Chevy introduced the Volt to car buyers back in 2011. While reviewers didn’t give the vehicle many points for style, the industry did appreciate having another electric car on the market. With the 2016 Chevy Volt, the car company outdid itself by improving the model’s exterior style and offering buyers a vehicle that combined the power of electricity with the support of a conventional engine.

A Quick Glance

When it came to making updates to the vehicle, Chevy listened to the complaints of car buyers. The 2016 Volt will give you a longer electric operating range. In fact, you can travel as far as 53 miles on electricity alone. It also features a quieter engine and more overall spunk than earlier models. The car company upgraded the powertrain to a zippy Atkinson-cycle 1.5-liter aluminum-block engine, resulting in the vehicle’s fuel economy coming in at 42 miles per gallon.

The Volt also has a retuned suspension and improved dashboard controls that feature old-school knobs and switches. Car makers are returning to yesterday’s knobs and buttons because vehicle occupants tend to have trouble reaching them quickly or easily when volume and climate controls are added to a vehicle’s infotainment unit.

What Does it Come With?

The 2016 Chevy Volt is a five-seat hatchback sedan that comes with four doors. The carmaker is offering the car in an LT and a Premier trim. Standard equipment includes:

• 17-inch alloy wheels
• Keyless entry and ignition
• Remote start
• LED headlights and taillights
• Automatic climate control

For technology, Chevy added an 8-inch infotainment system, Bluetooth and a six-speaker audio system that has satellite radio. You’ll appreciate the addition of two USB ports and an auxiliary audio jack.

In the category of safety, Chevy added antilock brakes, traction control and stability control to the vehicle. It also comes with plenty of airbags and the OnStar emergency communications system that will automatically notify emergency personnel during crash situations. It has a pedestrian safety signal and stolen vehicle assistance.

Optional Equipment

As far as optional equipment goes, you can upgrade your Volt to include:

• Heated mirrors
• A heated steering wheel
• Heated front seats
• Leather upholstery

If your tunes are important to you, then you can also enhance the car with an eight-speaker Bose audio system.

To go all out and get the best possible Chevy Volt, purchase the Premier trim. This model comes with all of the standard and optional equipment that we’ve covered as well as heated rear seats, a wireless charging pad for your smartphones and an automated parking system. You can also upgrade this Volt trim with Chevy’s Driver Confidence Package. If you take this step, then your vehicle will feature:

• A forward collision alert system that has automatic braking
• Adaptive headlights
• A lane-keeping assist system

A navigation system is also available with the 2016 Chevy Volt.

Vehicle Performance

Chevy equipped the Volt with a plug-in hybrid system that has two electric motors that deliver 149 horsepower and a 1.5-liter gas-powered engine that’s also a generator. The vehicle’s electric motors receive their power from an 18.4 kWh lithium-ion battery pack that the grid charges. If you’re taking a road trip, then the electric motors can also be partially recharged by the vehicle’s engine. The system is set up to recharge the battery pack automatically when its initial charge is completely depleted. This means that the gas engine operates primarily as a generator for the electric motors. The Volt’s gas engine will kick in to give the vehicle additional power as it’s needed. This may happen when the vehicle is traveling up a steep incline or if you just need a little more power when passing another car. According to Chevy, the Volt can reach a speed of 60 miles per hour from a complete stop in just 7.8 seconds.

Interior Design

Along with updating the exterior of the Volt, Chevy decided to improve the interior. When you take your test drive, you’re sure to notice that the inside features upscale materials as well as comfortable front seats and plenty of places to store stuff. It has a two-tone color scheme that gives the interior a pleasant appearance while the hatchback design makes it easy to get cargo in and out of the vehicle. The luggage area has 10.6 cubic feet of space with the rear seats in use. If you need more room, then you can fold them down. The Volt could use a little more leg room and head room in the back seats, but if you intend to mainly haul kids around town, then this won’t be an issue.

If It’s Time to Go Electric

If you’re ready to become an electric car owner, then is a solid choice. With its streamlined exterior styling and comfort interior features, this is an electric car that looks nice driving down the roadway while being a friend to the environment.