2016 Chevrolet Volt named Green Car of Year – Detroit Free Press
LOS ANGELES — The Chevrolet Volt was named 2016 Green Car of the Year today at the Los Angeles Auto Show, in recognition of improvements to every aspect of the extended-range hybrid that was first introduced in 2011.
Judges noted the 2016 model’s “sleek and sporty design, more energy-dense batteries, new electric motors, and quicker acceleration.” The car has a more efficient 1.5-liter engine-generator that creates onboard electricity to power the Volt’s motors for a total 420 miles.
The Volt beat a field of finalists that includes the Toyota Prius, Honda Civic, Hyundai Sonata and Audi A3 E-Tron.
“Unlike the first generation where we had no owner base and had to figure it out, we now have a base of 80,000 loyal buyers,” said Steve Majoros, marketing director for Chevrolet cars and crossovers.
The Volt will be a cornerstone of marketing campaigns, he said. Additionally, “we have a lot more plans for electrification.”
The 2016 Volt is the second generation of the hybrid, which went on sale this fall with a range of 53 miles on electricity alone — beating the automaker’s prediction that the second-generation car would reach 50 miles under battery power.
“This is the first time in Green Car of the Year history that a vehicle has won the award in two succeeding model generations,” said Ron Cogan, editor and publisher of Green Car Journal. “Considering all the brands and models evaluated in the award program, that’s quite a statement. The Chevrolet Volt was a standout when it won 2011 Green Car of the Year and continues in that role today as the 2016 Green Car of the Year.”
The Toyota Prius was redesigned for the 2016 model year.
The Honda Civic is now in its 10th generation and was nominated for getting the fuel economy of a hybrid with a conventional gasoline engine.
The Hyundai Sonata is available as a conventional, hybrid and plug-in hybrid that can go up to 24 miles on electricity alone.
The Audi E-tron is a plug-in hybrid. The five-door hatchback can go 19 miles on electricity alone after which the gasoline engine acts as a generator to continue driving.
The annual award is given by the Green Car Journal, which uses a panel of independent judges. This is the 10th year of the award that named the BMW i3, a plug-in hybrid made of carbon fiber, as the winner last year.
In October, the Green Car Journal announced it was rescinding past Green Car of the Year awards given to the 2009 VW Jetta TDI and 2010 Audi A3 TDI after Volkswagen’s admission that it deliberately deceived government authorities about emissions from the diesels in many of its vehicles, including the past Green Car winners.
“Rescinding the Green Car of the Year awards for the VW Jetta TDI and Audi A3 TDI is unfortunate but appropriate,” said Ron Cogan, editor and publisher of the Green Car Journal in announcing the move. “These models were selected as Green Car of the Year® above others for compelling reasons, including high fuel efficiency, reduced carbon emissions, a fun-to-drive nature, and the ability to meet 50 state emissions requirements with advanced diesel technology.”
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