‘I took delivery of the Volt on 12 December last year,’ Jay Leno said in a telephone interview before appearing Tuesday at a Chevrolet event held in conjunction with the Los Angeles auto show. ‘And I’ve never had to put gas in it yet.’
The comedian and late-night television host said he had put about 11,000 miles on his Chevrolet Volt in the last 11 months. ‘They gave it to me with a full tank of gas,’ he said. The tank, by the way, holds 9.3 gallons. ‘I’ve used less than half of that.’
Leno’s expansive garage is in Burbank, and every car is maintained with a full tank of petrol, current registration and valid insurance, so he can select any one of them for a drive. Some of the cars are almost never driven. Not so his Volt. It has quickly become a favorite.
‘It’s my daily driver,’ he said. ‘It really is. I commute in it to work every day. My commute, and all my other daily running around, totals less than 35 miles.’ Chevrolet claims that the Volt can travel about 40 miles on electric power alone, under normal driving conditions, before the juice in the batteries would be depleted, after which the car’s small gasoline engine would provide added range.
‘You get 40 miles free, as they say,’ Leno said. ‘Because of the way I drive it, it almost never kicks into gasoline mode.’ Leno echoed one of the primary marketing points used by Chevrolet to differentiate the Volt from purely electric cars like the Nissan Leaf.
‘I mean, I could jump in it and drive to Vegas,’ he said, a trip of about 280 miles, door to door, from Burbank. ‘They say the range is something like 400 miles.’ The Leaf can travel roughly 100 miles before requiring a charge. Aside from the mileage, Leno said he was also pleased with the rest of the car, especially its technology. ‘It’s a real breakthrough,’ he said. ‘I know people probably get tired of hearing me say that. But it really is.’
The comedian then went for the rimshot line. ‘You know it’s good because they lose money on every one of them they sell,’ he said.
The Vauxhall Ampera, as it will be known as in the UK, will go on sale here in 2012.
[Source: New York Times]