earlier.
The agency has asked all manufacturers who currently have electric vehicles on the road or plan to introduce one to provide information on the protocols they have established for discharging and handling their lithium-ion batteries, including how to lower risk of a fire. This is to
NHTSA said it had investigated an incident involving a fire in a Chevy Volt after a crash test on May 12. The test involved a Chevrolet Volt crashing into a pole which caused the battery pack in the center tunnel and rear seat to crack. Then, NHTSA followed procedure to put the car on a rotisserie and rotate it 90 degrees every five minutes to see any fluid leakage. Coolant leaked out of the battery pack but the components stayed put.
Three weeks after the test, the Volt caught on fire at NHTSA's storage facility in Wisconsin. NHTSA said the damage caused the fire.
After the news, both NHTSA and General Motors both independently replicated the crash test and rotation. In both crashes, neither one could reproduce the conditions.
GM spokesman Greg Martin said if NHTSA had followed certain protocols after the crash test, there would have been no fire.
"We've developed very stringent safety protocols on the disposal and safe handling of the battery packs on the Chevy Volt. Those obviously were not followed in this case. GM also has also been unable to replicate the incident."
NHTSA in a statement today said,
“As manufacturers continue to develop vehicles of any kind -- electric, gasoline, or diesel -- it is critical that they take the necessary steps to ensure the safety of drivers and first responders both during and after a crash, Based on the available data, NHTSA does not believe the Volt or other electric vehicles are at a greater risk of fire than gasoline-powered vehicles. In fact, all vehicles -- both electric and gasoline-powered -- have some risk of fire in the event of a serious crash.”
The agency says the information from automakers will be used to inform emergency responders, tow-truck operators, salvage yards, and consumers about the risks and how to handle an EV in a accident.
We'll be keeping a close eye on this story.
Source: Bloomberg, Detroit News, Green Car Reports, Jalopnik
Statement from GM on Page 2
GM Statement in Response to NHTSA Investigation
DETROIT – The following statement can be attributed Jim Federico, General Motors chief engineer for electric vehicles:
“First and foremost, I want to make this very clear: the Volt is a safe car. We are working cooperatively with NHTSA as it completes its investigation. However, NHTSA has stated that based on available data, there’s no greater risk of fire with a Volt than a traditional gasoline-powered car.
“Safety protocols for electric vehicles are clearly an industry concern. At GM, we have safety protocols to depower the battery of an electric vehicle after a significant crash.
“We are working with other vehicle manufacturers, first responders, tow truck operators, and salvage associations with the goal of implementing industry-wide protocols.”
Today, General Motors told it's dealers that they are free to sell their Chevrolet Volt demonstration models. The move will increase the number of Volts on sale from 1,800 to 4,100.
GM launched the Volt back in December in seven markets and since July has been rolling out the Volt nationwide to, and is nearing its target of 2,600 dealers in all 50 states. The problem is dealers have been given a Volt to use a demo only.
“Multiple dealers have requested to sell their demo to satisfy customer demand,” GM said in a memo to dealers.
GM spokesman Tom Henderson told Automotive News that GM is “giving them the choice to satisfy their customers and the flexibility to meet pent-up demand.” To compensate for depreciation and for the cost of removing some decals from the demo models, GM will reimburse dealers $1,500. But to get the reimbursement, dealers will need to sell the demo by January 3rd. Then dealers will need to get a new Volt demo by the end of January.
General Motors is hoping with this move they will be able to meet their lofty goal of selling 10,000 Volts by the end of year. Through October, GM only 5,003 Volts.
Source: Automotive News
In Europe... the countries that build cars, their folk are fiercely loyal to their home market. Germans never think about buying anything but German. The French never think about buying anything but French and so on. In Germany, the German car factories are heavily subsidized by the German governments while the unions protect the German auto worker to degrees that the UAW will never see in America DESPITE what we think about the UAW in North America...
The Japanese too. Same story in Japan as with Germany...
The one European country that poo pooed their automotive industry is the one that does not have an automotive industry to call their own anymore. And laughably, British TV and British automobile journalism diss American cars and even MORE laughably STILL try to insist that Rolls Royce and Bentley are English makes. Just because manufacturing is still being done in the UK...
I see the similarities with the UK in the US with how Americans view their own automobile industry...
And what is funnier....AND SCARIER...is that Americans not only poo poo their own phoquing industry HARDER than the Brits done with their car industry, at least the Brits have the illusion that their marques are still British. The sad and scary part is that Americans dont think that American cars are...American...but rather think that Japanese cars made in America are indeed American. To go further than that, American built German cars...remain to be German.
Americans will bitch and moan about the UAW and will bitch and moan about the American factory worker yet still want American car manufacturing to return back to America, yet most Americans poo poo the American built car but wont poo poo the foreign American made products. They call those American...
It boggles my mind how far this mess has gone since the 1970s oil crisis hit America.
It boggles my mind how we all have poo pooed American cars during the last 40 phoquing years yet we still praise foreign cars yet WE KNOW that foreign cars were JUST AS BAD, IF NOT WORSE then those shytty American cars.
Toyota went down a path in the late 1990s-mid 2000s that was JUST AS BAD, if NOT WORSE as GM's path was in the 1970s, yet here we are...we still poo poo on GM yet we phoquing praise Toyota.
AMERICA....GET YER SHYTE FIXED!!! GET YOUR HEADS SCREWED ON PROPERLY. YA"LL MISSING A FEW SCREWS!!!
China's government is already quite authoritarian. Western companies will not leave because they believe there is too much money to be made there. By the time they think it is time to leave, it will be too late.
As for Ford or GM to be truly global automakers, that time has unfortunately passed. VW Group and Toyota are essentially protected at home in a way that Ford and GM never were. Both will stand astride the world like a colossus while Ford and GM are essentially second-tier players.
I agree with you on the Generic FWD/AWD platforms that is shared with Chevy/GMC.
I think while your right about the Power Surge of the communist in China, it is still a good way to have the US in a positive light of selling our products there rather than walk away from a market that makes up 1/5th of the world population. I think we need to fight to show democracy everywhere. Just need better leadership to see a global vision of growth at GM and a plan on how to accomplish that.
I can't imagine why any Western company continues to do business with China. Their government is getting more and more powerful and authoritarian...it's time for Western companies to leave, IMO.
Nothing of value left of Buick at this point, just a bunch of platform shared FWD generics...same appliances sold as Chevy and GMC with different styling.