2022 Chevrolet Bolt EV review: A little bit better, a lot more affordable

The new look really works.

Antuan Goodwin / Roadshow

It has a new look and some new technology, but not much has changed for the 2022 Chevrolet Bolt EV. However, it combines these small quality-of-life changes with a more tempting price tag – starting at around $ 5,500 less than last year. – and the little Bolt starts to look like a pretty big value.

Like it

  • Competitive pricing for the long haul class
  • More premium feel and look
  • Adaptive cruise control is now available

I do not like

  • DC fast charging is still limited to 55 kW
  • No highway assistance Super Cruise

New look, new attitude

The most obvious modification to the Bolt EV 2022 is the new front fascia, which swaps the playful, toy-like look of its predecessor for something more grown-up and premium-looking. The narrow LED lights are located where Bolt’s wide eyes lived. Meanwhile, the real LED headlights have been moved to the space previously occupied by the fog lights. This flip-flop – that’s the Chevrolet pioneer It also stands out for giving the impression of super slim concept car headlights during the day, while still offering adequate lighting at night.

The two light clusters are connected by an angular cut of glossy black finishes that helps frame the Bolt’s grille. At the rear, the taillights are narrower; Gone are last year’s 3D doodles, replaced with a simpler oval outline that blends better with the sedan’s rear glass. The bumper has also been updated with a thinner reflective bar, a repositioned reversing light and a larger area of ​​black plastic that helps visually lift the rear.

Internal updates

The changes to the cabin are perhaps even more extensive. The 2022 Bolt features an all-new center console that connects more naturally to the dashboard than the previous floating design. The shift lever is replaced with a vertical bank of PRND buttons and a dedicated button for one-pedal drive mode. The new gearbox is also located in front of the cup holders, which are now much easier to access.

Throughout the cabin, you will find more premium materials. While I’m a little sad to see the crazy, high-contrast white theme go, the new look is far less obnoxious and likely appeals to a larger set of drivers.

2022 Chevrolet Bolt EV

Less flashy than before, the updated interior features nicer materials and a remodeled center console.

Antuan Goodwin / Roadshow

The front and center is a 10.8-inch screen that now houses Chevrolet’s Infotainment 3 software. This interface is much easier to navigate than Bolt’s old specific setup and is less dependent on the Android Auto and Apple CarPlay standard for basic functionality, although both of the phone’s connectivity suites are still supported and can now be linked in mode. wireless.

The cabin technology features Chevrolet’s user profile system that satisfies the preferences of multiple drivers. Chevy Infotainment 3 also features built-in apps that can be downloaded and powered by Bolt’s 4G LTE connection and has a host of custom EV features. This includes menus for monitoring the energy impact of the vehicle’s various systems, charging planning, and the ability to limit the charge level to maximize battery health over time.

Recharge and autonomy

The Bolt excels as a commuter car, boasting 259 miles per charge according to EPA estimates. This estimate of autonomy is unchanged compared to last year despite an increasingly smaller 65 kilowatt-hour battery (a reduction of 1 kWh). This range is still sufficient to outperform the competition Hyundai, duck And Nissan, but continues to lag behind the Tesla Model 3.

Home charging is potentially faster with this year’s update up to level 2 charging up to 11.5 kW, although you’ll need to make sure your home can support the extra power and install a wall-mounted charging unit 48 amps to take full advantage of it. This reduces the charging time to approximately 7 hours compared to the estimated 10 hours if you plug the dual-level charging cable directly into a NEMA 14-50 receptacle. Of course, trickle charging is also possible in almost any standard 110-volt wall outlet, but that only adds about 4 miles of range per hour.

Having been spoiled by newer and more exclusive electric vehicles, I was a little disappointed to learn that Bolt can still quickly charge only DC at around 55kW max. This means that increasing the capacity by 80% in a fast charging station takes about an hour. This isn’t a headache, especially considering Bolt’s price and range between those expenses, and at the very least, DC fast charging is now a standard feature, so at least you’re not paying more to get it.

