The Chevrolet Bolt, Motor Trend's Car of the Year and a finalist for North American Car of the Year, may be the most watched new car of 2017. The compact hatchback has a 383-kilometre range range on a single charge, which tops some versions of the Tesla Model S. It is the first of several non-luxury battery electric cars with a 320-plus-kilometre range headed to market. Next up is the second generation of the Nissan Leaf, expected to be shown late this year and go on sale in 2018.
Sales of the Bolt, which costs $44,395, including destination charges, before tax credits, start in three provinces in January. But the true level of demand may not be apparent until the spring selling season.
After all applicable rebates, the price for the base model in Ontario, for example, plunges to $33,034 including destination charges.
General Motors will focus on British Columbia, Ontario and Quebec, the only provinces that offer government rebates, during its initial rollout. And in those provinces, only dealerships that are set up to sell GM’s range-extended Chevrolet Volt will be able to also sell the Bolt.
Though not a direct competitor to either of Tesla's battery electric vehicles, the Bolt will test Americans' willingness to buy a mass-produced battery-powered car from a mainstream automaker in a time when gasoline is inexpensive. And it won't be the only such vehicle. This week at CES, formerly the Consumer Electronics Show, in Las Vegas, Ford is expected to announce a Bolt competitor.