Apr 28

How Much Will the Chevy Volt Cost?

 

[ad#post_ad]“How much it will cost?” is by far the most asked question about the Chevy Volt. Not only most discussed but certain to bring forth strong discussion. The higher the quote the stronger the vitriol.

There was no mention of price when the concept debuted in January 07. The dialog began in May 07, when GM vice-chair Bob Lutz first was quoted as saying the goal price for the car would be under $30,000 (see post) . We luxuriated over that number until in January of this year when Mr. Lutz said: “I don’t want to wait for cost optimization. I’d rather it come out in 2010, and if it costs closer to 40 than 30, well, that’s too bad.” He did indicate the car would eventually reach the 30K price point but not until production costs could drop.

As your public liaison to the Volt team, when I last went to Warren MI, I went with the hope of obtaining GM’s current target price.

First, I asked Frank Weber, E-Flex/Volt vehicle line executive this question, “Since you guys always like to talk about a 40 mile EV range goal, what is your price goal for the car?” His answer was really just a wry smile indicating he wouldn’t answer.

Not undaunted I was ready when I came across VP of global program management Jon Lauckner and Mr. Lutz himself at the event’s closing dinner (pictured above), and yes, I did it again; I asked how much the Volt will cost.

What’s the target price for the Volt, it used to be $30,000?

Lutz: It keeps going up. Every time you ask, Lyle, it goes up again.

Is there a target?

Lauckner: We want to push it down to the maximal possible extent.

Lutz: It’s like this joke about a man at a conference who goes like this (demonstrates a steady clap) Then he says every time I clap my hands, a child in Africa dies. Some guy in the audience shouts “Then why don’t you bleedin’ stop clapping ya heartless bastard!’ (laughter)

So stop asking how much it will cost!

[ad#post_ad-left-1-1](Seriously) The answer is that we don’t know. Needless to say, the big chunk that we don’t control is the battery. Everything else we have a pretty good line of sight on. We know how to do electric motors, power electronics, the charger is pretty straightforward. The battery is the big unknown. We’ve had intense discussion about it.

Lauckner: The battery is the biggest cost component of the car by far. To give you an idea, if you look at just the powertrain, maybe 90% of that stuff, we know who is going to build it, its in common with other GM cars, and we know how much its going to cost. We have some work to do on that but we basically have it well understood. We’ve only sourced 10% of the car so far. That is we have production suppliers of about 10% of the value of the car. So we still have in front of us to source about 90% of the car. And that’s on schedule by the way, that’s not unusual for this point in a program. Part of that is the battery. That’s one of the vehicle side components that has to be sourced. How well we do with that sourcing process will impact our final product price.

Mr. Lutz also advised me that the recent quote of him saying “$48,000 was more reasonable” was never actually said by him . That he never gave that figure was also verified by his spokesman Dee Allen who was there for the interview.

I was also later instructed by other executives that a new car’s MSRP usually doesn’t get revealed until literally days before the release date. So whether its a wonderful surprise or a terrible disappointment, it looks like well have to wait until November 2010 to find out for sure. There is little doubt that over the long term, affordability is the goal, and that will depend in large part on the expected decline in cost of the batteries over time.
[ad#postbottom]

This entry was posted on Monday, April 28th, 2008 at 7:29 am and is filed under Financial. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. Both comments and pings are currently closed.

COMMENTS: 151


  1. 1
    RB

     

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    Apr 28th, 2008 (7:36 am)

    Lyle — Wonderful job, once again. Thanks! Please remain undaunted and keep asking. But I can see truth in what they are saying. We just aren’t going to know until its time for the curtain to come up.


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    Apr 28th, 2008 (7:46 am)

    Thanks, Lyle, this site not only lets them know we are interested, but that we need to have the car we want priced so that we can afford it. ‘Comfortably under $30,000′ might not happen due to the fluctuations in the dollar and escalation in battery prices, but if it is priced at $48,000 as Lutz hinted a while ago, this car will sell a lot more slowly.
    This car could change the world economy, but it needs to sell in large numbers and spur a host of competitors in order to reduce the demand for oil, and thereby reduce our dependence on Hugo, Putin and the house of Saud.


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    NZDavid

     

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    Apr 28th, 2008 (7:54 am)

    OK then, forget the price thing, ask when your free car is arriving ;-)


  4. 4
    nasaman

     

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    Apr 28th, 2008 (7:56 am)

    Jon Lauckner’s comment pretty much sums things up: “The battery is the biggest cost component of the car by far. To give you an idea, if you look at just the powertrain, maybe 90% of that stuff, we know who is going to build it, its in common with other GM cars, and we know how much its going to cost.”

    But I feel sure Lutz, Wagoner & others will make a pitch to the entire GM Board of Directors, and THAT will determine how much of the MSRP they’re going to “eat” to make the Volt sufficiently competitive. One concern I have is that GM’s “Head Bean Counter”, Fritz Henderson (highly regarded as GM’s “turnaround pro”) has recently been promoted to President, which should give him more leverage than before! UGH!!!!!

    But I’m hopeful that GM will consider the inherently low-to-modest costs of Li-Ion RAW materials, and the fact that the large-format prismatic cell assembly, pack manufacturing and testing can all be extensively automated (which will minimize Li Ion pack labor content).

    If so, and if they work with their Li-Ion pack suppliers in reducing high-volume pack costs, as I’m sure they will, I think we’ll all be pleasantly surprised at how relatively inexpensive the batteries, even those for Gen 1 Volts, will be. :)


  5. 5
    Dave B

     

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    Apr 28th, 2008 (8:00 am)

    I think our focus on GM is misguided, just as Lutz is suggested. A123 or LG will set the price as a supplier, and GM’s mark-up will be minimal. After everyone is done yelling, I think there are things that can be done at present.

    With this cost discussion, the notion of tax credits always arises. Tax credits are are the quickest way for those dollars to come back, dollar for dollar after you file. If people here want to make a difference, mobilize and focus efforts at Capital Hill for such credits related to EVs. I think efforts are under way, and 20,000 people willing to sign a petition here would likely be willing to sign a bill supporting credits. Probably moreso. I’m not familiar with the legislation pending. Anyone?


  6. 6
    NZDavid

     

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    Apr 28th, 2008 (8:03 am)

    #2 Ziv
    Did you actually read Lyle’s post?? I quote:

    “Mr. Lutz also advised me that the recent quote of him saying “$48,000 was more reasonable” was never actually said by him . That he never gave that figure was also verified by his spokesman Dee Allen who was there for the interview.”

    Which part of “… he never gave that figure …” did you not understand?


  7. 7
    Statik

     

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    Apr 28th, 2008 (8:07 am)

    Lol. Priceless. You just know they bumping up the price of this in their minds all the time.

    They can say 40K, 50K, 100K, heck make it a billion fa-fillion dollars. Guess what, there is a little thing called market demand and timing.

    So if you get it out on time, before the competition and only make a few thousand…yes you can get 45,50, even 75k a copy.

    You let the i-miev, Prius EV hit the market first and you just try to sell 100K copies a year of the Volt at 40 or 50K, during a recession. The first 25,000 fly out regardless of the price…after that your giving thousands in ‘dealer rebates,’ before you know it your offering 0% financing.

    Wonder how your 49 percent stake in GMAC (the only thing you own thats viable) will like that…still trying to dig it’s way out of it’s ResCap fiasco?


  8. 8
    voltman

     

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    Apr 28th, 2008 (8:15 am)

    They CANNOT reduce the price of the car after release. They will have a riot on their hands if everyone on this site buys it for 40k, then they lower it to 30k. It will be just like the iPhone. The value of my car will instantly go down 10k. That is a disservice to those who buy early.

    They have to eat the extra cost until they can get the price down by mass production.


  9. 9
    John

     

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    Apr 28th, 2008 (8:19 am)

    Competitive offerings will be a huge part of the pricing decision in 2010 . What happens to the rest of the GM car product line if the Volt is very well received and priced below 30 ? It is possible that the other assembly lines would come to a dead stop : most would delay their purchase until they could get a Volt ( or something similar from the competition ) , and plants could not be converted to E – flex overnight . I think the Volt’ s initial price will be very high and come down slowly , again subject to the competitive environment.


  10. 10
    Tim

     

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    Apr 28th, 2008 (8:23 am)

    It’s unreasonable to ask ANY company to say:

    “Well, we don’t know how much something is going to cost us, but we know what we are going to sell it for.”

    In this case almost EVERY component on the Volt is a moving target price wise and 2 years is an eternity in the rapidly evolving electric car world. Heck, they don’t even know what the competition will be like 2 years from now. They may even dump the battery all together and replace them with some new electron storage technology like EEStor (if it turns out to be real). WHO KNOWS???

    I vote that we quit asking price. If it’s right, then I’ll buy one or two. If too high, I won’t. It’s that simple. By the way, I’d like mine in forest green.


  11. 11
    vincent

     

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    Apr 28th, 2008 (8:25 am)

    Battery suppliers will not really set the price. I remember speaking to buyers at Wal Mart for my products. They will ask “whats your best price” ….. “You” in this case the battery suppliers will call all your individual suppliers and “squeeze” them for their best price.

    Each and every component and process will go under the knife.
    In a world where your battery was a niche product… you know that you must see that …making a dollar off of a million people is far easier than making a million off of one person.

    Hence MMR or mass market retail reality sinks in and the once thought golden egg that had “X” $ value due to it’s rare properties just became main stream.

    So did your pricing and so did reality.
    If these battery guys want mass market and all the benefits that go with it ….the price will have to come down. They will squeeze all their suppliers who also want to {and trust me are excited to be suppling in the end GM vehicles} get this contract. They are sweating it as much as GM. It will work. Sharpen pencils everyone.


  12. 12
    Statik

     

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    Apr 28th, 2008 (8:35 am)

    #5 Dave B

    I want to say this so it is received as more of a concern than a criticism of your post…and for others.

    Tax credits/breaks/cuts aren’t free money to you/Americans. They are mortgaging your future for the present. Right now the Volt is up to like 50K because of ‘tax cuts’ and overspending in the past devaluing your dollar (and GM’s indebtnesses too). Can you see how ridiculous it is to solve your ‘falling dollar’ probelm with the same wand that makes it?

    What you need to do is just stop. Take the hit. Yeah, some will lose their house…some will have to go down to one car, others will have to not buy that 60 inch plasma to replace your 42. People don’t just get what they want…that is the illusion of the ‘American dream’ So no Volt for you after all.

