Apr 30

Dave Letterman Bashes the Chevy Volt on National Television w/Video

 

Late Night host David Letterman interviewed Tesla CEO Elon Musk and rolled out the Tesla Model S on his show. They did get around to discussing the Chevy Volt. Dave seemed very irritated with GM’s bailout need, the destruction of the EV-1, and laid into the Volt on national television.

Letterman said “the Volt has a range of 40 miles, that’ll get you down the driveway and back.”  He said the range is “insane”, “ridiculous”, and “crap.”

Dave didn’t seem to know or care about the range extender or the fact that most people drive less than 40 miles per day, and of course Mr. Musk wasn’t about to point that out.  All he was able to do was nod his head and say “right.”

Though Letterman’s pretending to get electrocuted when he touched the Model S, and wondering aloud whether the car might “magnetize his nuts” were funny bits they don’t make up for this unnecessary slander.

Whether Letterman was truly so uniformed about the Volt or intentionally wanted to hurt GM’s image isn’t clear, but considering the large viewership he has, a negative effect on public acceptance of the Volt is a risk.

We can’t change what happened but for what its worth I posted a video response (below) and have
written to Mr. Letterman’s talent coordinator offering to go on the show to discuss the Volt and its fanbase, risking ridicule.

I doubt the show will call me but if you want to please contact them and help request it.

And though I’ve been a fan of Letterman since my teenage years, in this case I think he could take a lesson from Jay Leno.

[flash http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xiJJKBbg4TA]
[flash http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HLzO-bz0Tkc]

This entry was posted on Thursday, April 30th, 2009 at 8:31 pm and is filed under Public Opinion. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. Both comments and pings are currently closed.

COMMENTS: 220


  1. 1
    solo

     

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    Apr 30th, 2009 (8:36 pm)

    He is a complete dickless elitist snob.


  2. 2
    baccman

     

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    Apr 30th, 2009 (8:37 pm)

    Go get em, Lyle!!!!


  3. 3
    Marcus

     

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    Apr 30th, 2009 (8:38 pm)

    Letterman-Leno, Yin and Yang…


  4. 4
    statik

     

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    Apr 30th, 2009 (8:44 pm)

    Well, everyone has a opinion…and a stage to give it on. People generally fall into one of two camps on the subject of EVs…overly bitter about the past or overy optimistic about the future.

    You know what they say, ‘any press is good press’ (Kinda sounds dumb though to me,lol)

    I will say this, Tesla has the whole stage to themselves at this point….still. They have the image, and the ‘feel good’ aura about them. They have EVs in production, and working prototype of another ‘affordable for the mildy affluent’ car to show on the stage at the Ed Sullivan theater…and a salient and likeable CEO for the public to see to boot.

    I thought Musk did a good job not going down Dave’s path too much, of course he had to laugh when Letterman was joking at GM’s expense…but he did give GM credit for following their lead. I thought Letterman was even more than a little rude to Musk, cutting him off, not letting him talk…it was almost like he had a statement he wanted to get out and Tesla was the stage for that monologue.


  5. 5
    hayley

     

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    Apr 30th, 2009 (8:52 pm)

    Comments on Youtube make me want to puke for the lack of intelligence.

    PS. Good to know Letterman has a 20 mile long driveway


  6. 6
    JEC

     

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    Apr 30th, 2009 (8:52 pm)

    I used to love watching Dave in my college days, on Late Night, but either he has become less funny, or I am to old to understand the humor anymore.

    Either way, Dave lends no credibility to the auto industry, but unfortunately for GM this is the kind of press that is hard to counter. Not sure why Dave would have such a beef with GM. Sounds like he is just playing his audience and feeding the frenzy of bailout madness.

    Here is Dave’s top ten reasons not to buy a Volt:
    10) It only goes 40 miles!
    9) It only goes 40 miles!
    8) It only goes 40 miles!
    7) It only goes 40 miles!
    6) It only goes 40 miles!
    5) It only goes 40 miles!
    4) It only goes 40 miles!
    3) It only goes 40 miles!
    2) It only goes 40 miles!
    1) It only goes 40 miles!


  7. 7
    solo

     

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    Apr 30th, 2009 (8:53 pm)

    I would really REALLY like to know what vehicles Davie L. has in his fleet. I bet my right nut if you averaged their E.P.A mileage, you would be in the low LOW teens. Just like big L’s I.Q.

    And while I’m on my soapbox I bet his house(s) burns more carbon than Al Gore’s.

    Okay. I just took a Zanex. I feel better now.


