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2011 Chevrolet Volt Prototype makes rounds in GM Test Center

You might have seen the 2011 Volt from Chevrolet on the road, but in reality they were just mock ups built on the platforms of Malibu and Cruze. The real deal production prototypes cruise around the Warren Test Center of General Motors in Michigan.

The test mules are packed with lithium ion batteries, complex computer controls, a cooling system, and other necessities to make it cruise smoothly on the road. GM will be testing the configuration on 80 units until it goes to production by late 2010.

The prototypes that will eventually go into production are referred to as the integration vehicles since they combine the Volt power train and platform.

The integration achieves two goals. First, they validate the design, safety components, and performance of the car. The test runs also give GM designers and engineers an insight for their final moves before production kicks off.

It is still a long shot before you see a Volt on the road with GM still under Chapter 11. The 2011 Volt is expected to have a tag price starting at $32,500 and may face stiff competition from other environmentally friendly cars as it enters the market by next year.

The 2011 Volt from Chevrolet can cruise to a top speed of 160km/h with its 16kWh LiI battery pack and the 150hp electric engine under its hood. The powertrain can produce at whatever speed a consistent 273lb-ft of torque.

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