    Once you do that, once you hit bottom and get your books in order, your world will immediately start to slowly improve. Each year will be better than the next, the dollar will again get stronger…and taxes will go down the way they are intended to, because fiscal responsibility is letting the government run on less.


  13. 13
    BillR

     

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    Apr 28th, 2008 (8:41 am)

    I agree with GM’s position, you will get the final price when the car is ready for sale – get over it!

    I agree with this for 2 reasons, first, as mentioned, they really don’t know the price of the car at this time. Second, this is a competitive market and it’s business sensitive information. If it were my business, I certainly wouldn’t be giving out any pricing information at this time!

    To me, this is very encouraging. Let’s face it, GM knows how to make doors, body panels, suspensions, brakes, ICE’s, etc. Now in regard to the powertrain, see Lauckner’s quote:

    “Lauckner: The battery is the biggest cost component of the car by far. To give you an idea, if you look at just the powertrain, maybe 90% of that stuff, we know who is going to build it, its in common with other GM cars, and we know how much its going to cost. We have some work to do on that but we basically have it well understood.”

    So it would seem indeed that the real challenge is the battery pack. The good news here is that automobile manufacturers specialize in high volume manufacturing. For example, they may buy or produce millions of pistons every year with the same part number. I’m sure some of their expertise will be available to the battery suppliers, so that the cost of these battery packs can be minimized.

    I see nothing here but good news.


  14. 14
    Statik

     

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    Apr 28th, 2008 (8:43 am)

    Attendum: for interest sake

    A new car is ‘supposed to be’ a quarter of your annual salary, thats the way it always has been until this spend, spend, tax cut, I deserve everything I want mentality came around:

    Year Avg. Wage Toyota Corolla
    1970 $7,000 $1,686
    2008 $38,000 $15,250

    …probably you shouldn’t do the math on a Volt at 50K…or 40K…or 30K


  15. 15
    Tim

     

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    Apr 28th, 2008 (8:50 am)

    Statik (#11). Uncontrolled military & entitlement spending collapsed the Soviet Union and soon it will collapse the United States. What will take its place? My guess would be a Socialist North American Union.

    Much will happen in the next 2-3 years. Many freedoms & rights will be traded for privileges because the US Constitution has been shredded by traitors who ignore their Oath of Office and the 10th Amendment. I’m amazed that only about 2% of the population and about 1/2% of Congress understands simple economics.

    Debt is NOT a bottomless pit and when you hit bottom the debtor becomes a servant of the lender which in this case is the privately owned unFederal noReserve Bank. It’s a shame when good men let freedom die for greed, ignorance, fear and laziness.


  16. 16
    RB

     

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    Apr 28th, 2008 (8:54 am)

    #11 Statik — I agree with you that tax credits are not free. Collectively, we pay for them. Tax credits are, however, important instruments of national policy. Well chosen, tax credits benefit the citzenry collectively by influencing the actions of individuals. So if one thinks that purchasing US electricity rather than imported oil is a benefit to us as a group, then one can support tax credits for BEV and EREV cars, and do so with full understanding that “there ain’t no free lunch.” So I do support such credits.


  17. 17
    ThombDbhomb

     

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    Apr 28th, 2008 (9:07 am)

    “[Mr. Lutz] did indicate the car would eventually reach the 30K price point but not until production costs could drop.”

    I’m sure GM can sell the first 10k Volts at a premium, if they desired. But, that is not the way to whet the desire of the “affordable” class. If the initial Volts are expensive, that will be my first impression. First impressions are hard to shake. I would assume that the second production run wouldn’t be much different, price-wise. I’d lose my excitement over the Volt.

    I’ve been holding on to my clunker waiting for the Volt. If I perceive that an affordable Volt won’t be available in a reasonable time-frame, I’ll have to buy something else. I’ll bet there are a lot of people holding on their clunkers until the promise of the Volt is delivered. GM could lose those sales to the competition.

    Production cost drops will correlate with sales volume increases. “Eating” some initial production costs will spur sales volume increases. Rather than selling the initial Volts at a premium, set a low price and hold a lottery for customers. Imagine how much excitement a low-priced Volt lottery would generate. Potential customers will continue to think that the Volt is for them, not for the elite that can afford them.


  18. 18
    Cantjam

     

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    Apr 28th, 2008 (9:07 am)

    TOO RIGHT, #14 – RB-
    A tax credit is a vehicle (pun intended) for advancing public policy for the national betterment.

    Not free and also not applicable unless you are a productive, “tax paying” individual. IN other words, it is not a hand out – there is no benefit unless you are making enough money to offset taxes you would otherwise owe. It is an investment in a better direction and a pat on the back of those who are making America great(er).


  19. 19
    Dave B

     

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    Apr 28th, 2008 (9:12 am)

    Statik @ 11,

    Tax credits for EVs are a drop in the ocean. I agree in principle, but come on, let’s get real. We subsidize health care, welfare, retirement, on and on… Everyone else is living on my dollar, so all I’m asking for is a nibble to promote the one thing I think our country needs.

    I agree we rely too much on the government and I’d happily give up tax credits if Uncle (gouging) Sam would stop taxing the hell out of us for redistributing wealth. BTW, I’m not getting a rebate today…or any of the “stimulus.”


  20. 20
    Cantjam

     

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    Apr 28th, 2008 (9:14 am)

    ALSO,

    Dear GM,

    We of Volt Nation hereby request that you build one of the first Volts with Lyle’s name on it! Give it too him, free. Call it an Honorarium. It is a small price to pay for all the good will and positive public exposure he has generated for not just the Volt, but for GM as a whole.
    Even though i have loved Chevy and Oldsmobile my whole life I now have a fresh and new respect for you. You OWE Lyle a great deal

    Lyle, you will have to figure this as income for your taxes, sorry.


  21. 21
    ThombDbhomb

     

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    Apr 28th, 2008 (9:14 am)

    #11 Statik and #14 RB

    Good exchange on the topic of tax credits. The government takes my tax money. I want the government to spend it wisely.


  22. 22
    Dean Anderson

     

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    Apr 28th, 2008 (9:25 am)

    re: #18
    At least give Lyle one of the test mules for 6 mo.


  23. 23
    Cantjam

     

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    Apr 28th, 2008 (9:30 am)

    #20,

    Yes, and that would keep the title out of his name. It would remove the tax bite of a gift.
    Hey, I’m for anything that gets our Lyle behind the wheel ASAP!!!


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    N Riley

     

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    Apr 28th, 2008 (9:37 am)

    On and on it goes. And we still have two more years to go.


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    Cantjam

     

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    Apr 28th, 2008 (9:38 am)

    I have started a Volt fund. I will not buy another car, new or used for the next 2 years.
    I am doing what ever it takes to keep from buying any new car until the Volt comes out. My current “work” vehicle has 298,000+ miles on it. It’s paid for and owes me nothing. I just want it to hold together a couple more years. I have another one just like it to cannibalize parts from to get me there.
    I have also written a spreadsheet with my savings goal. I will track my payments into the fund over time. What ever the final price turns out to be I plan to be ready. I may not have the cash saved up for it all, but at least i will have a whopper of a down payment!


  26. 26
    Estero

     

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    Apr 28th, 2008 (9:39 am)

    Well said #11 Statik!


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    Mike-o-Matic

     

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    Apr 28th, 2008 (9:39 am)

    @#8 Voltman

    >>They CANNOT reduce the price of the car after release.
    You’ve got that right. Nor would they be inclined to, if it’s selling well.

    If people feel burned by the $100 or so they were hosed out of when they bought an iPhone early, imagine how they’ll feel about a $5-10k burn… ouch. Like automobiles don’t lose their value fast enough as it is!

    IMO, they’ve gotta get the price right on day #1.


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    N Riley

     

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    Apr 28th, 2008 (9:43 am)

    #23

    Same here. I am saving $1,200 monthly now. Some of that my be used to fund a new car that will be given to my wife when I buy my Volt.


  29. 29
    Statik

     

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    Apr 28th, 2008 (9:51 am)

    Just want to say the board is/has been extremely rationale lately.

    Nice to see a little give and take…without have to wear a flame suit against each other. Everyone has their own take on things and it’s nice to see we can discuss without going ‘over the top’ to try and ‘win’ a argument.

    Have a nice day, hehe. (=


  30. 30
    Schmeltz

     

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    Apr 28th, 2008 (9:56 am)

    I think privately, GM already has a pretty good feel as to the end cost of the vehicle. However, it is wise on their behalf not to throw a price out yet, when so many things can change on the vehicle for one reason or another. I would rather not know the price until just before the vehicle launches. Even then, GM has warned that the first year’s production vehicles will be expensive for the first adopters. That fact is hardly suprising. Think of every new technology that ever came through to the mainstream; it started off expensive, and then worked it’s way downward in price when the product became ubiquitous. As just one example of many, in the ’50′s, air conditioning in buildings was a new and expensive option, not to mention crude compared to today’s efficient systems. Today, you can hardly find a car that doesn’t have air conditioning in the U.S., let alone a house. I would like the Volt to be as in-expensive as possible too, however the realist in me just doesn’t see that happening the first year, or maybe 2 or 3. Just brace yourself and expect a high price initially. The more accustomed GM gets to manufacturing electric cars, and the more they sell, then the price will eventually drop. I know we are the “NOW” generation, although, it has to be understood that things just take time. The sooner we make our peace with these realities, the better off we will be. Just my 3 cents.


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    Schmeltz

     

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    Apr 28th, 2008 (10:10 am)

    #11 Statik:

    There’s a lot of wisdom in your comments–Thank you.


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    ThombDbhomb

     

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    Apr 28th, 2008 (10:13 am)

    #28 Schmeltz

    To keep things on an even keel, you should keep your contributions to two cents. That is the accepted norm.


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    Apr 28th, 2008 (10:16 am)

    ThombDbhomb:
    LOL! Yeah, normally I only offer my 2 cents, however to this group I’m usually inclined to offer an additional cent for good measure!


  34. 34
    Eric E

     

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    Apr 28th, 2008 (10:18 am)

    Lyle…Stop bloody clappin ya heartless bastard!

    Oh…I mean askin.


