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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hello - I'm the pleased new owner of a new 2019 Bolt Premier in Slate Grey. My wife says it looks like putty, which I think is a riot! I think it looks like primer grey with some clearcoat... whatever you call it, we love the color.

I can't claim that the Bolt is better in every single way compared to my previous car, but it is definitely far better in nearly every area that is important to me, and any ways it might seem lacking either aren't that important to me or can be improved by the aftermarket.

I'm coming from a 2015 VW eGolf, which I leased new 4 years ago and bought out the lease last year. Despite it being a really nice car with great handling and a first-class interior and fit/finish, I've been complaining about the 83 mile range, mediocre climate control, and lack of power at any speeds over 40mph. I'd intended to keep it until the VW ID.3 gets to the U.S... but VW has been silent about it coming here, and with all my complaints my wife said, "You're never going to make it" ... and indeed I didn't. Like many, I had also been considering the Model 3. I'm intrigued by the Tesla engineering/sales/support model, and would have loved a RWD car; however there are some pretty good deals on the Bolt right now, making a loaded Premier cheaper for me than the cheapest 3 by about $10k... not to mention the fact that I'd really prefer a hatchback and availability of heated steering wheel, both of which are unavailable on the 3.

I would have considered the LEAF, but I wanted to move into an EV with active thermal battery management so I could have the option of worry-free frequent fast charging on road trips. The new Hyundai and Kia offerings just don't do it for me, and they're still pretty expensive.

I must say that I find the handling of the Bolt to be disappointing compared to the eGolf, but there appear to be aftermarket suspension upgrades available (e.g. EV-MODS.com). And I can confidently say that it should be far easier, cheaper, and more effective to add parts to improve handling on the Bolt, than it would have been to transplant a 60kWH liquid-cooled battery and 200hp motor into the eGolf. ;)

And lest you think I complain too much, I find the Bolt's power to be very refreshing. I am one of the lucky folks who find the seats comfortable. The infotainment system is far superior to what was available 4 years ago when I got my eGolf. I wasn't sure about the taller seating position but I've found that I actually like it. There is plenty of interior passenger and/or cargo space. I really like the flat floor without the legacy transmission/driveshaft/exhaust hump in the middle. On the hottest days of the summer the A/C has been freezing cold. I'm greatly looking forward to the heated steering wheel this winter. And of course the range is an eye-opener for me, compared to what my earlier eGolf 24 kWh battery could manage. Electric road trips are now an option! I'm very excited about that.

I started my car ownership career with a '78 Caprice (I put 200k miles on it) and a bought-new '84 Z28 H.O. 5-speed. Then went to VW/Audi for 2 GTIs, an S4, and an eGolf for a further half million miles. Now back to Chevy. :)

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Congrats on your Bolt. You went through some of the same logic I did when I considered a Tesla. Yeah, my dealer gave me 10,000 reasons not to buy the Tesla, and the Bolt had some features I wanted that aren't available on the Tesla.
I'm not sure when the US will get the ID.3. Maybe we'll get the Crozz (ID.4?) first in 2020 or 2021? I love the look of the Crozz except for the sliding doors.
 

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Congratulations. The longer you own and drive it, the more you will find that it is very nice car.... I will never buy an ICE car again. The Bolt fits so many of the features that I like and has enough power to be very fun to drive. I like passing all the big diesels that seem to think they have a chance to beet me off the line..... (and even at 60mph).
 

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I was back to Chevvy after 41 years. My first car was a new '65 Corvair. I've had my new Bolt for a couple of weeks.

There is quite a bit of chatter in the rear end going over sewer covers and other road bumps. I wonder if tire pressures could be reduced to dampen some of that. It's tolerable, and gives you a sports car feel (hard suspension) to go with the fast acceleration.

I did the homework on the Leaf and battery cooling. The Bolt's water cooling preferred over air cooling. I've had a couple of Porsches along the way, and never felt air cooling was adequate to cool the oil.

