Jump to content
  • Drew Dowdell
    Drew Dowdell

    SPIED: Chevy's smallest EV drops its CAMO!

    Sign in to follow this  

    Drew Dowdell - February 24, 2012 - CheersandGears.com

    Photo by Chris Doane Automotive, LLC - May not be used elsewhere without permission of photographer.

    The last time we saw a 2014 Spark EV prototype, the front end was covered in heavy camouflage and rear was held together with pop-rivets. Today, we've spied another Spark EV prototype with the production bodywork in place and almost NO camouflage.

    From our spy photos, we can see the Spark EV will get a different front end from its' gasoline brother. A new, smaller grille is in place, with filler panels that mimic the styling of the panels we find on the Chevy Volt. The Spark EV also has a new lower fascia and new styling around the fog lights.

    On the driver's side, front quarter panel, the door to access the charging port is clearly visible.

    The rear fascia on the Spark EV is also new, and looks to protrude from the car more than the bumper we find on the gasoline-powered Spark. This is likely to provide more room for the battery pack. It's also easy to see that this Spark is, of course, NOT sporting any tailpipes.

    Motivation for the Spark EV will come from a 114hp, permanent magnet electric motor, built at a GM plant in White Marsh Maryland. That motor will get its' juice from a lithium-ion pack manufactured by A123 Systems.

    GM will hope to have this all-electric Spark on sale sometime in the first half of 2013.

    Full size photo:

    Chevrolet Spark EV without camo

    Sign in to follow this  


    User Feedback

    Recommended Comments



    You are going to argue a point on Horses here and try to make a point with the Electrovair II LOL! You have got to better than that.

    I stand by my post.

    The Electrovair II from its specs is within a magnitude of the Leaf, except it seats 5 people comfortably. And GM developed it FOUR decades before the Leaf.

    Stand by your post... you said little has been invested on electrics since the Detroit and Baker Electrics. GM didn't build these cars on a shoestring. Plenty has been invested... decade after decade, because just as electrics had a place in 1910, they also could have carved out a foothold in 1945, 1960, 1973, 1979 and 1991... _IF_ they could be made compelling.

    Battery development is not at a standstill. Electric motor development is not at a stand still.

    Nobody said it was. But it is very slow... and its severely constrained by certain limits imposed by physics. Hasn't anyone stayed awake during an advanced physics class?

    You guys want range? The 640hp AWD electric mini-cooper has a range of 200 - 250 miles. Or... roughly Pittsburgh to D.C.

    If they made it just FWD *cough* sorry, if they made it just RWD and 320hp, and only increased the range to 350miles, that would still be a longer cruising range than I have on my Toronado or CR-V or my old CTS.

    I realize it is just a concept, but it is also proof of concept.

    Its also 6 years old.

    I love the PML powertrains... they seem to have a nice solution... by moving the motors into the wheels, you can free up more space for batteries... but that only solves so much... and these PML units are REAL pricy... and the OEMs so far have offered up a collective 'Yawn'.

    Share this comment


    Link to comment
    Share on other sites

    Fine, say that the auto makers had a collective yawn (save volvo which is looking at it seriously) but don't go around saying that electric cars with decent range and decent power can't be done.

    As for the batteries, the packaging of cars has changed tremendously since the Electrovair such that the installation of the batteries in that car didn't compromise interior space. I can find plenty of room in various parts of my Toronado to install battery packs as well especially after swapping out 5 liters of Iron Block for a Tesla motor the size of a watermelon.

    The main developments in batteries have been in size and weight. Had the Electrovair used modern batteries that took the same volume/weight of today's high tech LiO batteries along with modern electric powertrain, it is likely its performance and range would increase dramatically.

    You can't simply say that the since the Electrovair and the Leaf have the same range then battery technology hasn't improved at all in 50 years. You are leaving out far too much data to come to that conclusion.

    But hey, the Model-A Ford got 30 mpg and the 2012 Camaro V6 automatic gets 29mpg.... there hasn't been any improvement in fuel economy in 80 years!!!!!1!!!!!11eliventy!!!!!

    Share this comment


    Link to comment
    Share on other sites

    One other important detail was the Electrovair was just a enginnering experiment, a prototype..not a production car. The Spark EV is going to be the real deal.

    • Upvote 3

    Share this comment


    Link to comment
    Share on other sites

    You are going to argue a point on Horses here and try to make a point with the Electrovair II LOL! You have got to better than that.