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    Mikey

     

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    Apr 28th, 2008 (10:25 am)

    The all electric Mitsubishi i Miev which is coming out late 2008/early 2009 in Japan and will cost $7000 more ($24,000 total) than the gas version. It goes about 100 miles per charge, seats four, but is smaller than the volt. A quick charge system can charge it in 30 minutes. The volt will be based on the next version of the chevy cobalt platform, but it appears the additional cost will be substantially more than $7000. I’m not sure what is happening here.


  36. 36
    BillR

     

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    Apr 28th, 2008 (10:31 am)

    Personally, I don’t envision GM being able to get a big premium for the Volt (unless gas goes to $8 per gallon or something crazy like that).

    Let’s face it, this will be a small car. These cars don’t usually get big premiums. Also, GM will be competing with themselves in 2010. By then, the BAS+ (newer belt/alternator start system with Li-Ion batteries) will be available. I would expect that the larger Malibu with this hybrid technology and a 4 cyl engine would be getting close to 30 mpg overall.

    For the average driver at 15,000 miles per year, and assuming the Volt would only be used for 3000 miles with the ICE running, we are looking at 500 gallons per year for the Malibu, and for the Volt, 2400 kWh of electricity and 60 gallons of gas. Therefore, the savings equate to the difference in cost between 440 gallons of gas and 2400 kWh of electricity. Depending on projections, locale, etc, this might equate to $1500 to $2000 per year.

    Although this is not insignificant, if oil prices stabilize, and many customers see the Volt as a small car (only 4 passengers) with high risks associated with the purchase, there may be the core group of enthusiasts who will purchase the Volt, but from there, sales could be difficult.

    Many people purchase mid-size family automobiles that can seat 5 or 6 people, have ample trunk space, and cost in the mid-20′s for basic amenities. They are willing to pay extra for added fuel consumption because the vehicle provides the space, comfort, and safety afforded by a larger vehicle.


  37. 37
    Jim Rowland

     

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    Apr 28th, 2008 (10:47 am)

    Should I stay or sould I go……
    some decisions must be made…..
    but you got to let me know……
    should I stay or should I go.

    Isn’t uncertainty confusing, and a little fun? Lets try to be patient. If you can’t wait… buy something to put miles on for a couple of years until the truth comes out.
    I am betting on the “Volt” to be worth the wait!!


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    Apr 28th, 2008 (10:47 am)

    #34 BillR

    Respectfully, GM could get a big premium for the Volt. Porsche makes small cars that sell for a premium. If an expensive Volt is quick off the line, or can be easily made so, and has a low center of gravity, it may sufficiently satisfy your core group of enthusiasts enough to be a sustaining niche product.


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    brad

     

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    Apr 28th, 2008 (10:48 am)

    I think there is way more possibility that the price of oil will skyrocket than collapse. At its current levels a hurricane hitting some of the oil platforms in the Gulf of Mexico will cause major oil disruptions. Iran and Venezula can also cause major disruptions any time.


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    Apr 28th, 2008 (10:52 am)

    GM will face some serious competition in 2010 & 2011 and will have to respond to that competition. Price will only be one component of the competition. Features, size, range and other “features” will cause GM to respond or be left behind. Price will certainly be one of the competitive features.

    Only time will tell if GM will be able to produce the Volt at a price that they are willing to sell it for and take a hit on the price if necessary to maintain a competitive position. Market forces will determine many of these decision, but hard economic facts will certainly play a large part, also.

    Lots of luck to GM and its future customers, of which I count myself as one of them.


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    Apr 28th, 2008 (10:53 am)

    Volt’s selling price jacked up to $48,000.00? It was supposed to be in the $30,000.00 ballpark. Why? My best guess is, GM believes jacking the price up will cause the American people to turn to Congress for help (big, big electric car subsidy). GM lowers it’s price a little, Congress kicks in with a huge “incentive” to lower the cost further. Result: GM suckers Congress into filling GM’s pockets with taxpayer dollars, for a car they never intended to sell for over $30,000.00 anyway. Clever – some GM lawyer is getting a big bonus this year, for coming up with this plan.


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    Apr 28th, 2008 (10:58 am)

    Gosh, Terry, what else do you see as a “boggy-man”. The lowest possible reason should not be the first thing out of your mouth. I know that it does work that way sometimes, but not every time.


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    Apr 28th, 2008 (11:16 am)

    I smell a rat.

    The BYD, supposed to produce their patent infringing LiFePO4 battery car (read: stealing from A123), is a 47kWh battery (3 times the size of the Volt battery), and the car is supposed to cost $20K if sold in the states.

    Of course their car will never be sold in the states … but my point is how is BYD producing so cheaply a LiFePO4 battery with 3X the GM Volt capacity? Is the battery really the cheapest part … or is GM bad at negotiations? Or they gonna try to make money off it before it’s cheap enough to be a winner?


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    Apr 28th, 2008 (11:48 am)

    I for one don’t want the government involved in any thing I do!!!Congress cannot operate within their own budgets !! What makes us think they can help us in the automotive industry ??
    The less we have to do with the Federal Government the better off we will all be.


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    Apr 28th, 2008 (11:53 am)

    Folks, GM has not signed a production contract with LG or A123, so the battery cost has not been finalized. But in the fall of this year, I believe GM will enter into a production contract with one of them, and so internally they will have a good idea of the break even price. But they still must consider what the market demand will be, and price it to maximize profits or minimize loss as the case may be. I think two factors are unknown at this point, the price of gas in the spring of 2011, and the size of any government incentives available at that time. Time will tell.


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    Apr 28th, 2008 (11:54 am)

    A much better question than price is an explanation GM’s marketing strategy for the Volt.

    A private vehicle can be the WORST financial investment. GM…please consider the following scenario:

    Try to explain to your accountant (and this could be yourself or your spouse) a $40K purchase that one year later a new one will cost $30K. It’s called “insane depreciation”. However relatively speaking, 10K$ could be insignificant to some folks.

    I’ve steered clear of new GM vehicles in the past since their depreciation can be one of the worst in the industry. Some of it GM’s fault….HUGE rebates and incentivizes.


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    Apr 28th, 2008 (11:55 am)

    Oh, I see I failed to mention the Prius factor, is a retail PHEV Prius available, and what is the price?


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    Apr 28th, 2008 (12:26 pm)

    #36 ThombDbhomb

    “it may sufficiently satisfy your core group of enthusiasts enough to be a sustaining niche product.”

    You say it all with this phrase, “niche product”.

    I thought the marketing concept was for GM to manufacture and sell annually 60,000 plus copies of the Volt here in the US. To me that is more mainstream, not a niche vehicle.

    Note that Chevy sells about 35,000 Corvettes annuallly, and I believe I read that it is more than Porsche, Honda, and a few others combined in the 2-seat sport car category.


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    Apr 28th, 2008 (12:30 pm)

    Well, there you have it. Spoken in plain english so that most of us here can understand. The price of the Volt will be $?????.?? when it comes out. That simple. We no longer have to talk about the price, but there is no question in my mind that we will. It is just too important of a subject for us to drop, it seems.


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    Apr 28th, 2008 (12:51 pm)

    static and I rarely agree on anything, but on the government incentive/rebate involvement issue we are best buddies!

    Until our lawmakers can get their act together and even begin to think about reducing our ten TRILLION (yes with a “T”) dollar federal debt, they should stop playing sugar daddy with money they really do not have. The value of the dollar would be in much better shape, if our great, great, great grandkids were not already going to be born in debt………..


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    Apr 28th, 2008 (12:52 pm)

    Jeff at #44 said:

    “10K$ could be insignificant to some folks.”

    Indeed, $40,000 – $50,000 for a car is insignificant to some folks. My company designed a Mercedes Benz / BMW dealership recently. On those sales lots, the “cheap” editions of those cars were in the $40-$50,000 range. Well, one can argue that both of those brands are regarded as premium vehicles. Precisely engineered and precisely tuned luxury machines. The Volt is a Chevrolet, not commonly regarded as a high dollar nameplate. Yet, the Volt will be unlike any other machine on the road. The Volt is a game changer by all definitions.

    My thought/hope is that early adopters will come forth whom are looking for “something different”. They will have money more easily accessible than the general aggregate, and won’t find spending $40,000 for a new technology and a new car as the unthinkable. These will be the sort of customers who were like the early adopters of cell phones in their infancy. Remember cell phones in the early ’90′s anyone? I only knew of a few rich yuppies that had them in that time period. They were expensive (hundreds of dollars), they were rather large, (usually carried around in bags with their chargers), and the calling areas were limited only to the immediate vicinity of the city they were in, therefore the second you crossed the city line, you were out of luck. The people who had these phones had a lot of disposable income. The phones were just another cool toy for them. There are a lot of people (and I think GM is banking on this), that can afford this car at $40,000 and will pay that to be an early adopter. We need to be thankful for people in that bracket for they will be in effect subsidizing and promoting the Plug-in Hybrid movement, to later make the vehicle more affordable as susbsequent models and editions follow.


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    Apr 28th, 2008 (12:55 pm)

    voltman #8:

    I think the original model of the Volt will maintain it’s pricing scheme. If they can reduce the costs substantially, they will introduce a “new” model with a different name and the lower price. Then by year four or five, the original Volt will be discontinued.

    Otherwise, you are right, there will be a REVOLT against the Volt!


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    Apr 28th, 2008 (12:59 pm)

    schmeltz #49:

    I can afford a $40K price. But if GM limits the sales to CA, FL, Wash, DC, and NY, it is still a problem to buy a Volt and be able to have it serviced!!!!

    So being able to buy once is only a part of the problem……..


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    Apr 28th, 2008 (1:00 pm)

    Tom M #42, and Jim I #48. You are both correct. However, let me give my personal point of view.

    I paid about $30,000 in taxes last year. That is a whole year’s salary for some people. I see congress as wasting just about all of the money I give them. That money would go better in my pocket. So if congress wants to give me some of my money back, then I’m for it.

    Now the conflicting thought I have. I would rather they pay the debt down completely, but I know they won’t. I would have rather they spend the 100′s of billiions of dollars in Iraq on finding a new energy plan, or curing serious diseases, etc. Congress is truly a waste of space and skin. But they are what we have for government. So, if they want to give me my money back, then I won’t argue with them. But they are idiots, and I know they will make the wrong decision, what that is.


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    Apr 28th, 2008 (1:11 pm)

    rashiid:

    My wife and I also paid over $30K in federal taxes, and as far as we are concerned, we might have well as flushed it down a sewer.

