Old Chevy Volt Batteries Help Set New Guinness World Record −


Published on August 4th, 2015 | by Zach


Old Chevy Volt Batteries Help Set New Guinness World Record

What happens to electric vehicle batteries after they are too old for their host vehicles is one of the greatest topics of interest for many of us in the EV community these days. Of course, at the minimum, we’d expect to see these recycled, and assume such a system would help to bring down the cost of EV batteries. However, even more interesting and exciting is when they can be reused for stationary electricity storage.

Old Chevy Volt batteries

Just about every manufacturer of electric cars has been playing around with the reuse option. Most recently, the news is that old Chevy Volt batteries helped to set a new Guinness World Record.

“At the Pan American Games in Toronto, from July 17-27, a record 4,739 people pedaled bikes to generate electricity into a Volt’s battery,” Jeff Cobb writes. “The record title: the most number of people generating electricity in one week.”

The Pan American Games exhibit where these 4,739 people pedaled some electricity into old Volt batteries was the Chevrolet Power of Play exhibit. They were racing each other via their generated electricity on a 1,038-foot marathon slot car track. “Participants controlled the speed of the cars and charged the batteries by riding on six stationary bicycles, generating electricity with their own pedal power.”

Sounds like fun. In total, the participants generated over 13,000 watt-hours of electricity. So, those 4,739 people together could have sent a Chevy Volt 37 miles (60 kilometers). That sure makes you appreciate the power coming out of our power plants and going into our cars, doesn’t it?

The Volt batteries in use had reportedly gone beyond their 8- to 10-year recommended lifespan on the road. Since the Volt is only 4 years old, one must assume these were GM test batteries. Apparently, despite being considered unfit for use in a Volt, they did still have 50–70% of their initial capacity. That still makes for a very useful technology, especially if provided at a relatively low cost. It’ll be exciting to see what comes from used batteries when the Nissan LEAF, Chevy Volt, and Tesla Model S are hitting 8–10 years on the market.


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About the Author

is the director of CleanTechnica, the most popular cleantech-focused website in the world, and Planetsave, a world-leading green and science news site. He has been covering green news of various sorts since 2008, and he has been especially focused on solar energy, electric vehicles, and wind energy since 2009. Aside from his work on CleanTechnica and Planetsave, he's the founder and director of Solar Love, EV Obsession, and Bikocity. Zach has long-term investments in TSLA, SCTY, FSLR, SPWR, SEDG, & ABB. After years of covering solar and EVs, he simply had a lot of faith in these companies and felt like they were good companies to invest in as a portion of his retirement strategy. To connect with Zach on some of your favorite social networks, go to ZacharyShahan.com and click on the relevant buttons.

  • Jon Erickson

    Beyond their life? Volts aren’t old enough to wear out.

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