10 things I like better on the new 2017 Chevy Bolt vs my 2013 Tesla Model S

10 things I like better on the new 2017 Chevy Bolt
10 things I like better on the new 2017 Chevy Bolt than my Tesla

I’ve had my 2017 Chevy Bolt for over a month now and have been pleasantly surprised about how much it has to offer. Like I really, really love this car even months after our review.

Looking for an electric vehicle?  Visit Ron Westphal Chevrolet in Aurora IL or drop by our website anytime.

I’ve had my 2017 Chevy Bolt for over a month now and have been pleasantly surprised about how much it has to offer. Like I really, really love this car even months after our review.  While I still prefer my twice as expensive 2013 Tesla Model S overall, there are a number of areas where the Bolt beats the Tesla – and I mean the 2013 Model S but also in many cases Tesla’s new/upcoming models as well. Some of these things Tesla could choose to fix, but most are inherent design decisions.

Also I should note before y’all head to the comments that we love all EVs here at Electrek and before a Tesla vs. Bolt fight breaks out remember that we’re all on the same “Team EV” here. 

  1. Regenerative braking – The Bolt’s L mode is already stronger on regen that the Model S and with the left hand paddle that adds more regen, I can come to a complete stop in all but emergency braking situations without ever touching the actual brake. The Model S has fantastic regenerative braking but I need to use the brake way more often. I could see going weeks or months without ever touching the Bolt’s brake. I don’t think either car will ever need any brake work but the Bolt’s will certainly last longer and produce less brake dust.
  2. 4G LTE Hotspot in the car. Why? Because both my Tesla Model S and Chevy Bolt get way better signal than either of our phones and even a MiFi hotspot. The reason is because with a car, you can put seriously powerful antennas on the hotspot and get a signal even when phones and their compact circuitry are out of range. Could Tesla do this? Sure but billing software is a concern says CEO Elon Musk. Chevy/AT&T give me 3GB of data to start with a $20/month option which I’ll be tempted to buy when my free data runs out.
  3. CarPlay/Android Auto. I’ve got a great set of apps and music on my smartphone and Carplay and Android Auto both work great for me. As good as Tesla’s version of Google Maps is and its OK voice and music, it is never going to get to Android or iOS level. Add the messaging options and other apps and the advantage is clearly with the Bolt, even with its half the Tesla-sized screen.
  4. Size: The Tesla Model S and Model X are huge cars. They weigh a lot with their huge batteries and they take up every inch of a parking spot or a garage. Sure that space is nice to have on a long trip but lugging all of that car around day to day becomes a chore. The Bolt on the other hand with its “Micro Crossover” design is big on the inside with a bunch of headroom and cargo space but small on the outside. The amount of space in our garage we save with the Bolt, even over our old Prius, is substantial. When I just need to make a quick dash to the store? Bolt…every time.
  5. Ride Height. Since we are comparing the Model S and the Bolt, it should be noted that you sit about a foot higher in the Chevy. That means you can see more of the road and adds visibility and some confidence in driving. The BMW-like surround cameras don’t hurt here either.
  6. Getting in/out. That ride height also translates into making the car easier to get in and out. At “crossover” height, it is easy to kind of lean over into the seat and do the same getting out. On the Model S, you are getting much lower and have to climb out. For my parents who have some mobility issues, getting in and out of the Bolt is way easier than the Model S. Obviously, Tesla’s taller Model X and 3 may not have this “problem”.
  7. Winter FWD vs RWD. Since we are comparing base models, Tesla’s is rear wheel drive (RWD) and the Bolt is front wheels drive (FWD). For driving pleasure, I’d take RWD any day of the week but when it is snowy outside, FWD definitely feels a lot safer especially into slippery turns. Give the advantage to the Bolt in the winter, unless of course you want AWD, which in electric car world, is still a Tesla exclusive.
  8. Perceived pretentiousness factor – reduced. My wife doesn’t like taking the Tesla to work because she doesn’t want to have a better car than her boss. Even though we got ours when Teslas were selling for $49,000, people think you are driving a $100,000 car (and frankly it is exotic enough to warrant that). But that’s not great when you want to blend in. The Bolt looks and acts like a (hot) hatchback which is standard fare in these parts.
  9. Charging can be better…sometimes. In our garage like many, the power is toward the back and that means the Bolt’s front based charger is easier to get to. When doing public charging stations, I don’t need to back in nor do I need a Tesla->J1772 adapter. Oh, and there happen to be some Chademo/CSS combo stations at the ski resort we frequent near Bennington/Manchester Vermont. We had to buy the $450 Chademo adapter for the Tesla to use these (which are overpriced, flawed NRG EVGO stations that need to be restarted every 30 mins). Overall however, Tesla’s Supercharger network is the best in the business by many order of magnitudes. I really hope that in the near future, every EV can use every charging station.
  10. More range per kWh. Both cars have 60kWh batteries but I can easily get 240 miles out of the Bolt. Even when the Model S was new, I didn’t get 210 miles because it is a much bigger car. Now, 4.5 years later, I get in the high 190s – which is a very small degradation for a car that has 50K miles and lots of DC charging under its belt. However, our trip to the Vermont mountains is about 180 miles which means the Bolt will make it without issue while the Tesla will likely need to charge along the way to be safe.

