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Bob Bonniface Snipes at the Aerodynamic Qualities of the Competition

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[source: Inside Line]

Chevrolet Volt's Design Director Snipes at the Aerodynamic Qualities of the Competition

Date posted: 07-29-2009

2011.chevrolet.volt.2.500.jpg

DETROIT — The war of words between the creators of the Chevrolet Volt and its competition are getting ugly. In a Web chat on Tuesday on the corporate GM FastLane blog, the Volt design director accused the competition of "grossly exaggerated aero figures that are not repeatable when we test their vehicles in our tunnel."

Bob Boniface, the Volt design director, did not name names. But he made the remark in response to a question by Lyle Dennis from GM-Volt.com, who mentioned that the Tesla Model S is said to have a coefficient of drag of 0.27. Drag coefficient is a measure of the aerodynamic qualities of a vehicle, a critical component for fuel saving.

Boniface refused to issue a CD number for the Volt, however. "People may think we are skirting the aero issue by not quoting our tunnel figures," he wrote. He added: "If I quote an actual GM-derived tunnel figure, it may not look impressive to you when, in fact, it is superior to most, if not all our competition.

"It is very much like the horsepower race back in the '60s. The Volt aero performance is second only to the EV1 in GM history."

Boniface said GM plans to test the 2010 Toyota Prius "this week." "I expect the Volt to stand up to the competition," he added.

The Web chat revealed that Goodyear has sourced a "unique, low-rolling-resistance" tire for the Volt that Boniface said "may find its way onto other GM vehicles." However, each vehicle has its own mission and own set of tradeoffs," he noted. "For instance, I would not put this tire on a Corvette or Camaro."

As for the the big picture, Boniface said: "Volt design is done. Still a bit of work to do on Opel Ampera. Working on some other (secret) projects now."

When asked how the Cadillac Converj would look compared to its concept version should it ever make it into production, Boniface said the transition would be easier than moving the Volt from concept to production form. He said the Converj would have an easier time "because it was based off the production Volt architecture."

In terms of interior features, Boniface said Volt designers have "added features such as dual LCD screens in the interior, as well as fully touch-sensitive controls for the center stack." He described those controls as "an industry first."

He also clarified that there will be separate ports on opposite sides of the Volt for fuel and electricity.

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Why won't he say what the Volt's drag coefficient is? I am guessing it isn't great, a Corvette's is .29 and GM isn't known for aerodynamics. If it were great they'd be saying so. I doubt they even get this thing as aerodynamic as the S-class.

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Why won't he say what the Volt's drag coefficient is? I am guessing it isn't great, a Corvette's is .29 and GM isn't known for aerodynamics. If it were great they'd be saying so. I doubt they even get this thing as aerodynamic as the S-class.

Didn't Car and Driver estimate what the drag was going to be on the Volt?

Bonniface says it is second best to the EV1.

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Why won't he say what the Volt's drag coefficient is? I am guessing it isn't great, a Corvette's is .29 and GM isn't known for aerodynamics. If it were great they'd be saying so. I doubt they even get this thing as aerodynamic as the S-class.

Because they're still tweaking the details. Of course it's going to be aerodynamic, that's why it doesn't look like teh concept. Please think a little before you spew such garbage onto the internet.

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Why won't he say what the Volt's drag coefficient is? I am guessing it isn't great, a Corvette's is .29 and GM isn't known for aerodynamics. If it were great they'd be saying so. I doubt they even get this thing as aerodynamic as the S-class.

Maybe because drag coefficient is just a pissing match that doesn't directly hurt or benefit the consumer, it just contributes toward efficiency, which does benefit the consumer. If the Prius is .30 and the Volt is .32, people like you would get jollys off of retarded rants about how GM is the devil and incompetent, even if the final product is superior in efficiency.

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Car and driver didn't estimate it. The Saab 9-3 is .28 and the Corvette is .29, those are GM's most aerodynamic cars. .27 is all they need to be second to the EV1, which shouldn't be that hard, but an S-class is .26 and the 2010 Prius is .25.

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Well, the EV1 was .19 and I bet they are planning on trying to get as close as possible to that number.

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Shhh... Ferrari F430 has a CD of 0.34 (With Reference).

And given its more than three decades of continuous F1 racing and testing it has no knowledge of Aerodynamics and is poor at it.

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Why won't he say what the Volt's drag coefficient is? I am guessing it isn't great, a Corvette's is .29 and GM isn't known for aerodynamics. If it were great they'd be saying so. I doubt they even get this thing as aerodynamic as the S-class.

today, class, we will study the advantage of reading comprehension skills.

Bob Boniface, the Volt design director, did not name names. But he made the remark in response to a question by Lyle Dennis from GM-Volt.com, who mentioned that the Tesla Model S is said to have a coefficient of drag of 0.27. Drag coefficient is a measure of the aerodynamic qualities of a vehicle, a critical component for fuel saving.

Boniface refused to issue a CD number for the Volt, however. "People may think we are skirting the aero issue by not quoting our tunnel figures," he wrote. He added: "If I quote an actual GM-derived tunnel figure, it may not look impressive to you when, in fact, it is superior to most, if not all our competition.

The Web chat revealed that Goodyear has sourced a "unique, low-rolling-resistance" tire for the Volt that Boniface said "may find its way onto other GM vehicles." However, each vehicle has its own mission and own set of tradeoffs," he noted. "For instance, I would not put this tire on a Corvette or Camaro."

Edited by cletus8269
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Yes, just read the article, he tells you why he doesn't say what the drag coefficient is. He said they have tested other companies vehicles and were not able to get the same results as the other company claimed. So if another company claims .28, but GM tests that same vehicle and gets .32, and GM tests the volt and gets .29, why would they release that info? For people to look at the numbers and think the volt is inferior, when it actually did better in their tests?

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