During a week and 201.9 miles of testing, commuting, and running various urban errands, I calculated an average of 124 miles per gallon equivalent – actually a touch more than the EPA’s 118 mpge estimate. I haven’t even hypermile or treated the throttle like an eggshell. In fact, I spent a whole afternoon testing Bolt’s Sport mode in the hills and in the end I still got more than decent efficiency for the week.

2022 Chevrolet Bolt EV

Home charging speeds have been improved, but CCS DC fast charging is still limited to 55 kW.

Antuan Goodwin / Roadshow

Electric sensation

Speaking of Sport mode, Bolt features a few different driving programs. There is Normal and Sport, the latter which adjusts the throttle sensitivity for a more responsive ride. Then again, with 200 horsepower and 266 lb-ft of instant electric torque, the Bolt feels great out of line in either mode.

There are also two regenerative braking modes. The standard setting slows down when the throttle is raised and moves forward slightly at low speeds. One-pedal mode instantly decelerates in proportion to lift, ultimately bringing the car to a complete stop without having to depress the brake pedal. Now accessible with a button, instead of the old Bolt’s mislabeled L-shift position, drivers can select one-pedal mode by default, which makes getting used to this unique EV option even easier and more predictable.

Of course, the Bolt’s regeneration lever returns for 2022, allowing the driver to immediately access full regenerative braking by pulling a lever on the left spoke of the steering wheel. Personally I find this feature too difficult to modulate and much less natural than driving with just one pedal.

2022 Chevrolet Bolt EV

Drivers can now set single pedal driving as the default mode for better control over regenerative braking.

Antuan Goodwin / Roadshow

It’s a good thing that Bolt is so powerful because the handling is still pretty disappointing. The Bolt turns quite well, but its heavy weight and low rolling resistance tires can be a handful when driving fast up a winding mountain pass. Fortunately, the low center of gravity, light steering and responsive right pedal keep the Bolt lively on freeways and in urban environments where it will spend most of its time.

Adaptive, but not Super Cruise Control

The 2022 model year update sees the addition of adaptive cruise control to Bolt’s optional makeup bag – a serious omission in previous model years that’s now a $ 375 upgrade for the higher 2LT trim level and the reason why more convincing for the upgrade from the basic 1LT model. The system works smoothly in stop-and-go traffic and complements the standard steering assistance for lane maintenance on the motorway.

All Bolt 2022s come standard with a rear view camera, forward pre-collision warnings with pedestrian detection, lane departure warnings and automatic high beam. Moving on to 2LT specification updates to a surround camera and blind spot monitoring with lane change pre-collision warnings.

Sadly, Bolt EV does not yet offer General Motors hands-free Super Cruise highway driving assistance. For that, you will need to upgrade to the newest, largest 2022 Bolt EUV.

2022 Chevrolet Bolt EV

Many small changes add up to a big difference in the Bolt 2022, only made more convincing by its new price.

Antuan Goodwin / Roadshow

The price is right

The Chevy Bolt EV 2022 builds on an already solid budget EV formula with improved aesthetics and a more exclusive interior. The new infotainment and adaptive cruise option fill the gaps in the cabin and safety technologies that help keep this electric vehicle competitive. And while I’d like faster DC charging, the slight speed improvements to home charging – where you should be getting most of your juice anyway – shouldn’t be overlooked.

However, the best new feature of the Chevrolet Bolt EV 2022 is the lower price. Starting at $ 31,995 (including a $ 995 destination tax and before any EV tax incentives), the Bolt costs $ 5,500 less than last year and is now the most affordable long-range electric car in the world. its category. Only the 40 kWh Nissan Leaf and the Mini Cooper SE they are cheaper and with both you will get at least 100 miles less. As tested, this 2LT spec with premium audio ($ 595) and adaptive cruise control upgrade ($ 375) has a pre-incentive sticker price of $ 36,165 – nearly $ 10,000 less than any other current club member 250 mile electric compact.

The Bolt was already, in many ways, the right EV for every day. Now, less expensive than some competing gasoline cars, it’s more compelling than ever.