Advertisement

Why ads?
Popular at KBB.com
  • 10 Best Hybrid Cars Under $30,000
  • The 40 MPG Cars of 2014
  • 10 Best Sedans Under $25,000
  • Class of 2015: New Vehicles Ready to Roll
Go
Federal Tax Credit Up To $7,500!

The 2011 Chevrolet Volt electric car qualifies for a federal tax credit of up to $7,500, effectively reducing the net base price from $41,000 to $33,500. Some states offer additional purchase incentives that can be combined with the federal credit. Other electric vehicle-related perks that vary by city or state include single-occupant access to carpool lanes, free metered parking and significantly reduced vehicle registration fees. Home charging stations, which cut charging times in half compared to standard wall outlets, are also eligible for attractive incentives. You can find more incentive information at fueleconomy.gov and pluginamerica.com.


2013 Best
Resale Value
Award Winner
Learn more

2013 Chevrolet Volt

Overview
Share this page
Trading in or Selling? Know where you stand with the most up-to-date Kelley Blue Book Value at your fingertips. See your car's value

Buying this car?

2013 Chevrolet Volt Review

By

KBB Expert Rating: 6.5

The 2013 Chevrolet Volt electric plug-in hybrid represents a unique twist on the hybrid-car theme. Unlike the Toyota Prius Hybrid, which uses its gasoline engine to power the car and the electric drive as a supplement, the Volt runs purely on electric current. Once its battery pack is depleted (after 25 to 50 miles), the Volt's gasoline engine kicks on to run a generator, powering the electric motors and helping recharge the batteries. This extends the Volt's range an additional 300 miles or more. With its cool and elegant styling, and even more cool and elegant interior, the 2013 Chevy Volt plug-in hybrid not only makes a statement about your environmental consciousness, it also says something about your good taste and appreciation for style.

You'll Like This Car If...

If you're worried a pure electric car won't be able to satisfy your distance requirements before needing to be recharged, the 2013 Chevrolet Volt plug-in hybrid electric sedan is the answer: It carries a charging station around with it, in the form of its 1.4-liter gasoline engine.

You May Not Like This Car If...

Buying a 2013 Chevy Volt is an expensive proposition, even with the federal and state tax breaks. If you just want long range, good fuel economy and low emissions, a VW Golf TDI or Toyota Prius is cheaper.

What's New for 2013

The 2013 Chevrolet Volt gets a new Hold mode in its drive selection to conserve battery charge, and a new no-cost-option low-emissions package qualifies the Volt for single-occupancy HOV lanes in California and New York. New features include lane-departure and collision-warning systems, and GPS-enabled navigation.

Driving the Volt

Driving Impressions The 2013 Chevy Volt's electric motor delivers a big dose of torque right from the get-go, letting the car sprint away quickly from a standing start. The absence of engine...

noise is a bit disconcerting at first, and when it does kick in, the way the engine's revs don't track road speed can seem odd, but you'll soon get used to the quirks. We can't call the Volt's driving dynamics "spirited," but the Cruz-based platform works well. The electric power steering is quite well-weighted and responsive, though the regenerative braking feels a bit unnatural through the pedal. This year, the EPA raised its estimate of the Volt's electric-only range from 35 to 38 miles, but obviously, actual range varies hugely depending on circumstances. The new Hold mode is useful, for example, when driving on a freeway heading into the city, where you'll want the full electric charge available.

DELAYED START AND DEPARTURE TIME MODE
Using information supplied by your local electricity provider, you can program the Volt to start recharging its battery pack when rates are at their lowest. And if you tell it when you plan to leave in the morning, the car will automatically schedule the charging process to ensure it's ready.

VOLT SMARTPHONE APP
The OnStar MyLink app lets you check your Volt's battery level, tire pressure, available electric range, lock/unlock the doors and start the A/C system to pre-cool the interior, all from your smartphone. You can control charging rate and get a text or e-mail alert when the battery is "full."

2013 Chevrolet Volt Details
2013 Chevrolet Volt photo Interior

Taking a page from the Apple computer school of design, the 2013 Chevy Volt's interior is covered in bright white and dark accented plastics and touch-sensitive controls for the audio and climate-control functions. Two 7-inch LCD screens replace the traditional analog gauges, with one serving as the instrument cluster (speedometer, fuel and range gauges) and the other in the center stack displaying the electric motor/battery operation as well as the available navigation screen. The cool-looking touch-sensitive buttons are a little tricky to identify and operate. The rear seat takes only two occupants and their head- and legroom are snug.

Exterior
2013 Chevrolet Volt photo

With the goal of total operating efficiency, the Chevrolet Volt's design team crafted a body shape that could cheat the wind while delighting the eyes. Up front are a rounded nose, closed grille opening and steeply raked windshield. Sharp edges along the Volt's rear fenders help slice through the wind, as does the functional rear hatch spoiler. This is one of the most aerodynamic cars in GM's long and storied history. Even the Volt's wheels and tires are designed for maximum efficiency; the ultra-lightweight wheels (17.8 pounds) mount Goodyear Fuel Max low-rolling-resistance tires.