    I stand by my post.

    The Electrovair II from its specs is within a magnitude of the Leaf, except it seats 5 people comfortably. And GM developed it FOUR decades before the Leaf.

    Stand by your post... you said little has been invested on electrics since the Detroit and Baker Electrics. GM didn't build these cars on a shoestring. Plenty has been invested... decade after decade, because just as electrics had a place in 1910, they also could have carved out a foothold in 1945, 1960, 1973, 1979 and 1991... _IF_ they could be made compelling.

    Battery development is not at a standstill. Electric motor development is not at a stand still.

    Nobody said it was. But it is very slow... and its severely constrained by certain limits imposed by physics. Hasn't anyone stayed awake during an advanced physics class?

    You guys want range? The 640hp AWD electric mini-cooper has a range of 200 - 250 miles. Or... roughly Pittsburgh to D.C.

    If they made it just FWD *cough* sorry, if they made it just RWD and 320hp, and only increased the range to 350miles, that would still be a longer cruising range than I have on my Toronado or CR-V or my old CTS.

    I realize it is just a concept, but it is also proof of concept.

    Its also 6 years old.

    I love the PML powertrains... they seem to have a nice solution... by moving the motors into the wheels, you can free up more space for batteries... but that only solves so much... and these PML units are REAL pricy... and the OEMs so far have offered up a collective 'Yawn'.

    I speak in production terms not prototype terms on vehicles that were not anymore production than the Chrysler Turbine was.

    When I speak investment I speak in terms of a real production cars of today. I will give you the EV-1 had some things that have contributed to the Volt but the EV1 was not really even clost to a true production car. GM knew they had a lot of work ahead of them hence the lease only deals to a limited market.

    From the Baker and Detroit Electric to the Leaf and Volt there has been little attempt to make a real prduction car that the average buyer would even consider. These are the first real mainstream cars that address the needs of real daily dirvers and to make an electric car that drives, rides and has the feel of a gas only car. The Volt is the first to come damn close and right now the price is the only area that really is holding up higher sales.

    I would have never considered an electric car till they came out with the Electric Gas combo. It solves a lot due to the lack of better batteries and would be a good foot hold to grow this segment of the market vs the token fleet sale Rangers and Golf cart models mof the past.

    Your perspective is not focused on todays maket and the fact that for the first time in decades they are attempting to makie a regular production Electric cars that would be a real option to some buyers.

    So in other words drop the science experiment notes and and get with the program by looking at this from a production stand point.

    • Upvote 2
    • Downvote 1

    Share this comment


    Link to comment
    Share on other sites

    Fine, say that the auto makers had a collective yawn (save volvo which is looking at it seriously) but don't go around saying that electric cars with decent range and decent power can't be done.

    Done within economic reason... its still too expensive to pack high range into an EV. Nobody is paying six figures for a PML electric Mini that can barely outrange a gasoline one. And done in a format that isn't only suitable to move small payloads...

    The main developments in batteries have been in size and weight. Had the Electrovair used modern batteries that took the same volume/weight of today's high tech LiO batteries along with modern electric powertrain, it is likely its performance and range would increase dramatically.

    The Electrovair II's Silver Zinc batteries are actually fairly lightweight as batteries go and modern Silver Zinc batteries provide 40 percent more run time than Li Ion batteries, according to Wiki. Overall, Silver Zinc energy density tops out at 500Wh/L, as opposed to Li Ion at 625Wh/L... which demonstrates that Li Ion is not light years ahead of other battery technologies.

    Again, you guys act like Li Ion batteries have suddenly become awesome in the last couple years. They haven't. They've been around for 30 years and commercially available for 20. Will they continue to get better, sure... but at a slow rate... and due to lithium being the lightest solid, we've run out of potential light elements to use as a base.

    'High tech powertrain'... LOL.

    Share this comment


    Link to comment
    Share on other sites

    Fine, say that the auto makers had a collective yawn (save volvo which is looking at it seriously) but don't go around saying that electric cars with decent range and decent power can't be done.

    Done within economic reason... its still too expensive to pack high range into an EV. Nobody is paying six figures for a PML electric Mini that can barely outrange a gasoline one. And done in a format that isn't only suitable to move small payloads...

    The main developments in batteries have been in size and weight. Had the Electrovair used modern batteries that took the same volume/weight of today's high tech LiO batteries along with modern electric powertrain, it is likely its performance and range would increase dramatically.

