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#43779 Initial impressions of my loaded 2017 Bolt EV Premier

Posted by bro1999 on 19 January 2017 - 06:22 AM

So I got my Bolt a few days ago! Those of you that checked out my blog may already know this, but now that I've spent a few days with it, I am posting my initial thoughts. Since the Bolt is similar in shape and size to a C-Max (bit smaller all around exterior wise), I figure some of you may be interested in how it stacks up. Will start off with some exterior shots:






Regen in L is HUGE! Way stronger than L in any other plug-in I've driven to date (G1/G2 Volt, C-Max, Spark EV). I noticed that a lot of the time I don't even need to use the regen paddle to make the Bolt come to a complete stop...it's that strong. Despite the powerful regen, at higher speeds it is tuned down appropriately so it doesn't slam you forward like you just jumped on the brakes. L + regen paddle = no touching the brake pedal except for sudden/emergency braking situations.

Interior space is....spacey! I am 6' tall, and with the driver's seat set at a comfortable level, I have at least 4-5 inches of headroom to spare. The Bolt's front seats sit very similar to a C-Max (higher up than say a Volt) despite the subcompact footprint. GM definitely maximized interior passenger space in the Bolt.

The flat floor makes the rear seating area very spacious as well....again, very similar to the slightly larger C-Max. No hump of any kind back there thanks to the skateboard battery design, and a "real" 5th seat. Sitting 3 adults in the back would still be tight however. I found with 2 booster seats in the rear, I could squeeze my 190 pound self in the middle, though that would not be pleasant for any long distance drive. Moving a car seat to the middle should make a trip much more pleasant for an adult sitting in the rear, however.






Positioning the driver's seat at comfortable position and then hopping in the rear, I found I still had a good 2-3 inches of leg room. I have a 32" inseam FWIW. However the complaints about the front seats being uncomfortable....I know what people are talking about. I don't find them bothersome, but definitely noticeable. I can feel the plastic shell through the cushion with my left thigh, but I've already gotten used to it. Someone such as HUGH JAZZ may find them troublesome, though.

You can easily squeal the tires off the line, even when at an extremely low SOC and with propulsion power reduced mode engaged (which happens when the SOC drops below 10%)! wink.png

Ride is very solid...very similar to a Volt to those of you who have driven one. No getting bounced around a rough road like in an i3 with its bicycle tires. The batteries all being in the floor help keep the Bolt planted even in sharp turns.

Getting into a Bolt it no problem, as you just slide in horizontally compared to say dropping in with a Volt.

Interior of a loaded Bolt is definitely cheaper than a loaded C-Max (and possibly even a base C-Max) Lots of hard plastics found in the interior, but I don't care too much about that TBH. The 10.2" main display is very nice, and is a tech nerd's dream.

Hatch space is deceptively bigger than you would think. Depth is pretty similar to an Energi as well as the hatch height, but if you remove the optional false floor, the hatch area is much deeper than an Energi. I was able to fit two 28-32 inch tall luggage pieces in the Bolt's hatch (too big to carry on), and could have easily fit another. I may have been able to fit 4 of the 28 inch pieces. I don't think I could have fit those pieces vertically in an Energi.




The wireless phone charging slot. I shoved my Moto Droid Z Play (no case, 5.5" screen) in there, and it fit snuggly. Anything bigger than a 5.5" phone likely won't fit. Wasn't actually able to test the wireless charging feature since my phone needs some accessory to enable wireless charging.

My Bolt has some kind of HUD for the Forward Collision Alert/Automatic Emergency Braking (AEB). The FCA activated one time when I was rapidly approaching some cars slowing on the highway. Red lights lit up in the lower left corner of the windshield along with rapid, audible beeps. A button on the left side of the steering wheel lets you adjust how sensitive the FCA is (has 3 settings to choose from). In the vehicle menu, there are options you can select for FCA/AEB, to include "off", "Alerts on, AEB off", and "Alerts on, AEB on".

There is a "following distance" display you can choose that tells you how many seconds ahead the car directly in front of you is. I guess it's useful if you want to know exactly how far behind you are someone?

If you don't use the turn signal and drift towards the painted lane dividers on the highway, the Bolt will nudge you back towards the center of the lane. I wanted to see how long the Bolt would play ping-pong between the lanes, but the wife yelled at me to stop screwing around after she realized what I was doing.

