If you’ve been watching the news, you probably know that the 2016 North American International Auto Show (NAIAS) in Detroit just ended on January 24. NAIAS occurs in January of every year and is widely regarded as one of the biggest and most important auto shows of the year.
This year, as a guest of the General Motors in-house diversity team, I was privy to all the latest and greatest offerings from GM, including a fabulous new concept car from Buick (the Avista), Buick’s first convertible in 25 years (the Cascada) and a fully electric car from Chevrolet (the Bolt EV).
The cars were amazing and so were the group of college journalism students that GM brought in to experience the auto show for the first time. These twelve students, who had to apply to be selected for the program, came from all over the Unites States, representing schools like Vanderbilt, Northwestern, Palo Alto College, NYU and Wayne State University. During their time in Detroit, the students were paired with professional writers, like myself, to help them navigate the world of automotive writing and create a group project about the auto show.
One of the most impressive cars to both college students and the veteran journalists alike was the aforementioned 2017 Chevrolet Bolt EV.
Green cars are certainly the wave of the future. The fact that our four weather seasons are blurring into each other is proof positive that the environment needs a helping hand. Some of the car companies have been quick to adopt hybrid technology. Notably Toyota was one of the first in the game with the hybrid Prius. More recently, the BMW i3 and i8 have been making waves and, at the 2016 Detroit Auto Show this year, the Bolt EV was all the rage. With a range of more than 200 miles per full charge, the Bolt is the first of the hybrids that have enough of a driving radius to be practical.
During the auto show, General Motors CEO Mary Barra drove the Bolt EV on stage herself, which can certainly be counted as a ringing endorsement. Even President Obama visited the auto show floor to check out the Bolt for himself.
Here are a few quick but important facts about the 2017 Bolt EV.
- Chevrolet’s first all-electric vehicle
- Goes into production end of 2016
- Will offer more than 200 miles of range on a full charge
- “Bluetooth low-energy” technology can unlock the car as the user approaches it
- OnStar 4G LTE can turn the Bolt EV into a mobile Wi-Fi hotspot
- Electric vehicle-specific navigation can design a route that offers maximize range and shows locations of charging stations
- MyChevrolet Mobile App offers functions, like remote start, car climate pre-conditioning and charge level of the car’s battery