    Here is a thought for a fix: There should be a place on the 1040 form that allows you to choose were your taxes are spent. If you think it should go to social programs, put in how much gets allocated to that. Same for military, foreign aid, research and “debt reduction”. For a laugh, add a block for “pork barrel” and see how much goes there… :)

    And forcing the federal government to have a balanced budget EVERY year, would also do a lot to help things!

    I apologize for going off topic.


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    Apr 28th, 2008 (1:15 pm)

    # 53. Jim I. I agree. Then I would have myself to blame for wasting money, but could correct the following year.


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    Apr 28th, 2008 (1:18 pm)

    #46 BillR

    My “niche product” comment was in response to your “small cars don’t usually get big premiums” comment. I just wanted to point out that expensive, small cars are viable as a niche product. I wasn’t saying the Volt was originally meant to be a niche product. I suggested that it could eventually end up that way.

    The original Volt was conceived as an affordable car for the masses. But, sometimes, the concept doesn’t come to fruition. Perhaps the Volt won’t be comfortably under $30k. It could be $48k. We don’t know what it will be. But, GM seems to hedge closer to $40k. That is getting expensive.

    With all this talk about government fiscal responsibility, individuals need to practice fiscal responsibility too. We should save for retirement, rainy days, medical catastrophies, elder care, life insurance, kids college…

    Spending a large percentage of one’s income on an automobile may not be the wisest thing to do. As Statik mentioned in #13, a new car is ’supposed to be’ a quarter of your annual salary. To responsibly afford a $40k Volt, you’d need to make $160k annually. The average Joe isn’t anywhere near that amount. If the Volt’s price isn’t “affordable,” the Volt could very well morph into a niche product.


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    Apr 28th, 2008 (1:35 pm)

    So how much will these batteries cost? I don’t see the chevrolet volt costing $40k , and neither does Gm.


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    Apr 28th, 2008 (1:38 pm)

    The Price I see is $ 20k-$30K. That’s what I Think.


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    Apr 28th, 2008 (2:04 pm)

    I think a lot of folks here need to re-read the referenced article then start this conversation all over again.


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    Apr 28th, 2008 (2:13 pm)

    #50,

    It shouldn’t matter if the price cut is associated with a “new model”, the Volt will still depreciate in line with the new, less epensive model.

    e.g. If a 2010 Volt is $40,000 and by 2015 a 100 mile Re-Volt is 30,000, don’t expect to get $20,000 for your 5 year old 40 mile Volt with half the battery used. The buyer is going to compare what they can get new at that time, not what you paid 5 years ago.

    Early adopters are going to take a HUGE hit ($25,000-30,000 in 5 years?). But that is the price of being an early adopter and there are lots of people willing to pay it.


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    Apr 28th, 2008 (2:13 pm)

    Any talk about price always reminds me of Bob Lutz and the rest of the GM execs pitching the Volt to GM’s board of directors as something that will have to be sold at a loss of millions of dollars for a few years until they become profitable. With GM’s only other option being to NOT sell the Volt at all, and lose BILLIONS as buyers abandon Chevy completely.

    I fully intend to hold Bob Lutz’s feet to the fire on this. My expectation is that GM will have to sell the Volt at a loss for a few years until volume makes them profitable. Just like Toyota had to go through with the Prius, and Honda with the Hybrid Civic. This is not a new concept.

    Early Volt buyers should NOT shoulder the expense of catching GM up in a market that Toyota and Honda already have a decade-long head start in. That is a GM expense that should be budgeted at the top corporate level and come out of GM’s bottom line, not at a per-unit level on the sales lot.

    Any talk from Bob, or anyone else at GM whining about the price having to be really high in order for them to make a profit should be rejected outright. The answer should be something like this:

    “Yeah, So? You knew you would take a loss on Volts until you got volume up when the idea of the Volt was pitched in the first place. If you want to make a profit, increase the number of units. Get your profits that way, not by taking it out of my back pocket. By being an early buyer of a Volt, I’m already bailing your butt out of a decade of failure to keep up with Toyota and Honda.”


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    Apr 28th, 2008 (2:17 pm)

    1) GM started the price talk.
    2) GM is advertising the car three years out.
    3) Bob was all too happy to talk about LOWER prices.

    Now that the price is trending up and Bob’s handler is around everyone is supposed to stop asking about it.

    I get what GM is saying, but talk about trying to have your cake and eat it too.


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    Apr 28th, 2008 (2:37 pm)

    I think is obvious that management and the board of D will go round and round on the price over the next 2 years. And, like the democratic contest will go right down to the wire so speculation is futile.


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    Apr 28th, 2008 (2:44 pm)

    If the feds could provide a $3500 tax credit for the first 65,000 Priuses ($227,500,000), they can d**n sure do it for the Volt, and more. How much does gas really cost? When you factor in the externalized cost of the US military providing “security” for the world’s oil supply, it’s a heck of a lot more than $4/gallon.

    I have no doubt that dramatically lowering the demand for foreign oil would save back multiples of the cost of the tax credits. Never mind reducing air pollution, which also carries billions of dollars a year in “externalized” costs, and slowing the hollowing out of our manufacturing base of which ditto.

    I would a whole lot rather have my tax dollars spent subsidizing the Volt than in paying for the “endless war’. Anyone who cannot see that connection is living in a dream world.


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    Apr 28th, 2008 (3:05 pm)

    GXT #61

    Maybe, but try shifting gears to produce a vehicle like no other and on a time line that GM has set and go public with it’s progress. Not an easy circus balancing act and as anyone would guess, a few china plates are going to break in the process. It’s all part of taking chances and in the end hopefully we’ll all benefit.


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    Apr 28th, 2008 (3:20 pm)

    #60 Nixon.

    You are right. GM will have to sell this car at a loss for the first few years. At GM they know they are on the right path when Toyota is already trying to slander the idea because people currently buying their hybrids are looking for better fuel economy and/or polluting less. Obviously, the technology behind thevolt would the next big step up from the hybrids we have become used to.There has been talk that GM my use the E-Flex system soon after the launch for the Volt which would further the “green value” and cost savings people may be expecting to come from the volt. In the long run GM has the ability to over take other car companies, such as toyota, by moving forward with this technology and improving on it. So as far as price is concerned Im sure the volt will be around 30k for the first generation and as it becomes more redilly avaliable and popular it will go down by introducing new generations.By taking this loss,GM will leave other companies banking on their “awsome hybrid technology”, in the dust and helping GM to move forward. By pricing the car high they would be doing nothing more than stunting their ability to lead with innovations and emerge from their current financial mess. Also by pricing to high, GM would be letting other car companies improve on what they made and let their financial mess worsen. Overall, Im sure this new technology that we are all very excited to see hit the roads ASAP will be a little high for some people not looking for this type of car, but will not be out of the reach of these people either.


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    Apr 28th, 2008 (3:21 pm)

    Noel @ 63,

    Thank you…if Congress can afford to offer tax breaks to Japanese companies, then we can expect the same for American companies which ironically will get is the F**k out of the Middle East.

    And I know we’re paying for it in the end…but I’d rather fund the Volt with government dollars than pay for another day of Iraqi “infrastructure” projects. What a crock.


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    Apr 28th, 2008 (3:40 pm)

    Hmmm,
    GM have indicated e-flex and the Volt has the mission of changing the perception of GM as a sort of enviromental anti christ (LOL).
    However concerns about battery supplies may mean they price it as a green Chev Corvette. That four door sports saloon image sounds familiar.
    Those that can afford it will probably do quite well as it will have a high resale value.
    inmho


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    Apr 28th, 2008 (3:48 pm)

    I’m sure the volt will have a high resale value for at least 5 years. Look at the Prius now. I see used ones for sale all the time and they are usually around $24,000 for one a year or 2 old. When the prius first came out they were so hard to get used ones were selling for more. I’m sure GM will not be able to supply the market with enough the 1st or 2nd year.


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    Apr 28th, 2008 (3:54 pm)

    This is a little off the “Volt price” topic. But, it deserves mention…

    A lot of people seem to like Mr. Lutz personally because he is “unfiltered.” But, with me, unfiltered only goes so far. The village idiot can be unfiltered. Don’t get me wrong. I like unfiltered. But, I want “unfiltered”from compassionate and wise sages. Lutz’s joke, the one mentioning dying African children, seems boorish. How do you think jokes like that come across to the rest of the world? Lutz should stick to the facts and company position when addressing the media. Does GM really their representatives to joke about dying African children?

    Call me a bleeding heart if you will. But, if a foreign entity were equally insensitve to dying americans, do you think we would take it as lightly? You don’t make allies and create good will that way.

    Go GM! Go Volt! Go humanity!


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    Apr 28th, 2008 (4:14 pm)

    The problem is that if they don’t make enough to meet demand, it won’t matter if they price it below $30k since the dealers will mark up the price and make all the money. That’s even worse if GM decides to subsidize/take loss to get the price affordable. I bought one of the first Subaru WRX’s off the boats in 2001 and all the dealers in Silicon Valley were selling them for well over $5k over list (on a $24k car). One dealer was actually bragging to me that they were selling them over $10k over list and were going to start auctioning them off to the highest bidders for the next batch they got. I finally wound up buying it in L.A. for MSRP and had a nice drive back up here in it.
    I’d had to see that kind of gouging on the Volt (or worse, like Miata gouging was), but I know it’s going to happen. Perhaps that’s why GM is going to phase the rollout so that there’s enough supply to prevent gouging in those metro areas where they will go on sale, first.


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    Apr 28th, 2008 (4:16 pm)

    $ 30 K ? $ 35 K $40 K…..The car has to be priced right to get the volume… If the top managment at GM insist on a high retail price to “break even” or score a small profit. …. they will not sell many cars and will have wasted everyone’s time… It they are selling the Volt at ,…. say $ 30-35 K and are losing money for the first couple of years …. so be it… If the GM corporation is that poor, take the dollar loss per Volt out of all the upper end management’s salaries. I am sure that they could learn to live on a few ? dollars less per month out of their “million + ” Salaries… Lord knows they are paid way too much for doing little or nothing… All the real work comes from the front lines. Not management.


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    Apr 28th, 2008 (4:25 pm)

    #70 DaveP

    The Volt will be revolutionary. Why not revolutionize the sales aspect? My earlier “Volt lottery” suggestion would allow GM to sell Volts without the ugly frenzy that accompanies traditional high demand/low volume initial offerings. A lottery would allow for “buzz” without the ill will that price gouging spreads.


