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Discussion Starter #1
My friend Max asked me to post this for him: ;)

I've had my Bolt a couple of weeks now, but this weekend was the first time I really put it to the test. Alas, it failed, revealing some serious problems with the car. It might upset some folks here to hear this, but it needs to be said.

Prior to driving a Bolt, I used to have a Ford F150 truck. One reason for getting a Bolt was my hope to save money, as the Bolt is far more economical than my truck for my 10-mile commute to work as a CPA. The idea of being able to throw things into the back without them getting wet when it's raining seemed like a plus, too.

So anyway, my pal Doug was moving and needed to shift his old refrigerator across town to his brother's place, who was going to put it in the garage, and asked for my help. Always happy to help a friend, I said yes without a second thought and drove over. It was only when we got the fridge outside next to the Bolt that we realized there was a problem: Although it wasn't a side-by side fridge or anything, it seemed like there was no way to fit it into the Bolt. I thought that if I put the seats down, it would fit, but the back hatch of the Bolt was so limited in size that you couldn't squeeze it in, and I think even if we had, it would have stuck out the back.

Normally, I'd throw it in the back of my truck and it would be easy, but apparently the geniuses at GM didn't think about these kinds of everyday needs when they made the Bolt, and instead designed a car that is only capable of carrying a week's groceries. Pathetic.

Thankfully, the Bolt was a Premier, and I realized that what you were supposed to do was use the roof rails. Carefully we lifted the fridge onto the rails but the only way to place it on the rails was sideways, causing the fridge to stick out dangerously over the sides of the car. Worse, it seemed like the fridge would just slide along the rails and fall of when we pulled away. Clearly a stupid design.

At this point, I looked into things a bit and it turns out you can buy a “roof rack” for the Bolt. Has anyone ever heard of these before? Not something I'd ever tried, but off we went to the dealer and amazingly they had some in stock, although it cost an arm and a leg to buy. After spending about two hours attaching them properly, eventually resorting to reading the instructions because the design was so bad, we again lifted the fridge onto the newly installed rack. This time the fridge was stable but still seemed precarious. Doug did some sleuthing and it turns out you also need bungie cords, tie down straps and the like. No one told us this, of course. So back out we went again and bought the necessary cords and straps.

At this point it was getting late and we'd wasted over three hours due to these basic design deficiencies of the Bolt, but we got the fridge on the roof, tied down and ready to go.

The car's handling wasn't great for the journey, however, and I worried every time I floored the go pedal that the roof rack might come flying off. Instead it just made an ominous creaking sound as the fridge shifted around. (Maybe 200 lbs is more than you're supposed to put up there? I didn't check.)

We made it to our destination, and I was shocked to discover that the Bolt had only gotten 1.8 miles/kWh. I don't know if any of you on this forum have ever thought about doing the calculation, but at 1.8 miles/kWh, that makes the range of the Bolt only 108 miles, not the 238 that Chevy promised me. Talk about a con job there.

After we took the fridge off, the rails seemed a bit the worse for wear, scraped up and maybe a bit bent. What kind of quality is that?

As I say, all in all, this shows that although you might be able to get a couple of bags of groceries in the back of the Bolt, it's not really suitable for carrying anything else.

All in all, very disappointing. The F150 is the top selling vehicle in the USA for a reason. If the Bolt is going to succeed, it needs to shape up and GM will have to think about meeting the needs of ordinary drivers like me.



[Dedicated to @davioh2001 and so many others.]
 

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My friend Max asked me to post this for him: ;)

I've had my Bolt a couple of weeks now, but this weekend was the first time I really put it to the test. Alas, it failed, revealing some serious problems with the car. It might upset some folks here to hear this, but it needs to be said.

Prior to driving a Bolt, I used to have a Ford F150 truck. One reason for getting a Bolt was my hope to save money, as the Bolt is far more economical than my truck for my 10-mile commute to work as a CPA. The idea of being able to throw things into the back without them getting wet when it's raining seemed like a plus, too.

