For several years now, Bolt has been the battery electric car brand at Chevrolet. Now, a second, slightly larger Bolt joins in to add to Chevy's battery-powered offerings: the Bolt EUV, for Electric Utility Vehicle.
"We see the trends are really going more toward the upright seating position, better visibility. And so we wanted to capitalize on what the customers were asking for," said Brandon Bloss, a lead electric vehicle engineer at General Motors who worked on the Bolt program.
The Bolt EUV is not tremendously bigger than the regular Bolt EV, but offers a few extra inches of rear legroom, and sits slightly taller. You can also get a sunroof with it, something the smaller Bolt has never offered. Range is about the same - around 250 miles on a charge.
And a Chevrolet first on the technology side, optional Super Cruise, previously only available on Cadillacs. If conditions are right on a freeway or highway, it allows you to take your hands off the wheel while it steers, and maintains speed and distance. You can't start doing other things, as your motions are monitored, so you still have to look at the road.
With this, and the other attributes, the Bolt EUV could make an appealing commuter vehicle.
"You get the great visibility, you get the comfortable seats, you get the Super Cruise to give you a much more relaxed commute. I think people are going to really like it," noted Bloss.
General Motors has been investing billions in future electric vehicles for the various divisions. Cadillac will have some expensive, high-end EVs, the Hummer name is coming back as an electric vehicle for the GMC brand, and Chevrolet gets to offer the lower-priced electrics.
And along those lines, the original Bolt EV gets a styling update, and a lower sticker price of $31,995 for the 2022 model year. The Bolt EUV will start at $33,995. As Chevrolet moves more of these out of showrooms and into people's garages, perhaps the eventual switch to more electric cars on the road won't seem so obscure to buyers.
"It's really just a matter of getting people in the seats. And once they get into an EV, especially a Bolt EV, they realize how smooth it is, how comfortable it is, and how it really just works for their everyday lives. It's a great vehicle," said Bloss.
Chevy's new "dynamic EV duo" will arrive at dealerships by summer.