Source: 10 things I like better on the new 2017 Chevy Bolt vs my 2013 Tesla Model S

Nascar Chevrolet’s R07 engine hits 10-year anniversary mark

Nascar Chevrolet's R07 engine

This weekend’s running of the Monster Energy All-Star Race is an anniversary for Chevrolet and many of the teams aligned with the automaker.

Want your own Nascar-inspired ride?  Visit Ron Westphal Chevy in Aurora, IL or call our Customer Care Team at 630-898-9630 to set up your V.I.P. appointment.  Of course you can always visit us online.

Ten years ago, Chevrolet scored its first victory with the R07 engine, a new piece designed to replace the outdated, although still formidable, SB2.

Kevin Harvick, driving the No. 29 Chevrolet for Richard Childress Racing, won the event, known then as the Nextel All-Star Challenge, at Charlotte Motor Speedway.

Success in a points-paying event wasn’t far behind — the first points win for a team using the R07 came a week later when former Hendrick Motorsports driver Casey Mears captured the Coca-Cola 600 at CMS.

Chevrolet teams won 23 races the previous year, the first season of a five-year title run for Jimmie Johnson. In ’07, with teams transitioning to the R07, eight of the manufacturer’s 26 wins came with the new engine under the hood.

“We had two things occurring in the 2007 season; Chevrolet had new engine hardware approved in the R07 and the second was we were rolling out the Car of Tomorrow,” Doug Duchardt, general manger for HMS, told NASCAR.com. “So as the season began we started thinking about how we wanted to combine those two. We knew the R07 had more power potential so we focused on getting those engines into the previous car, the non-COT races, because those were more intermediate races.”

The COT debuted that year at Bristol and was run on all tracks under 1 mile, as well as Darlington (1.366 mile), road course races at Sonoma and Watkins Glen, and the fall stop at Talladega.

“We felt like that while there was an advantage obviously to have more power, that if you were at a Richmond or Bristol or Martinsville, that’s not as big as say Charlotte,” Duchardt said. “So at the beginning of the year we focused on getting that rolled out for the intermediate tracks.

“As we started running them and saw the potential in the engine, we thought it was going to take longer to roll out. But the thing I remember is … when we first started running them everyone knew what the potential gain was. We put the carrot out there to the engine shop of, ‘We’d like to have this rolled across all of our programs by the 600.’ We thought it was a stretch to get there. And when we put that vision out there, that goal, it was amazing how everyone focused on that and worked to achieve it.”

With Toyota teams arriving on the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series level that season, other OEMs had been given new parameters on which to build their engines to keep a level playing field.

“It was really just a matter of seeing the writing on the wall, the limitations of the architecture of the SB2 and knowing that we were going to have to keep up with something that had more capability that really drove us in that direction,” said Pat Suhy, Chevrolet Racing NASCAR group manager.

