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Hello, my name is Scott. I got my Bolt in November of 2017 and have put on nearly 3000 miles so far. I come from a 2014 Silverado truck, which I needed the towing capabilities for my job, but I did not like doing personal trips at 16 mpg. My prior car (2006 to 2014) was a Toyota Prius which I converted to a plug-in vehicle with a 7 kWh pack. I could do fully electric on city trips under 20 miles with the Prius, or get 60-80 mpg on 50-150 mile trips.

Since about 2010 I knew I wanted to go full electric, purely for the thrill of the high acceleration, quiet, and low cost driving. My attention has been on Tesla since I did a college study/report on them back in 2006. I have been close to pulling the trigger on a Tesla multiple times, but a $90k Model S didn't really fall in my desire for low cost driving, which includes purchase price. The second thing that stopped me (for now) from a Tesla purchase was Michigan's corrupt laws not allowing Tesla to sell or have a store in the state. If you can't tell, I am a big Elon Musk & Tesla supporter.

The Bolt has been treating me well so far. I have been busy collecting data and observations on the car and am happy to start sharing them here. My biggest plus about the car is how quiet and fun it is to drive. The biggest negatives so far is the complete lack of "fast" 44 kW charging stations in Michigan, and the battery range, which may be 238 or higher in the spring/summer/fall, but I am experiencing 100 to 160 miles in the winter. I personally need to do 200 miles in the winter, so my next car will either have the range to do that in the winter, or have Tesla supercharging!!! Until then I will make due with the Bolt, and borrow or rent a car in the winter or for 200+ mile trips.

I will try to attach a photo of my car I took during my pre-purchase test drive.
 

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Welcome aboard the forum. Look forward to hear more of your experiences with your Bolt. Many of us Bolt owners wanted EVs but didn't want to pay Tesla S prices. Sorry to hear about your winter range reductions.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Welcome aboard the forum. Look forward to hear more of your experiences with your Bolt. Many of us Bolt owners wanted EVs but didn't want to pay Tesla S prices. Sorry to hear about your winter range reductions.
Winter range reductions are as expected, so no need to be sorry. I just wish GM would make 300-400 mile (EPA) range car so that those of us in winter climates could do a 150-200 mile drive without needing to charge.
 

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Welcome. I'm in Midland.

Winter range reductions - it's a fact that winter range will drop 40% in our climate. IMO, adding a bunch of expensive, heavy battery capacity you have to pay for up front and haul around to deal with 3-4 months of the year doesn't make economic sense. When I turn in my Silverado lease, I may well go to the rent an ICE solution for trips beyond EV range and too short to fly.
 
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Hey neighbor --- I've been driving a red Bolt around northern lower michigan for a few months and about 6000 miles.

Winter Range: I've seen range hovering around 130 miles on cold days (10 F or lower) to 150 miles (at 30 F). It's a pain point for me also, as many of my daily drives are around 140 miles. I get around the range problem with level 2 charging for an hour or 2 halfway through the long days. There are quite a few level 2 chargers around here, even in small towns. I was surprised that mine was not the first charger in town listed on plugshare.com. Traverse City currently has the most public charging stations up north, predictably.

One day last week I was surprised by a detour that would require 40 miles to get home, with a predicted 35 miles remaining. It was late at night, rural, cold. I slowed down from 55 to 35 mph for the last 40 miles, and got home with a predicted 15 miles remaining. So lower speed adds dramatically to the range.

So I'm a little frustrated at winter range, but happy to have work-arounds, and the general awesomeness of the car makes it worth it.
 

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Hello and welcome. I live in West Virginia but love going up to Mackinac Island every summer. This coming one will be my first on all-electric, and I too am disappointed in the lack of "fast" chargers in mid- and upper lower peninsula. I can easily charge fully in Ann Arbor or Belleville, but beyond that I can see nothing. Hopefully as more and more people go electric north of the Detroit area fast chargers will follow. I'm hoping I can find parking in Mackinaw City with a spot to plug in my slow charger while I'm on the island.
 

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I wouldn't hold my breath for CCS chargers to appear in our rural areas - fact is installing those is excruciatingly expensive and so are the kwhs. Useful thing we can do in the short term is carry a Tesla to J1772 adapter so we can plug into the Tesla destination chargers. Still Level 2 but the more options the better.
 