So anyway, my pal Doug was moving and needed to shift his old refrigerator across town to his brother's place, who was going to put it in the garage, and asked for my help. Always happy to help a friend, I said yes without a second thought and drove over. It was only when we got the fridge outside next to the Bolt that we realized there was a problem: Although it wasn't a side-by side fridge or anything, it seemed like there was no way to fit it into the Bolt. I thought that if I put the seats down, it would fit, but the back hatch of the Bolt was so limited in size that you couldn't squeeze it in, and I think even if we had, it would have stuck out the back.

Normally, I'd throw it in the back of my truck and it would be easy, but apparently the geniuses at GM didn't think about these kinds of everyday needs when they made the Bolt, and instead designed a car that is only capable of carrying a week's groceries. Pathetic.

Thankfully, the Bolt was a Premier, and I realized that what you were supposed to do was use the roof rails. Carefully we lifted the fridge onto the rails but the only way to place it on the rails was sideways, causing the fridge to stick out dangerously over the sides of the car. Worse, it seemed like the fridge would just slide along the rails and fall of when we pulled away. Clearly a stupid design.

At this point, I looked into things a bit and it turns out you can buy a “roof rack” for the Bolt. Has anyone ever heard of these before? Not something I'd ever tried, but off we went to the dealer and amazingly they had some in stock, although it cost an arm and a leg to buy. After spending about two hours attaching them properly, eventually resorting to reading the instructions because the design was so bad, we again lifted the fridge onto the newly installed rack. This time the fridge was stable but still seemed precarious. Doug did some sleuthing and it turns out you also need bungie cords, tie down straps and the like. No one told us this, of course. So back out we went again and bought the necessary cords and straps.

At this point it was getting late and we'd wasted over three hours due to these basic design deficiencies of the Bolt, but we got the fridge on the roof, tied down and ready to go.

The car's handling wasn't great for the journey, however, and I worried every time I floored the go pedal that the roof rack might come flying off. Instead it just made an ominous creaking sound as the fridge shifted around. (Maybe 200 lbs is more than you're supposed to put up there? I didn't check.)

We made it to our destination, and I was shocked to discover that the Bolt had only gotten 1.8 miles/kWh. I don't know if any of you on this forum have ever thought about doing the calculation, but at 1.8 miles/kWh, that makes the range of the Bolt only 108 miles, not the 238 that Chevy promised me. Talk about a con job there.

After we took the fridge off, the rails seemed a bit the worse for wear, scraped up and maybe a bit bent. What kind of quality is that?

As I say, all in all, this shows that although you might be able to get a couple of bags of groceries in the back of the Bolt, it's not really suitable for carrying anything else.

All in all, very disappointing. The F150 is the top selling vehicle in the USA for a reason. If the Bolt is going to succeed, it needs to shape up and GM will have to think about meeting the needs of ordinary drivers like me.



[Dedicated to @davioh2001 and so many others.]

Yeah, when I tried to drive mine to Catalina, it only got about 25' from the boat ramp, where it promptly sank to the bottom of Huntington Harbour. Nobody told me that the plastic shield on the bottom wasn't completely sealed! Very poor design...SAD!:crying:
 

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What a great story, I tell you … seriously.

Make up more! you could create a whole series of mini-novels, for example "How My Friend Max Discovered That The Bolt Doesn't Cure His Golden Hamster Allergy" .. just a thought, no pressure :)
 

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What a great story, I tell you … seriously.

