Fully functional Chevrolet Volt prototypes will be built in the United States from 1 June, General Motors has confirmed.
So far, the Volt’s powertrain has only been tested in around 30 test hacks based on the Chevrolet Cruze.
GM plans to build 80 Volt prototypes at rate of 10 per week, and they are likely to be on the road from early July.
Andrew Farah, the Volt's chief engineer said, "The prototypes will look, taste, smell and feel like the Volt. They are the Volt."
Testing of the Volt will be stepped up next year, with GM employees trying out a fleet of around 100 examples ahead of the production car's launch.
Greg Ceisel, GM's Voltec powertrain manager, said, "We've got several phases leading up to the production launch, and we build larger and larger batches.
"In each phase, as we perfect the production process, we'll make sure we've got all the fit, finish and other details exactly correct, and that the quality of the vehicle meets our standards."
Full production of the Volt is set to begin in November 2010.
The Vauxhall Ampera, the UK-spec car based on the Volt, is expected to go on sale in 2012.