    The Electrovair II's Silver Zinc batteries are actually fairly lightweight as batteries go and modern Silver Zinc batteries provide 40 percent more run time than Li Ion batteries, according to Wiki. Overall, Silver Zinc energy density tops out at 500Wh/L, as opposed to Li Ion at 625Wh/L... which demonstrates that Li Ion is not light years ahead of other battery technologies.

    Again, you guys act like Li Ion batteries have suddenly become awesome in the last couple years. They haven't. They've been around for 30 years and commercially available for 20. Will they continue to get better, sure... but at a slow rate... and due to lithium being the lightest solid, we've run out of potential light elements to use as a base.

    'High tech powertrain'... LOL.

    There again you miss the mark again.

    I really don't think anyone is expecting Li Ion batteries are the only thing that will come in the next 10 years [unless you are the only one]. There are new technologies and materials being tested and used that may break through the present barriers we have now. This is a lot more than just cars as Cell phones Computers, Pads and even heart implants need better power. The fact is the need for better batteries are now greater than any other time in human history and with the addition of the auto market the demand has just taken an even greater jump.

    With the greater increase in investment in these power storage systems more ground will be gain in shorter times. It is no seceret that the person who solves the power storage issue will reap not only fame but would be in line for billions and billions dollars. THis is a prize greater than the X prize as this one would effect all parts of our lives.

    There are new materials being created every day and like Edison who tested so many filiments for his bulbs some one will find the break through in time.

    Share this comment


    Link to comment
    Share on other sites

    I would like to recomend that we all read the story on page 24 of Autoweeks March 5th issue.

    They have a story that looks at the 54.5 CAFE for 2025. This story shows what is going on and different points of views of many insiders as to what to expect. Some things are good, some are bad and some views are eye opening.

    Things are poined out as these.

    Downsizing. Everything will get smaller trucks cars and even luxury. We are already seeing this in the Benz A body and even the Buick Verano.

    Lightweighting Everything will ve judged for cutting weight from leather seats to entertainment system. Some have suggested with the smart phones and pads that your radio and nav system may be based on you smart product you plug in.

    Decontenting Many see removing the spare as only the first of many steps. Brake systems, Steering systems, Entertainment systems will all be looked at. Drive by wire systems may be used in brake and steering to remove large amounts of weight. Again msmart phone or cloud systems used for onboard entertainment or diagnostics.

    Changing Materials. New materials and more expensive materials will be used. Plastics and composites will be used in everything. New plastic body panels are now being promoted by Bayer in Germany again. Saturn fans rejoice.

    Losing Family Members. They say to expect some automakers to abandon some markets and toss some models overboard vs trying to make them get better MPG. One GM engineer stated "I envision full size SUV's just going away. Something new will come along to fill the niche...although I don't know what that might be".

    These are just a few of the thoughts in this story. By the comments by many it sounds as if they expect some major changes but at this time they are not even sure what. A lot depends on the MFG's getting the average buyers to increase buying EV cars and hybrids. If the public starts to buy more of these and they gain in market share the remaning vehicles will have to face a little less dramatic changes. Change they will but no where near what they would have to change.

    OIther issues to be faces are the fact the United States does not have the capacity right now to handel the needs for more aluminum casting. Not just the car will change but the way they are build, designed and even the plants will have to changed everything accept the 4 walls.

    Credits are in play. If a MFG like Honda is well over the average others like GM could buy these credits.

    1/2 ton trucks are under the gun but the 3/4 and one tons will not have as harsh standards. The issue will be to keep 1/2 tons the one vehicle that has the greatest impact on our auto market something people still want to buy. We will not see aluminum frames but more V6 engines and weight reduction in other areas. This is the one tough segment that will have to be address and can not be abandoned.

    There is a lot more but this can give you an idea of how they tried to breakdown the well over 800 pages of the new EPA standards for Fuel. This does not even touch emissions.

    If you can get a copy take a read and while it is not anything carved in stone it give you a real indication how drastic things could become. This is not a sky is falling story just facts that will have to be looked at depending on some factors still in flux.

    Once you read this you really understand that the EV sales will be very imporatant to the future of the cars we love. Also you will understand that most cars will have some hybrid system on it.

