One six hour charge will give you 80 kilometres of emission free (apart from that used to generate the electricity initially) travel, enough for most city bound commuters each day. If needed however the new Holden Volt can extend its range by using petroleum in the normal manner, or assisted by recharging the 16.5-kWh lithium-ion battery pack.
The Volt is due for release this coming November, and is indicative of the kind of changes required in the Australian automotive manufacturing industry. The good news seems that beyond all the cool green technology, the Volt has been designed for Australian conditions (that is, long distance driving) and is proving to be packed with many other innovative safety features.
“As more electric vehicles enter the market, no doubt consumers are interested to learn of any additional safety concerns regarding these vehicles when involved in a crash,” said ANCAP (Australasian New Car Assessment Program) Chairman, Mr Lauchlan McIntosh.
Mr McIntosh also remarked, “In addition to the Volt being one of the safest choices for consumers, it also has an innovative range-extending petrol generator making it an attractive green vehicle for non-urban areas.”
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New active advanced safety features including Lane Departure Warning and Forward Collision Alert will be offered for the first time in a Holden, making Volt one of the safest vehicles on the road.
Volt’s Lane Departure Warning helps to modify collision risks that may arise when drivers stray over lane markings unintentionally, or depart a lane without signalling first. The system uses a windscreen-mounted digital camera that looks for lane markings to provide lane departure alerts over a certain speed.
The Forward Collision Alert system uses the same windscreen-mounted camera for lane departure warning to detect slow or stationary traffic in front of the vehicle. The system looks for vehicles ahead and warns drivers if they are following another vehicle too closely.
Volt’s safety is further enhanced with the inclusion of eight airbags, a rear view camera, front and rear parking sensors, electric park brake and Electronic Stability Control (ESC) incorporating Anti-lock Braking System (ABS), brake assist, electronic brakeforce distribution and traction control.
“With a simple one model line-up, we've packed everything into this vehicle so that its list of standard features is what you would expect to find in a top of the range premium vehicle,” Curtis said.