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5 Plug-in Hybrids -- Arriving Soon

        Auto | Plug-in Hybrids

4
Chevy Volt
The Chevy Volt marks a new direction for General Motors.
The Chevy Volt marks a new direction for General Motors.
Steve Fecht/General Motors/Getty Images

As General Motors -- parent company of several automotive brands including Chevrolet, Buick, Cadillac and GMC -- comes out of bankruptcy, the company is looking to cut back on one program after another. Previous GM-owned brands like Saturn and, most notably, Hummer were dropped or sold in order to keep the company a manageable size.

One project that Chevrolet is moving forward with, however, is the much labored-over Chevy Volt, a plug-in hybrid that marks a significant step away from gasoline-only vehicles for the company. Reports from the automotive press say that the Volt will have an electric motor with a 40-mile (64.4-kilometer) range coupled with a small internal-combustion engine.

The Volt isn't without controversy -- along with engineering difficulties and political scuffles, the U.S. government's auto industry task force has worried that the Volt may be too expensive at a proposed $40,000 to make a difference with American drivers. There's also concern about the plug-in hybrid's release date getting shuffled around; however, GM claims the Volt should be ready for production by late 2010.


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