Make up more! you could create a whole series of mini-novels, for example "How My Friend Max Discovered That The Bolt Doesn't Cure His Golden Hamster Allergy" .. just a thought, no pressure :)

On a related note, my salesperson convinced me to buy the Super Deluxe Rhinoceros Repellent Option. The $5k extra I gave him (cash only) was money well-spent. I haven't seen a single rhinoceros on the road since I've been driving it. Drivers around me benefit as well. You know...herd immunity!:nerd:
 

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Yeah, same sad story here. The Bolt has such terrific acceleration I thought to myself that surely the engineers at GM had meant for this car to get airborne. I went down to the local airport swerving around planes waiting to take off, got to the active runway and floored it. I must have forgotten to get clearance from the tower because I saw in my incredible rear view camera a bunch of security cars chasing me. Anyway I released the wonderful telescoping steering wheel latch and slowly pulled back as I reached around 91 mph (which should be takeoff speed based on my quick observation of the nifty airfoil shape of the car). The car wouldn't fly! Later that night, in my jail cell, I finally read the owner's manual. Wouldn't ya know it, those ba***trds at GM limited the top speed for some reason. I soon as I get enough money to bail myself out (crowd sourced of course) I gonna trade that heap for a real car.
I heard from my cellmate that Tesla makes a car that can achieve escape velocity.
 

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I wouldn't go so far as calling it a design flaw as saying You're trying to "push the envelope" too far! It also goes back to my numerous posts where I was trying to bring this up without really slamming the car. I personally like the car. I do think that for the average American consumer with high expectations whatever we currently have needs essentially doubled across the board. I'm not saying such a product could even exist with today's technologies and at reasonable prices. If such a thing did exist Bolt size car for around $40k but with following specs- 120kwh battery that could charge at 350kw... Such a product would silence all but the most vocal critics of EV who would use the fringe examples posted here to say "I told You so!"
Edit; I guess the story about "the fridge on the roof rack" was pulling my leg but it honestly does sound like the kind of story those objecting to EVs would come up with a straight face...
 

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Discussion Starter #12
I guess the story about the fridge on the roof rack was pulling my leg but it honestly does sound like the kind of story those objecting to EVs would come up with a straight face...
Indeed it was inspired by your post, and thanks for seeing my parody it in the sprit of fun.

There are a few of themes here, and I think it might be worthwhile to spell them out:


  • Max hasn't done any homework. Anyone with some common sense knowledge about cars could have told him that his assumptions were unrealistic, but he plunged ahead in ignorance.
  • Max shows all-or-nothing thinking. Because the car struggled to carry this cargo, it can't carry any cargo.
  • Trade-offs exist. They are normal. Every vehicle has things it can't do well, or at all.

If such a thing did exist Bolt size car for around $40k but with following specs- 120kwh battery that could charge at 350kw... Such a product would silence all but the most vocal critics of EV who would use the fringe examples posted here to say "I told You so!"
I don't think so. People would move the goal posts again. Someone would take the 450-mile range as a given, attempt a trip in sub-zero temperatures with the heat blasting and get only 300 miles and post about how they've been lied to. Someone else would skip installing a home charger and then complain about how the free chargers at the grocery store are always taken, and so on.

Look at current ICE vehicles. We take it for granted that they need oil changes. A few years ago, when the rule was changing the oil every 3000 miles, driving 60,000 miles in a year (as @NewCoulomb does) would require 20 oil changes, basically stopping for an oil change every two weeks. No one thought that an imposed wait of half an hour to an hour while the oil was changed was utterly unacceptable. Today's cars are a bit better, but someone driving 60,000 miles in a year will still be a familiar figure at their local oil-change shop.

Sure, technology will improve and we'll have less time waiting while the car charges when taking long trips, but our sense of whether or not having to wait is acceptable is driven entirely by our expectations and our sense of what is reasonable.
 

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Edit; I guess the story about "the fridge on the roof rack" was pulling my leg but it honestly does sound like the kind of story those objecting to EVs would come up with a straight face...
I'd have to agree with them. GM definitely dropped the ball here.

They already make 70" TVs so the Bolt carrying space for household appliances was outdated the minute they released this car in 2017.

 

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Indeed it was inspired by your post, and thanks for seeing my parody it in the sprit of fun.



I don't think so. People would move the goal posts again. Someone would take the 450-mile range as a given, attempt a trip in sub-zero temperatures with the heat blasting and get only 300 miles and post about how they've been lied to. Someone else would skip installing a home charger and then complain about how the free chargers at the grocery store are always taken, and so on.

