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Discussion Starter #1
I'm looking at buying an Ampera and I've found a couple of good examples. A 2014 plate Positiv with 37k miles and a 2013 plate Electron with 29k miles. The Electron with lower mileage is about £250 more. Is age or mileage more important, or is the Electron a better bet than the Positiv?
 

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Plated age would be my opinion, these are probably both MY13 - check the rear armrest - if its an armrest then probably MY2013, no armrest and cupholders in line then its a MY2012. the VIN is the true giveaway of the model - search the forum for the VIN decoder.

Check the service history - must have the Vxl ampera dealer stamps, yearly or every 20,000 mile, whichever is sooner to confirm the 8 year 100,000 mile drivechain warranty. walk away if not intact, never mind the year.

the 2014 has a few months of the 3year warranty left to sort out any niggles like door buttons / wheels, the 13 plate is out of 3 year.
the Positiv (I have one) is missing the satnav (out of date by now anyway) reversing lines on the rear view camera and the Bose sound system. Must say I miss neither...
 

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Discussion Starter #3

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Plated age would be my opinion, these are probably both MY13 - check the rear armrest - if its an armrest then probably MY2013, no armrest and cupholders in line then its a MY2012. the VIN is the true giveaway of the model - search the forum for the VIN decoder.

Check the service history - must have the Vxl ampera dealer stamps, yearly or every 20,000 mile, whichever is sooner to confirm the 8 year 100,000 mile drivechain warranty. walk away if not intact, never mind the year.

the 2014 has a few months of the 3year warranty left to sort out any niggles like door buttons / wheels, the 13 plate is out of 3 year.
the Positiv (I have one) is missing the satnav (out of date by now anyway) reversing lines on the rear view camera and the Bose sound system. Must say I miss neither...
Hi I have a positiv as well but it does have sat nav & Bose & hard drive & reversing lines which I've never seen before on a positiv .does any one know why that would be ?
 

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We should create a buying guide, lots of info spread about i'd be happy to amalgemate if somebody stickied my post.
EDIT: tidied post.
 

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Also re the original post wouldn't engine milage (major failure point) vary according to how many mile were on ice.
Could you do a rough calculation from lifetime mpg.
 

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We should create a buying guide, lots of info spread about i'd be happy to amalgemate if somebody stickied my post.
EDIT: tidied post.
Try searching. there have been a few already.

In regards age or mileage, 29k versus 37k is irrelevant. You should go on interior condition for this sort of mileage. A 'good' and careful owner would have it still in mint condition, someone who has mistreated the interior will have almost certainly mistreated the car in a careless unsympathetic mechanical way too.
 

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Are the ICE engine in Amperas a major failure point?
I meant milage matters on ICE car as its one off two major indicators off failure chance.(the other being serviceing) Battery milage really doesn't seem to matter as others have mentioned Amperas batteries seem rock solid.
Therefore ICE milage is what you are really looking for. So a rough calculation of estimated ice mileage would be more pertinent.

simply ask for liketime mpg and milage
EstimatedICEMiles=MILAGE*0.01*(40/(LIFETIMEMPG/100))

Assuiming 40 MPG is usual ICE MPG (please correct me if ive got that wrong)
 

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Just wondering why you multiply by 100 and then again by 0.01 in your equation?
 

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lazyness I copied it from another more complex calculation i was using that had additions etc in, sorry, was trying to make the point that high MPG=lower REAL ice milage.=lower wear on un warrentied moving parts
 

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There are cars with 100,000+ petrol miles in the US running well.
Consider the ICE here is running at at an efficient setting controlled by the car. You have no input, the go pedal is not attached to it, the car sets the use as needed so its never strained. This ICE has a cosy stress free life. I expect it to run well over the 1/4million mile mark as long as the oil is changed.
 

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hmmmmm... when the ICE is running on the Ampera it is always running at around 85% WOT. That's quite a heavy loading. However, it is a steady one-directional load (i.e. there are no torque reversals, or negative torque) unlike a regular manual or auto.

Cold starts and short running intervals aren't what I'd suggest is a cosy life. My engine never runs long enough in winter commuting to get fully warm. Effectively it is a series of cold starts, running only for a few minutes, and at near full throttle when it runs.
 