    Share this comment


    Link to comment
    Share on other sites

    I really don't think anyone is expecting Li Ion batteries are the only thing that will come in the next 10 years [unless you are the only one]. There are new technologies and materials being tested and used that may break through the present barriers we have now.

    Li Ion batteries are the only game in town until we find a lighter, more reactive element than lithium... that gets involved in an easily reversable chemical reaction that produces electric. Please consult your periodic table, and you will see few alternatives.

    We've spent over a century testing compounds... but the bottom line is that we didn't get to Li Ion by guessing. We looked at the elements and found one that has the specifications that lead to a battery that gives a decent specific energy. Its very possible that this fantastic breakthrough will not come. The compounds we can make from a finite bunch of elements do not guarantee we can make a super battery.

    This is a lot more than just cars as Cell phones Computers, Pads and even heart implants need better power. The fact is the need for better batteries are now greater than any other time in human history and with the addition of the auto market the demand has just taken an even greater jump.

    Oh really?... seems Apple has filed patents to switch off batteries and move to hydrogen fuel cells, so you'll be refueling your iPhone and iPad and it will emit water vapor. The paradigm of fueling and emissions sounds more like the advertisement about a world where everything was gasoline powered, than the sleek battery powered future the EV optimists are forecasting. The bottom line: the very smart people at Apple have seen the forecasted future of the battery (and the ultracapacitor) and don't see the power they need... for a smartphone or tablet! Do I believe it will come to this?... no... I think we will just suffer with crappy batteries... just like we have for a century.

    With the greater increase in investment in these power storage systems more ground will be gain in shorter times. It is no seceret that the person who solves the power storage issue will reap not only fame but would be in line for billions and billions dollars. THis is a prize greater than the X prize as this one would effect all parts of our lives.

    And yet the break through discovery of the century has not been realised. Amazing. Just spend more money. Common sense and existing technologies are not the answer, but undiscovered science will save us!

    So you are of the belief that the more R&D money we throw at cold fusion, the faster we get functioning cold fusion, since its only a matter of testing every compound we can invent? Then we could be skipping this battery mucky-muck with its caustic chemistry and just invent Mr. Fusion.

    There are new materials being created every day and like Edison who tested so many filiments for his bulbs some one will find the break through in time.

    Edison tested filaments for less than 2 years and came back to a carbonized filament based on bamboo (first used in 1854) for his historic 1880 bulb patent. General Electric didn't use the tungsten filament until it was already done in Europe in 1906. Edison was better at stealing ideas and being a businessman than an inventor. Of course, this was also done in an era of science when we weren't able to predict ahead of time the characteristics of the missing elements on the period table or of molecules that had not been made in a laboratory. We can do that today... and so when we need a material for a particular task, we can immediately eliminate hundreds of thousands of compounds. This is why we aren't attempting to build a better battery in 2012 with bamboo filaments.

    Oh, and that post about the 54.5 mpg EPA thing... I really don't think that Americans will allow it, once people see what cuts they have to make.

    Edited by SAmadei

    Share this comment


    Link to comment
    Share on other sites

    I really don't think anyone is expecting Li Ion batteries are the only thing that will come in the next 10 years [unless you are the only one]. There are new technologies and materials being tested and used that may break through the present barriers we have now.

    Li Ion batteries are the only game in town until we find a lighter, more reactive element than lithium... that gets involved in an easily reversable chemical reaction that produces electric. Please consult your periodic table, and you will see few alternatives.

    We've spent over a century testing compounds... but the bottom line is that we didn't get to Li Ion by guessing. We looked at the elements and found one that has the specifications that lead to a battery that gives a decent specific energy. Its very possible that this fantastic breakthrough will not come. The compounds we can make from a finite bunch of elements do not guarantee we can make a super battery.

    This is a lot more than just cars as Cell phones Computers, Pads and even heart implants need better power. The fact is the need for better batteries are now greater than any other time in human history and with the addition of the auto market the demand has just taken an even greater jump.

    Oh really?... seems Apple has filed patents to switch off batteries and move to hydrogen fuel cells, so you'll be refueling your iPhone and iPad and it will emit water vapor. The paradigm of fueling and emissions sounds more like the advertisement about a world where everything was gasoline powered, than the sleek battery powered future the EV optimists are forecasting. The bottom line: the very smart people at Apple have seen the forecasted future of the battery (and the ultracapacitor) and don't see the power they need... for a smartphone or tablet! Do I believe it will come to this?... no... I think we will just suffer with crappy batteries... just like we have for a century.