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    Apr 28th, 2008 (4:30 pm)

    Dave B #66 and Noel #63.

    Well said guys. There are certainly no idiots here. They are all
    in Congress. Why should our government give tax breaks for foreign car purchases is beyond me. They should be supporting American workers. But no one ever accused Congress of being intelligent.


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    Apr 28th, 2008 (4:47 pm)

    #69 ThomDbhomb:

    Great comment. Thank you for it.


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    Apr 28th, 2008 (4:56 pm)

    The cost of the Volt should be reduced by offering a 10 year battery warranty as an option. Build in the cost of a 5 year warranty, rather than a 10 year warranty. By the time 5 years is up, I will probably replace the battery with one that is lighter, cheaper, more powerful and more reliable. Providing a 10 year warranty on items such as the drive train makes sense, because these items are technologically mature. I don’t want to have to pay a few thousand dollars for a warranty I will most likely never use.


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    Apr 28th, 2008 (5:00 pm)

    #79 Dave P:

    Thanks for a good commentary on the “dealer markup” issue. I want a Volt, as witness all of my blabbing on this blog, but I don’t want it that bad. I find the “dealer markups” insulting. I will just wait if I have to.

    #72 ThomDbhomb:

    As I have said before, Rodger Penske is no fool. His organization devised the Smart on-line deposit program. As I understand it, the first year’s run of 30K units was sold before they ever delivered the first car.

    Of course they had to commit to a firm price and give up their ability to fiddle therewith, and the dealers’ ability to “markup”. Even so, selling out those culture changing cars is pretty impressive.

    Their initiatives to do ordering on-line, thereby minimizing dealer inventories, has the potential to revolutionize car retailing. But that’s another story.

    Maybe it’s too early to expect GM to do this with the Volt. Maybe the culture will never allow it. Maybe the Volt is more of a technological leap than the Smart, although the size of the Smart alone is a pretty big cultural challenge. Even so, it would be worth looking at. It might be a good way to make sure the initial launch goes really well from the standpoint of moving out the units.


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    Apr 28th, 2008 (5:03 pm)

    ME and Jim I, best buds, who would have thought it, lol.

    #63 Noel Park,

    “If the feds could provide a $3500 tax credit for the first 65,000 Priuses ($227,500,000), they can d**n sure do it for the Volt, and more”

    — I know this makes sense in a logical way, if it was good for them, it’s should be good for us. Problem is, we are doomed to fail by repeating mistakes of the past. We can’t continue moving forward on the same path because thats is what we always have done.

    Saying rebates really are net positive because of the savings of not going to war over oil (or paying through the nose for it), in essence does sort of makes sense on some level.

    If you really want to achieve independance from oil and the ‘tyranny of war’ all it takes is the president’s name on the bottom of a piece of paper that says all sedans must get 30MPG and your not allowed to drive a truck/SUV unless you can prove you need it…or you pony up a 20K ‘environment fee’ (so the rich don’t riot in the streets).

    Boom…crisis over. Oil is back to $50/barrel.


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    Apr 28th, 2008 (5:05 pm)

    2010! How about a nice Phoenix electric? Should be easily available in 2009. Same price. Why is GM always so pig-headed? Didn’t they have an electric car 25+ years ago? I bought a 2005 chevy van. It gets a whopping 11.5 miles per gallon HIGHWAY. My 15 year old toyota previa van got just over 20 mpg (and the seats moved too!). Why is GM’s modern technology worse than something from a previous generation or two? The US car manufacturers really need to get their act together before we all end up having to buy chinese or indian cars.


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    Apr 28th, 2008 (5:08 pm)

    Sorry about the hijack off the topic. Wait what is the topic again? That Bob Lutz said absolutely nothing when asked a question…and he continues to mesmorize (sp) his peers with ’50s style one liners.

    Title of this article should be, “Bob Lutz continues to convert oxygen to carbon dioxide.”


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    Apr 28th, 2008 (5:18 pm)

    Sorry Dave #70 – the typo monster strikes again!

    #77 Statik:

    Fine with me, but I’m not holding my breath.


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    Apr 28th, 2008 (5:18 pm)

    I’ve been saving for this car since spring 2007. I am hopeful that GM prices it low enough to allow most lower middle class households to afford it. Then it will truly become an icon and put GM in automotive history akin to Ford’s Model T in the 1920′s.

    I’ve also been reading everything I can about GM and the Volt since last summer. I feel so confident that Lutz and Company can and will change the driving paradigm that today I called and bought shares of GM stock directly rather than my mixed 403B’s and other retirement accounts (mutual funds). I have faith that they are creating a game changer and their fortunes will rise (and mine with them).


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    Apr 28th, 2008 (5:43 pm)

    Our local paper reported Saturday on the 2009 Toyota iQ:

    “This tiny Toyota might arrive in North America after a late-2008 launch in Europe, especially if fuel costs continue to spike. Although nearly as small as the Smart fortwo model, the iQ actually has more interior room than a Toyota Yaris hatchback and can seat three people in front plus a child in back. A version of Toyota’s gasoline/electric hybrid drive provides the kick.”


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    Apr 28th, 2008 (5:44 pm)

    The Canadian i-think is looking better at $25k. So what if it’s ugly. Buying one still might save our soldiers from dieing for oil.


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    Apr 28th, 2008 (5:48 pm)

    There is another form of Dealer price gouging besides selling above MSRP. It is offering less for trade-in’s than what a car is worth.

    I hope GM can do something about both forms of gouging!


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    Hous Volt Pharteen

     

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    Apr 28th, 2008 (6:36 pm)

    Number 11, you hit the nail in the head…I for one had prohibited myself to speculate about the price of the Volt. I want a Volt and in fact, it will be my next car, to get to that want of mine I have been making a few sacrifices and I have been saving since 2007 when I became aware of the Volt. How dare can we tell GM how much we want to pay for the car. In the end, GM is a company just like Toyota, Honda Nissan, Ford, BMW and on and all they want is to make a car that we all want to buy, want, need, wish desire. I think GM has been super open in the development of this car and just because they let us know what is going on with the development of the car is not to us to determine the price of the car when this is something we have never seen before, we had heard about the technology the Volt will have, but never operable, so let stop bitching on how much we are willing to pay for the car, and hope it comes in a price that is within my/your range. Do not think of the Volt as just another mean to transport you from point A to point B, but also as a mean of protecting the environment while you go from point to point. As a payback to those sand countries in the Mid-east, and big oil companies, and for the Exxon Valdez off the coast of Alaska. A car that you want to spend your cash-money because you know that it worth it, the fact that many of us will rarely will have to stop to buy gasoline at a gas station. That mean something to me. So, that the Volt will cost, what 30k, 35k, 40k or perhaps, 45k. Still, I am willing to make more sacrifices to get that car, because not having to stop by Exxon Mobile for gas or any other gas stations in a regular basis that is priceless.


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    Apr 28th, 2008 (6:56 pm)

    GEE WIZZ… give them a break on the price.. they don’t know… it’s years away!!! Did Toyota say what a Prius would cost 2 years before it came out?


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    Apr 28th, 2008 (7:04 pm)

    #43
    I am with you for a few reasons:
    1) The batteries have been built, do you think A123 does not know what to charge? This has been their business for a while.
    2) At my design reviews a COA of the BOM is nearly the first thing completed, and the buyer has the task of making it better.
    3) I can buy a 2KWh Motorcycle Lithium Ion Battery for $3,000 today, scaling up to 16KWh is a very approximately $24,000 – Ouch. Goodbye $30,000 target

    The Chinese will sell you one for $10K, look at this:
    http://www.edn.com/blog/1470000147/post/1030008103.html

    I consider these prices the high and low estimates. Any more input to the guess-timation machine? What I did notice is that Mr. Lutz did not deny the Price, only that HE did not say $48K. How does the reporter reply???


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    Terry

     

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    Apr 28th, 2008 (7:06 pm)

    Why does everyone keep comparing Toyota hybrids to the Volt? What’s the best mileage a Prius owner can expect? 50 MPG? 55 MPG? OK, some gearheads can tweak the Prius mileage up to 100 MPG, but the Volt is different.

    If your trips stay under 40 miles, you never use a drop of gasoline – EVER! No hybrid can make this claim. This is the future of private transportation – less than 40 miles, use no gas at all. If you want to go farther, with a little gas, you can. It’s your choice.

    I just hope GM doesn’t shoot itself in the foot by overpricing the Volt. They probably don’t want to be the corporation that killed the electric car – again! (remember the EV1?) This can be the beginning of a new future for GM. With advances in energy storage, even big electric SUV’s and trucks are possible – diesel locomotives use this technology every day. New CAFE standards? With Volts rated over a million MPG on electric power? Bring them on!


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    Apr 28th, 2008 (7:50 pm)

    I hate to be a drag, but I watched the interview with Mr. Lutz done at the New York show. It was linked to on one the threads here and it sure sounded like he said a selling price based on the costs they were looking at would be more like $48,000. I think he’s been following the presidential campaigning too closely. Either way, I didn’t take as being very meaningful, just posturing.

    Everyone is right. There is no good reason to release a price until you are actually ready to sell something. Their is only downside for the seller. This is why I think Lyle asked the wrong question. I think the best question to ask is: “When do you anticipate accepting deposits for the Volt?” As soon as the announce a deposit program we will know the price (at least the price for those willing to make a deposit). Unfortunately they may not feel deposits are needed, although they did smile genuinely at Voltnation when the subject came up.

    Here, Here for Lyle being given a Volt. Add campaigns cost millions and he’s done more for the Volt than most adds will do.


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    Apr 28th, 2008 (8:04 pm)

    Grants should also be available from your local power utility to encourage PHEVs. After all, the overnight charging of the first 50 million or so PHEVs across the US would represent increased revenue for the power utilities with no investment in infrastructure, i.e., a windfall. In fact, when millions of PHEVs are connected to the power grid, there is an opportunity for the power companies to save money by lessening or dispensing with spinning reserves, generators up and running and ready to go on-line to stabilize the grid in case of a large power failure.

    In addition, the production of meaningful amounts of PHEVs will improve the pricing and performance of power electronics and batteries. These improvements would be transferable to solar energy and wind power systems


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    Apr 28th, 2008 (8:20 pm)

    FYI for those that can not wait for the VOLT….A123 is already offering PHEV conversion package for the Prius. Since A123 is one of the two batterires suppliers for the VOLT, it should be real product.