There are no sensors that trigger audible beeps to clue you in on how close the front of the Bolt is to a car or wall when parking (like in my '12 Volt with that feature), but the birdseye camera + front camera give you plenty of info to see exactly how far away from a car/wall you are. I guess GM decided having front parking sensors would have been overkill?

Rear cross traffic alert system activated once when a car was approaching from the right when I was getting ready to reverse out of a parking spot. So it works I guess.

Haven't tested the front pedestrian braking system yet. If someone is in the Central MD area and wants to be a guinea pig, let me know. You'll have to sign a waiver that says it's not my fault if my Bolt runs you over and kills you though. wink.png


And last but not least, range! Suffice to say, the range is ginormous....estimated 217 miles on the first full charge, and that is before the Bolt adapts to my usual conservative driving style. Compared to the Energi's 19-21 mile range.....yeah, nuff said.


For anyone that liked the C-Max but wished it had more range and a more spirited drive, the Bolt EV may be just the car for you. If you can live without an ICE, that is. ;)

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#36838 Energi HV Battery Replaced Under Warranty

Posted by mipmapped on 31 March 2016 - 08:33 PM

I know I've not been the only one with low battery capacity so I wanted to let the others know that it is possible to get an HV battery replaced under warranty if you have a supportive dealer. My C-Max Energi is 3 years old and 56K miles. Over a period of a few months the battery capacity dropped to and stayed at 4.2KWH and 14m maximum range. It took a few months but I worked with the amazing guys at Ford Store Morgan Hill, especially the lead mechanic Mike Mead, who convinced Ford to ship a new battery under warranty. They installed it today. Couldn't be happier!
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#8082 Charge port door pops open?

Posted by outerdog on 18 May 2013 - 08:55 AM

I think that the straight man should get come credit for making all this merriment possible.  That's what I get for baring my soul to you guys.


Getting ready to leave this morning for the donut shop, I pull the plug out of the car — all the while telling my wife, who is standing by the passenger door, about the helpful input that I am getting from other members on the C-MAX Energi forum.  I hang the plug up and pull the other end out of the AC outlet as I always do, because I am that careful about conserving energy.  I'm still telling my wife about the wise guys on the forum as I get into the car.  "Uh, Outerdog," she says.  "Yes, Dearest?"  "Outerdog, don't you think you had better close the little door on the car?"  I had forgotten to close the charge port door.

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#8278 Will The Battery Be Charged After A Long Trip

Posted by mikeb on 22 May 2013 - 08:14 AM

Why bring them up?  The damages are temporary and the benefits to human civilzation gigantic!  Fraking has been proven by government studies, including the current EPA, to be safe and water contamination a myth.  More drilling, more fracking, and energy independence from ME oil can be achieved.

No, Fracking means death, and the long-term disadvantages to human civilization are immense.


Unless the laws of thermodynamics are repealed, greenhouse gasses in the atmosphere scatter outgoing infrared light, causing an imbalance in the amount of energy recieved from the sun vs radiated into space. This is not debatable. And another non-debatable fact is that CO2 concentrations just passed 400ppm, a value that has not been seen on earth for millions of years. That increase in concentrations is proven to be human caused, also a non-debatable fact. The higher that concentration becomes, the more planetary warming we get, and we're well past the safe threshold already.


The big problem is that we've got about 6 times more buried fossile fuel that the next obtainable safe stopping point allows. If we add in fracking and alternative sources of oil, we suddenly have 7 times too much. If we don't leave that in the ground, then all of human civilization is at risk. Think I'm overstating things? Condider this: what we are building is an ecological catastrophe, and by ecological I really mean agricultrual. Every known side effect of a warming planet will have a negative impact on food production: drought, extreme rains, invasive insects, heatwaves, etc. It all stacks up on top of a overworked agricultural system, and it all will combine to drastically reduce crop yields. And what happens when agriculture collapses? We already know: the Egyptian government fell in 2011, and the trigger is actually considered to be high food prices stressing a poor population. Why were food prices extra high that year? Massive heat wave in Russia combined with torrential rains in China. Civilization cannot survive without agriculture, and it won't be pretty if agriculture is just barely hanging on and we've got 9 billion people to feed.