Notable Equipment
Standard Equipment

The base 2013 Chevrolet Volt plug-in hybrid comes with a more comprehensive feature set than just about any other Chevy on the market. It's also the recipient of all of Chevy's latest and greatest technology and features, including touch-sensitive climate, audio and drive controls, and an 8-year/100,000-mile warranty on its battery pack and associated electrics. Other standard features include air conditioning, keyless access, power mirror/locks/windows, 110-volt charge cord, color-touch AM/FM/CD radio and 17-inch wheels. Standard safety features include electronic traction and stability control, anti-lock brakes and eight airbags. You also get USB connectivity and five years of OnStar.

Optional Equipment

For 2013, most Chevy Volt options are grouped into a few packages, including Comfort (heated front seats and leather-wrapped steering wheel), Premium Trim (adds leather seat trim and a rear center armrest), and two Enhanced Safety packages, one including rear park assist and rearview camera and the other adding front park assist and the new lane-departure and collision-warning systems. Stand-alone options include an energy-saving Bose sound system (it's 40 percent lighter and uses 50 percent less energy than a conventional sound system), MyLink, and a navigation system with 30 GB hard-drive music storage and Sirius NavTraffic.

Under the Hood

The 2013 Chevrolet Volt's propulsion system consists of an electric drive unit that makes 149 horsepower and 273 lb-ft of torque, a 16kWh lithium-ion battery pack and a 1.4-liter/84-horsepower 4-cylinder "range-extender." That engine takes over when battery charge is depleted – normally after 25-50 miles of driving – and generates on-the-fly electricity for another 300-340 miles. Recharging takes 10-16 hours using a standard 110V outlet or about four hours on a 240V dedicated unit. The Volt has four operating modes. Normal is the most efficient, Sport provides more direct accelerator response, Mountain helps the battery cope with extended steep grades and Hold runs only on the gas engine/generator, conserving battery charge for when it may be wanted (in town, for instance).

AC synchronous electric motor/generator
16kWh lithium-ion battery pack
1.4-liter inline-4 (drives generator only)
111kW/149 horsepower @ 4,800 rpm
273 lb-ft of torque @ 0-4,800 rpm
EPA projected full-charge range: 38 miles (all-electric), 344 miles (gasoline range-extender only)
EPA city/highway fuel economy: 93 MPGe (all-electric, mpg equivalent), 37 mpg (on gasoline engine/generator)

Trading in or Selling? Know where you stand with the most up-to-date Kelley Blue Book Value at your fingertips. See your car's value

Buying this car?

2013 Chevrolet Volt Consumer Reviews

Overall Rating
9.0
Out of 10

Based on 167 Ratings for the 2011 - 2015 models.

Review this car
  • Value
    8.7/10
    Quality
    9.2/10
  • Reliability
    9.1/10
    Performance
    9.1/10
  • Comfort
    8.9/10
    Styling
    9.0/10

best of many vehicles I've owned.

By on Monday, December 01, 2014

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 2,500

10 10.0
overall rating 10 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
10/10
Value
10/10
Reliability
10/10
Quality
10/10
Performance
10/10
Styling
10/10
Comfort
10/10

Pros: "mileage, technology that works, unique."

Cons: ""A" pillars are a bit wide."

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10

"I had no intention of buying this car till I drove one. I had seen a few of them but they never really appealed to me so didn't consider them to be "my" type of car, and I've had a lot of new cars. Why Chevy doesn't promote this car more is a mystery to me. I can honestly say after 6 months and 2,500 I am more impressed with it each time I get in and out it. Have Nav with backup camera, Bose, rear park sensors, leather, heated seats and chrome wheels and more. This car has rock solid build quality, good driving/ riding qualities, and is really a technological marvel. I lucked out and bought at a time when they offered no interest for 72 mos. and with the federal and stated tax credits, well that was "icing on the cake". Love the smart phone app which allows status notifications of charging,tire pressures miles driven and other things. Standard remote start is great in the cold weather. I think the people at Chevy thought of just about everything to make this an outstanding vehicle. Still waiting to give the car a test in the fairly heavy snow but talk on the forums is positive."

