It has been six years since the Chevrolet Volt appeared in Concept at the Chicago Auto Show.

Today, Volt is mass-produced, charging across America and into garages of green-conscious buyers interested in an electric powered car not only for what it represents, but how well it rides and drives.

General Motors' compact-size Chevrolet Volt is a plug-in extended-range electric four-seat five-door vehicle capable of traveling up to 38 miles on electric only power.

When the electric charge is depleted, a gasoline-powered electric generator propels the car for 382 total miles of range.

“Every Volt we get, we sell,” says Mike Spudic, sales consultant for Team Chevrolet in Valparaiso. “Our Volt buyer demographic ranges from tech-savvy consumers to folks 70 years old.”

Inside, driver and three passengers enjoy a two-tone interior with a quad-seat configuration created by the placement of Volt’s T-shaped battery pack positioned beneath the floor pan.

Using common household 120-volt electric current tops Volt off with a full charge overnight. With 240-volt service, a complete charge is accomplished in four hours.

“Volt’s technology is ahead of its time. It is not a car shell wrapped around an electric car platform, but a quiet luxury sedan that has a great ride with instant torque the second you step on the throttle,” Spudic said.

Going the distance (BOLD subtitle)

An inherent headache of a 100-percent pure-electric vehicle is “range anxiety” - that is, an owner's concern of running out of charge while traveling further distance from a charging station.

I have experienced ‘range anxiety’ on every extended-mile electric vehicle test drive I've conducted. It sure puts the brakes on a relaxing driving experience.

General Motors provides a virtual extension cord that remedies range anxiety with the Chevrolet Volt.

Last month, I drove the 2013 Chevrolet Volt to Detroit to attend the North American International Auto Show Press Preview.

The 2013 Volt features a “Hold” driving mode that stores a full battery charge and allows exclusive use of the Ecotec 1.4-liter gas-powered generator engine to create its own electricity for long distance travel.

Once I reached downtown Detroit, I released the ‘Hold’ mode and resumed electric only power for my around-town travel.

The equivalent of 98 miles per gallon can be attained under Volt’s all-electric power. I achieved combined mileage of 37.8-mpg traveling the Interstate at 70 miles per hour using the gasoline generator.

Cabin comfort is exceptional with well cushioned seats for fatigue-free travel across my 700 mile round trip.

The 2013 Chevrolet Volt is a proven plug-in passenger car that handles year-round driving needs without compromise starting at $39,995, including destination charge. A $7500 federal tax credit may be applied for further price reduction.