There's been a lot of talk about the Volt electric car battery lately. We want to make sure that you have the facts and that all of your questions are answered. Below we've compiled answers to the most Frequently Asked Questions about the recent NHTSA Volt electric car battery testing below. If you want to know more, give us a call at 877-4-VOLT-INFO [877-486-5846].
The Volt is a safe vehicle. The Volt has a 5-Star Overall Vehicle Occupant Safety score from NHTSA--the highest possible overall safety rating. The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) also named it a Top Safety Pick for 2012.
Last Spring, The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration [NHTSA] performed a severe crash test on a Volt, totaling the car in the process. Three weeks after the test, the battery in the discarded vehicle caught fire. NHTSA conducted an investigation to figure out why the fire occurred.
In January, the NHTSA closed its investigation and reported that “NHTSA does not believe that Chevy Volts or other electric vehicles pose a greater risk of fire than gasoline-powered vehicles.”
NHTSA stands for National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. NHTSA does many things, specifically directing various national highway safety and consumer programs and overseeing the safety of motor vehicles, including the Volt.
NHTSA conducted a severe crash test on a Volt in May 2011 as part of its normal testing procedures. Three weeks following the test, the totaled Volt, which still had a partially charged battery, caught fire while parked in a storage lot.
What caused the fire? After the battery was damaged in the test crash, coolant leaked and over a period of time created an electrical short. The incident happened under lab conditions. GM is unaware of any real world crashes that have resulted in a battery related fire involving the Chevy Volt. In fact, Volt customers have driven over 25 million miles without a single similar incident.
We’re reinforcing the vehicle structure that protects the battery pack to help prevent damage to the pack in the event of a severe side collision. We’re also installing a sensor in the battery cooling system to monitor coolant levels.
The safety of our drivers is our top priority. Therefore, we are making these changes available to current Volt owners in addition to implementing them on future Volts sold.
Chevy dealers are trained and prepared to make the above enhancements at this time.
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