My first electric experience was with a battery mower, and I realized then the power advantage over gas mowers. Plus the instant startup and reliability with minimum maintenance. I now also have a battery-powered snow blower.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Congrats on your Bolt. You went through some of the same logic I did when I considered a Tesla. Yeah, my dealer gave me 10,000 reasons not to buy the Tesla, and the Bolt had some features I wanted that aren't available on the Tesla.
I'm not sure when the US will get the ID.3. Maybe we'll get the Crozz (ID.4?) first in 2020 or 2021? I love the look of the Crozz except for the sliding doors.
Thanks! Yes, sounds like we had the similar decision processes.

Yes, the Crozz looks pretty neat. For my preferences though, I think I would still prefer the ID.3. I plan to enjoy the Bolt for at least 100k miles anyway, so by the time I’m there I’ll be looking to see if the ID.3 makes it here yet, maybe with a Golf R-like version... or perhaps GM will even bring something like a Bolt SS - that would be pretty cool too. In the intervening 5+ years I’ll be enjoying the Bolt.

Cheers,
- Bob
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Congratulations. The longer you own and drive it, the more you will find that it is very nice car.... I will never buy an ICE car again. The Bolt fits so many of the features that I like and has enough power to be very fun to drive. I like passing all the big diesels that seem to think they have a chance to beet me off the line..... (and even at 60mph).
Thanks! Agreed, I’m again never buying another ICE car as a primary daily vehicle. After driving EV, the serene experience and the instant accelration are superior to an equivalent ICE car - and that doesn’t even take into consideration the potential environmental and economic savings, simplicity, reduced maintenance, etc. I know I’m preaching to the choir here. :)

(I can’t swear under oath that I’ll never buy an ICE car again though - I’d consider getting a garage-queen weekend toy car if something like a pristine 2007 Audi S4 avant 6-speed in dolphin grey, with 20k miles became available for, oh, $15k. But I think I’m pretty safe in saying that’ll never happen. :D )

Cheers,
- Bob
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
I was back to Chevvy after 41 years. My first car was a new '65 Corvair. I've had my new Bolt for a couple of weeks.
Congratulations to you too! ‘65 Corvair - neat! My cousin had one too, back in the day...

There is quite a bit of chatter in the rear end going over sewer covers and other road bumps.
Agreed - I’ve been following with interest the posts on Bilstein or Koni shocks - I wonder if those might help as well. I’m hoping that there might be a front-shock solution; it sounds like either Bilstein or Koni can be made to fit at the rear...

I did the homework on the Leaf and battery cooling. The Bolt's water cooling preferred over air cooling. I've had a couple of Porsches along the way, and never felt air cooling was adequate to cool the oil.
Agreed. My previous car (VW eGolf) also had air-cooled battery. In they manual they specifically recommended against “frequent and consecutive fast-charging”, presumably due to possible battery damage. Also, in the hottest weather the available power would drop at times until the batteries would cool down. I can see the appeal to a simpler air-cooled setup, but it just doesn’t seem to be the right way to go.

My first electric experience was with a battery mower, and I realized then the power advantage over gas mowers. Plus the instant startup and reliability with minimum maintenance. I now also have a battery-powered snow blower.
Haha, I was nearly the opposite - I got the eGolf 4 years ago - then the following year got an electric mower, and an electric snowblower the year after that. Like you, I’m loving the increased reliability and reduced maintenance.

Cheers,
- Bob
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Congratulations. Welcome!
Thanks! Loving the Bolt so far... and this seems to be a great forum, very active - happy to be here.

Cheers,
- Bob
 

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My first Chevy was a 1975 Monza that was supposed to come with a Wankel engine. But they put a V-8 in it instead. Not a great car. Bolt is my 2nd Chevy, the best they've ever made. Next Chevy ? C8 Corvette mid-engine (my wife gets the Bolt). Sorry, you only live once:geek:
 

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Welcome, @PrimerGrey!

Prior to our getting the Bolt, my daily drive was a 2010 Golf TDI (and since getting the Bolt we've still kept the Golf [with the emissions fix] as our second car), so I'm very familiar with how Golfs feel. FWIW, I think the Bolt's handling is pretty good. It feels a bit heavier and the standard tires are far from grippy, but in my eyes it's still definitely in the fun-to-drive hot-hatch category. One funny thing is thats some people on the forum (who like the feel of the Prius!!?!) have complained that the Bolt isn't soft/wallowy enough for their tastes, so it takes all sorts.

