2019 Chevy Volt Getting Up To $550 Price Increase

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Automotive Editor

Joel Patel is an automotive journalist that hails from Northern Virginia, but now calls Detroit home. His work has been featured on various automotive outlets, including Autoweek and Autoblog. When not writing about cars, Joel enjoys trying new food, wrenching on his car, and watching movies.


, Automotive Editor - August 22, 2018

Chevrolet made a few updates for the 2019 Volt. The most notable upgrade includes the addition of a new 7.2-kilowatt charging system that's standard on the Premier and optional on the LT trim. The 2019 Chevy Volt also gets a few more changes, which is probably why pricing is up over last year.

Order guides reveal that the LT trim starts at $34,395 (all prices include the $875 destination fee). That's an increase of $300 from last year's model, which started at $33,095. Prices for the Premier trim have increased by $550, giving the range-topping Volt a starting price of $38,995.

While the Premier trim comes with the 7.2-kW charger as standard, the system is a $750 option on the LT trim. A 3.6-kW charger is standard on the base Volt. With the new charging system, the Volt can be recharged in just 2.3 hours when hooked up to a 240-volt outlet. That's half the amount of time it takes to recharge the Volt with the 3.6-kW charger.

Chevrolet has also updated the level of brake regeneration, allowing drivers to set a lower temperature for when the engine turns on to run the heater, and revamped the infotainment screen to include an eight-inch touchscreen with a new Energy app. More standard features include a power driver's seat on the Premier trim, a new tire fill alert sound, a new digital rearview camera, and a new pattern for the cloth seats.

The changes don't necessarily make the Volt stand out in the plug-in hybrid crowd. The vehicle has one of the more attractive all-electric ranges on the market, capable of traveling up to 53 miles on a single charge, which bests the Honda Clarity, Kia Niro plug-in hybrid, Hyundai Ioniq plug-in hybrid, and Toyota Prius Prime.The majority of those options, though, get better electric fuel economy. The Ioniq plug-in hybrid is the most fuel efficient with an electric rating of 119 MPGe (miles per gallon equivalent).

The price increase comes at an interesting time for General Motors, which is approaching the 200,000-unit threshold for the Energy Independence and Security Act of 2007 that was signed into law by President George W. Bush. The Act states that buyers can take advantage of the $7,500 federal tax credit for the purchase of a plug-in vehicle for the first 200,000 cars an automaker sells. As Green Car Reports pointed out earlier this February, GM reached a total of 165,000 units of Volts, Bolts, and Spark EVs sold at the end of 2017.

Volt

After the 200,000-unit threshold is reached, the federal credits start to decrease, continuing in full for the rest of the calendar quarter and the following one. For the next two quarters after that, Green Car Reports claims the credit amount drops to 50 percent of the original value. The credit further decreases to 25 percent after that for the next two quarters before vanishing completely.

What General Motors should be doing to make plug-in electric vehicles more attractive to buyers as the federal tax credits start to decrease is bring the prices of its vehicles down. That may happen as automakers like GM work out a way to make more affordable batteries. Until then, better EV technology will result in more expensive electric cars.

, Automotive Editor

Joel Patel is an automotive journalist that hails from Northern Virginia, but now calls Detroit home. His work has been featured on various automotive outlets, including Autoweek and Autoblog. When not writing about cars, Joel enjoys trying new food, wrenching on his car, and watching movies.