We were smitten with the Chevy Bolt EV when it debuted back in 2017, perhaps ignoring the battery recall. But the 2022 model year’s redesign isn’t just an update to the Bolt EV’s features and capabilities, it includes a new, compact SUV-sized variant as well, dubbed the Bolt EUV.
On the outside, it’s not hard to tell the EV and EUV apart. The EUV is half a foot longer, for one thing. And as the company points out, the two vehicles don’t share any exterior body panels. Under the hood, however, the Bolt EV and EUV are functionally similar. They use the same 65W, 288-cell lithium ion battery pack, and they are propelled using the same single front 200 HP (150kW), 266 lb-ft of torque, electric motor. The Bolt EV is a bit more efficient than the larger EUV, boasting 259 miles of range — a nine-mile advantage over the EUV’s 250.
But range isn’t everything. The Bolt EUV offers its passengers a longer wheelbase, additional head space and higher ride height. It is also the first Chevy vehicle to offer the company’s Super Cruise hands-free driver assist function. Not just the first Chevy EV, first ChEVy.
The Super Cruise function is GM’s advanced adaptive cruise control, offering a hands free driving option along some 200,000 miles of mapped North American roadways while relying on a mix of onboard cameras, sensors and GPS tracking to guide the vehicle. The system has seen some dramatic performance improvements in recent years, such as in the case of the new Escalade, the ability to change lanes in moving traffic without direct wheel input from the driver.
GM has already promised to implement the self-directing system in 22 vehicles by the 2023 model year. Both the EV and EUV will come with the Chevy Safety Assist ADAS standard. Future iterations of the Super Cruise system could port its currently highway-only hands free driving options to work on city streets.
“We're trying to take that same capability off the highway. Ultra Cruise would be all of the Super Cruise plus the neighborhoods, city streets and subdivisions. So Ultra Cruise's domain would be essentially all driving, all the time,” GM’s VP of global product development Doug Parks announced last May. “What we're not saying is that Ultra Cruise will be fully autonomous 100 percent of the time, although that could be one of the end games.”
Best of all, it watches your face. Whenever the Super Cruise function is activated a tiny infrared camera mounted on the steering column monitors the driver’s face to ensure that they are paying attention to the road around them. It works at night, it works with facial hair — even when you’re wearing sunglasses, it'll work most of the time.
That said, the 2022 EV and EUV will both offer the normal mix of apps and outlets. Apple CarPlay and Android Auto are both preinstalled, a 4G LTE Wi-Fi Hotspot is standard on the EUV and optional on the EV, and Amazon Alexa is available as well.
Chevy also announced the release of a new combined charging cord, but please try to contain your excitement. Standard with the Bolt EUV and available for Bolt EV, it “has a changeable plug that allows the customer to plug into a standard 120-volt three-prong outlet for Level 1 charging and a 240-volt outlet for Level 2 charging up to 7.2 kilowatts,” according to a recent press release, so that means one less cord to carry in the boot at least. That new cord supports up to a 11kW Level 2 but you’ll need “separate charging equipment (not included)” in order to do so. Now, if you qualify by leasing or buying a Bolt EV or EUV, Chevy may offer to cover the costs of installing a Level 2 charger on/in your property. Using a DC fast charging system 2022 Bolt owners can expect to get between 95 and 100 miles of range with a 30-minute recharge session.
The 2022 Bolt EUV is priced from $33,995 and the 2022 Bolt EV starts at $31,995. Both will hit Chevy show floors this summer.