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I will disagree with You on that point. I at least hope EV's are similar to computers and other electronics in that at some point it becomes Good enough not to notice the difference between last years models. Examples: 1. I see plenty of people carrying around smart phones. None of them are complaining they don't work unless they are so careless they drop and break it. If they do drop and break it they are likely sad and embarrassed they dropped it and not blaming the phone manufacturer. 2. My Dad recently disposed of a 30+ year old stereo receiver. I didn't hear him complaining he only got 30 years from it. Of course the new version was probably 10% the price with bluetooth and other features built in that weren't even thought of 30 years ago. 3. I'm typing on a work laptop where I got around 6 hours battery using a free 90 MBPS wifi in a local grocery store. It has a huge solid state drive and likely cost my employer much less than $1000. I'm not complaining that it only lasted 6 hours or that I only got 90 MBPS free of charge! Such capability wasn't even available in computers (at least to the general public) 5 years ago (and if it even was available back then You can guarantee the hardware was more than $1000 and the ISP connection cost more than Free).
 

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I will disagree with You on that point. I at least hope EV's are similar to computers and other electronics in that at some point it becomes Good enough not to notice the difference between last years models. Examples: 1. I see plenty of people carrying around smart phones. None of them are complaining they don't work unless they are so careless they drop and break it. If they do drop and break it they are likely sad and embarrassed they dropped it and not blaming the phone manufacturer. 2. My Dad recently disposed of a 30+ year old stereo receiver. I didn't hear him complaining he only got 30 years from it. Of course the new version was probably 10% the price with bluetooth and other features built in that weren't even thought of 30 years ago. 3. I'm typing on a work laptop where I got around 6 hours battery using a free 90 MBPS wifi in a local grocery store. It has a huge solid state drive and likely cost my employer much less than $1000. I'm not complaining that it only lasted 6 hours or that I only got 90 MBPS free of charge! Such capability wasn't even available in computers (at least to the general public) 5 years ago (and if it even was available back then You can guarantee the hardware was more than $1000 and the ISP connection cost more than Free).
To expand your thought (and I hope I captured it correctly): for better or worse, our very own, *spoiled rotten* mass consumer expects costly items to work more or less as described - at all times, pretty much on their own.

Also we kind of expect our "new gear", apart from supplying the cool factor, to give us some immediate extra capabilities. For example, even primitive word processors were a great improvement on the most advanced typewriters. To store music digitally is a lot more convenient than on physical carriers. A microwave is handier for a number of food preparing techniques, and the slowest transatlantic airliner was like 5 times faster than the fastest boat.

Nothing like this with EV's. The main practical advantage that applies to all drivers is ostensibly lower operational costs, but no-one really knows what the Bolt's residual value is going to be after X years and YK miles on the road, so can't really talk about the TCO. The Bolt doesn't travel faster (matter of fact, slower on 200+ mi trips), isn't more comfortable and can't move more people and/or cargo or than its close size equivalent, the Trax.
 

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Discussion Starter #17
To expand your thought (and I hope I captured it correctly): for better or worse, our very own, *spoiled rotten* mass consumer expects costly items to work more or less as described - at all times, pretty much on their own.

Also we kind of expect our "new gear", apart from supplying the cool factor, to give us some immediate extra capabilities. For example, even primitive word processors were a great improvement on the most advanced typewriters. To store music digitally is a lot more convenient than on physical carriers. A microwave is handier for a number of food preparing techniques, and the slowest transatlantic airliner was like 5 times faster than the fastest boat.
Let's look more closely at the examples your gave. In each case, let's see whether progress also had some drawbacks over what came before.

With files stored on a computer, a failed hard drive can result in hundreds or thousands of lost documents. This never happened when the copies were made on carbon paper. No one was ever confused about how to work a typewriter, or had to relearn how to use it after a major software update. No one ever typed things in Comic Sans.

