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The First Tahoe Hybrid Arrives at Runde Chevrolet in East Dubuque


Runde’s first Hybrid Tahoe is currently on the lot and available for test-drives. Several of the staff members at Runde Chevrolet have driven the vehicle and were impressed with the fit and finish of the vehicle. This is something that GM certainly didn’t rush to get out on the market. They really did their homework and took their time in the development stages and the result is an extremely q

uiet, fuel-efficient, full-size 4WD SUV that looks like it should cost about $10,000 more than the list price.CLICK HERE for a VIDEO WALK AROUND of the new 2008 TAHOE HYBRID !

The first thing that struck me was the exterior look of the Hybrid. It has a real upscale look with unique and refined aluminum wheels and it can easily be identified as a hybrid — mainly due to the fact that it says hybrid on the side of the vehicle. Tahoe Hybrid owners won’t have to tell others that they did something good for the environment by purchasing a hybrid vehicle, because the vehicle basically speaks for itself.

The next thing that I noticed is how quietly it starts up when you turn the ignition key — and this becomes an important feature because the vehicle will shut off to save gas when you come to a stop at a red light or a st

 

op sign. The vehicle then starts back up when the driver takes his/her foot off the brake. So you can imagine how many times the vehicle will be starting and shutting off during the course of a day of in-town driving. Overall, it drives really nice — but if you’re skeptical about hybrids, come to Runde’s to try it out for yourself (while it’s still here).This fuel-sipper is powered primarily by a 6.0L aluminum alloy V-8 rated 332 horsepower engine that’s mated to a hybrid drive system housed in the transmission case that consists of two electric motors and a planetary gear transmission, with a manual-shift mode. It sounds like a pretty complex description, but one motor basically assists with acceleration while the other helps to synchronize the transmission with the power flow from the gasoline engine and electric drive motor.

There’s a 300-volt battery pack under the second-row seat that powers the electric drive motor and this is recharged by regenerative braking. In other words, when the electric motor is not assisting the vehicle, the engine acts as a generator and it recharges the battery pack.

As for the gas mileage, GM says that it will average 19 or 20 miles per gallon in town, 20 to 22 mpg highway and 20-21 in combined city-highway driving. Those are increases vs. gasoline-only models of about 40% in town, 5% on the highway — or 25% overall.

 


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