Over the last 11,000 years, the entire history of human agriculture and civilization, we've seen a slow drop of 1.7 degrees, followed by an extremely rapid increase of 1.8 degrees in just the last century. On our current path (burning all the fossil fuels we can find), we can expect another 10 degrees of warming before end of the century, a rate of warming that should be considered equivelant to hitting a brick wall at 100mph.


Sure, you don't want to go back to the pre-industrial age and use horses for transportation, and that's fine.  I feel the same way. That's why vehicles like the Energi are so important to our future, as well as the ability to charge them from renewable sources of energy like solar and wind and geothermal.

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#8075 Charge port door pops open?

Posted by fwroberts on 18 May 2013 - 06:37 AM

PHEV etiquette: it's okay to tell a friend when their flap is open.

I forget where I read this, but I think it was a reliable source.

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#30623 Apparently nobody mods a C-Max

Posted by RubyMax on 16 June 2015 - 04:44 AM

  Not going to make it any faster but it'll look better, sound better and hopefully pick up a few mpg's on the highway. 





What can sound better than the silence of an electric drivetrain ???

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#16381 Winter driving strategy

Posted by larryh on 03 January 2014 - 05:48 PM

The following graph shows Power vs. Time while charging the HVB using a 240 V charger.  Charging begins at 0:53 and continues until 2:38. I believe that the HVB cells are being balanced from 2:19 to 2:36, as the power drops from about 3.4 kW to 0 kW over the 17 minute period.  Then from 2:36 until 4:54, the car continues to draw about 67 watts of power from the charger, which I suspect is to charge the 12 V battery.  Preconditioning occurs from 4:55 to 5:38, at which time I disconnected the charger.  The GO time was set for 5:45.  The temperature in the garage was about 15 F.


All the time that power is being drawn, the 12 V battery is being charged.  This can be observed by monitoring the voltage using a voltage monitor plugged into the Power Point in the car's console. 


Normally, the car stops drawing power from the charger once charging the HVB battery completes, i.e. at 2:36.  So no further power is drawn until preconditioning begins, i.e. 4:55.  I have only observed the 67 watt power draw about 4 times over the past few months.  The last 3 times were in the past three weeks with the colder weather.   I think it requires much more than 67 watts to do anything to the HVB. 


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#12025 All the problems with my C-Max Energi

Posted by ITFlyer on 17 September 2013 - 09:15 AM

Reading through the posts here (and on any model-specific auto forum, for that matter), one would be inclined to deduce that owners of C-Max cars are beset with nonstop problems and endless trips to the dealer. Doing research on a car by reading forums dedicated to it slews the overall picture, because the people most likely to post messages are those people who have problems. People who don't have problems, typically don't post messages about their cars.


So I'm just here to say, I now have 3300 miles on my C-Max Energi, I'm 3/4 way through my second tank of gas, I've been driving it since I got it in July, so 2 1/2 months. I've had a total of ZERO problems of any kind. The car is perfect. I love it!


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#10300 Charging my new Energi with our Solar Panels

Posted by marcklein on 27 July 2013 - 05:46 PM

We took delivery of our Energi today. We have solar panels on our house and hope to be charging the car with as much solar power as possible!
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#43157 My Bolt EV blogging adventure

Posted by bro1999 on 13 December 2016 - 03:56 AM

So some of you guys have expressed interest in the Bolt EV. Despite deliveries starting as soon as the end of this week, unfortunately most of the country won't be able to actually see one in person until Feb of March next year at the earliest.

I have started my journey into trying to bring back a Bolt that is on a train to SoCal to MD. Feel free to view my blog on my experiences. I'll likely provide weekly updates, or whenever newsworthy events happen. :p

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#40647 CMAX, CMAX, CMAX haha

Posted by Magnetic16 on 06 August 2016 - 01:55 PM

About a month ago, before getting our Energi, my car needed some warranty work done. I didn't have time to drop the car off during working hours and the dealership offered to pick it up from me. I told them I was going out of town, but would leave the FOB in it and give them the door code. They let me know they picked it up and left a CMAX to drive until my car was done. I also had a CMAX company car to drive and my wife had an SEL hybrid.. Needless to say, it was CMAX parking only in my driveway.

