Chevrolet’s upcoming affordable electric car looks like it will beat the Tesla Model 3 to market, on mileage, and price.
The Bolt is slated to go on sale later this year for about $37,500 not including the $7,500 federal electric vehicle tax credit. The Bolt is the first mass-market electric vehicle to cross the 200-mile range. That range should be enough to meet or exceed almost every person’s daily driving needs. (The vehicle range was determined in testing by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency.)
Chevy says the Bolt boasts an EPA-rated range of 238 miles per charge. Tesla claims the Model 3 should go about 215 miles, although that number could be higher when/if the car makes it into production.
The Bolt also has a longer range than the Tesla Model S, which can cover 210 miles per charge but costs about $28,500 more. Tesla’s lowest-cost Model S is $66,000 before the credit. Late next year, Tesla plans to start selling the more affordable Model 3 for $35,000 before the credit. The new Model S P100D can go about 315 miles per charge, but it starts at $134,500 without the credit. Historically Tesla has failed to meet the low price points due to production cost overruns so expect the Model 3 to be the same if not slightly more than a Bolt. Chevrolet sells many cars below MSRP with rebates, sales, and dealer incentives making the price difference even less.
The Bolt will be able to get software updates over the internet, it will take approximately 9.3 hours to recharge a Bolt from near empty using a 240-Volt home charger.
Can the Bolt help EV sales? Only time and consumer’s money will tell.