8 people out of 9 found this review helpful

Far exceeded my expectations

By on Monday, November 17, 2014

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 13,500

10 10.0
overall rating 10 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
10/10
Value
8/10
Reliability
9/10
Quality
9/10
Performance
9/10
Styling
9/10
Comfort
8/10

Pros: "extended range. smooth electric propulsion. remote"

Cons: "lack of 5th seat"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 9

"When I replaced by 15 year old commuter car with the Chevy Volt, cost saving was not a factor at all. I purchased the Chevy Volt because it was a technology marvel and perfectly suites my requirements. Now, more than a year later, I could not be happier with my purchase. There is absolutely no buyers remorse. How could you - when the car went 13500 miles on just 12.5 gallons of gasoline and about $400 in electricity? And maintenance? I rotated the tires at 7500 miles (free by dealer). I still have 35% oil life remaining. And as per the manual, I don't have to do any other maintenance (except tire rotations) for the next 30,000 or so miles! The car is fun to drive. Its not a sports car (0 to 60 in 8 seconds) but in local traffic, I can be far ahead of other cards because of the silent 150hp + 280 lb-ft instant electric torque. Many people think the battery is expensive and needs to be replaced every 3 years but the car comes with 8 year/a 100K mile traction battery warranty. In fact, all the electric drive components carry the same warranty! And battery technology 8 years (should the need to replace arise - its not like the battery will just die after 8 years!) will be much better to what it is today. And batteries will also be a lot cheaper 8 years from now. The only limitation I see in the volt is the lack of a 5th seat. Otherwise, this is the best electric/hybrid you can get."

10 people out of 17 found this review helpful

Solid car

By on Monday, November 17, 2014

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 98,500

10 9.0
overall rating 9 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
9/10
Value
10/10
Reliability
10/10
Quality
10/10
Performance
10/10
Styling
6/10
Comfort
8/10

Pros: "great refinement solid engineer with 2 exceptions"

Cons: "91 octane required and nav system"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 9

"We're coming from a Toyota matrix and quality is far improved with this car. We bought this used and have only had for a month so we'll see over time how the battery does. I couldn't get a Prius or any other hybrid currently on the market- the Prius and all other hybrids use the infamous CVT transmission my transmission mechanic said $8000 for any Prius with a bad transmission when our conventional Durango cost us $2500. for tranny overhaul. The volt stands alone as an electric car with gas range extender- their is a tranny- it is 1 speed direct drive with a digital clutch so much more efficient and simpler to repair than any other PHEV. The main drawbacks here are required 91octane (I called volt and asked if 87 octane is OK and they claim 87 is fine but watch for pinging. The car pinged immediately sounds like a tin can filled with rocks. Went back to 91 and engine quiet again). The only other issue is the navigation. We have a garmin and it is far better. I know the 2016 volt burns 87 octane and hopefully they fix the nav too. Overall this is a tight, highly refined Vehicle with potential for very high gas mileage around 200 mpg if always plugged in. We get about 58 mpg since we live out of town which is fantastic mileage. I can also go get the mail or drive around our 6 acre farm fuel free after plugging this in. It's a great car high recommendation."

3 people out of 4 found this review helpful

Outstanding vehicle for almost everyone

By on Monday, November 10, 2014

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 900

10 10.0
overall rating 10 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
10/10
Value
10/10
Reliability
10/10
Quality
10/10
Performance
10/10
Styling
9/10
Comfort
8/10

Pros: "Economical, great to drive, avoid the gas station"

Cons: "Pure 4 seater, remember to recharge"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10

"This 2014 model is my second Volt. I have driven more than 900 miles so far and used 1.0 gal of gas. Just like my cell phone, I can drive all day, and then plug it into a regular 110V outlet at night and it's ready to go again in the morning. If your battery ever runs down, the gas powered range extender kicks in and makes more electricity! You can go another 350 miles or so, and then either recharge, or just put more gas in. Ultra modern electronics inside, and great acceleration when you hit the "go" pedal."

5 people out of 7 found this review helpful

Car is great. 50 miles round trip on Battery

By on Tuesday, November 04, 2014

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 17,000

10 9.0
overall rating 9 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
9/10
Value
8/10
Reliability
10/10
Quality
10/10
Performance
8/10
Styling
8/10
Comfort
10/10

Pros: "Saves me $ on gas"

Cons: "Expensive"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 9

"Do not like all the bangs and whistles. Would be nice to take that out and make the car more afordable"

1 person out of 7 found this review helpful

Superb Automobile.

By on Friday, October 03, 2014

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 19,000

10 10.0
overall rating 10 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
10/10
Value
9/10
Reliability
10/10
Quality
10/10
Performance
10/10
Styling
10/10
Comfort
10/10

Pros: "Well engineered. Green. Great leather"

Cons: "Hard to see out the rear window."

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10

"This car is neither your Grandfather's Electric Golf Cart, nor a Prius. Its an exceptionally well engineered automobile. It flies. Its electric motor gets you where you need to go, no matter if it is getting around town on the charge or going across country with the Generator assist. The torque is phenomenal meaning the car gets up and goes. The engineering behind this car is wonderful. As is the interior. The leather is subtle, the passenger compartment is quiet and refined. As an extra engineering bonus, when you put the back seats down, there is a remarkable amount of cargo area. In fact, I got an entire set of kitchen cabinets in it."

12 people out of 21 found this review helpful

Share this page

Advertisement

Why ads?
Trading in or Selling? Know where you stand with the most up-to-date Kelley Blue Book Value at your fingertips. See your car's value

Buying this car?