When audio was on cassette, you could push the fast forward button and hear the audio whiz by at high speed, allowing you to quickly find the desired part very quickly. Now you can skip forward but it is jerky and sometimes it is quantized to be in 15 or 30 second jumps, making it hard to get to the exact point you want. People would make mix tapes and share them with each other, and kids would use their cassette recorders in interesting ways.

When microwave ovens came out, people tried to treat them just like conventional ovens, roasting chickens in them, and then complained that the meat was rubbery and didn't brown properly. For a while there was a market for microwave browning plates that would allow you to cook meat in a microwave and have it cook properly. Before microwaves, no one ever stank out the office burning popcorn.

Airliners require security and waiting around. Airports aren't necessarily conveniently placed, and flights aren't necessarily scheduled at desirable times. If you're in Pasadena now and want to get to Las Vegas, the next flight isn't until 6am tomorrow, and you'd have to get up pretty early to get on that flight, assuming there is a seat left to buy. Set out now in your car and you could be there in 3.5 hours. Likewise, if you realize at 9pm you need to get to San Francisco for a meeting tomorrow, you won't make the last flight out today and you'd be better off driving (or paying someone to drive you). It might even be cheaper than the last-minute ticket.

Imagining each step forward involves no compromises over what has gone before is just false.

Nothing like this with EV's. The main practical advantage that applies to all drivers is ostensibly lower operational costs, but no-one really knows what the Bolt's residual value is going to be after X years and YK miles on the road, so can't really talk about the TCO. The Bolt doesn't travel faster (matter of fact, slower on 200+ mi trips), isn't more comfortable and can't move more people and/or cargo or than its close size equivalent, the Trax.
The main reason to drive a Bolt is that the driving experience is great (one pedal driving is a joy, instant power is fun and sometimes allows trouble to be avoided). The car won a variety of car-of-the-year awards when it came out. Consumer reports rates it 5/5 for owner satisfaction and regarding handling says “Upright stance notwithstanding, the Bolt handles like a taut, tied down, and agile machine. It turns into corners enthusiastically with hardly any body roll and the steering is quick, allowing the small EV to feel zippy and enjoyable. On the track the Bolt was utterly secure.” and “The Bolt's 200-hp electric motor delivers immediate acceleration -- every small depression of the throttle translates into decisive forward thrust. We clocked a zero to 60 mph dash in just in 6.8 seconds, which puts the Bolt on par with sports sedans. Acceleration is smooth, linear, and silent. Thanks to the Bolt's direct drive transmission, power delivery is free of any peaks or valleys. [...] Like most electric cars, the Bolt is strikingly silent. The motor is whisper-quiet. Equally impressive is the low road and wind noise that are kept at bay.”

Another reason is no trips to the gas station and no oil changes. Charging at home is super convenient. You never wake up in the morning and think “oh crap, I need to get gas, don't I?”

Read the comments here. “I’ve had my Bolt for over a year – best car I’ve ever owned.” “Same here. Hands down, overall the best car I’ve ever owned. The only car that was more fun was a Honda S2000 roadster.” “My wife has had a Bolt for about a year and a half. She is not a car person – in fact her previous car she didn’t even care what she got; she told me to pick it out. She couldn’t even tell the different between a Camry and an Accord. But she loves her Bolt. She talks about it all the time; she is completely converted over to electric drive and thinks the Bolt is the perfect car. As far as the best car she has ever owned – it’s not even close. The Bolt is miles ahead of any other car.”, etc.

If you don't like your Bolt much, that's fine; maybe you bought the wrong car for your needs and preferences. But if you're struggling to understand why anyone else would buy one, the answers are all around you.
 

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I'd have to agree with them. GM definitely dropped the ball here.
They already make 70" TVs so the Bolt carrying space for household appliances was outdated the minute they released this car in 2017.
I know, so disappointing. Just about the time I figured out I could carry a cubic yard of cedar mulch (14 2cf bags) and 300 pounds of bagged stones), I had a friend ask me if I could move an entire mountain.
 

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