A week before its official debut, leaked photos of the Chevy Volt are spreading across the Internet faster than the electricity that powers the car.

Unpublished photos that were snatched off of a General Motors media website by TheCarConnection.com, show several members of the Volt design team posing with the car. GM’s Vice Chairman, Bob Lutz, who has made development of the revolutionary hybrid car a priority for the troubled automaker, is seen leaning on the Volt’s hood looking like a proud grandfather.

The Volt uses a unique drivetrain that propels the car solely with electric motors powered by high capacity lithium ion batteries that can be charged by plugging the car into a home electrical outlet. GM says it will be able to travel 40 miles on electric power alone, but carries a small gasoline engine on board to recharge the batteries on longer trips. The combination of the two power sources gives it an effective efficiency of over 100 miles per gallon.

The world debut of the Volt is expected to take place on September 16th in conjunction with GM’s centennial celebration in Detroit. Retail sales are scheduled to begin in the fall of 2010.

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