How is it possible for a hybrid car to travel 1,554.1 miles on just half a gallon of gas? Leave it to Chevy battery systems engineer Andy Oury to find out. The Chevy employee, who leases a Volt, shared a video showing off his badge of honor. By driving in electric-only mode for several months, Oury’s Volt displayed a maintenance warning informing Oury that the engine has not been run in quite some time. In order to keep the engine lubricated, the Volt will run for a short time, and go then back to sleep. If a Volt owner does not use an entire tank of gas after a year the Volt’s engine will run until the gas tank is empty in order to make sure that the gas in the tank does not get stale.
If you read our post covering everything you need to know about the Chevy Volt, then you know that the Volt is a different kind of hybrid vehicle then we are used to seeing. It’s an electric car with an engine to extend range, not a gasoline car with electric motors to improve efficiency like the Toyota Prius. Since the Volt uses electricity first, and then relies on gas to recharge the batteries it is possible to drive short distances without ever having to use gas. The range for electric-only driving is only 40 miles, which means Oury is lucky enough to have traveled 1,554.1 miles 40 miles at a time. Electric cars like the Nissan Leaf, and the Tesla roadster do not have a gas generator, but have a longer electric range. Both the Leaf and Roadster are able to travel around 100 miles before requiring a recharge.
The average driver will not be able to replicate Oury’s results, but it is still exciting to see people push the limits of the Volt.