Compared to the Golf TDI, the Bolt is way more responsive, although since you're coming from an e-Golf, that won't be as much in the positive column for you as the e-Golf is pretty zippy off the line (even if it does rather lose it beyond 40 mph).

One note about the AC. Yes, it can blow very cold because it's a pretty powerful unit. But the same A/C unit also serves to cool the battery. Thus, if it's really hot and the car has sat out in a hot parking lot, on returning to the Bolt the A/C may seem a bit anemic for a while. That's because a chunk of the A/C capacity is being used up by conditioning the battery, and getting the battery coolant loop from warm to cold takes quite a bit of work. This is a case where using the Bolt's preconditioning can help. Five minutes before you return to the car, set it preconditioning. That way you'll come back to a cooler car, and the hardest work of cooling the battery coolant will be done.
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
First car = black 1957 Chevrolet Bel Air --- next Chevrolet = kinetic blue 2017 Bolt EV.
Haha cool, I'm sensing a pattern here ... Bolt entices long-lost Chevy owners to try again :)
 
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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
My first Chevy was a 1975 Monza that was supposed to come with a Wankel engine. But they put a V-8 in it instead. Not a great car. Bolt is my 2nd Chevy, the best they've ever made. Next Chevy ? C8 Corvette mid-engine (my wife gets the Bolt). Sorry, you only live once:geek:
Wow, years before we met, my wife had a '77 Monza Mirage with the 305 (same block as was in my '78 Caprice and '84 Z28)... she said it wasn't very well sorted, and I recall her talking about issues reaching the rear two spark plugs from underneath ... same as on my Z28 if I recall correctly... but at the time the power/weight was pretty entertaining. But yeah the Bolt is way better engineered, not to mention faster and more practical.

My dealer sales guy was saying that GM are not ruling out eventually putting an electric powertrain for the C8 'Vette... I'll believe it when I see it but that would be pretty neat. But I don't blame you for planning on getting one with a V8. :)
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
Welcome, @PrimerGrey!

Prior to our getting the Bolt, my daily drive was a 2010 Golf TDI (and since getting the Bolt we've still kept the Golf [with the emissions fix] as our second car), so I'm very familiar with how Golfs feel. FWIW, I think the Bolt's handling is pretty good. It feels a bit heavier and the standard tires are far from grippy, but in my eyes it's still definitely in the fun-to-drive hot-hatch category. One funny thing is thats some people on the forum (who like the feel of the Prius!!?!) have complained that the Bolt isn't soft/wallowy enough for their tastes, so it takes all sorts.

Compared to the Golf TDI, the Bolt is way more responsive, although since you're coming from an e-Golf, that won't be as much in the positive column for you as the e-Golf is pretty zippy off the line (even if it does rather lose it beyond 40 mph).

One note about the AC. Yes, it can blow very cold because it's a pretty powerful unit. But the same A/C unit also serves to cool the battery. Thus, if it's really hot and the car has sat out in a hot parking lot, on returning to the Bolt the A/C may seem a bit anemic for a while. That's because a chunk of the A/C capacity is being used up by conditioning the battery, and getting the battery coolant loop from warm to cold takes quite a bit of work. This is a case where using the Bolt's preconditioning can help. Five minutes before you return to the car, set it preconditioning. That way you'll come back to a cooler car, and the hardest work of cooling the battery coolant will be done.
Thanks @Vertiformed! I am getting more accustomed to the Bolt's handling and more comfortable with tossing it around bends and entrance ramps, so yes I'll agree it's still in the fun-to-drive hot-hatch category. (I am still looking for suspension upgrades though. :) )

We too still have a TDI in the garage - ours is a '14 Touareg (also with the emissions fix). Tough to argue with 700 mile range and 7500 lb towing capacity. :) It doesn't see much use though, as I drive the Bolt whenever possible.

Thanks for the info on the Bolt using the A/C system to condition the battery - I hadn't realized that it would do that. Part of the reason that I chose the Bolt over other cars (such as the Leaf, or the larger-battery 2019 eGolf) is that the Bolt has active battery thermal management which really appeals to me. It seems like GM have done that part right - as far as I've heard, reports of early Volt battery degradation (or lack thereof) are very encouraging so it seems that GM have gotten the engineering there right.
 
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