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I was notified by my closest Chevy dealer that they finally had a Bolt on the lot. I had asked them to contact me when they did. So today I went over and checked out their one and only Bolt.

It is a Silver Premier and it's not for sale... yet. GM is requiring them to not sell it for at least 90 days and to make it available for people to sit in it and drive. Because they will sell it eventually, they were not allowing people to take proper test drives to keep the mileage down. Basically out of the driveway and then up and down the frontage road in front of the store. No freeway.

Since I had already spent quite a bit of time with the Bolt at the LA Auto Show, this was a bit of second impressions and getting to check out what they wouldn't, or couldn't do at the show. Second look, I like it even more!

First, some seem to have their undies in a bunch (literally I guess) about the seats. For me they are near perfect. They are firm and have firm bolsters, like a German car might have, or a performance car. I suspect our chief engineer with his racing background may have played a part here. So some may hate them, but others like me will find them pretty dang good.

An interesting thing about the front seats is, the seat back is very thin compared to other modern cars. This saves weight, but more importantly it is one way they get such great leg room and cargo room in the back. Good move as far as I can tell.

Today was the first time I have ever actually driven an electric car. Oh, I've driven golf carts before, but this was the first electric car of any type. It was everything I was hoping it would be! Quiet and lots of strong linear grunt. Like I said I didn't get to merge on the freeway and I did have a sales drone minding me in the passenger seat, but I could tell that this car will do well merging and passing. This is the future of cars.

Turning radius was great, but the steering is a bit stiff. It feels very planted and you have to really kind of force it into a corner. It's not bad, but I would not describe the low speed handling as playful. It seemed to be all business and no play. Too bad, but hardly a deal breaker.

The regen braking paddle is awesome! I'm sure I will use this a lot. The brakes over all are more than adequate and not too sensitive like some new cars I've driven. I'm happy with the brakes.

I finally got to look under the hood. Pretty straight forward and looks to be pretty easy to work in there, however they seem to have made adding brake fluid and high voltage battery coolant kind of a challenge. The filler caps are right underneath the cowling where the wipers and cabin air intake is. Unless I'm missing something, it's going to take a pretty fancy funnel to get the fluids in there.

First time I've seen the interior in the sunlight. It was the Premier and I have yet to see an LT, but I love the white checkerboard texture and the white metallic accent on the dash. Super cool. I hope the LT has this as well.

It is a complicated car and not immediately intuitive I found. I decided to try the A/C as that is important here in the summer and realized I really had no clue how to turn it on. In nearly any car I've been in in the last 20 years or more, it's pretty conventional and obvious, this car will require owner's manual study. Fortunately, the sales guy sort of knew how and he fumbled though it and got cold air going.

The bird's eye view parking assist is pretty cool. I'm not sure $4300 cool, but cool none the less. The review cam... much less cool IMO. I feel it's a gimmick as it offers you nothing you can't get from the traditional glass mirrors and it shows you what's behind in wide angle view, so beware. Objects are much closer than they appear! I'm kind of hoping that if I get the LT, I can mod the rearview camera's angle to point down and be able to use it as a traditional back up camera.

Overall, the car is super cool and I want one! I'm just not sure when to spring for it. Right now there are no deals, but how long do I want to wait? The practical side of me says my cars are running fine now, there is no rush. My impulsive side wants it now! >:)
 

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The rear view mirror camera is only available on the Premier. The LT comes standard with a backup camera.
 

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The rear view mirror camera is only available on the Premier. The LT comes standard with a backup camera.
Is that true? I have never seen an LT. My understanding was that both trim levels came with the same rearview camera system, or at least that is what is implied by the Chevy website.

Has anybody driven, or played with an LT that can answer this question? I'd be thrilled to death if the LT came with a traditional back up camera.
 

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Is that true? I have never seen an LT. My understanding was that both trim levels came with the same rearview camera system, or at least that is what is implied by the Chevy website.