    And a price has been released…$10K…with a used Prius (2004 or newer) that is under $30K. It comes with a 3 year warranty.

    http://www.a123systems.com/hymotion/products/N5_range_extender

    Quotes from website:
    Consumer delivery and installations are expected to begin in July 2008

    Our Hymotion modules have been designed and tested to meet all relevant Federal safety and emissions standards, including NHTSA and FMVSS vehicle safety standards. We have fully crash tested our modules to ensure safety, going beyond the testing requirements for aftermarket products.


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    butters

     

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    Apr 28th, 2008 (8:32 pm)

    $30K is too much, let alone the rumors of substantially higher prices. Last week I presented a microeconomic life-cycle cost comparison with a Prius HEV. This time I’ll take a macroeconomic perspective:

    I’m 25, an energy modeler for a firm that designs super-efficient buildings, earning less than $80K/yr in the San Francisco area. A reasonable budget for a new car on this salary is $20-25K. In order to afford a Chevy Volt at $30K, I’d need to be making six figures.

    I grew up in an “upper-middle-class” household, have an engineering degree from Carnegie Mellon University, and I can’t afford GM’s so-called “car of the people” at this stage in my life, let alone once I have kids (the cost of raising kids is another thoroughly depressing concept).

    I believe that my parent’s generation, the Baby Boomers, has set a standard of living that their children won’t be able to match. We simply won’t have the purchasing power that our parents have had, but we’ll naturally yearn for the comforts and luxuries of our childhoods.

    There’s a generational component to America’s domestic economy, and ironically, it’s the American producers who are the worst positioned to respond to the gap between what the boomers can afford and what their grown children can afford.

    In terms of purchasing power, younger Americans are more like Europeans, and our taste for small, cheap, efficient transportation is a reflection of where we see ourselves economically, both today and in the medium-term. Hint: things don’t look so good from down here.

    Bottom-line: $30K is too rich for my 20-something, white-collar American blood, regardless of (or perhaps partly because of) my strong commitment to a clean, efficient, sustainable future. However, the amount of GHG emissions I save through my work dwarfs what I would save personally by driving a Volt.

    I also want to speak to the economic policy issues raised here… It’s undeniable that our government wastes our tax dollars in ways that range from questionable to borderline treasonous. However, I believe that the government has a mandate to invest public funds in shared prosperity and shared infrastructure, without which the great success of private enterprise would not be possible.

    Ultimately, placing progressive constraints on the concentration of wealth is in the best interest of even the wealthiest capitalists, whose fortunes depend on sustainable consumer demand. Furthermore, the continued competitiveness of American corporations depends on investments in public infrastructure such as education, healthcare, transportation, communications, and energy.

    However, I’m generally skeptical of using public funds to subsidize private enterprise, including incentives for EV sales and grants for proprietary battery research. Anything funded by the public must become public property. The only way it makes sense to publicly fund EVs is for a public rental service. The only way is makes sense to publicly fund battery research is if all documents and patents are freely licensed to all American individuals and businesses.


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    Apr 28th, 2008 (8:59 pm)

    In around about way off topic but…
    Price gouging by anyone in the production chain is possible due to scarcity and GM has assured scarcity by indicating the first run will be 10,000.
    Yet I cannot see how a limited run helps the quality of the Volt.
    The mules are now clocking up hours and hope to do enough to predict the 10 year behavior.
    How does a years manufacturing and distribution improve that knowledge significantly?
    If there are recalls the quantity will be small.
    OK, but the industry handles very large recalls successfully when they have to.
    I saw somewhere that CPI can build 100,000 of these batteries a year and they probably can, they are part of LG I believe. They also have the financial muscle to back their product.
    A123 is a bit more problematic but I saw reference to a development contract so maybe whey will come on stream later.

    GM, please consider taking one of your modest lines, like Hamtrammck, and start down the road, perhaps just a thousand a week.
    That should stabilise the price for everybody, including the suppliers.


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    Apr 28th, 2008 (9:41 pm)

    Bruce g #95

    A limited run will not necessarily help the quality, but it will limit liability, and the amount of warranty repairs. There are going to be few dealerships qualified to work on the Volt as none of its systems and fewer of its parts are from the general GM bin. Moreover, fewer cars out means less unfavorable press, something anyone with a product like this would like to avoid.

    I think you’re right about LG’s production capability, they are a huge company. However, I sure hope that if they produce the batts it’s with A123′s cells. I don’t doubt that currently both packs are performing up to spec, but it’s near impossible to torture test for time, even in simulated mode. This is why if I were warranting the product or just expected it to perform for 10 years, I’d want the best chemistry and in my book that’s A123.


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    crows

     

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    Apr 28th, 2008 (10:01 pm)

    I have a stong feeling that when the Volt comes out in 2010 it will have a list price of about $70,000 dollars….

    GM isn’t going to lose money on this car because they are already going broke because no one is buying their SUV’s or big trucks due to the high price of gasoline…

    Lutz seems to me like the smiling politician who just can’t tell it to ya straight…I don’t know what it is but something happens to the minds of these corporate executives when they get those multi-million dollar salaries…

    They should take those 3500 workers they are laying off and put them to work building the Volt before gasoline hits 6.00 dollars a gallon…


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    JBFALASKA

     

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    Apr 28th, 2008 (10:52 pm)

    Well, let reality set in. This company is here to make a profit and following Toyota’s lead, they did eat the initial production roll out counting on future sales. Let’s hope GM realizes the future in this car.

    Now, how can all of us here in the Volt Cult help? Preorder to guarantee production numbers is a way. GM, the Volt community is standing by. I’ve personally said before, I have $10,000 ready to deposit for my make and model. I don’t intend buying at $48,000, but I suspect the cost will be lower; closer to the $35,000 tag I will gamble at predicting. Price this car to sell this car in volume or fold up the tent and let Toyota’s plug-in again still the American market.

    CHEVY VOLT: American-made, American FUELED.


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    Apr 28th, 2008 (11:23 pm)

    Just build it, I’ll buy it.


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    Apr 28th, 2008 (11:37 pm)

    Hi all,
    I REALLY like the idea someone posited about having a lottery for potential buyers of the first run Volts. The lower the sticker price is, the more people would want to “join” the lottery. I’m not sure what the laws are, but even if they allowed for a refundable deposit of several hundred dollars “out of pocket” to enter the lottery (to show good faith), the advertizing value would be HEEEYOOOOGE! Want to own a Volt? You COULD be one of the LUCKY ONES…. (literally). It’d avoid all the class envy of “only the RICH can get one”, and still move every Volt out of the factory and into someone’s garage (with great fanfare in their local dealership).
    These are great times….
    God Bless


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    Apr 28th, 2008 (11:42 pm)

    My 2 cents.

    GM has to build cars. We as a nation can not afford to have GM fail. I think they build better cars than Toyota & Honda. 10,000 Volts seems like a low number. They sold 100,000 HHR’s last year. I am hoping that GM will build enough Volts that I will be able to afford one. Also I hope that they will use my GM card rebate dollars as a down payment. Yah the government should kick in a rebate to get it started. GMAC would be smart to offer a 0% loan until the tax rebate check comes in.

    My view is they have to build lots of Volt’s. Hopefully they can juggle the numbers so that I, and lots of others could afford it. Then the price of gas would come down for everybody else.

    Red HHR


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    Apr 29th, 2008 (12:05 am)

    The price of gas aint’ comin’ down. Sorry, but this is the world we live in and how it’s fostered in developing nations.

    It’s time we start to think about the grid and look beyond gasoline. There was some hope in 1996, but the times just weren’t right. They are now and there will be no turning back. Trust me on this one.


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    Apr 29th, 2008 (12:26 am)

    I agree that it is totally normal for GM to wait to unveil the msrp right before the launch but…….

    For them to say in the mid 30′s or 40′s isn’t asking to much. I mean damn that gives them like 7500 in wiggle room, they have to have some idea. Right?

    Or maybe they have a pretty good feeling that when these cars are finally available people will be willing to pay just about anything if fuel prices keep going the way there going, and they’ll price them then based on demand.

    From GM’s side if there going to only build 25K of these the 1st year, i’m pretty sure in a country of 300 million people they could sell them for 75k and sell them out! Look at the Tesla roadster!


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    Apr 29th, 2008 (12:28 am)

    Additional Note:

    Actually they have said things like around 35, or under 30, or closer to 40 than 30.

    If they could just give us one and stick with it.


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    Speedy

     

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    Apr 29th, 2008 (1:26 am)

    These Chevrolet Volt Price will be price right. $20k-$30k


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    Apr 29th, 2008 (1:31 am)

    #74 ThombDbhomb:

    Yeah, maybe a lottery can be made to work, I dunno. That sort of implies doing an end run around the dealers, though, otherwise you’ll show up at the dealer with your winning lottery number and they’ll say, “great! Extra $5k for us, please!” I don’t have a very high opinion of the dealers around here, that’s for sure. I hope GM figures out some way to control them or go around them or something. Have they ever been successful with that in the past, though? I don’t have a warm fuzzy feeling about that.

    Come to think of it, dealers have another way to get more money and that is to simply not stock base or reasonably upgraded model cars and load them up with all the weirdest (expensive) options you can imagine. I hope they have some way to address that problem as well.


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    Apr 29th, 2008 (1:51 am)

    GM is going to have two forums of the Volt first off, E-Flex Drive System with- these- ICE and these Generator, and these E-Flex Drive System Pure Electric (No, ICE or Generator).


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    Apr 29th, 2008 (3:38 am)

    3 German banks discovered that with Project better place – even in America it would be Cheaper to run FULLY Electric cars than ICE ones.

    http://solveclimate.com/blog/20080409/deutsche-bank-electric-cars-could-wipe-gas-cars-map

    Looks like the USA will have to sell all the second hand v8 SUV’s to Russia as some Detroit dealers are doing 10 a month !
    Failing that Russian play equipment might be apt.