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#28987 HVB Long term best practices

Posted by P=E/t on 07 April 2015 - 09:30 AM

It's hard to believe no one on such a generally tech-savvy forum has yet seen the obvious solution to high HVB temperatures:
Beer is the solution for so very many things. In this application, mind you, I'm not talking about actually drinking it. For drinking beer, I myself prefer an IPA at "cellar temperature," meaning around 55 degrees F. Or perhaps a stout when I'm in the proper mood. And lagers are fine, and can be served colder--but they must be interesting lagers.
No, in our C-Max Energi battery-cooling application I'm talking about going out and buying two or three cases of mass-produced American pabulum, like Budweiser or even (gasp!) Coors Light. And then chilling them down to 32.000001 degrees F, which is, so I'm told, the temperature these beers tend to be consumed at.
And then just sticking the three cases of cold mass-produced watery beer right there on top of the HVB and closing the retractable cover.
That should drop the HVB temperature enough to ease our EV-range-anxious minds a little. And then when we plug in at night, we simply pop the beer in the fridge for "pre-conditioning."
Just never, ever open one ....

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#26288 Suggestions for C-Max Energi improvements

Posted by viajero on 04 December 2014 - 07:46 PM

2. Reduce the height by 1".  The car is quite tall now, so this inch would not be missed.  The result should improve wind resistance and reduce the weight slightly, compensating for some of the extra weight due to the widened track.


Noooo!  The height is the main reason I bought this car.  If it were shorter, I would have bought a Volt.

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#25558 cmax lemon?

Posted by nrg_tm on 01 November 2014 - 11:32 AM

Went back and swapped for another cmax.  this one appears to be solid.  thanks everyone for the advice.  

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#19865 C-Max Effect on my Home Electric Bill

Posted by viajero on 06 May 2014 - 03:23 PM

I recommended to leave the packs around 1/2 full, stated 60% charge level so if you need to go somewhere and need to top off its not far from finishing before departure.  60% is the standard with chargers I use, here they talk about 40% charge level.  Again, they are agreeing with what I said -- don't leave it full and plugged in all the time.


You are correct that it is better to store lithium ion batteries about half full.  40% is the number I've seen most often.  I would probably do that if I were going to leave it in storage for months.


But I think it greatly overcomplicates things to try to do that every day, and no one wants to calculate how far they're going to go for each trip.  Besides being a pain in the butt, people will frequently forget to top it off before driving, or just not have time.  Then they'll lose more EV miles due to starting with a half full battery than they ever will due to decreased capacity over the years.


Those of us who do most of the talking on this forum are engineers and hypermilers and professional mechanics, AKA car geeks.  And if you want to try to eke out every last bit of performance/capacity from your battery, that's great.  But for anyone who's reading and might be getting turned off by all these things we recommend to each other, just remember:


The only special thing you have to do with an Energi is plug it in whenever you can, and unplug it before you leave.  Other than that you can just drive it like a normal car.  You don't have to think about SoC, DoD, cycle life, pulsing, gliding, regeneration, etc.  The computer will turn on the ICE whenever it's necessary, and you'll save a lot of gas compared to a non-plug-in.

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#19636 2013 C-Max Energi SEL for sale

Posted by Andrew Roberts on 25 April 2014 - 04:01 PM

Something about small town USA just wants nothing to do with the hybrid stuff. I have family in a small town that a cmax plug-in could literally drive to all 4 corners of town and back all on electric. Why everyone and there brother goes out and buys a pickup truck is beyond me. I get needing a pickup, but 95% of people with pickups would be better off getting a car and borrowing a friends truck that one time a year they need to go get a Christmas tree. 


Sales guy at the Ford dealership there, didn't even know what an Energi was. "Oh no we don't have any of those here, people need cars that run on gas and those require a lot of maintenance." My thought to this way $@%# %$#%. 


IF I lived in a small town, I wouldn't know where the gas station is.


Good luck selling that Energi. Get educated on what it is capable of and sell it.

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#19107 Just reached the milestone of 10K EV miles

Posted by Tom_NC_1 on 03 April 2014 - 04:37 PM

It has taken a little over ten months but I have just reached 10k EV miles. That is out of a total 11,388 miles. The ICE does not see a lot of action. I have only used 32 gallons of gas during all this time and enjoy not having to visit the gas station more than once every three months. 


I am still totally in love with this car. The only trip back to the dealer was for an early headliner recall and a reprogram to solve a foot swipe sleep issue. I did recently have the tires rotated at 10k miles. 


