Now that the details have been released on the new 2022 Chevy Bolt EV, a few surprises may lure buyers into seriously considering the switch to an electric vehicle for the first time. Though the size and performance capabilities are largely the same for the redesign, Chevy defines the interior and exterior with a few sharp elements and features that are likely to be enticing. Add to that a lower price than last year’s model and the option to easily plug in to charge virtually anywhere, and the 2022 Bolt may very well get new interest.
While several brands are racing to offer fully electric vehicles, many struggle to provide buyers with enough driving range to satisfy most drivers. For Americans who must commute daily or often take long trips for vacations, the driving range must accommodate a buyer’s need, and it doesn’t help the cause of EVs when they can’t charge as quickly as vehicles filling a gas tank. Few buyers have the time to sit at a charging station for over an hour to fully charge a depleted battery. Fortunately, Chevy is attempting to mend those cracks in the road by offering several helpful features and options to make the Bolt easier to own.
When it comes to buying an electric vehicle, having to charge the vehicle is probably the biggest reason people are afraid to take the plunge. However, if you own your home or have access to a place where you can install a charger, Chevy is making this a no-brainer. Chevy, along with Qmerit, is willing to pay for the cost of the installation of a new charging station at your home for customers who qualify. This means it doesn’t have to come out of your pocket if you buy the 2022 Bolt. What you get is a Level 2 (240-volt) charger that can charge in a matter of hours to give you a full driving range of up to 259 miles. However, when that isn’t fast enough, use the available DC Fast Charge capability at a public charging station, and you can get up to 100 miles of range in just 30 minutes.
Chevy is also offering an available Dual Level Charge Cord that easily switches from the 240-volt charger to a standard 120-volt plug that can plug into any three-pronged outlet. While it will take a lot longer to charge at the 120-volt, or Level 1, outlets, at least it gives buyers the option to charge virtually anywhere. If you sit at work for eight or nine hours and have access to an outdoor outlet, you could charge your Bolt to full capacity in that time, especially if you only drive a few miles to work. It’s worth noting that the battery also charges slightly through regenerative braking, so city drivers will actually have better battery life in stop-and-go traffic.
Another solution to making charging easier is the higher number of charging stations that have popped up across the nation. Chevy offers EV buyers an app called Energy Assist that helps you locate the nearest charging station, and it can also help plot out a route that both utilizes the battery life most efficiently and helps find charging stations on the way. Such an option may change minds about how much simpler it can be to own an electric vehicle, particularly if most of your driving involves city driving. Chevy equates plugging in the Bolt to plugging in your cell phone at night, which is no less convenient than having to go to the gas station. If anything, it’s easier because you charge from the convenience of home at any time.
One of the many benefits of owning an electric vehicle is the plethora of technology that comes with a battery-operated vehicle. The 2022 Bolt redesign definitely appeals to the buyers who love the convenience of a connected life, particularly when it comes to linking a smartphone to the vehicle. Wireless Apple CarPlay and Android Auto are standard for the 2022 Bolt, so you can just place your phone anywhere in the car, and the phone and vehicle infotainment will automatically sync once you link your phone to the system. The option to add wireless charging is available, which means you could drive wire-free.
EVs generally have larger touchscreens for the infotainment system, which is true of the new Bolt. A 10.2-inch screen sits in the center stack, and the instrument cluster is also digital and customizable. The ease of using a larger screen makes navigating the apps and settings simpler, and using the standard HD rearview camera means a larger view of what’s behind you, too. With the upper trim, you can have HD Surround Vision for the bird’s-eye camera views of the whole vehicle. If you lump safety features into the technology offerings, the 2022 Bolt comes standard with a suite of six driver-assisted features with more added to the upper trim.
Redesigned With More and Yet You Pay Less
You read that right, the 2022 Chevy Bolt EV has been redesigned in a way that looks to the future of electric vehicle technology, but it actually costs less than the 2021 model. How much less? Well, the 2021 Chevy Bolt EV starts at a price of $36,500, and the new 2022 Bolt EV starts at just $31,995. That’s a $4,500 decrease in price for a vehicle that has more options and more style. Buyers will certainly appreciate such a significant drop in price, especially with a redesigned interior that is more comfortable and has a more upscale feel.
This year, Chevy is adding a One Pedal Driving feature that will allow drivers to utilize regenerative braking in a whole new way to increase battery life while driving. With this feature, pressing the accelerator tells the system to move forward, but taking your foot off the accelerator applies the brakes automatically. When more braking is needed, paddles on the steering wheel can be used to brake quicker. It may take practice to get accustomed to driving this way, but it does improve the battery life. The energy created by braking this way can then be captured by the Regen On Demand system, and with the pull of a paddle, you can send that stored energy back to the battery for a little extra charge.
One other way EV buyers gain is in savings at the service bay. With fewer parts and fluids needed in an electric engine, you don’t need to make as many visits to the service center for maintenance or repairs. EV owners often rave about how rarely their vehicles require shop visits other than replacing or rotating tires or having them inspected for overall safety. Belts and other parts under the hood also either disappear or are used less, so that means buyers save on costly repairs.
The Electric Future Is Waiting
If you are seriously thinking about going electric, you may want to hold out until summer when the 2022 Bolt is available. The price is affordable for a vehicle that offers a lot of convenience and safety. Starting at $31,995, the entry-level trim will have a lot of standard features to make it attractive for modern lifestyles, but it will also save a lot of money at the pump and in the shop. Taking into account the convenience of home charging should turn a lot of city dwellers into Bolt owners, especially if you like the idea that your car has zero emissions and exciting new technology.