Has anybody driven, or played with an LT that can answer this question? I'd be thrilled to death if the LT came with a traditional back up camera.
Both the Premier and the LT have a backup camera.

The Premier replaces the traditional rear view mirror that every car has with a combination camera/mirror unit that when in camera mode gives you a wider view out the back. It is not a replacement for the backup camera.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
Both the Premier and the LT have a backup camera.

The Premier replaces the traditional rear view mirror that every car has with a combination camera/mirror unit that when in camera mode gives you a wider view out the back. It is not a replacement for the backup camera.
Upon closer inspection of the build comparison of the LT vs. Premier with regards to the "Rear Vision Camera", it appears you are correct! The LT does sound like it comes with a traditional back up camera that displays in the center console. That's awesome!

So this is what it sounds like-

LT has an ordinary "analog" rear view mirror and a conventional back up camera in the console display.

Premier has the rear view mirror that has an optional wide angle camera view in it and it has the "bird's eye" view back up system in the console display.

While the bird's eye system is pretty neat and a nice technical achievement, the LT package is good enough for me!
 

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Upon closer inspection of the build comparison of the LT vs. Premier with regards to the "Rear Vision Camera", it appears you are correct! The LT does sound like it comes with a traditional back up camera that displays in the center console. That's awesome!

So this is what it sounds like-

LT has an ordinary "analog" rear view mirror and a conventional back up camera in the console display.

Premier has the rear view mirror that has an optional wide angle camera view in it and it has the "bird's eye" view back up system in the console display.

While the bird's eye system is pretty neat and a nice technical achievement, the LT package is good enough for me!
I thought the wide-angle rear view mirror was pretty gimmicky too, because the small size of the screen vs. the considerable width of the angle makes it kinda hard to actually see what's going on at a glance. But I believe you can flip the lever to operate it as a regular mirror. And presumably it's one of those things you grow to appreciate once you're used to it, like one-pedal driving.
 

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I thought the wide-angle rear view mirror was pretty gimmicky too, because the small size of the screen vs. the considerable width of the angle makes it kinda hard to actually see what's going on at a glance. But I believe you can flip the lever to operate it as a regular mirror. And presumably it's one of those things you grow to appreciate once you're used to it, like one-pedal driving.
The other advantage is that it gives you an unobstructed view to the rear when you have passengers in the back seat or when you've filled the cargo area up to the ceiling. It should also eliminate the problem of distracting glare at night from the headlights of cars behind you.
 

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A good person to ask about the rear view mirror is @bilmat who's already picked his Bolt up.

I'm pretty set in my ways so the rear view camera mirror isn't really needed, but it will be interesting to hear about everyone's learning curve when it comes to all of the nifty new features.
 

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Unless I'm missing something, it's going to take a pretty fancy funnel to get the fluids in there.
If it's like other cars, you simply pop off the cowling to get to those reservoirs. You don't need to get at those fluids often, but you do need to be able to verify the levels visually.
 

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If it's like other cars, you simply pop off the cowling to get to those reservoirs. You don't need to get at those fluids often, but you do need to be able to verify the levels visually.
I am hoping GM thought of some solution like that, but there's no mention of it in the owner's manual. Otherwise I'l make up funnel/hose arrangement to get the job done.
 

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You can see the buttons that hold the cover in place in under-the-hood pictures.

Honest, it's a 2-minute job to remove/replace it, and you needn't do it unless the fluids are visibly low, which they should never be.
 

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Sorry to be off topic from what you guys are talking about but in regards to topping up fluids and what not, does the cowling look easily removable? Typically I can't see why they would require you to use an elaborate funnel to get to it. Should make it easier for servicing and what not if the cowling was removable.
 

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Sorry to be off topic from what you guys are talking about but in regards to topping up fluids and what not, does the cowling look easily removable? Typically I can't see why they would require you to use an elaborate funnel to get to it. Should make it easier for servicing and what not if the cowling was removable.
And that's the unknown. Is removing the cowl easy, or not? Is removing the cowl easier than filling with a special funnel?
 
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