My name is Piper. I am the co-pilot on this low impact road trip.With my family, Buddy Boyd and Barbara Hetherington, we are travelling across Canada in our new Chevy Bolt EV.

 

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Bolting to Squamish

May 3, 2017

Monday Buddy and I made a quickie trip to Squamish for lunch and to meet up with Chevrolet promotion team doing a media event.

It was a rainy day so we didn’t stop to take pictures at the look-outs with the amazing views of Howe Sound and mountains .The winding section of Highway 99 is called “Sea to Sky Highway” because of the dramatic change from a coastal highway at sea level to quickly being a full-on mountain highway with an elevation of over 700 metres.

 

The Sea to Sky highway is a great driving road for the convoy of journalists and Chevy people testing out the features of the driving the Bolt we met up with in Squamish.

 

For Buddy the driving was about working on the techniques for long distance driving. Buddy used an awareness of elevation changes and that going uphill takes energy but downhill you can regain energy. By using the regen braking instead of the brake pedal he put energy back into the battery pack instead of wasting it heating up conventional brakes.

 

Along the way and around the curves he talked about coasting and maintaining a steady speed. The purpose of the driving is to maximize battery range for long range trips not win the race. Remember driving slower can actually speed up your trip if you don’t have to stop to charge.

 

Normally drivers hate being stuck behind a big truck but another technique Buddy used is called drafting. Basically you have less air/ wind resistance in front of your car if a big truck has already passed through the air and your car is in the tunnel or slipstream behind it and a truck also blocks some of the air rushing at you. You don’t have to tailgate instead you just pick a nice big truck that is driving safely at a constant speed and drive behind them at a safe distance. One Tesla blog I read said “that if you drive one second behind a large truck, you can get as much as 15% improvement in range, or equivalently drive 10 mph faster for the same energy.”

 

We listened to the radio instead of car sounds as  we made our way home as the sun began to shine.

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