I have had my FFElectric for about 3 weeks now. I'm in Atlanta and that means the car and I both survived Snowpocalypse 2014 and IceJam the Sequel. My normal commute is 20 miles roundtrip. I sometimes go out for lunch for a maximum of 10 miles, making my daily driving 30 miles at the most before coming home to charge. When the first snow storm hit a few weeks back, I had just leased by car. I attempted my normal route home only to find a blocked road after about 3 hours. I had to turn around and head back a different direction. Even though I had plenty of charge left (I used the heat sparingly which was no problem since I am very hot natured), I stopped for about 1 hours charge at a Walgreen location, mostly to calm my nerves from what happened on my attempt home (my nerves were shot). By the time I got back on the road, it was too late as the interstates were totally jammed. So, I slept at work. I later found out this was a blessing as others who got on the interstate that day were stuck for hours. At least my office was warm. So, even on this day, I never dipped below 50%ish on the battery.
So, today I had time to kill and thought I would see how far I could get. I thought I would attempt a trip up to the North Georgia Premium Outlets. From my house, this is a 35.5 mile trip. In the middle of the Georgia summer last year, driving as fast or faster than traffic. In the Volt, I made it on battery there and a few miles back back before the gas generator cut on. So far, I have been estimating that the FFElectric has about 2 times the miles available as the Volt. I thought this trip would be fine as I preheat and I wouldn't run the heat going or back if the sun shined while I was shopping. I left our Lincoln MKZHybrid and the Volt (which I haven't turned in yet) behind and headed out. My thought was I would either drive all the way there OR until the battery reached 50%. Well, I didn't make it all the way. The battery reached 50% about 28 miles into the trip. So, at that point, I turned around and changed my plans in locating some of the charges along the way. I knew I would be able to make it home, I just wanted to locate a few chargers. I found the first one at a Walgreen's (different one that from the snowstorm. This one wasn't free but I already had the app to pay for service so no issue. I ate lunch at a nearby restaurant and charged up for about 45 minutes. Afterwards, I located 3 other charger locations. I saw about 8 Nissan Leafs during my travels (Atlanta is a hot spot for Leafs). I'm back home a few hours later, and the car is charging back up. I made it back home with about 12 miles left.
Now for my observations/comparisons between FFElec and the Volt:
Navigation: FFE (It's the same Sync that's in our Lincoln. I love all the options. The Volt's system is more basic. Coincidentally, my partner drives the Lincoln normally and he has been driving the Volt since we got the FFE. He thinks the Volt's system is better and more user friendly.
Interior: FFE but the 2014 Volt that my friend just has is super nice in tan. My Volt is all black interior and I loved it when I first got it but I find the FFE in the mixed tan and black accents very nice.
Drive: Tie. The FFE drives like a small car to me (yes, I know it is one) and the Volt drives like a sports car. The Volt seems faster (not sure if it really is).
Radio: Volt. The Bose speakers in the Volt deliver a lot better sound. This isn't really important to me as the FFE is my commuter car so I am only listening to it for 45 minutes to 1 hour a day.
Brakes: Very different braking. The FFE is super sensitive like the Lincoln. The Volt is not so sensitive. This is almost a problem for me when I drive them both on the same day. When I do, I usually send myself almost into the windshield when I hit the brakes in the FFE and almost don't stop fast enough in the Volt. When I am used to it, I prefer the FFE's braking.
Battery Control: Volt. In the Volt, without running the heat, there is very little mileage drop due to cold weather. In the FFE, even with the heat off, the battery takes a drop in cold temperatures. I normally got 38-44 miles off the battery in the Volt. I can't wait to see how it handles the summer heat.
All in all, I love both cars. I got such a super deal on the FFE that it was worth it to get it before my lease expires on the Volt. I am torn about keeping the Volt until the lease runs out (November). Keeping it will only cost me about $100/month and my partner is actually enjoying driving it. The Lincoln has been sitting almost every day since we got the FFE. If Lincoln comes out with a plug in, I am guessing that's what my partner will want next. He is starting to love driving electric.
And, I WILL make it up to the Outlet mall in my FFE when it warms up even if I have to take secondary roads and stop at one of the chargers I found along the way. I know today was a bad day to try. It was in the 30's and very windy on the way there.