The prototype of the production Chevy Bolt at the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas, introduced by GM Chairman & CEO Mary Barra.
General Motors unveiled a prototype of the production version of the all-electric Chevy Bolt, a car the automaker intends to help lead the way into the world of car sharing.
The car, which goes into production later this year, will get 200 miles per battery charge and is expected to cost less than $30,000, once government rebates are factored in. That, in itself, is a major leap forward for electric cars, which until now have only been able to get up to 100 miles per charge. But the company said it designed the interior of the Bolt so it could be used in in car-sharing services like Lyft, an Uber rival in which the automaker recently invested $500 million.
“We wanted to make sure this was a car that was targeted not just for today, but well into the future,” said Pam Fletcher, chief engineer for GM’s electrified vehicles programs.
GM isn’t only investing a ton of cash into Lyft – it’s also going to make a fleet of cars available in select cities for drivers who want to use them as Lyft taxis.
So here are some quirky little things you’ll find in the Bolt that should help launch it into the future:
1. No rearview mirror. Sounds crazy, but GM has removed the rearview mirror and replaced it with a rear camera. No more peering out over the tops of your children’s heads or trying to see around the back pillar of the car. The camera feeds a live image to a screen that looks exactly like Ye Olde Rearview Mirror, and in the same spot.
2. A flat floor. The battery and drivetrain are all tucked away under the car, so there is no need for a hump in the middle of the car floor, making it easy for people to get in and out of the back seat. Which is a minor victory for Uber drivers everywhere.
3. Self-sealing tires from Michelin, so Lyft drivers (and others) won’t have to worry about stopping for flats.
4. “Gamification.” Yes, GM went there and used that nerdfest of a word. They’re making it so EV drivers can compete with each other to see who is more green.
More details will emerge as Chevy continues working on the car. Prototypes available for test drives at CES this week were shrouded in black sheets inside, indicating Chevy has more work to do on the car before it’s ready for prime time. Fletcher said the car will go into production at the end of 2016.