I recently got a Chevy Bolt and I found out that it evidently is speed limited to 91 mph.

There's just one problem: I see no mention of the limit except in two places: in the car itself (it stops accelerating and pops up a little message indicating that the car will not go over 91 mph) and a Kelley Blue Book article that just mentions it in passing.

Note that the owner's manual is not one of the sources, nor is the dealership (though I admittedly haven't spoken to a mechanic -- just a salesperson).

I have also test driven a Tesla in the past, during which time they indicated that their vehicles had a demo mode that was speed limited. So now I'm wondering if the Bolt has a similar feature.

To sum it up, my Chevy Bolt won't go over 91 mph. Is that a built-in limitation of the vehicle, or is it a super-secret feature that I can turn off?

  • googling this gives 91 or 93 mph - so if you wanted to go faster in an ev you should have bought a tesla....
    – Solar Mike
    Oct 27, 2017 at 12:15
  • 3
    Depending on where you are you just publicly admitted to breaking the law @bvoyelr.
    – GdD
    Oct 27, 2017 at 12:37
  • 1
    @GdD, He obviously was testing this at a track. No one would ever go that fast on a public road.
    – JPhi1618
    Oct 27, 2017 at 13:14
  • 2
    Of course @JPhi1618, how silly of me.
    – GdD
    Oct 27, 2017 at 13:16
  • 1
    FWIW many cars are speed limited to the speed rating of the original tires. I don't think any passenger car tires are under 112 mph though.
    – agentp
    Oct 27, 2017 at 20:04

2 Answers 2


In general, it's more than likely a safety feature for the vehicle imposed by GM. It could be there for any of several different reasons, such as safety or possibly to prevent damage to the vehicle. Many cars have this feature and are speed limited whether it's a "pure" electric (like the Bolt or Tesla), or even if it's gasoline driven (I've heard tale of Dodge Challenger/Charger models being speed limited to just over 150mph).

That said, there will ALWAYS be enterprising people out there who have figured out how to crack the code and do a "tune" on the vehicle's ECU. In most cases this entails turning off the limiting widget within the software and rewriting the tables which allows the user to push it past the manufacturer imposed limit. Sometimes there are certain ways to turn off these types of system limitations through a series of dash panel button pushes, but that is more rare. You'd have to research what might work for your specific vehicle.

Please note, if you do this, you will void the warranty on the vehicle (in most cases). Manufacturers don't like to fix things when they break due to an operator caused issue.

EDIT (from comments): It's quite common for non-sports cars to have speed limiters as an "undocumented feature".

  • 2
    I figured it was a damage mitigation feature -- the motor delivers power straight to the wheels, so at those speeds it is pushing 5,000 RPM (which is around where commuter cars tend to red line) -- but the fact that it isn't mentioned in any official capacity is what has me confused. In your experience, does the vehicle documentation mention these speed limiters?
    – bvoyelr
    Oct 27, 2017 at 17:08
  • It's usually one of those "undocumented features" I believe. People on the internet may post stuff about it, but you'd probably not know otherwise. More than likely the salesperson who sold it to you doesn't even know about it. If they do, they probably wouldn't tell you about it. Most of the time, unless it's a performance vehicle, you're never going to hear about "top speed". Just one of those things. Oct 27, 2017 at 17:51
  • 1
    Back in the day when we had the Lotus Sunbeam (2 litre and weber carbs, small car) which had a rally version ie 11500rpm and an ordinary "shopping trolley" version ie 5500rpm the limiting was in the distributor : one customer asked for the limiter to be removed - wasn't written on the job card though....
    – Solar Mike
    Oct 28, 2017 at 13:44

I realize that this is a very late response, but the 93mph limit is due to the 8810 RPM limit of the motor, not an otherwise safety demanded limit.

I doubt anyone will be able to bypass this, nor would it be safe to do so. Computers in the cars are far more integrated these days, we can't just hack them like we used to.

  • 1
    8810 rpm limit? Where did that number come from? Aren't these just brushless motors?
    – zipzit
    Jan 17, 2020 at 16:25
  • 1
    SAE 2016-01-1153 "Design of the Chevrolet Bolt Propulsion System" white paper written by GM talks about the motor and describes the maximum rpm as 8810. This number is also seen in other presentations that they've created. Jan 20, 2020 at 19:24

You must log in to answer this question.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .