If you look at the 2011 Chevrolet Volt and malign its on-board gasoline-powered range extending engine then you’re unlikely to be a huge fan of general motors at the moment.
But that could all change, if you’re lucky enough to be in Seoul, South Korea later this month.
While you’re unlikely to get a ride, General Motors announced last week that it would be offering ten of its electric vehicle test fleet to the seoul G20 Summit Committee and Seoul Municipality for use during the November 11-12 event.
Although seven of the vehicles will be badged as Daewoo Lacetti Premieres, all ten vehicles are all-electric versions of the Chevrolet Cruze, a car we reported on back in September.
Chevrolet Cruze EV, test fleet in South Korea, October 2010
Expected to produce a 100 mile range from a 31-kilowatt-hour battery pack, the prototype all-electric Chevy Cruzes feature a 0-62mph time of 8.2 seconds. Top speed is limited to 102.5 mph.
Unlike other test cars like the 2010 BMW Mini E which sacrificed its rear seats for a battery pack, the all-electric Cruze features the same number of seats as its gasoline sibling, along with an under-body battery pack to ensure no loss of trunk space, or seats.
As our John Voelcker has postulated in the past, this is likely to suggest that the battery pack will follow the same shape as the one found in the 2011 Chevrolet Volt, since both vehicles share an ancestral chassis.
2011 Chevy Cruze EV
So what does this mean? We’ve seen GM use the Cruze platform as a test-mule before, specifically as an early test-mule for the 2011 Chevy Volt, so it is conceivable that the car is being used as a test-mule for an all-electric version of the 2011 Volt.
What of the test fleet’s presence as official G20 summit cars? We think it suggests that whatever GM’s plans, the Chevy Volt test fleet must be of a significantly high standard in order for them to be loaned to the event.
The loan of three vehicles as press cars is even more indicative that GM must be nearing a production intent version of the drivetrain and possibly even a car.
Could we see an all-electric Volt or Chevy Cruze soon? Quite possibly. GM has taken considerable flack recently for its is-it-or-isn’t-it-a-hybrid 2011 Chevy Volt among pure EV fans and an all-electric 2012 or 2013 Chevy Cruze could easily provide a direct competitor to the 2011 Nissan Leaf.