With no official recall on the books, General Motors is announcing enhanced safety features on its Chevrolet Volt extended range electric car to protect against possible fire concerns.
The Volt made headlines of the wrong kind recently when it was revealed that last summer a test vehicle caught fire at a National Highway Transportation Safety Administration (NHTSA) facility after being crash tested. As explained by Mary Barra, senior vice president, Global Product Development at General Motors, during a conference call today, the issue arose when a piece of the car punctured the battery pack. Then during a "slow roll" procedure coolant (over a liter of it) leaked out of the battery. Days later, when the car was recharging, an electrical short caused a fire.
GM dispatched a "senior engineering investigation team" and developed a solution to the potential fire risk, choosing to strengthen the car's safety structure, thus "eliminating the chance of a post crash fire," says Barra, who confirmed that in internal testing the solution resulted in no intrusion into the battery pack and, therefore, no coolant leak.
More: GM Announces Chevy Volt Fire Fix