    With the greater increase in investment in these power storage systems more ground will be gain in shorter times. It is no seceret that the person who solves the power storage issue will reap not only fame but would be in line for billions and billions dollars. THis is a prize greater than the X prize as this one would effect all parts of our lives.

    And yet the break through discovery of the century has not been realised. Amazing. Just spend more money. Common sense and existing technologies are not the answer, but undiscovered science will save us!

    So you are of the belief that the more R&D money we throw at cold fusion, the faster we get functioning cold fusion, since its only a matter of testing every compound we can invent? Then we could be skipping this battery mucky-muck with its caustic chemistry and just invent Mr. Fusion.

    There are new materials being created every day and like Edison who tested so many filiments for his bulbs some one will find the break through in time.

    Edison tested filaments for less than 2 years and came back to a carbonized filament based on bamboo (first used in 1854) for his historic 1880 bulb patent. General Electric didn't use the tungsten filament until it was already done in Europe in 1906. Edison was better at stealing ideas and being a businessman than an inventor. Of course, this was also done in an era of science when we weren't able to predict ahead of time the characteristics of the missing elements on the period table or of molecules that had not been made in a laboratory. We can do that today... and so when we need a material for a particular task, we can immediately eliminate hundreds of thousands of compounds. This is why we aren't attempting to build a better battery in 2012 with bamboo filaments.

    Oh, and that post about the 54.5 mpg EPA thing... I really don't think that Americans will allow it, once people see what cuts they have to make.

    Bla... Bla... Bla.... Read the story and learn what is really going on by people that are a little more involved than you or I.

    By the way you can stop the Quote machine as I stopped reading them. .

    • Upvote 1
    • Downvote 1

    Share this comment


    Link to comment
    Share on other sites

    By the way you can stop the Quote machine as I stopped reading them. .

    I don't care if you read them. Others do and I'm only pointing out counterpoints to your overly optimistic propaganda.

    • Upvote 1
    • Downvote 3

    Share this comment


    Link to comment
    Share on other sites

    The EPA needs a choker collar, and a strong arm to yank the leash.

    How about a shock collar? We can dial it up to 10.

    I would also add those elected officals that love to pass rules but hate the automobile and the auto industry but they love to take UAW money.

    Share this comment


    Link to comment
    Share on other sites

    By the way you can stop the Quote machine as I stopped reading them. .

    I don't care if you read them. Others do and I'm only pointing out counterpoints to your overly optimistic propaganda.

    All I have to add is I did not do the negitive you recieved on your post. I guess you are correct and others are still reading. :scratchchin:

    Edited by hyperv6

    Share this comment


    Link to comment
    Share on other sites

    Since when are we the country of "can't!"

    Not sure exactly, but it's been some time...

    Around 2001 we started to become a country of Can't seems 9/11 has allowed the Gov to tell you what you CAN'T and Can do. More CAN't thand CAN.

    Very sad editorial of our last 12 years.

    • Upvote 1

    Share this comment


    Link to comment
    Share on other sites

    A lot of the can't went with the cuts with space program. A funded NASA made greater gains vs private industry alone can afford. The space program created problems that needed solved and the private contractors to NASA solved them and were able to sell the technology for their new products that have touched every part of our lives.

    Now that money is going to stimulus Union contract construction jobs that are often over budget and short term.

    As for what the goverment saying what you can or can't do has been in place since the TR and Wilson terms. Some of this regulation was good but much of it is over regulation by a under regulated govement.

    The Patriot act since 2011 is a whole different argument.

    • Upvote 1

    Share this comment


    Link to comment
    Share on other sites

    Well I saw a Gas Spark today. It really make the Sonic look like a great car.

    The Spark has two styling elements to it that really hurt it from what I saw. It looks narrow and tall. Compare this to the Scion IQ it looks less solid.

    As for the second issue. The area where the fender, door and A pillar comes together just has little flow to it.

    I can only hope it makes a really good cheap electric car.

    Share this comment


    Link to comment
    Share on other sites



    Join the conversation

    You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.
    Note: Your post will require moderator approval before it will be visible.

    Guest
    Add a comment...

    ×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

      Only 75 emoji are allowed.

    ×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

    ×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

    ×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.




About us

CheersandGears.com - Founded 2001

We ♥ Cars

Get in touch

Follow us

Recent tweets

facebook

×
×
  • Create New...