    Bring on the Volt, need it sooner than latter – even in Australia


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    Ted in Fort Myers

     

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    Apr 29th, 2008 (5:27 am)

    If the government can give $100,000.00 rebates on Hummer they can surely help a working man save gas buy providing rebates on BEV and E-REV. I would not feel bad if we never imported another drop of oil. The savings to America will come in the long run. TED


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    Apr 29th, 2008 (8:22 am)

    Regarding my comment #71

    …in a moment of inspiration it occurred to me how Lutz’s joke could be improved. Instead of dying African children, he should substitute “automobile-related death or injury.” At least that would impart corporate self-deprecation and/or irony. It would go like this

    Lutz: It’s like this joke about a man at a conference who goes like this (demonstrates a steady clap) Then he says every time I clap my hands, someone gets injured or dies from an auto-related incident. Some guy in the audience shouts “Then why don’t you bleedin’ stop clapping ya heartless bastard!’ (laughter)


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    Apr 29th, 2008 (8:51 am)

    So just to be clear on this:

    Mr. Lutz says tells Lyle to stop asking how much the Volt will cost, because now they “don’t know”.

    But they knew enough to say several times over the last year what it would cost.

    And with no new information, we now have 111 posts in this thread.

    Is that about it?

    :)


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    Apr 29th, 2008 (9:24 am)

    :| of the upcoming brand new models (gaz or EV), how many gave the price before the car actually hit the market/car show.

    Most of the post trying to guesstimate the price don’t make any sence.

    All we know is the Volt is not in the Cadillac or Buick brand and as they said over and over again, it’s in the Chevy brand because they target Chevy buyer, that should give you a pretty good idea of the price range.

    They also created 2 other concept that got great review (Saturn/Opel and Cadillac) also showing more EV using the same plateform will be made. Also make sence, why build a plant for only 1 car when you could make more then 1 model.

    Because of that, they can’t price it to high or they would get in the Buick/Cadillac target buyer and they can’t price it too low as they will most probably roll a compact car EV.

    That being said, I think a simple poll where people can guesstimate the final price of the Volt would be welcome. Me, I still beleive it will range from 30K$ to 45K$, it will be price as a high end car for Chevy.


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    Apr 29th, 2008 (11:07 am)

    #92 NorthernPiker:

    Thanks for your very educational comments about PHEVs and their potential positive impact on the utility companies’ profits and the reliability of the power grid. Very good indeed.


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    MeMyselfAndI

     

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    Apr 29th, 2008 (1:09 pm)

    For those saying that they will throw a fit just like early adopting iphone owners :

    Please grow up. If you can’t afford to lose that much “value” when you buy your first XYZ product…then don’t buy XYZ!…. that goes DOUBLE for a car which devalues the second you sign the paperwork to make it yours!!!

    Cars are not financial investments…unless that car is going to save you a boatload of money in terms of gas as compared to your current vehicle… even then that isn’t a true financial investment, but moving money from your left pocket into your right pocket with the added benefit of not being as dependent on oil and not being as affected by fluctuations in gas prices.

    It *is* that simple. You have warning from GM saying that they are targeting the 30k price mark, but the first ones won’t come off the line at that price. That means there will be a price drop over some period of time. However you have to decide whether you want to wait and get one of the cheaper ones that are possibly more advanced and few bugs or if you want to be an early adopter and support GM right up front.

    Show some patience as a consumer or suck it up with understanding that if you do buy early, you will pay more. Period.

    Face it: Electronics usually get cheaper to produce at a faster pace than more physical components. The Volt is an electric vehicle… with a lot of electronics (battery, computer, circuit boards, etc)…. many of those parts will become cheaper to produce as the technology gets better or more powerful for the same price.


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    N Riley

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    Apr 29th, 2008 (2:20 pm)

    IMHO

    At $25,000 price I buy a Volt
    At $30,000 price I buy a Volt
    At $35,000 price I try to buy a Volt
    At $40,000 price I buy a Prius or something else


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    Rockyroad

     

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    Apr 29th, 2008 (3:27 pm)

    With all this whing by GM about the cost of the Lithium_ion battery costs … Take a look at the list of Lithium-ion battery manufacturers world wide.. there will be more than souces enough to supply the batteries and probably at a lower cost … who do you think will be supplying to Toyota, Honda and Nissan…

    http://www.globalsources.com/gsol/I/Lithium-ion-manufacturers/b/2000000003844/3000000181565/22761.htm


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    Rum Doodle

     

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    Apr 29th, 2008 (4:31 pm)

    Estero No. 86 “There is another form of Dealer price gouging besides selling above MSRP. It is offering less for trade-in’s than what a car is worth. I hope GM can do something about both forms of gouging!”

    Let’s hope that GM doesn’t sell the Volt through dealers, but instead sells it through the Internet (at the MSRP) the same way one would buy an iMac.


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    Kevin R

     

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    Apr 29th, 2008 (4:52 pm)

    #115 N Riley

    I’m right where you are with regards to the price points and my ability to purchase the Volt.

    I might take the plunge at $40k but the car would have to have every luxury option available stuffed into it as do the Lexus et. al vehicles have just to make it palatable at that price point.

    Again, if we want this car to be a game changer and begin moving massive numbers of people into GM showrooms and off of gasoline it must be modestly priced. Here’s a look at what the average person would face in financing this vehicle.

    Lets be generous and assume that our purchaser is able to put down $5,000 (I intend to do much more) towards financing.

    Going longer than a 48 month loan period is simply not advisable per most financial planners. Interest rate at 6%.

    Insurance: For most people with clean driving records and in the 30-60 age bracket, you’re looking at anywhere from $80-160 per month in insurance costs. (This is just a range for say a Bonneville or Grand Prix or similarly sized and equipped car, we don’t even know what the insurance industry will do with regards to pricing insurance on the Volt.

    $30,000 = $587.13
    $35,000 = $704.55
    $40,000 = $821.98
    $45,000 = $939.40

    As you can see, the montly payment escalates rapidly above the $30K price point. Add to that the insurance payment, stagnant wages, soaring food prices and household items and you can see how difficult it would be for the ‘average’ person to be able to purchase the Volt if it is priced above $30,000.

    I’m saving like crazy as I’m buying one but I truly hope GM is able to sell it at a lower price and reap customers and good will in the process.

    Go Volt Team!


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    Matt H

     

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    Apr 29th, 2008 (4:55 pm)

    The notion of a new car being 1/4 of you gross annual income does not pass the smell test; the average car is probably $25K, but the average income is not $100K.

    Nixon [#62] thinks that the Volt is catching up with the likes of the Prius, but the Prius uses a battery as a energy buffer for an gas engine, whereas the Volt a gas engine an energy buffer for a much larger main battery. Although both attempt to operate that gas engine in it’s most optimum range, the engine is only an auxiliary source of power in the Volt, which if you live less than 20 miles from work, you may never need any gas for commuting to work (provided you don’t forget to plug in your Volt upon arriving at home).


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    Matt H

     

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    Apr 29th, 2008 (5:01 pm)

    Kevin [#115] Surely you don’t think luxury vehicles cost $40K?!? The Lexus LS600H (a vehicle with a much larger version of the Hydrid Energy Drive system found in the Prius) costs $100K. You would do better comparing the Volt to a Prius or Camry Hybrid from Toyota which cost in the $20K to $30K range….


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    Kevin R

     

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    Apr 29th, 2008 (5:03 pm)

    #119 Matt H

    Pardon my ignorance.


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    ThombDbhomb

     

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    Apr 29th, 2008 (5:59 pm)

    #118 Matt H

    What does the average car price have to do with what one can responsibly afford? I know, I know, people want to keep up appearances by buying something that gives them status. But, the original point (see #14 Statik) was based on traditional personal budget advice. If your household brings in $50k annually, then prudence dictates that you only spend $12.5k +/- on a car.

    You don’t have to buy a new car. But, you might want a new car so much that you forgo other things to make it happen. That is a personal choice. If you can’t afford a $25K car, don’t buy it.

    This gets back to the “affordable” price for a Volt. I believe Statik was using personal budget advice to define affordable. Not what the auto industry thinks is affordable. The auto industry wants your money and has done a good job of convincing people to shell out a large percentage of their income to purchase their product.


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    noel park

     

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    Apr 29th, 2008 (6:02 pm)

    #115 N Riley:

    Sounds about right to me.

    #116 Rum Doodle:

    Or a Smart.


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    Nixon

     

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    Apr 29th, 2008 (7:16 pm)

    #119 Matt H – Your point is well taken about the technological superiority of the Volt over a hybrid.

    I should have used the phrase “leap frog” when it comes to the actual technology instead of “catching up”. Right now GM currently doesn’t have anything to offer that matches what Toyota and Honda have been selling for nearly a decade. So in that sense GM needs to “catch up” in the race. But you are right that Volt technology actually leap-frogs the current hybrids that Toyota and Honda are currently selling.

    But the key word here is “currently”. And GM has nothing currently on their lots to compete with their current competition. Since GM hasn’t had any models to compete for almost a decade, that’s why I said GM needs to catch up. Or in the case of the Volt, leap frog their competition in order to keep from hemorrhaging their number of unit sales to their competition and losing billions of dollars in potential sales.

    On your other point, the average price of new cars has outgrown US incomes for the last 3 decades. New car sales have been surviving on increased consumer debit levels that are no more sustainable than they are for the current housing market. The concept of what is affordable has been replaced. More and more often the question people ask themselves at dealerships isn’t how much they can afford, but how much upside down debt from their trade-in can they plow into the next new car purchase before the whole pyramid scheme will collapse.

    Afford-ability is going to have to be re-established in the new car market for exactly the reason you stated. The average income DOESN’T support the average price of new cars — or even used cars for those who don’t buy new. For the past few decades the gap between the rapid growth in car prices and the slow growth of incomes has been almost entirely paid though increasing levels of consumer debt. This isn’t working.

    According to the US gov’t, the 2006 median income was just $48,201, and the median family owns 2 cars. 2 cars at 25K is more than 100% of median family income. Even 2 used cars at 12.5k each is a serious stretch for the median family, and used car prices are very closely tied to new car prices. The math the way it has been working for the last 3 decades just isn’t sustainable.


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    Kevin R

     

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    Apr 29th, 2008 (7:41 pm)

    #124 Nixon…..

    You’re so right and this is so problematic for sustaining American industry. You can’t have continuing sales growth if people can’t afford to consume. Look at many European countries today. They are in sustain mode where growth is small and incremental but not by huge percentages. As you stated, it’s not sustainable especially when corporations want to pay little to its workers.

    Henry Ford had it right in the 1920′s. He raised workers wages to an astounding $5 a day. It angered other corporations but he knew that doing so would help keep a trained workforce and give workers spendable income that could be used to buy his cars and other consumer goods. The era of the 1920′s was the era of turning a citizen into a consumer and the introduction of consumer credit too.


