Chevy Volt turned into Buick Velite 5 for China

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Teaser for 2017 Buick Velite 5 debuting at 2017 Shanghai auto show

Teaser for 2017 Buick Velite 5 debuting at 2017 Shanghai auto show

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Buick will soon add an extended-range electric car to its lineup in China. A teaser shot reveals that the car, labeled a Buick Velite 5, is essentially a rebadged Chevrolet Volt.

The news isn’t a complete surprise as we’ve known since September that the Volt was going to be rebadged a Buick for the Chinese market. And the Velite name was used on a concept unveiled at the 2016 Guangzhou auto show that Buick said foreshadowed a series of new electrified models it planned to launch in China.

The Velite 5’s powertrain should be identical to that of the current Volt, meaning a dual-motor electric drive system, 18.4-kilowatt-hour lithium-ion battery, and 1.5-liter range-extender. The car’s electric-only range on the Chinese test cycle is estimated at 100 kilometers (approximately 62 miles), versus the Volt’s 53-mile EPA rating.

Buick says the Velite 5 will be revealed soon, suggesting the debut will take place at the 2017 Shanghai auto show starting April 19. The car is the first of Buick’s new electrified models for China. It will be followed in the next two years by a plug-in hybrid and electric car. Buick’s lineup in China also features a LaCrosse Hybrid.

Buick is more popular in China than General Motors’ other brands, so it makes sense to sell the Volt there as a Buick. It also means the upcoming electric car for Buick will likely be a rebadged Chevrolet Bolt EV.

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