Now with Chevrolet badge - the 2011 EN-V

Now with Chevrolet badge - the 2011 EN-V

Work on the next-generation Chevrolet EN-V concept vehicle, General Motors’ vision to meet the growing demand for safe, connected, zero-emissions personal transportation, is under way, it was announced today. The next-generation could participate in pilot demonstration programs in megacities around the world to determine real-world practicality.

In addition, future EN-V concepts will carry a Chevrolet badge, Chris Perry, vice president, global Chevrolet marketing and strategy, told media visiting Detroit in advance of Chevrolet’s 3 November centennial celebration.

“By 2030, more than 60% of the world’s 8bn people will live in urban areas,” said Perry. “The EN-V represents a possible solution for global customers living in markets where alternative transportation solutions are needed.”

The EN-V, short for Electric Networked-Vehicle, is a two-seat, electric urban mobility concept that maintains the basic principle of personal mobility - freedom.

Sampled by just-auto near Shanghai, where it was one of the stars of the World Expo there, the 2010 EN-V was designed to address environmental issues and help alleviate traffic congestion, parking, safety and energy consumption.

The next EN-V concept will add new features that customers need, such as climate control, personal storage space and all-weather operation, while preserving key elements of the original EN-V, such as the small footprint and manoeuvrability. It will also retain its battery electric propulsion, connectivity and autonomous driving capabilities.

“The Chevrolet EN-V has the potential to reinvent transportation in key markets by creating a new vehicle DNA through the convergence of electrification and connectivity,” said Chris Borroni-Bird, GM’s director of advanced technology vehicle concepts. “It provides an ideal solution for petroleum- and emission-free urban transportation that is free from congestion and crashes, and more fun and fashionable than ever before.”

In April, GM and the Sino-Singapore Tianjin Eco-City Investment and Development Co. Ltd. (SSTEC) signed a memorandum of understanding to collaborate on integrating the next-generation EN-V into the Tianjin Eco-City from a power, communications and physical infrastructure perspective.

Borroni-Bird said Chevrolet will explore other locations around the world – including the United States and Canada – for potential pilot programmes.

The EN-V is a zero-emissions vehicle powered by lithium-ion batteries. Recharging from a conventional wall outlet using standard household power enables it to travel at least 25 miles (40km) on a single charge, acceptable for most urban trips.

By combining GPS with vehicle-to-vehicle communications and distance-sensing technologies, the car can be driven manually or autonomously. In autonomous mode, it offers mobility to people who may not otherwise operate a vehicle. By leveraging wireless communications it allows drivers and occupants to communicate hands-free with friends or business associates while on the go.

The ability to communicate with other vehicles and with the infrastructure could help EN-V significantly reduce the number of vehicle crashes and make it easier to find available parking spaces. It could also reduce traffic congestion by automatically selecting the fastest route based on real-time traffic information.

“This technology platform of electric propulsion, sensors, wireless communications and GPS-based navigation is likely to migrate from the EN-V concept to other automobiles and could lead the way to safer, cleaner vehicles in the future,” said Borroni-Bird.