General Motors has released a software update for the 2017 and 2018 model year Chevy Bolt EV that will lift range and charging restrictions on the vehicle and allow owners to park within 50 feet of another vehicle.
GM released a similar update for the Chevy Bolt EV in November, however that software update was for the 2019 model year vehicles only. This latest one applies the same changes to the vehicle, but for the 2017 and 2018 model year Bolt EV. According to The Detroit Free Press, owners of 2020 and later Chevy Bolt EV and Bolt EUV models are expected to receive a similar version of this software update sometime in the next 30 days.
This software update sets the car’s maximum charging state to 80 percent of its original capacity and will allow users to drain the battery below 70 miles of range. This reduces the risk of fire in the battery module, as the majority of reported Chevy Bolt EV fires occurred when the battery was either extremely low or fully charged. This change will also allow owners to park their vehicles indoors, in covered parking garages and within 50 feet of another vehicle – which GM had previously advised against doing due to fire risks.
As GM Authority reported previously, the battery fires reported in Chevy Bolt EV vehicles have been traced back to a rare situation in which a torn anode tab and folded separator are present within the same battery cell. This latest version of the battery software will help GM determine which vehicles will need a full battery module replacement under the recall campaign, which was extended in August to include all 140,000 units of the 2017-2022 Bolt EV and 2022 Bolt EUV.
GM is also reminding owners to get the battery module replacement recall performed on their vehicle once they are notified by their dealership.