  8. 8
    nataraj

     

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    Apr 30th, 2009 (8:53 pm)

    I recently watched who killed the electric car. Wow. GM has come a long way.

    Oh … I never watch Letterman (though my wife likes lame jokes of spineless Leno). I’d anyday take Stewart or Colbert over these jackasses.


  9. 9
    solo

     

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    Apr 30th, 2009 (9:05 pm)

    nataraj:

    I like Jay Leno. I really like his web sight JAYLENOSGARAGE.COM. If you haven’t been to it you should check it out if you like cars, regardless if you don’t like his act.

    Jay tested a Porsche something (The top TOP of the line 911 quad turbo $190,000 super car.) Jay said very specifically if you want a performance car with no compromises, you have 2 choices. Porsche, and Corvette. Kinda think he likes GM and the other American car companies a lot even though he owns a lot of nice foreign iron too. (really REALLY nice foreign iron!!!).

    My favorite car he has is a 1966 Olds Tornado. Originally you see, it was a front drive car. His crew stripped it down to the body shell, converted it to rear drive (Using 2 scrap corvette frames!) installed a 1000 hp engine (yes I typed it right, one THOUSAND horsepower). His goal was to make a better performing (and looking) car than a Bentley Turbo. He succeeded big time.

    Okay. That last Zanex is finally kicking in. Nighty nite folks.

    Screw Letterman.


  10. 10
    statik

     

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    Apr 30th, 2009 (9:06 pm)

    Lyle,

    I like the part where you offer to go on the Letterman’s show (0:56), hehe. It made me smile.


  11. 11
    vincent

     

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    Apr 30th, 2009 (9:06 pm)

    So you have it…that’s the education challenge GM has ahead of them to inform people of what the Volt really is and what it’s all about.

    I wouldn’t be surprised if Dave makes a statement of what the Volt really is once he learns how wrong he was…he has never struck me as an unfair Man. I think the meds had him nuts last night. He was just ridiculous… he would probably give GM a shot at being on stage with a Volt show & tell type of deal.
    Lyle your in the city go get em buddy! Bet we see Lyle on stage with Dave! :)


  12. 12
    truthguy

     

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    Apr 30th, 2009 (9:12 pm)

    David Letterman is a pig. He stopped being funny about 10 years ago. He is increasingly mean and just plain stupid. He got his ass kicked by Leno and never really got over it.
    Yes I WAS a Letterman fan back in the day when he was at NBC and the first few years at CBS. But something has happened to him. He has become very political but he doesn’t have the education and intelligence to tackle political issues. His fans are deserting him. It’s extremely rare that I watch him at all. I’m not surprised that he made a stupid comment about the Volt. I’ll bet he doesn’t know anything about the car. He might have heard that Leno is interested in the car. I don’t know. I’m just speculating.
    Dave go away, just go away. You are old, mean and well past your funny days. Your audience is shrinking and your days are numbered. You have enough money. Retire and stew in your ignorance.


  13. 13
    Dave K.

     

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    Apr 30th, 2009 (9:13 pm)

    Someone on Letterman’s staff really let him down. He was feeling ill and in the dark about the brave new world of electric cars. Granted his job is to make something funny out of something which is important. Just needs to do a little more homework.

    =D~


  14. 14
    JEC

     

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    Apr 30th, 2009 (9:17 pm)

    Dave was more interested in the hot models, than the car (not that I blame him, those ladies were Smokin’ hot!).

    I watched the video and I could see that Elon wanted to discuss what Dave was saying about the Volt, but then he cut to commercial. I am really disappointed in Letterman, even though I know he is a comedian and supposed to be funny, I think he went beyond funny to just being a snob.


  15. 15
    Mike-o-Matic

     

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    Apr 30th, 2009 (9:29 pm)

    It matters little whether Letterman (or really, any misguided fool) slams the Volt. Fact is, if GM gets them to market, they’ll sell every one of as fast as they can build ‘em.

    By the time a year or two passes after launch, the tens of thousands of copies sold will speak for themselves. If they perform well, Letterman’s unkind words will be long forgotten. Even if they do relatively *poorly*… his vitriolic spew will still be forgotten.

    In that respect, I’d say his ignorant comments are a lot like his pointless, un-funny show. Both will be forgotten before very long.


  16. 16
    Hasbro

     

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    Apr 30th, 2009 (9:31 pm)

    This was just trash. Since when did the letterman show become Letterman’s Garage? He knows nothing about cars and the technology that goes into making an electric car. Why no mention of Telsa raisng the price of the roadster of people that have already put a deposit down. Why no mention that out of 1,500 cars ordered only a handful are delievered. Why no mention of after 244 miles driven you have to wait 36 hrs on a 110 outlet to recharge or less on a 220. I could go on but you get the picture.


  17. 17
    Edwin Mang

     

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    Apr 30th, 2009 (9:33 pm)

    Dear bond holders if your current offer of thirty percent was traded for a twenty percent of GM stock and GM stock follows the same as ford . Then in two months you get an 8 fold return on the original value of your bond . If GM bankrups you get sguat and little else .

    I can only figgure in four demensions but I know greed when I see it .

    God Bless


  18. 18
    Red HHR

     

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    Apr 30th, 2009 (9:34 pm)

    Letterman is just mad/bitter that he could not race his Indy Car this year. He likes to think he is a motorhead. He is not. Jay Leno is….
    Letterman must also still be miffed for being passed up on the Tonight Show. Do I have that right???


  19. 19
    Edwin Mang

     

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    Apr 30th, 2009 (9:52 pm)

    Ford was 5.70 in sept 08 , 5.98 today .
    GM 25.00 .

    Go figgure .


  20. 20
    Dave K.

     

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    Apr 30th, 2009 (9:55 pm)

    Mike-o-Matic 15

    I agree. The Volt is not only a new car. It’s a new, exciting, and efficient means of transportation. Tesla has a good idea with their sports car. The sales snag is having it priced at three times the current market demand. Not the best positioning for this economic condition.

    GM should offer advanced ordering. The first 50,000 Volt will sell months ahead of availability. The next 100,000 will sell on word of mouth. The next 100,000 will sell on earnings made during the economic recovery. GM will then need a battery improvement to keep sales strong.

    It would be wise for GM to offer advanced ordering through an internet menu system. How many well to do people enjoy a weekend cocktail and order something new for themselves or for their kids? I do this often. Surf the net and find a made-to-order computer, custom set of golf clubs, or book a surprise trip for my family. It’s just green paper, buy what you want. Then “click” ~ PayPal ~ and UPS.

    Don’t miss this opportunity GM. Walk into the light.

    =D~


  21. 21
    Efusco

     

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    Apr 30th, 2009 (9:57 pm)

    While Elon could barely get an word in edgewise even about the Model S it’s pretty tough to hold him responsible for not correcting Dave. But I agree completely, Dave was out of line. I know his job is entertainment, but I have to wonder, with a rant like that, if perhaps it’s time for him to hang ‘em up. I’m glad he’s an EV enthusiast, but the Volt has a place in this evolving world of alternative energy automotives and bashing it works against the overall cause.


  22. 22
    charlie h

     

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    Apr 30th, 2009 (10:02 pm)

    Letterman has noticed that a bankrupt company intends to build a $40K compact car.

    What’s not to mock?

    Good job, Dave for bringing up the CO2 issue. I’d question Musk’s response on that.

    Many of the things Dave said showed a real interest in the future and a sharp awareness of the real problems that face the country. Problems that aren’t going to be solved by a piddly 10K cars dribbling out starting at the end of 2010.

    And, as far as electric transportation goes, Dave’s right. 40 miles… after all these years and all those GM press releases is not particularly impressive. Dave’s remarks – notice the applause? – reflect what most of the population is going to think about the Volt. 40 miles? $40K? Why bother?


  23. 23
    charlie h

     

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    Apr 30th, 2009 (10:05 pm)

    “These auto companies are shining people on… if they were actually working on technology that’s going to be in showrooms, they wouldn’t have to be closing down plants and filing for bankruptcy.”

    Pithy and true.


  24. 24
    BillR

     

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    Apr 30th, 2009 (10:08 pm)

    When it comes to the mainstream media, I like this following quote:

    If you don’t read the newspaper you are uninformed,
    if you do read the newspaper you are misinformed.

    - Mark Twain

    Obviously the newspapers of Mark Twain’s day have expanded to include Television, radio, and other electronic media today.

    It seems to me that Elon and Dave must have done some rehearsal prior to the show. Dave knows something about the EV1, he knows about electric cars at the turn of the century, and he knows the Volt goes 40 miles AER. I am willing to bet he also knows that the Volt goes 400 additional miles with the range extender.

    However, he choses to omit this from the conversation, and then talk about bailouts, make fun of the 40 mile electric range, etc.

    Dave is not being stupid, people, he is being deceptive. He has an agenda. Whether it is to promote Tesla (perhaps Dave is an investor), whether he is friends with Chris Paine, or whether he is pissed because GM has defeated his ass in racing events, we don’t know.

    But I am convinced Dave is purposely distorting the truth.

    Good luck Lyle trying to get a spot on his show. He really isn’t interested in the truth, and certainly isn’t interested in having you expose what appears to be his ignorance.

    Just another note on distorted facts. Elon mentions that his car, even with all its electricity coming from coal, emits less CO2 than the Prissy. This is also incorrect. A gallon of gasoline, when burned, will emit 20 lbs of CO2. At 45 mpg for the Prissy, this equates to 0.444 lbs/mile. The average coal plant in the US emits 2249 lbs of CO2 per MWH (from the EPA). The Tesla roadster gets about 3.5 miles per kWh. This then equals (2249/1000)/3.5 or 0.643 lbs/kWh, and this does not include any transmission losses or charging losses.


  25. 25
    Dave G

     

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    Apr 30th, 2009 (10:09 pm)

    From the article: Whether Letterman was truly so uniformed about the Volt or intentionally wanted to hurt GM’s image isn’t clear…
    ————————————————————————————–
    I believe it’s the former. I’ve been saying this for a while now. The average Joe still doesn’t know what the Volt is. They hear “electric car” and “40 mile range” and tune out. I wouldn’t be surprised if most people out there still don’t know the Volt has a range extender, Letterman included.

    When the Volt is actually starts selling, then many more people will tune in. When these people realize there are no limitations, a new day will dawn.


  26. 26
    GM-fan

     

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    Apr 30th, 2009 (10:14 pm)

    Dave comment actually reflect one very critical point for Volt success.

    Although statistically, 80% of US drivers drove less than 40miles everyday, but psychologically, they will fear that they actually drive more than that. Even though it’s a range extender, they just dun care about it.

    Seems Volt need more effort from marketing point of view.

    That’s remind me one comment from Honda president why they don’t build electric car yet, technology not mature and consumer is not ready.

    They will follow the product development “S-curve” and break-in at more advantage position, while taxpayer pay for the price


  27. 27
    Arch

     

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    Apr 30th, 2009 (10:14 pm)

    LOL

    Take Care
    Arch


  28. 28
    ClarksonCote

     

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    Apr 30th, 2009 (10:37 pm)

    #5 hayley,

    20 mile long driveway… haha, too funny!


  29. 29
    LauraM

     

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    Apr 30th, 2009 (10:39 pm)

    I’m sure that Dave already knows. If he knows about the EV1 and Tesla, there’s no way he doesn’t know about the range extender. He’s just laughing at GM’s expense. People are angry about the bailouts, and want to laugh at them. If you think this is bad, you should hear some AIG jokes. It’s to be expected.

    But I doubt it will affect actual sales. Once people hear about the range extender, GM won’t be able to make them fast enough.


  30. 30
    ccombs

     

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    Apr 30th, 2009 (10:41 pm)

    I think Elon was actually quite collected the whole time and even he was embarrassed a little bit by Letterman’s idiocy. Letterman treated him like dirt, even while helping his cause. Musk is a genius on the order of Howard Hughes and I often like his spunk, although sometimes he can be a bit disingenuous. I wish both Tesla and the Volt success. Why must they be pitted against eachother?- they are so different it is fairly odd we are even comparing them.


  31. 31
    LauraM

     

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    Apr 30th, 2009 (11:10 pm)

    #17 Edwin Mang

    The bondholders are getting the raw end of the deal. The UAW is the one using political influence to get an ridiculously generous deal at the bondholders’ and taxpayers’ expense. Even the New York Times basically said as much.

    http://www.nytimes.com/2009/04/30/business/30uaw.html?ref=automobiles

    And, by the way, many of those “greedy” bondholders are retirees who entrusted a significant portion of their life savings to those bonds. We can’t protect them from bad business decisions. But they had a right to rely on bankruptcy law as written. And as written–they have the same priority as the UAW.


  32. 32
    Frank D

     

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    Apr 30th, 2009 (11:26 pm)

    Letterman is a comedian…if we take him too seriously, as the problem in this culture (that includes sports figures, newscasters, and any other entertainer) we only justify them and their enormous salaries and egos. Lets not buy into a rivalry between electric car companies, they are all good! Go GM, Go Tesla!


  33. 33
    Nevin

     

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    Apr 30th, 2009 (11:45 pm)

    I think the majority of you are missing the point. Although expensive, the people at Tesla came up with a way to have an electric vehicle drive well over 40 miles (the Volt’s standard) on a single charge. And Tesla is a START-UP company.

