TrueDelta Reviews the Seat Room and Comfort of the 2015 Chevrolet Volt
2015 Chevrolet Volt Seat Room and Comfort: Cons
The original Chevrolet Volt's cramped rear seat could only hold two people. In the second-generation Volt the hump for the battery pack has been lowered to permit a third person to straddle it. But they'd better be small, and even then they won't be comfortable. This fifth spot could be the least comfortable seating position in any four-door car. It's best considered for short-term emergency use.
Even the Volt's outboard rear seat passengers better not be tall. The Volt's roof line sweeps dramatically downward, while the hatch extends unusually far forward. To squeeze rear seat passengers within this oddly configured space, Chevrolet has positioned the seat cushion very low and has located the rear passengers' heads beneath the hatch glass. The roof's rear cross-member produces an odd bulge in the headliner ahead of said heads. As is, both rear head room and rear knee room are in short supply and it is easy to bump one's noggin while getting into the rear seat.
Adding insult to injury, the Volt's rear seat feels even tighter than it is because the rear side windows are small and the front seats largely block the view foward. Claustrophobes better sit up front. One somewhat bright spot: the Volt's rear seat cushion angles sharply upward to provide more thigh support than you'll find in the typical compact car (or the Prius) despite the seat's ultra-low butt pocket.
The Prius's official interior dimensions might not differ much from the Volt's, but its rear seat passengers enjoy much more rear knee room (if slightly less rear headroom) and feel like they have far more room.
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TrueDelta Reviews the Powertrain of the 2015 Chevrolet Volt
2015 Chevrolet Volt Powertrain: Pros
Unlike other plug-in hybrids, the Chevrolet Volt performs very well on electricity alone. The electric motor reacts more immediately than any gasoline engine, feels tire-spinning strong at low speeds, and accelerates the car to highway speeds with at most a faint whine and no sign of strain. The driving experience is dramatically different from that in a gas-powered car (in that there's much less drama). An all-out run to 60 mph takes about eight seconds.
The Prius can barely accelerate on electricity alone. Even minimal accleration causes the gas engine to kick in. Run the Prius hard, and the noise of the engine is fairly high and not pleasant. Even then the Prius cannot acclerate nearly as quickly as the Volt despite retaining a quarter-ton weight advantage. The Toyota sounds and feels best when driven casually.
If you're a fairly aggressive driver, you'll enjoy driving the Volt far more than the Prius. Plus fuel economy won't suffer as much since an electric motor remains efficient over a broader operating range than a gas engine.
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