A Used Chevy Bolt for Under $20,000 Will Help You Avoid Chip Shortage Stress, Consumer Reports Suggests

by Gabrielle DeSantis

Along with lots of problems and heartbreaks caused by the pandemic, a global shortage of chips is creating a shortage of new vehicles available for sale. Buying a used vehicle instead of a new one is one way around this problem. A used Chevy Bolt is one option for buyers looking for a small car.

The pandemic caused a chip shortage

There is a semiconductor chip shortage, which is slowing the production of anything with this component, from portable electronics to cars, explains Consumer Reports. Auto manufacturers canceled orders for chips in 2020 when factories closed during the early days of the pandemic.

Demand simultaneously increased for computers and electronic devices that people were buying while quarantined at home. The microchip manufacturers weren’t able to produce enough chips once auto manufacturing resumed and demand for vehicles increased. While the situation could improve in a few months, it might last for a year.

Today’s standard vehicles have 24 to 36 microchips, but luxury ones can have more than 100 to operate their high-tech features. The industry uses hundreds of billions of microchips each year. Auto manufacturers are handling the chip shortage with temporary pauses in manufacturing and by producing fewer vehicles with certain features.

The 2017 and 2018 Chevy Bolt made the list of “Best Used Cars and SUVs for $15,000 to $20,000”

The Chevy Bolt EV | David Paul Morris/Bloomberg via Getty Images

Buyers who haven’t been able to find a new car to purchase might want to consider a used car instead right now. Consumer Reports recommends a variety of great used vehicles, and all are less than $20,000. The 2017 and 2018 Chevrolet Bolt is recommended as one of the best small cars.

There are a number of small cars that Consumer Reports suggests. The others in addition to the Chevy Bolt are the 2017 and 2018 Honda Fit, 2017 and 2018 Mazda3, 2017 and 2018 Toyota Corolla, 2016 and 2017 Toyota Prius, 2018 Toyota Prius C, 2017 Toyota Prius Prime, 2016 and 2017 Toyota Prius V, and the 2017 and 2018 Volkswagen Beetle.

Check out the 2017 and 2018 Chevy Bolt

The 2017 and 2018 Chevrolet Bolt both have the Consumer Reports recommendation and the Green Choice designation as well. These are the first two model years of this electric vehicle, which is currently in its first generation, and there aren’t major design differences between the two years.

The 2017 Bolt has a four out of five for owner satisfaction from Consumer Reports, while the 2018 model has a five out of five for owner satisfaction. Both model years have five out of five for reliability.

The Bolt for these two model years has a 238-mile driving range and was one of the first EVs to reduce range anxiety. Recharging the battery with a 240-volt connector takes about nine hours. Consumer Reports found that the large battery helps give the Bolt a “planted feel.”

Its electric motor generates 200 hp. The ride is a little “choppy,” but it is quiet and accelerates quickly, going from 0 to 60 MPH in about 6.5 seconds.

The interior isn’t upscale, but there’s plenty of space in both rows of this small car, says U.S. News & World Report. Power-adjustable seats are not available, but leather upholstery is an option. A 10.2-inch touchscreen is standard, and the system is compatible with both Apple CarPlay and Android Auto.

The Bolt also comes with a six-speaker audio system, satellite radio, a Wi-Fi hotspot, voice recognition, two USB ports, and parental monitor settings. Available tech features include a seven-speaker Bose stereo, wireless device charging, two additional USB ports for the rear seats, and a 360-degree camera.

Advanced safety features are optional rather than standard. Forward collision warning, automatic emergency braking, and blind-spot warning were available, but not all used Chevy Bolt models will include these features. The 2017 Bolt is currently priced between $17,725 and $19,550. The 2018 Bolt is priced between $19,775 and $21,650.

If you’ve been feeling stressed trying to find the perfect car during this chip shortage, consider buying a used car instead. Getting a 2017 or 2018 Chevy Bolt might be just what you need.

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