    GM however is an American staple and has yet to figure out how to do what a start-up already has. And you may say, “Well Tesla’s car is so expensive that it’s not applicable to the majority of Americans.” While true, you would be again missing the point. GM could have figured this out year’s ago and instead refused not to.

    That’s all Dave was doing, was venting his frustration with a great American company like GM who have basically let America down by not adopting this sooner, thus making it cheap and affordable now.


  34. 34
    jbfalaska

     

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    Apr 30th, 2009 (11:55 pm)

    I think both cars are incredible advances and the first most important step in alleviating a nation long addicted to foreign oil. Both are great cars, and frankly, I don’t think these two models are in fact competing for the same drivership.

    I hope they both succeed.


  35. 35
    Gary

     

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    May 1st, 2009 (12:00 am)

    How can we contact Letterman to “gently remind” him that he distorted the truth about the Volt? Why did he ask what happens if the Tesla’s battery goes empty?

    At this point, pure electric cars such as the Tesla are for myopic environmental extremists–not practical thinking people. Although it’s all sunshine and lollipops to have a pure electric car, when you consider that most people drive less than 40 miles a day, having a huge battery designed for occasional trips of a few hundred miles gets expensive since battery technology is rather new.

    Even with a big battery, there is still the problem of range anxiety. Heck, I wouldn’t even want to drive a pure electric Tesla Model S to visit my brother 2.5 hours away in Seattle, as it’s standard 160-mile battery would be barely adequate. That would be like me choosing to start the trip with a 1/4 tank of gas in my current car and hoping that I can make it. Sure, I can do a higher capacity battery swap, but I don’t need the hassle and doubt that my home town would even have a mythical 5-minute battery swap station where I can pet a unicorn and feed it sugar cubes as the work is being performed on my car. :-)


  36. 36
    carcus1

     

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    May 1st, 2009 (12:03 am)

    Carcus1′s top 15 list:

    Name the top 15 automotive manufacturing companies in the world, . . . . . . . . . then name the one that doesn’t have a BEV in the works.

    1 Toyota
    2 General Motors
    3 VW
    4 Ford
    5 Hyundai/Kia
    6 Honda
    7 Peugeot/Citroën
    8 Nissan
    9 Fiat
    10 Renault
    11 Suzuki
    12 Chrysler
    13 Daimler
    14 BMW
    15 Mitsubishi

    If you guessed GM, you’re right!
    Johnny, tell them what they’ve won!

    (And yes, I’m giving Honda points here because they are working on electric motorcycles (potentially a huge market for them) . . . . Puma points? puh-lease.)

    flame on


  37. 37
    Jason Sander

     

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    May 1st, 2009 (12:05 am)

    I think there is room in the marketplace for both vehicles, and moreso. We are on the brink of a true turning point in automobiles, the widespread adoption of electric drive. To bash any true effort to stem our reliance on foreign oil in the name of comedy is not only counterproductive, but short-sighted and frankly, idiotic. There are customers for pure BEV’s, and customers for range-extended vehicles. I was hoping for a real positive show, but what I get instead is a lot of bickering and hating on GM (although admittedly, some of it may have been well-deserved, considering the events of the EV-1). But times change, and people change. I look forward to seeing the Volt come through to completion, and I hope I can afford one someday.

    Shame on you, Dave, for spreading Fear, Uncertainty and Doubt; this is NOT what we need right now, especially in this economy.

    And BTW: That bit about being electrocuted by the Model S? That was just embarassingly unfunny.


  38. 38
    Muhammad

     

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    May 1st, 2009 (12:13 am)

    Wow — what a rant! It’s hard not to contrast how informed Jay is vs. Dave.

    Good job Lyle with the post — you have the right idea there.


  39. 39
    carcus1

     

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    May 1st, 2009 (12:15 am)

    #36 (me) correction:

    Oh yeah, yeah . . . . leap frogging. GM’s LEAP frickin’ FROGGING! Right over the other 14. Yeah, yeahh . . . . yeah yeah yeah. I keep forgetting.

    Sorry about that.

    Disregard my post at 36.


  40. 40
    lenard

     

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    May 1st, 2009 (12:21 am)

    Leno car guy know autos past present and interested in the future.
    Letterman well my mother said if you can’t say something nice don’t say anything, so Mr. Letterman ————-


  41. 41
    Ed M

     

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    May 1st, 2009 (12:24 am)

    Not to worry Lyle, Dave is just another know it all curmudgeon. If Tesla wants to compete with GM and Ford they need to produce either a range extended for under $40,000 or the current car with an ultra capacitor for quick charging Of course the top ten dummies on TV,………………………and No.1 is Dave Letterman for his dumb rendition of a man getting electrocuted.