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    ghost

     

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    Apr 29th, 2008 (11:09 pm)

    #94 Butters

    Well said butters. I think you have a firm grasp on things.

    I have two points to make..

    1.) Over 30k = over 40k here in Canada. Even though our dollar matches yours – the big companies mark up cars HUGE in Canada. Part of the reason? Because we USED to pay premium for autos. Now that this fact is well knows, prices have started to drop.
    40k is too much. I will buy the volt at 30k CANADIAN max. Which is 30 k American by the way.

    2.) Why does the Volt only get 40miles range when the EV-1 got 100miles?


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    nasaman

     

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    Apr 29th, 2008 (11:52 pm)

    126 Ghost…..

    You ask, “Why does the Volt only get 40miles range when the EV-1 got 100miles?”

    The Volt’s design tradeoffs are made to make it attractive to about 4/5ths of the US market. A larger battery would add FAR too much to the car’s cost for that targeted market. Or to put it another way, the range-extension ICE/Gen is MUCH less expensive than increasing the battery size enough to also meet the needs of the last 1/5th of the market would be.

    In other words, the Volt’s tradeoffs between battery size/cost & ICE/Gen cost are very nearly IDEAL for the North American market!


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    Gogreennow

     

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    Apr 30th, 2008 (7:18 am)

    $30k? Are you kidding me?
    A seasoned investor said of GM in the 1960s,
    “Can’t make it better, can’t make it cheaper.”
    The car needs better performance, lower price.


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    N Riley

     

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    Apr 30th, 2008 (10:16 am)

    The simple fact is that the majority of consumers will find a way to pay for what they want. They will use a combination of down payments and long finance terms with interest rates to purchase cars. Dealers are now offering 75 months for new car purchases. 75 months!

    I want a Volt and I would buy one today if it was available. The thing is that many other options are going to ba available this fall and during 2009 that will impact the Volt market. We all know that Toyota is going to offer an improved Prius. Honda is supposed to come out with a new hybrid to replace the Civic Hybrid, plus offer a diesel engine for the Accord that is supposed to ge 50+ MPG.

    Plus, the other new EV cars being introduced. GM is goin to have plenty of competition. As we all know – competition is good for all, both producer and consumer.

    I bet that we all will be studying these new options very closely. Many of us will be swayed to purchase one of the competitions vehicles. And there is nothing wrong with that. I have said myself that I will very likely purchase a new Honda or Prius this fall or early next year. But in 2011 or 2012 when the Volt gets to a dealer close to me, I will pass on to my wife the Honda or Prius and go shopping for a new Volt.

    We all have many interesting years ahead of us. I just wish the Volt could come out next spring at the latest.

    Good luck to you all.


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    noel park

     

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    Apr 30th, 2008 (11:08 am)

    #129 N Riley:

    Thanks. We’re gonna need it!


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    N Riley

     

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    Apr 30th, 2008 (11:39 am)

    # 130 Noel

    I seem to following you on the different subjects today. I have been very interested in your comments on the GM Volt. You have been very helpful as have many of the others Thank you one and all for the comments.


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    Jason The Saj

     

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    Apr 30th, 2008 (3:27 pm)

    The Prius while a semi-affordable vehicle today was at a premium when it first came out.

    And also remember what is commonly referred to in the U.S. as the classic Prius (ie: like my 2002 model) was in fact a 2nd generation Prius. With the first generation only being in Japan.


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    Nixon

     

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    May 1st, 2008 (1:12 am)

    One could argue that the Prius is in fact a 2nd generation EV1…


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    Jason D

     

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    May 2nd, 2008 (7:54 am)

    Have they talked to energizer? Seriously..Who wouldn’t want a energizer in their volt..I know i would..


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    Dan Frederiksen

     

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    May 3rd, 2008 (2:26 pm)

    assuming their effort to build the car is honest, it’s very very simple. make A123 an offer they can’t refuse. simply tell the greedy bastards, we’ve done the math on iron phosphate battery cost and it’s this little. this is the price we will pay you and we will need a lot of them. if you don’t want that deal we will make them ourselves.

    tell GM to do that Lyle. making iron phosphate batteries is both cheap and easy. that’s the real know how they need because it’s dirt cheap to make those batteries and it’s the only thing holding them back.
    if they are honest


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    Zach H

     

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    May 14th, 2008 (3:49 pm)

    Well, i hope they keep it around the $30,000 mark. I think a lot of younger people would buy it. It is a very sporty car and i think some older people will to. We will not know till 2010.


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    Tina

     

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    Jun 19th, 2008 (7:39 pm)

    Just a question… if you would sale MORE Volts with a lower price…. then WHY sale LESS Volts at a higher price?????

    Just confused of the logic… Thee idea is to get more people to drive electric or alternative fuel cars!!!! IMMEDIATELY if not sooner!!!

    We are very much in trouble with what we’ve done to the atmosphere!

    Hope that you figure it out soon! I would like to buy one (ps… I am 44 years of age), but won’t if price is so high that we can not afford one… we’ll have to check with other electric vehicles…
    Best of luck (really want a volt :)
    Have a great evening…)

    Don’t forget to recycle!


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    Andrew Kelsey

     

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    Jul 29th, 2008 (9:55 am)

    In the UK we pay around $13 for a gallon of gas. When are GM going to bring this technology to Europe? The market would be huge here, even at a premium price.


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    joe

     

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    Oct 7th, 2008 (7:05 pm)

    It makes a lot of sense that not one of us will know the price for the Volt, until it is finally available for sale. It is also apparant from GM’s comments that they know the costs for everything, except the battery. So, it is logical to assume the price and supplier of the battery for the Volt is still being haggled over. A123 Systems ‘may’ have the better battery, but they might also be asking too much, hence the latest info, where it is down to two suppliers for the battery, and no one company has won the entire contract.


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    joe

     

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    Oct 8th, 2008 (5:42 pm)

    Hopefully…………A123 Systems realizes that a ‘fair’ profit, is still better than, no profit at all, from the worlds largest auto maker.

    I hope they get the contract, and yet invest wisely to increase their efficiencies of production, so they always remain competetive.


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    David

     

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    Oct 10th, 2008 (5:36 pm)

    Simple economics dictate that the Volt should be much less than $40K for the average middle class citizen. A lower price will also be much more enticing for people to buy it which will help GM to sell large numbers of the vehicle and be profitable. It is very easy to find a one or two year old used vehicle in the $20K price range that gets 30 MPG Hwy. If you take the $20K savings and purchase gas at $5.00 a gallon you will travel approximately 80 to 120,000 miles, dependent of if highway or city miles, before you even break even. I think after 100,000 miles most of us are ready for a newer vehicle with newer technology. The economic break even point to entice middle class citizens to buy this vehicle has to come much quicker to deem it affordable.


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    Garza

     

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    Dec 10th, 2008 (12:04 pm)

    I am a student who need to find out how much will be the Chevy Volt, for a report I am doing on it.


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    Nathan

     

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    Feb 2nd, 2009 (12:30 am)

    “I’d rather it come out in 2010, and if it costs closer to 40 than 30, well, that’s too bad.”

    ^^ What kinda stupid statement is this? This is the reason I am not going to buy another Chevrolet. There not making what anyone wants. Look at the Volt, it doesn’t look anything like the concept.. All I can say, “If they go out of business, well, that’s too bad.”


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    joe bob

     

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    Feb 9th, 2009 (11:04 pm)

    I have to say, if it stays at 30,000, ill be buying one. thats pretty cheap. i mean hey, its a sick looking, fuel efficient, electric plug-in car. that’s a pretty sweet deal. Chevy just needs to do what ever they can do keep it in the $30,000 ballpark


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    alex K.

     

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    Feb 9th, 2009 (11:07 pm)

    i agree with “joe bob”. a car like the volt, for a price around $30,000? think about it. i just wish they could get it strait with the batteries.


  146. 146
    Divest

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    Aug 11th, 2009 (12:18 pm)

    Do you not know the merit of playing around with possibilities? There’s a sneaking suspicion that he got this quote from somewhere, not just out of his ass. He’s playing with numbers and possibilities here, stop trying to be a condescending prick and realize that this is a discussion, not a scientific forum.


  147. 147
    Jason Housour

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    Aug 12th, 2009 (12:38 am)

    I just wanna say that i think this new car will help the economy out very much but what I don’t get is that they have had a car sitting in a lab done that the whole car only runs on water. What i am saying is that if they are trying to save on fuel why not make copies of the “water car” and start selling that. I just don’t get the US Government’s thinking anymore.


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    Kathy

     

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    Aug 12th, 2009 (10:36 am)

    I believe ALL cars need a makeover! GM is Finally on it’s way with new Volt. What I don’t get, how can ANY car company keep over pricing these new cars..especially when they are pricing the general public right out of one. Why don’t they go sell them for around $20,000 and sell a whole lot more! In the long run, I think that “long run” = more selling and more profits for GM. I cannot afford a $40,000 new car and I’m not the only one.
    Why over price and keep on getting people who end up NOT paying! Times are bad and people can’t pay for what they’ve already got. But the ones who can buy, need a better deal than $30-$40,000. Thats why GM got into the finacial shape it is in now and retirees’s spouses are losing some of the health benefits or are being charged more for their prescription drug coverage.
    C’mom GM…and ALL car companies..man up and do what’s right and affordable and people will buy what your selling!
    And, why should all these ‘green’ cars be soooo expensive.. I know things costs BUT shouldn’t the Government (epa) include enough incentives to help cover most of the cost to build these cars? Shouldn’t that be included in the bail-out money?


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    daniel

     

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    Aug 14th, 2009 (6:09 pm)

    If your commute is 40 miles or under, you are not spending any money on gas. you might spend a max of 2.50 to charge your battery every night. at that rate i dont think too many people will be worried that there car will depreciate by 10K the next year. after 5 yrs or so of the volt, you will have saved so much money you can get that 30K car that will now be 15K and not loose an hr of sleep over it.


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    Jonathan

     

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    Aug 19th, 2009 (12:33 am)

    might as well stay with the best option, Prius, then. I can’t see any reason to justify 20K extra for a car to use electricity, and have GMs “great” reliability….yay for Toyota!


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    DRE

     

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    Mar 16th, 2010 (8:10 pm)

    A step in the right direction.but some other company will definetly beat out this car shortly after launch im waiting to see how this is going to pan out. I want at least 60 ,miles for a charge but still the car is sounding reasonable right now.The future is bright for chevy for awhile anyway.