“We didn’t just look at them and say, ‘Oh crap!’ We knew architecturally that the SB2 was challenged. And we had evolved designs of a small block before Toyota showed up. But them showing up with their part is what I think kind of forced NASCAR’s hand, if you will, to let the other OEMs do significant architectural changes to our stuff in order not to be left behind.”

Heading into Saturday night’s race (8 p.m. ET, FS1, MRN, SiriusXM NASCAR), the R07 has powered drivers to 156 victories in NASCAR’s elite division.

That first victory, Suhy said, was “huge.”

“Because there’s always buyer’s remorse, right? You get this new engine and, ‘Man, it’s got to be at least as (good as) the old one. I hope it’s better.’ We had a few teething pains at the very beginning. Getting the first win under your belt, it’s like with anything, you breathe a sigh of relief and say, ‘Good, now we can get on.’ Not question if it’s as good; let’s make it better now.”

Likewise, getting the win in the 600 the following weekend, Duchardt said, was special.

“I always say the engine guys have it a little easier because we had a real simple and accurate way to measure the performance of the engine, and it’s on the dynamometer,” he said. “So we could understand the power, the torque, the fuel efficiency of the engine. So we knew by every measure that this was as good or better in every aspect. If you weren’t having success with it, it wasn’t because it was an inferior product to your previous one, it was because of other reasons.

“Once we saw that it was a better product than the SB2, then we had confidence in it moving forward. The fact that we won that race was just icing on the cake.

“I think it was Casey’s only win so that was really special, it was the National Guard car, Memorial Day … If you add all that in and the work to be ready for it, it was a special day all around.”

Source: Chevrolet’s R07 engine hits 10-year anniversary mark | Official Site Of NASCAR

The Final Chevy SS Was Built Today

The last Chevy SS was built today
Final Chevy SS Was Built Today.

Naturally, it’s a manual.

It’s a sad day in the world of sport sedans. We knew this day was coming, but that doesn’t make it less painful. Today the last Chevrolet SS sedan rolled off the line in Elizabeth, South Australia.

Looking for a fast ride?  Visit Ron Westphal Chevrolet in Aurora, IL or call our customer care team at 630-898-9630.

And boy, is the last one a beauty. It’s black with the aging, but lovely LS3 6.2-liter V-8 that comes with every SS and a six-speed manual transmission. Upon the request of whoever ordered it (likely someone from GM) it was signed by the Holden crew who built it.

Ordering for the SS ended in February and there’s no plan for a next generation or a successor. Like most Holden captive imports that GM has brought to the States, it was never intended to be a high-volume seller. Outside of NASCAR, Chevy didn’t really advertise the SS.

We only got a grand total of 12,953 SS sedans in the US and 7,305 Caprice PPV police cars which, like the SS, is based on the Holden Commodore. That’s less than half as many of the 41,000 Pontiac G8s (based on the previous generation Commodore) we got in its 3-model-year run.

To add insult to injury, the Australian plant where the Commodore and SS were built is being shut down this October. That makes it very unlikely that we’ll ever get a Holden-based GM product in the US ever again.

It’s hard to pin the death of the SS on any one factor. You can’t really blame sales numbers because it was such a low-volume car and I believe GM when they say it was never intended to be a big seller. But if that’s the case, then why bother bringing it over here at all?

Source: The Final Chevy SS Was Built Today – The Drive

The 52 MPG 2018 Chevrolet Cruze Diesel Will Start At $24,670

Chevy Cruze DieselThe all-new 2017 Chevrolet Cruze is a pretty damn good compact car. For buyers who prefer the added torque and fuel efficiency of a diesel—and still think that fuel has a future in America after Volkswagen lit it all on fire—Chevy has you covered for a starting price of less than $25,000.

Looking for a diesel?  Call our Customer Care Team at 630-898-9630 or drop by our dealership  If you prefer, you may visit us online anytime.

Chevy Cruze diesel rated 52 mpg

For more about Cruze diesel visit source: The 52 MPG 2018 Chevrolet Cruze Diesel Will Start At $24,670

8 Chevrolet cars that you won’t see anymore

Chevrolet Tavera
The Chevrolet Tavera

One of the biggest auto makers in the world, General Motors began its India journey in 1996 – much before the likes of Renault and Nissan, and around the same time as Hyundai. 21 years on, the American company has under one per cent share in the otherwise vibrant Indian car market. While the car did come as a fresh and premium package, it could not find mass appeal. Here’s taking a look at GM’s Chevrolet current offerings will now bid farewell to Indian shores. Bid adieu…

If you are interested in what is available in America, visit us online anytime or call our Customer Care Team at 630-898-9630.

