Blog: Dave LeggettPetrol tank for GM's Volt

Dave Leggett | 9 July 2008

There's an interesting posting on Autoblog that raises a thorny question for engineers working on plug-ins that come with a supplementary gasoline engine to boost range by using the engine to generate electricity. How much fuel do you need to be carrying around? Much depends on how much range can come directly from the battery charge-up and also how efficient the power generation is when the car is running indirectly on fossil fuel. 

Here's another thought though.

Just how will people actually use such a vehicle in the real world? Those doing mainly short daily journeys may rely on plug-in charging most of the time and get into a groove of charging the battery nightly and keeping the tank near empty to save weight. Great. But would others just get into the habit of filling up the tank and mainly use a car like the Volt on the supplementary ICE if they cover plenty of miles? And if so, I wonder what the mpg might look like bearing in mind the slightly convoluted transmission of power from source to wheels?  



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