Towing with the Bolt - Chevy Bolt EV Forum
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post #1 of 14 (permalink) Old 10-09-2016, 05:03 AM Thread Starter
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Towing with the Bolt

With 150kw of power you should be able to tow a light trailer, but with front wheel drive??
Can a tow bar be fitted to the Bolt? even for a bike rack?
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post #2 of 14 (permalink) Old 10-09-2016, 11:46 AM
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I have a 2009 Chevy Equinox CUV (Gen 1 from 2005 to 2009), which is FWD and it has a factory tow bar. I have seen other Equinox CUVs towing a small boat, and I know that other FWD SUVs and CUVs can tow even heavier stuff. The Bolt EV is a small CUV type, so if GM offers a tow bar, then it will work, too. Bike racks exist for many vehicle, some much smaller than the Bolt EV.

Just wait until the Bolt EV arrives at your dealer, then order the tow bar and bike rack you need.

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post #3 of 14 (permalink) Old 10-09-2016, 04:25 PM
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The only thing CUVish about the Bolt EV is the seating height. It's basically a hatchback that is a little heavier than it looks.

I do not expect GM to offer a tow hitch as a dealer installed option. I suspect aftermarket companies will offer one eventually.

Dynamically, the Bolt EV would likely tow better than a similarly sized car. It has a long wheelbase, low cg and enough torque. But it's still only a small FWD car. Also, because it's already so efficient, the addition of a trailer will significantly impact range.

What kind or size trailer do you want to tow? Pulling a small utility trailer around town? Sure. Camper? No way.
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post #4 of 14 (permalink) Old 10-09-2016, 08:45 PM
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It's likely that Chevy will list towing capacity as zero/not recommended and doing so could potentially void the warranty.

You'd also need to cut/modify the "belly pan" to fit a tow bar. Not a good idea, particularly if you lease the vehicle.

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post #5 of 14 (permalink) Old 10-09-2016, 09:06 PM
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It will be interesting to see how Opel limits towing with the Ampera-e verses how Chevy limits the Bolt EV. Towing with small cars is more expected and accepted in Europe.

A Class 1 hitch (1.25", 2000lbs) may be reasonable but Chevy would much rather sell you other (higher margin) products for towing. It's just too easy for them to say "no" since the market of Bolt EV buyers wanting to tow is likely very small. Look at the Volt or Malibu as surrogates here. You can expect the same warnings in their manuals to be cut-and-pasted into the Bolt EV owners manual.
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post #6 of 14 (permalink) Old 10-09-2016, 09:25 PM
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...looks like the Volt and Trax get "The vehicle is neither designed nor intended to tow a trailer or another vehicle." The Malibu however does have a 1000 lbs towing capacity per the manual, so there's hope.

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post #7 of 14 (permalink) Old 10-11-2016, 10:26 AM
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Can't you still install a bike rack even though the factory says not to tow a trailer or vehicle? Installation is going to be a problem too if the factory doesn't have a hitch as an option.

Last edited by Bazinga; 10-11-2016 at 10:29 AM.
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post #8 of 14 (permalink) Old 10-11-2016, 10:45 AM
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Originally Posted by Bazinga View Post
Can't you still install a bike rack even though the factory says not to tow a trailer or vehicle? Installation is going to be a problem too if the factory doesn't have a hitch as an option.
If you're looking at a trailer hitch type rack, fitting a tow bar to the Bolt might be problematic. You'll likely have to wait an take a peek under the rear, but it's likely that you would need to cut or modify the aero shield (if you can find a tow bar that fits).
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post #9 of 14 (permalink) Old 10-11-2016, 02:39 PM
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When I submitted the same question online to Chevy (Bolt) regarding towing a small boat and trailer with a total weight of 325 lbs., their reply was, "No, you will not be able to tow with a Bolt".

You might have luck with a bike rack! Good luck!
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post #10 of 14 (permalink) Old 10-11-2016, 11:57 PM
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A small utility trailer would be just fine. You'll never get GM to officially say that you can tow with the Bolt or any other subcompact car.

Take a look at uhaul.com. This is probably one of the most liability-averse companies around, and they'll rent you a 5 x 10 cargo trailer to tow with a Chevy Sonic. Obviously a 31-foot Airstream isn't going to work with the Bolt, but a little trailer or boat is okay.

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