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I'm hoping for Flint, Saginaw, Bay City, or maybe even Clare. Stations along I-75 would allow for EV tourists to drive bottom to top.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
Winter range reductions - it's a fact that winter range will drop 40% in our climate. IMO, adding a bunch of expensive, heavy battery capacity you have to pay for up front and haul around to deal with 3-4 months of the year doesn't make economic sense. When I turn in my Silverado lease, I may well go to the rent an ICE solution for trips beyond EV range and too short to fly.
Hello Shocker. Every person is different as far as their car range needed. 90% of Americans commute under 60 miles. If that was my commute I would want a car with 180+ mile EPA range to cover the winter drives & lunch trips. My commute is 2.5 miles (round trip!). However I tend to do 200-250 mile trips on weekends. In the summer I don't expect a problem. In the winter I suck every ounce of 120V @12A I can get at every stop. I am working on making 240V charge cords for the various locations I stop.

Personally I think public CCS Level 2 charging is great for emergency situations or overnight lodging, but they will never be planned into my trips. The charger power lists 7kW, actually gives closer to 5kW, and if it is 0F outside and you need the car on to provide some heating that eats 1kW for accessories/fan and 2-4 kW for heating. On one occasion I sat for 1 hr L2 charging and gained 3 miles!!! Like rawb says, much easier to reduce speed or climate temp slightly to gain range.
 

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I wouldn't hold my breath for CCS chargers to appear in our rural areas - fact is installing those is excruciatingly expensive and so are the kwhs. Useful thing we can do in the short term is carry a Tesla to J1772 adapter so we can plug into the Tesla destination chargers. Still Level 2 but the more options the better.
I love my “Tesla Tap”. It is worth the $249 for convenience AND peace of mind!
 

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I'm hoping for Flint, Saginaw, Bay City, or maybe even Clare. Stations along I-75 would allow for EV tourists to drive bottom to top.

Mackinac Island bans all vehicles, to eliminate pollution, both carbon and noise. Hopefully they will entice EVs that far north by supporting a Level 3 EVSE in Grayling or thereabouts. In the northern LP I expect multiple communities to mutually contribute to a centrally located EVSE to bring the tourists money up to “the fingertips” of the peninsula!
 

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Discussion Starter #12
Hey neighbor --- I've been driving a red Bolt around northern lower michigan for a few months and about 6000 miles.

Winter Range: I've seen range hovering around 130 miles on cold days (10 F or lower) to 150 miles (at 30 F). It's a pain point for me also, as many of my daily drives are around 140 miles. I get around the range problem with level 2 charging for an hour or 2 halfway through the long days. There are quite a few level 2 chargers around here, even in small towns. I was surprised that mine was not the first charger in town listed on plugshare.com. Traverse City currently has the most public charging stations up north, predictably.

One day last week I was surprised by a detour that would require 40 miles to get home, with a predicted 35 miles remaining. It was late at night, rural, cold. I slowed down from 55 to 35 mph for the last 40 miles, and got home with a predicted 15 miles remaining. So lower speed adds dramatically to the range.

So I'm a little frustrated at winter range, but happy to have work-arounds, and the general awesomeness of the car makes it worth it.
On my 20+ mile trips I have seen about the same ranges. On nicer 20-30F days I can do 3.2 mi/kWh (190 miles). Temp dips down to 0F and i am near 2.2 mi/kWh (130 miles). My worst long distance trip was 1.7 miles/kWh (about 100 mile range) in a 0F blizzard with ice & wind.

If we want to start talking about my lovely 2.5 mile round trip commute, I get about 1.2 miles/kWh (70 mile range). I always pre-heat for 2-5 minutes to take the chill off the car and shut off the "heat/ac" power (but keep the fan on) the last 2 minutes of any drive to drain the system of any internal heat. It makes a big difference to shut down the heat power early on a drive. You still get hot air from the vents and don't waste the heat to the atmosphere.

If I test my short commute without heat, my mileage depends on if it's cold enough to engage battery heating. With battery heating I get 3.5 mi/kWh. Without battery heating I can get 4-5 mi/kWh on short winter trips without interior heat.
 

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Hey Scott

I bought my Bolt a few years ahead of its time as far as fast charging stations go - I figure in 3-4 years when the EV population is higher the CCS chargers might start popping up at useful places. In the meantime I'll just stay within the "combat radius" of the car - 60 miles in winter and 100 or so in summer. I've got an ICE for long range travel in the meantime.
 
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