Chevrolet Volt Review
The 2014 Chevrolet Volt ranks 12 out of 22 Upscale Midsize Cars. This ranking is based on our analysis of published reviews and test drives of the Chevrolet Volt, as well as reliability and safety data.
Reviewers like the 2014 Chevrolet Volt plug-in hybrid's useful electric-only driving range and composed driving dynamics, but say its practicality is limited by its cramped back seats and meager cargo space.
The Chevrolet Volt is powered by a pair of electric motors and a gasoline engine that serves as a backup generator for the motors when the battery is depleted. Reviewers say the powertrain provides ample power in all situations. Running only on electricity, the Volt achieves an EPA-estimated 98 mpg-equivalent, which is on par with other plug-in hybrids’ estimates. When the gas engine kicks in, it is rated at 35/40 mpg city/highway, which is a bit less than other plug-in hybrids’ fuel economy. However, compared with those rivals, the Volt has a substantially farther electric-only driving range of 38 miles per fully-charged battery. Despite its high-tech hybrid powertrain, the Volt scores points with reviewers for driving much like a regular car, with composed handling and responsive steering.
Reviewers say the 2014 Volt has a modern-looking interior constructed with high-quality materials. The Volt seats up to four people, and many test drivers say that the front seats are comfortable, but the rear seats offer little headroom and legroom. Some critics also note that, for a hatchback, the Volt doesn't offer much cargo space. However, its cargo bay is similarly-sized to other plug-in hybrids’. Reviewers say that the touch-sensitive controls on the center stack are sometimes difficult to use. Standard equipment includes Bluetooth, Chevrolet's MyLink infotainment system, a six-speaker stereo and automatic climate control. Optional features include navigation, a backup camera, rear parking sensors and an energy-efficient Bose stereo system, which reviewers say delivers crisp, clear sound.
- "Harnessing the best of two worlds, the 2014 Volt is a viable and attractive solution within green motoring. And Chevrolet offers lease deals on the Volt that take the sting away from its high sticker price." -- AutoTrader
- "The 2014 Chevy Volt has the best all-electric range of any plug-in hybrid, while its gasoline engine offers peace of mind that true electric vehicles can't match. Best of all, this year's price drop makes the Volt much more attainable." -- Edmunds
- "Even with a price reduction and tax credits, the 2014 Volt doesn't come cheap. The Volt's back seat is small, and only holds two people, limiting its usefulness to many urban buyers." -- Kelley Blue Book
- "The choice of gas or electricity as a power source is freeing in a way that pure electric power may never be, but the overall vehicle experience isn't appealing enough yet. Maybe when this level of technology finds its way into a less fussy, more utilitarian package, GM will have a winner." -- Forbes (2013)
Other Cars to Consider
The Toyota Prius Plug-in seats up to five and has more cargo space than the Volt. Additionally, it achieves nearly the same mpg-equivalent when running on electricity, and when the gas engine kicks in, the Prius Plug-in’s fuel economy rating is significantly higher.
The Ford Fusion Energi is a plug-in hybrid that seats five and earns praise for its spacious and comfortable back seats. The Fusion Energi also uses less fuel than the Volt when it’s not running on electric power.
Details: 2014 Chevrolet Volt
The 2014 Chevrolet Volt seats four and has front-wheel drive. Power is supplied by a pair of electric motors, and a 1.4-liter four-cylinder engine powers the electric motors when the battery is depleted. Chevrolet offers the Volt in one trim only, but there are a number of stand-alone options available. The Volt may be eligible for a federal tax credit of up to $7,500. The Volt was introduced for the 2011 model year and has seen few changes since. As a result, this overview uses applicable research and reviews from 2011 to 2014.
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