Chevrolet announced Thursday that its 2020 Bolt EV is getting a 21-mile bump in range, bringing its total up to 259 miles---an almost-10-percent increase compared to the 2019 model.
The additional range comes from an adjustment to the Bolt EV's battery chemistry, which resulted in a 10% improvement in the pack's capacity---from 60 kwh to 66.
EVs with 200 miles or more of total range have been multiplying in recent years. Nissan now offers a Leaf Plus variant rated at 226 miles; Hyundai has now entered the market place with its Kona Electric crossover, which has virtually identical range to the Bolt EV at 258 miles.
A 259-mile range gives the Bolt EV a slight advantage over the Standard Range Plus variant of Tesla's Model 3 sedan, which uses a 62-kwh battery pack and is rated for 240 miles on a charge.
The Bolt EV will also maintain its cost advantage over the Model 3, as the improved range comes without a corresponding price increase. The 2020 model will continue to retail for $37,495 (including destination).
The Nissan Leaf Plus and Hyundai Kona Electric are similarly priced at around $37,500---the price point at which EVs can be advertised as starting under $30,000 after factoring in the full $7,500 federal tax credit. Of these models, only the Kona Electric and Leaf remain eligible for that credit, as Tesla and General Motors have since used up their allotments.
Look for the updated 2020 Chevrolet Bolt EV to hit dealer showrooms later this year.