Meet the Buick Velite 7, the Chevy Bolt's Chinese cousin

Joel Stocksdale

The Buick Velite 7 has officially been revealed after having been leaked and spied a few months ago. The name derives from Buick's line of electrified models it sells in China, of course the design shows it's most closely related to the Chevy Bolt EV. Buick hasn't revealed many details about it, and only one photo, but we do get to see it and we also have a range estimate.

The range estimate is 500 kilometers on the NEDC cycle, which translates to 311 miles. That's actually less than the NEDC estimate for the Bolt EV, which is 565 kilometers or 351 miles, which increased for the 2020 model year from 520 kilometers or 323 miles. Of course NEDC figures tend to be much higher than EPA numbers, which rated the current Bolt EV at 259 miles and the previous version at 238. As such, we would expect this Buick to have an EPA range closer to 210 to 220 miles. We don't know what resulted in the lower range, but it could have something to do with additional weight or slightly worse aerodynamics. It could be both.

Design-wise, the Buick is clearly based on the Bolt, but has a more aggressive front bumper and a trendy partially floating roof. It also seems to have a slightly boxier, taller profile, mainly because of the nose.

Buick hasn't released any other details about the crossover, preferring to save them for the car's launch later this year. Since it seems so closely related to the Bolt, it probably has the same drivetrain: a single electric motor sending 200 horsepower and 266 pound-feet of torque to the front wheels via a single-speed transmission.

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