For more story visit Source: Chevrolet Beat – 8 Chevrolet cars that you won’t see anymore | The Economic Times

Vietnam vet’s beloved Chevy Corvette heads to auction

Vietnam vet's beloved Chevy Corvette heads to auctionINDIANAPOLIS — When Keith Richard Litavsky returned home from fighting on the front line in the Vietnam War, he did so with two Purple Hearts and one more mission to accomplish.

That mission took him to an Illinois car dealership where he purchased the car he had been dreaming about while serving overseas: a marina blue 1967 Chevrolet Corvette.

Looking to make your own Corvette history?  Visit Ron Westphal Chevrolet in Aurora, IL or call us at 630-898-9630.  If you prefer, our website is always open.

Paid for with money he’d sent home from the war for that very purpose, Keith Litavsky took meticulous care of the car.

He kept diaries of its use where he logged each time he started it and the RPMs he hit. He never drove it in the rain. He refused to park it in the sun. He even instructed his five children not to talk to anyone about the car out of fear it would be stolen.

After decades of caring for the vehicle, Keith Litavsky died in 1993 of cancer from exposure to Agent Orange on his last mission in Vietnam. That is when his son, Matt, inherited the car and vowed to carry on his father’s legacy of meticulous care and sharing each magical moment with the dream car with his growing family.

Source: Vietnam vet’s beloved Chevy Corvette heads to auction

This 450-hp electric Lotus Evora is powered by Tesla and Chevrolet

powered by Tesla and ChevroletIt’s putting down about 450 horsepower at the wheels.

When someone mentions an electric Lotus, the first thing that comes to mind is the Tesla Roadster, the California-based automaker’s first vehicle. That car started life as an Elise before being heavily massaged and adapted by Tesla’s engineers. In a similar spirit, the people at Onpoint Dyno are close to finishing Blue Lightning, a track-ready all-electric Lotus Evora.

Blue Lightning uses a Tesla drive unit and a Chevrolet Volt battery pack, both mounted in the middle in place of the Evora’s 3.5-liter Toyota V6. It’s putting down about 450 horsepower at the wheels. The car was built for time attack sessions, so power is fed through custom forged wheels and super sticky Pirelli PZero Trofeo R tires, the same ones found on the last Chevrolet Camaro Z/28. There is a custom digital instrument cluster in place of the Lotus gauges. There’s also a regen paddle on the left side of the steering wheel. With a full charge, Blue Lighting should go about 120 miles.

While the car runs under its own power, it’s only about 90 percent complete. It has no power steering, no firewall in between the seats and the motor and battery pack, no A/C, and a large hole where the shift lever used to be. Other final touches include fine-tuning the brakes and suspension. There is also a custom rear bumper coming that should make it look more like the new Lotus Evora 400. Onpoint Dyno expects the car to hit the track in the next month or so.

Looking for your own Chevrolet power?  Visit Ron Westphal Chevrolet in beautiful Aurora, IL or call our Customer Care Team now at 630-898-9630.  Of course, you can always visit us or chat with us online!

Source: This 450-hp electric Lotus Evora is powered by Tesla and Chevrolet – Autoblog

Chevrolet Corvette returns as 2017 Indianapolis 500 pace car

The Indianapolis 500, a race where drivers determine who will drink a bottle of milk immediately after winning, has a shiny new pace car for its 101st iteration.

General Motors continues its ridiculous 21-year domination of providing Indy 500 pace cars with the 2017 Chevrolet Corvette Grand Sport. The Grand Sport is, essentially, a Z06 without the supercharged V8. While it carries much of the ancillary equipment as the most powerful Corvette, it relies on the base model’s LT1 V8.

A Corvette Grand Sport will lead the 101st running of America's favorite milk-chugging contest.A Corvette Grand Sport will lead the 101st running of America’s favorite milk-chugging contest.