This is my first Hybrid and has now become an obsession/hobby. I am always looking for ways to improve my efficiency to get the most out of the battery pack.



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#18793 One Year Anniversary

Posted by reedrinn on 25 March 2014 - 11:30 AM

I recently passed my one-year anniversary of owning and driving a 2013 C-Max Energi.  I thought that some of my fellow Energi enthusiasts (and potential owners) on this forum might be interested in my experiences and driving and fuel economy statistics.  


I purchased an Ice Blue C-Max Energi in Austin, Texas on March 15, 2013 with the full option set.  I have absolutely loved this car!  The C-Max replaced a 2009 Ford Escape Hybrid which I also liked tremendously, having put over 120,000 miles on it.  My wife now drives the Escape.  I have had the C-Max back to the dealer four times:  Twice for two oil changes and to update the software, once to replace an outside mirror housing that had cracked, and a fourth time to the body shop after I hit a deer.  I've had no other problems with the C-Max.   


I would consider myself an average driver.  I don't generally try to "hyper-mile", but stay pretty close to the speed limits and try not to drive aggressively.  I'm consistently ranked in the Top-10 for Brake Score for my region, but not in any of the other categories.


I installed a Level 2 charger at my home almost immediately, and the car gets a full charge every night.  I have a 15-mile commute each way to work five days a week, but average around 60 miles a day when I add in my business trips and other travel.  Most of the time I am able to get a full charge at work during the day by using the Ford Level 1 charger and plugging in at the parking garage at work, so my daily commute consumes very little gas.  I pay nothing to plug in at work, and I also use several ChargePoint charge stations at various locations around Austin when I'm traveling around town.  I pay $50 a year for unlimited charges with ChargePoint through the City of Austin.


I like to keep records and statistics, so I use acaron my Android phone to record all of my fill-up and service records.  Here are my energy consumption numbers for my first year of C-Max ownership, compared to the previous year with my Escape:




The gas and electric costs are based on the actual amounts paid for gas and electricity.  My residential electric rate is about $0.12 per kWh.


In actuality, my electric costs are probably half of what is shown above as I use "free" electricity to charge at work and the ChargePoint chargers around town.


I just wish this car had double the EV range, and then I'd probably never buy gas!


I hope this information is helpful to anyone that might be thinking about buying a C-Max.




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#17222 12 volt battery S.O.C.

Posted by ArizonaEnergi on 28 January 2014 - 04:52 PM

I was sitting in the grocery store parking lot today while my wife shopped.  I got tired of listening to talk radio so I pulled the voice paddle and said "USB" then "play Space Oddity" and the song started playing.  When I saw her coming back I pulled it and said "AV" and it switched the input back to A/V, as we listen to audiobooks off the iPod when we drive.


The MFT voice recognition works, and works well.  At 65 I like being on the leading edge in one of the most advanced vehicles on the planet, and don't regret the few trips to the dealer to get it working for good.

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#14681 Fotomoto is in the house!

Posted by fotomoto on 17 November 2013 - 09:18 AM

Thanks everyone. :happy feet:


Since the cars are identical models (ruby red metallic, stone interior, 302a package), it should come as no surprise that overall they feel exactly the same with a couple of exceptions.  1) On familiar local roads where I typically expect the ICE in the hybrid to kick in, now nothing happens!  <grin>  Or 2) I catch myself thinking "time to pedal out of this pulse phase and get into a glide" and realize:  NOT!   Ahh the simple pleasures of driving a plug-in around town. :worship:  <VBG>   :smile2:


The NRG  passed it's first test with flying colors:  weekly grocery store run for a family of four that eats the vast majority of its meals at home.  I think I'd like to add another one of those mini-nets to the second level too.  I'm sure the are very cheeeeep from Ford (sarcasm).   :wink:  Side note:  an older couple with a Focus literally flagged me down in the parking lot to ask me about the car.  The fellow was so jazzed about it he said he was going to the dealership tomorrow to check them out.  Hope he does.






I spent last night and this morning getting everything set (phone app, SAT/radio stations, lift gate height, pairing phones, custom settings, installing map card, etc) as well as transferring items from the old car to the new.  I also ordered another application of Opti-coat 2.0 from Amazon.  I probably won't have time to apply it until the Thanksgiving break though.

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