When South Berkeley resident Patrick Wang first saw the Chevy Volt in 2007, he was convinced that the world had changed.

“It was the first electric car that didn’t look like a science project and that would actually work,” Wang recalled. “I thought this was the first real material move forward that any car manufacturer had made since the gas combustion engine.”

Wang’s enthusiasm — he describes himself as a “near-fanatic” — has led him to be the first Bay Area resident to actually take delivery of the Volt, GM’s much-ballyhooed entry into next generation cars. He picked his up yesterday. Tens of thousands of others around the country are still on waiting lists.

Earlier this year, Wang won a Wired.com video contest (see his entry above) for a trip to Detroit to test drive the Volt and meet the engineers behind the car. That trip led Wang to start a Chevy Volt blog to record his experiences — from the Detroit visit, through his order tracking to speaking to Pat, who drove the truck with Wang’s Volt from Detroit to Concord.

How did Wang feel after a day of driving his new Volt? “I had pretty good expectations since I’d done test drives,” he said. “It tickles all the right nerves.”

Lance Knobel (Berkeleyside co-founder) has been a journalist for nearly 40 years. Much of his career was in business journalism. He was editor-in-chief of both Management Today, the leading business magazine...