The 2011 Chevrolet Volt was recently named the 2011 Green Car of the Year by Green Car Journal. The announcement came at last week's Los Angeles Auto Show, which also featured GCJ finalists Nissan Leaf, Ford Fiesta, Hyundai Sonata Hybrid, and Lincoln MKZ Hybrid. The Volt is the first electric vehicle to take the top prize.
The Volt was singled out for delivering 25 to 50 miles of all-electric driving on a single charge, before a gas-powered on-board generator provides electricity to power the wheels for an additional 300 miles. This ability to allow extended electric drive range after the car's batteries are exhausted is an important element that helps address the 'range anxiety' that some people fear with battery-powered electric cars.
"This has been a long time coming," said Ron Cogan, editor and publisher of Green Car Journal and editor of GreenCar.com. "The electric vehicles that were test marketed in the 1990s tantalized us, but were without a solid business case. What a difference a decade makes. Now, Chevrolet has stepped up with an all-encompassing package in its Volt extended range electric car – a car deserving of the title 2011 Green Car of the Year."
If a decade makes all the difference, it will be exciting to see the business-savvy green technologies that will continue to emerge in the next.
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