A Corvette Grand Sport Ron Westphal Chevrolet

Still, 460 horsepower is nothing to sneeze at. We had a Corvette Grand Sport at the track last year, and we called it the best of both worlds, offering excellent performance at a price that isn’t outright offensive. It won’t out-race the cars participating in the Indy 500, but nobody would expect the pace car to do that.

This is the 14th Corvette to pick up pace car duties at Indy, and it’s the 28th Chevrolet to do so. General Motors has a rich history of Indy 500 pace cars, including an Oldsmobile Bravada in 2001, a Pontiac Fiero in 1984 and a Cadillac Allante in 1992.

Overall, GM has supplied 52 different pace cars, not all of which are as middling as the ones I just mentioned. The driver of this year’s pace car has not yet been announced, but since the race takes place over Memorial Day weekend, it won’t be too long before we find out.

Chevrolet is on a tear in the IndyCar series. It’s already won five manufacturer championships in a row, with the 2016 season seeing a Chevrolet take the checkered flag in 14 of 16 races.

Looking for your own milk chugging inspiration?  Visit our dealership in Aurora, IL or visit us online anytime!

Is there going to be a new corvette?  Read this: http://westphalchevyblog.com/index.php/2017/05/04/is-gms-bowling-green-plant-retooling-for-a-new-chevrolet-corvette-motor-trend

Source: Chevrolet Corvette returns as 2017 Indianapolis 500 pace car – Roadshow

Chevrolet Camaro SS Drag Race Development Program Continues to Tune the Camaro

Chevrolet Camaro SS Drag RaceIs Chevy looking to match Dodges nine second Dodge Demon or just build its performance catalog?

There has been a lot of buzz about how lightning fast the new Dodge Challenger SRT Demon is and for good reason. The Demon is capable of blasting through the quarter mile in just 9.65 seconds can hit 0 to 60 mph in just 2.1-2.3 seconds. However, that does not mean other manufacturers aren’t working hard to make fast drag cars.

Are you looking for your own fast car?  Visit our showroom or online today!

Chevrolet Camaro SS Drag Race rear view

Currently Camaro SS Drag Race Development Program, a branch of Chevrolet Performance, is working on taking the Camaro SS to the next level. Stock, the Camaro SS is equipped with a naturally aspirated 6.2-liter V-8 that produces a healthy 455 horsepower. However, that isn’t enough power and technology to get a 10 second car.

In order to start locking down quarter mile times within the 10 second range, Camaro SS Drag Race Development Program needed to modify the popular muscle car. Although the new 8L90 automatic transmission has proven to be faster than even the best drag racers, you still need a heaping dose of power to get the needed times. Last year the program took the prop-shaft and half-shaft from the 6th generation ZL1 and added 250mm ring gear from the 5th generation ZL1 in hopes of improving the times. However, in order to added the needed additional horsepower, the program added Chevy’s header and camshaft package for the LT1 (6.2-liter V-8) engine as well as a new exhaust and cold air intake. This brought power up nearly 100 horsepower to 530 horsepower.

Even though the program has been quiet about drag times, modified LT1 Camaro was able to hit 600 horsepower and achieve a 10.685 quarter mile at 125.73 mph. Chevy plans to continue testing so they can produce more performance parts for Camaro SS drag enthusiasts as well as to build a faster car over all. Do you think they are looking to beat the Dodge Challenger SRT Demon?

Chevrolet Camaro SS Drag Race front view

Source: Chevrolet Camaro SS Drag Race Development Program Continues to Tune the Camaro – The Drive

Chevrolet offers vehicle owners a $20 monthly unlimited in-car data plan

The in-car data business is booming, and Chevrolet is stepping up to help meet demand with a new, prepaid $20 monthly unlimited data plan – the first.

Looking for a new or late-model pre-owned Chevrolet with unlimited data?  We stock nearly 400 new Chevrolet models to choose from.

Call our Customer Care Team at 630-898-9630 to schedule your VIP test drive.

Source: Chevrolet offers vehicle owners a $20 monthly unlimited in-car data plan