GM Canada was joined in Toronto today by Ontario Transportation Minister Jim Bradley and Ontario Power Generation (OPG) Chief Nuclear Officer Tom Mitchell to unveil the new production version of the Chevrolet Volt extended range electric car slated to start production by General Motors in 2010.
The three partners announced new Ontario based R&D and public education initiatives that will help prepare the way in Ontario for a new, fast approaching, fleet of safe, highway-ready electrically powered vehicles. The event marked the first public viewing anywhere for the new production version of the Chevrolet Volt since its world debut at GM's 100th Anniversary event in Detroit on September 16.
"The Chevrolet Volt extended range electric car really embodies the excitement we feel at GM as we look forward to our next 100 years in the automotive business," said David Paterson, GM Canada Vice President, Corporate & Environmental Affairs. "Partners like the Province of Ontario and OPG play an important role today in paving the way for these exciting new electric car technologies that are right around the corner."
"Working together to communicate the environmental benefits of the innovative Chevrolet Volt makes sense for both OPG and GM, in that both companies are dedicated to a future that includes cleaner vehicles supported by cleaner electricity," said OPG Chief Nuclear Officer, Tom Mitchell.
"Ontario's roads are ready right now for electric vehicles like the Chevrolet Volt," said Ontario Transportation Minister Jim Bradley. "Clean, safe transportation options are critical in response to the energy and environmental challenges we are facing, not just here in Ontario, but around the world."
OPG and GM announced a new public education advertising campaign to raise public awareness of the environmental benefits of cleaner electricity powering new battery driven electric vehicles in Ontario.
GM Canada also announced it will work with OPG and others in the electricity sector on studies to assess the CO2 reduction potential of off-peak evening recharging of electric vehicles like the Chevrolet Volt.
With provincial and federal support, GM confirmed it is proceeding in Oshawa, Ontario with a new $40 million initiative in advanced technology R&D projects focused on the electrification of the car and other fuel efficiency improvements. This significant automotive advanced technology work, the largest project of its kind in Canada, will be conducted with selected Ontario based suppliers such as OPG and with Ontario universities including the University of Ontario Institute of Technology in Durham Region.
About the Chevrolet Volt
The Chevrolet Volt is leading a new era of electrification of the automobile by creating a new class of vehicle known as the Extended-Range Electric Vehicle, or E-REV.
The Chevrolet Volt uses electricity to move the wheels at all times and speeds. For trips up to 65 kilometres, the Chevrolet Volt is powered only by electricity stored in its 16-kWh, lithium-ion battery. When the battery's energy is depleted, a gasoline/E85-powered engine generator seamlessly provides electricity to power the Chevrolet Volt's electric drive unit while simultaneously sustaining the charge of the battery. This mode of operation extends the range of the Chevrolet Volt for several hundred additional kilometres, until the vehicle's battery can be charged. Unlike a conventional battery-electric vehicle, the Chevrolet Volt eliminates "range anxiety," giving the confidence and peace of mind that the driver will not be stranded by a depleted battery.