  42. 42
    Joe

     

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    May 1st, 2009 (12:34 am)

    Whether he “wanted to hurt GM’s image isn’t clear” ??

    Uh, I think GM is “hurting” their own image pretty well without Letterman’s help. GM SUCKS! THEY SUCK! SUCK SUCK SUCK…

    Got it?

    Maybe if GM DIDN’T SUCK – Letterman would show them more respect.


  43. 43
    EVONe

     

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    May 1st, 2009 (12:35 am)

    GM is a worthless company, maybe one day if you clowns in Detroit actually got a clue you twits wouldn’t be in the mess you are in now.


  44. 44
    Joe Blow

     

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    May 1st, 2009 (12:36 am)

    If GM didn’t throw away the EV1 maybe they wouldn’t have to feel so hurt that they’re now 10 years behind the competition. Letterman’s prodding should hurt and until GM can actually get one of these cars out the door people need to stop talking and get to work.


  45. 45
    popurls.com // popular today

     

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    May 1st, 2009 (12:39 am)

    popurls.com // popular today…

    story has entered the popular today section on popurls.com…


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    JohnTanner

     

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    May 1st, 2009 (12:40 am)

    Can you blame people for not being excited about a product that should have gone to market years ago? Now you guys want to bring out a electric car when gas prices have dropped significantly and charge us $40,000?

    No thanks, GM, and you guys don’t deserve a freakin’ bailout.

    Oh if GM had kept the ev1 I would have been a loyal customer, idiots!


  47. 47
    Mark M

     

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    May 1st, 2009 (12:43 am)

    Just because Dave’s opinion differs from yours doesn’t mean he’s wrong or uninformed. He probably knows more about cars and technology that 99% of the people on here. How many of us own an Indy racing team?

    I happen to think we was right on most of his points, but more importantly he is just reflecting public sentiment towards GM and the Volt. The casual public hears “40 mile range” and thinks it is a joke. Especially when they hear in the next sentance the Tesla has 300 miles.

    GM chose to not fully commit to an EV by going with the EV/ICE hybrid and hence a very weak electric range. When all these other car companies start releasing their BEVs with ranges in the 100s of miles, the Volt is not going to look good in comparison. I really hope GM has a BEV Volt with a long range in the pipeline to compete.


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    May 1st, 2009 (12:44 am)

    well, Lyle, you care to enlighten us on why was the EV-1 was pulled…?


  49. 49
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    May 1st, 2009 (12:50 am)

    My grandfather was a long-time GM employee, and most of my family adheres to the time-honored philosophy of buying American cars.

    However, I’m furious with GM. They have spent millions of dollars over the years lobbying against emission standards. As a result, technology to increase fuel efficiency and lower emissions has been far less than what it could have been.

    General Motors is a disgrace. There is no way our government should be bailing them out. We should be supporting companies like Tesla who anticipate the future, see what people want and need, and devote resources to developing it.


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    Sammy

     

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    May 1st, 2009 (12:51 am)

    This website is horrible and so was your response video. It sounds like you shot this at a softball field. Face it, 40 miles is ridiculous, and the gas option to extend removes the car from being a viable gas replacement. The tesla is going in the right direction. GM and other American companies better catch on and catch on quick before japan, china, germany, etc. jump in with some real engineered beasts that’ll turn Detroit into a ghost town.


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    May 1st, 2009 (12:52 am)

    Dave’s right.
    GM needs to die, it represents a lot of things and way of doing buisness that are completely wrong with this country.

    And, hey since we’re a CAPITALIST society, a LESSER RUN, LESSER MANAGED company like GM should DIE. Not be bailed out with this SOCIALIST BULLSHIT being shoved down our throats.


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    May 1st, 2009 (1:06 am)

    I think Dave is right. GM has blown through billions of dollars and we get a big half electric car in the volt that goes 40 miles on a charge? That car won’t work for commuters around here. In 2 years Tesla will have the S out the door, fully electric. It’s amazing a small company will lead the revolution while the big companies fail because they were too busy producing the same dumb cars they’ve been making for ages.


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    May 1st, 2009 (1:09 am)

    People who stay up all night to watch Letterman are usually not in the BEV or EREV target audience anyway, so all of this really doesn’t matter.

    What is going to have more of an impact… some Leno wannabe’s 10 minute rant on a show for insomniacs or the Volt’s starring role in the upcoming Transformers sequel?