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hmmmmm... when the ICE is running on the Ampera it is always running at around 85% WOT. That's quite a heavy loading. However, it is a steady one-directional load (i.e. there are no torque reversals, or negative torque) unlike a regular manual or auto.

Cold starts and short running intervals aren't what I'd suggest is a cosy life. My engine never runs long enough in winter commuting to get fully warm. Effectively it is a series of cold starts, running only for a few minutes, and at near full throttle when it runs.
One of my thought process was run the car down to say 20% and then run in mountain mode, it seems be less high reving and stays running for longer ie better for the engine.....opinion please
 

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I agree it is better to run the engine for one continuous run, but there are additional inefficiencies attached to that even if you can, and the circumstances may not make it possible.

It depends very much on the 'shape' of your journey. When I do my commute I can wait until the preheat wears off, set it to HOLD for a half litre, then off and (without boring you on the permutations of possibilities) will get me to work, at which I will have 5kWh or more left. MM still won't run when I get back in of the evening, so I can repeat that by running HOLD for cabin heat and I'll get back home then.

I could just use electric heating to work, then I'd be down to 7kWh used or so, and then I could run MM, but that is inefficient if I am going to have to run the engine anyway on the way home.

I have tried this in practice to see if theory does match reality*.. and it does. It is never better to use electric heating early in a trip when you have to run the engine sometime during the day anyway. However, it isn't much, and you have to ask yourself the question whether the additional ~0.75L over what you'd burn anyway is worth the fact that you only do one cold start, and run it fully to temperature, versus saving 0.75L and doing 2 cold starts and the engine doesn't warm up.

Putting it that way .... I might have to reconsider my strategy. Maybe it is better to run the car this way, even if it costs me an extra £100 per year (which is what it would cost). I can't tell. What we do know is that the engine has some additional modifications over the standard 1.4L Family 0 engine to cope with these sorts of cycles, so in theory avoiding spending this extra £1000 over 10 years would not result in an engine rebuild but that the engine would cope fine with doing this.

Wiil it? Won't it?

dunno-smiley-emoticon.gif


Maybe I'll have to run this strategy some more, to determine precisely what the additional costs are. If it was actually £50 a year more, I think I should do it. If it is £100 or more, I think I'd trust that GM have engineered the engine properly for this usage cycle.

It is one reason the engine doesn't have a turbo, of course. This engine configuration appears as a turbo version in almost every other car it appears in, but a turbo running short cold cycles would not have been clever, even if it was a bit more efficient.

The only engine fault I have read of for this engine, on the Volt/Ampera, is that occasionally it can crack the cylinder head. This leads to a series of unfathomable ignitions faults flagging up, until eventually the cracked head is diagnosed. This has been very rare though, AFAIK, and I have not heard of such an incident in the UK.
 

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*I think there is another thread I posted about this. The possibility that the electric-one-run-petrol-one-run was as efficient as petrol-out-and-return is because in the latter you have to heat the block up twice, so ~1kWh of potential heating from your petrol has been lost to reheating the engine block. So what it really boils down to is that if you run less than 1kWh of electric heating then it should pay for itself, and if not then it won't. I would use around 1.5kWh of heating to work, so in theory that might only add up to an additional 0.5kWh of petrol powered heating, which is around 300cc. That would then mean the 'less-efficient-but-better-engine-running' method would cost me around £45 per year, which I think would probably be worth the potentially improved engine reliability.

I'll have to do some more 'real world' runs, I did not do many before, seeing that it was less efficient my question then was answered, but this begs the question 'exactly how much less efficient'?
 

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Cold starts and short running intervals aren't what I'd suggest is a cosy life. My engine never runs long enough in winter commuting to get fully warm. Effectively it is a series of cold starts, running only for a few minutes, and at near full throttle when it runs.
I would have thought that the Volt/Ampera ICE has a much easier life than all other PHEV engines that are used for acceleration, as no engine should be used immediately for full power when cold but that is how they are used.
I wonder how much extra pollution is generated from cold Cats.

The revs tend to be quite low to start with and as far as I can tell, it only stops running at lights unless the load is very light.
Hard acceleration does cause it to rev its balls off though and I would have thought that a gentler action using the traction battery more as a buffer would be preferable.
 
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