  54. 54
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    May 1st, 2009 (1:13 am)

    He’s right about that car being crap. 40miles?? Its a golf cart.

    You can NEVER take an adventure in that car.

    NO ROAD-TRIPS.
    NO TRAVELING.
    NO FLEEING DISASTERS.
    NO DRIVING FROM DOWNTOWN LA TO MALIBU.

    Pathetic…


  55. 55
    Andrew

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    May 1st, 2009 (1:14 am)

    No offense, but he is right. Especially in California where commutes exceed 40 miles going to and from work. This is doubly true due to the recharge time, if you have to go out after work you are stuck using the “Range extender” (marketing term for a gas engine, what a revolutionary idea!). The Tesla blows it out of the water, and of course you are upset, you run a marketing site for the vehicle (whether you are paid or not). He is also upset about the fact that they had a marketable product that would keep them relevant and viable today, but threw it away. I love how your post doesn’t mention “Who killed the electric car”, because it exposes GM for being the idiots they are. Someone should bring that point to the mainstream, because no one talks about, and I’m glad he did


  56. 56
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    May 1st, 2009 (1:15 am)

    Are you really trying to justify an electric car that has a range of 40 miles with a “range extender”?

    WTF?

    No one is going to buy this piece of shit. I would rather buy a Toyota Prius instead.

    It won’t be long before Japan or China makes a electric car that actually works. David Letterman is right.

    GM, get your act together! There is a reason no one buys your piece of shit cars. Figure it out or disappear.

    The American consumer can care less who makes the electric car. If it works, we will buy it.

    And a car that can go 40 miles before it switches to gas DOES NOT WORK.


  57. 57
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    May 1st, 2009 (1:20 am)

    40-miles is USELESS. If GM didn’t kill their early electric car technology, they wouldn’t be in the jam they are today. Frankly, the Chevy Volt is pathetic, just like this website is. Tesla is going to dominate the electric vehicle market and rightfully so!!


  58. 58
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    May 1st, 2009 (1:26 am)

    The Volt is worthless and in the complete opposite direction of innovation. Hybrid’s are like mermaids. When you want a fish you get a woman, and when you need a woman, you get a fish.


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    May 1st, 2009 (1:27 am)

    GM got what they deserved–no respect. They had everything in the universe…money, acce$$ to the best minds, and still they screwed the pooch…just like Chrysler. They deserve exactly what Dave gave ‘em…a big FU. They are useless. Let them die a slow and painful death.

    However, my total respect for the workers. They just built them as told.


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    Zach

     

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    May 1st, 2009 (1:30 am)

    #20 Dave K.

    Can you pay off my 2003 Chevy Malibu LS? I’m a little strapped for cash… lol


  61. 61
    pico

     

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    May 1st, 2009 (1:33 am)

    The problem with the Volt and any other “electric” car coming out of Detroit is that those guys depend on service and repair as part of their business models, and that’s just not a factor for true electric vehicles. Thus we get all these hybrid cars–better gas mileage, sure, but there’s still a gasoline engine, oil, spark plugs, o-rings, belts, radiators, emissions, etc. for us to service. That’s really why the Volt sucks, not to mention the Prius, Insight, and so on. C’mon, people. They’re just dangling a little carrot in front of you to keep you pacified. There’s no real new or meaningful technologies in any of this. Let’s demand true electric or let these dinosaurs fade off into the sunset.

    GM should just suck it up and create another true electric car before they’re out of business.


  62. 62
    Sal

     

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    May 1st, 2009 (1:39 am)

    I wonder if the writer of the people here are a bit biased in favor of GM. Hmmm, I wonder.

    40 miles, really? O, but there’s a range extender *phew*! This car is 200+. Quit grasping at straws and quit bitching about a comedian that burned you good. I think you should have the ability to defend yourself, but if you get on that show, you guys will get burned again. Americans are tired of bullshit and we’re getting wiser surprisingly enough. There’s not much more to say, you know when you’re feeding us your bullshit, always have, now you have to get used to us knowing too.

    …update your resume, line up your references. (extreme, yea, but mostly wishful thinking)


  63. 63
    Sal

     

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    May 1st, 2009 (1:42 am)

    Also, fix your tie, get a tripod, and filter out the background noise.


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    May 1st, 2009 (1:59 am)

    Wow. Your response is so weak. Ask your dad how to straighten your tie. Is this a joke?

    We all need to learn from people like this. Americans are tired of this kind of crap. If you aren’t on board when things change you will be left behind. Dave was joking but still on target with how many of us feel. These aren’t the good old days anymore. You will need to show some actual leadership and vision… I hate to be the one telling you this but it’s your job.


  65. 65
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    May 1st, 2009 (2:00 am)

    “Joe” #42 through “Mikey” #59 (except Eliezer #53) = the SAME F-ING GUY!

    You made your point. We acknowledge. Now piss off.


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    May 1st, 2009 (2:33 am)

    The Tesla Motor company is leagues ahead of GM when it comes to electric cars. I find it more insulting that we are bailing out GM while Tesla Motors is the company showing real innovation and promise. Where is their funding? I’ve been a GM guy for the last 25 years and all 3 of my vehicles are GM and I grew up in a GM mechanic shop. The GM volt in comparison the the Tesla roadster is garbage, don’t take my word for it do your own research.


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    May 1st, 2009 (2:53 am)

    LOL The volt is not even a pure EV. The guy talks about a “RANGE EXTENDER”, which is salesman speak for – it’s a HYBRID Vehicle, not a pure EV. The Tesla is a pure EV and it STILL outperforms the Volt. Pathetic.


  68. 68
    Alex S

     

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    May 1st, 2009 (3:04 am)

    I really like this Elon Musk guy. He’s a genius.
    I do believe in Chevy Volt, but i’m impressed with how much can his Tesla Motors do. Such a small company can do two great looking cars, when the big 3 are strugling to keep up.

    I honestly hope Tesla will sell a lot of those Model S, they look like a company that can handle the foreign competition extremely well. In fact i believe at some point they will be the best automaker in the world. This guy is creating an empire, and he’s doing great so far.


  69. 69
    GeorgeB

     

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    May 1st, 2009 (3:39 am)

    I went back on the DVR to see the show. It wasn’t really much of an interview. Musk looked uncomfortable and Letterman was struggling through the whole process, not only with his laryngitis but also with the topic.

    I’m glad he chose to address the topic of electric cars but he really screwed it up. Once the Volt hits the streets the truth will come out. I have every expectation that it will be wildly successful and Tesla will still be cranking out 1,300 cars per year.

    GO VOLT…GO GM!


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    bfarnickle

     

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    May 1st, 2009 (4:23 am)

    the volt is too little too late for GM and a 40 mile range is pathetic. it’s more marketing rubbish, just like their AFM on their v8s.

    in short, the day that GM files for bankrupcy is on its way


  71. 71
    rotbear

     

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    May 1st, 2009 (4:58 am)

    40 miles because it has to lug a petrol engine that whole time. The volt doesn’t change a thing.


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    Bowie

     

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    May 1st, 2009 (5:02 am)

    I think the point he was trying to make was that GM really has no excuse for not *already* having a viable electric vehicle to offer.

    None.

    Its not new technology.

    GM has had enough time, enough money, and enough manpower to do it, for decades now, and still hasn’t.

    40 miles *is* ridiculous.

    So a guy starts his own company, produces a vehicle that GM, despite all its resources, refuses to produce.

    In all honesty, you and other supporters of the big 3 should be less interested in “debating” Chevy’s merits, and more interested in shutting up and being schooled by this guy. Last I checked, Musk wasn’t in line for government bailout money.


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    FORD

     

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    May 1st, 2009 (5:08 am)

    adios GM!


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    May 1st, 2009 (5:17 am)

    Nice. I didn’t check but did someone put the link to Lyle’s video in the comment section of David’s YouTube video? If not, that would be a good place to put it.


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    Ted in Fort Myers

     

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    May 1st, 2009 (6:06 am)

    GM will have a BEV version of the Volt in Gen II. I still would like a BEV. The Volt however will get me to Ohio to visit the kids and Grandkids. Go Volt Go GM. Go Tesla. Go any company that will get us off of gas. I am tired of making countries wealthy that hate us.
    Take Care,
    TED


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    Ted in Fort Myers

     

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    May 1st, 2009 (6:16 am)

    Good Blog Lyle. Thanks for keeping us informed.
    Take Care,
    TED



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    Joe

     

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    May 1st, 2009 (6:22 am)

    He does not have the understanding of how the automotive industry works and thinks he’s an expert on the subject. In short an automotive idiot.

    I would find what he drives and then ask him, why didn’t that company come out with an electric car decades ago? We all know he does not drive an American car…..more likely a German car.

    I hope Jay Leno comes to GM’s defense.


  78. 79
    FME III

     

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    May 1st, 2009 (6:29 am)

    This thread is a huge laugh. It has really brought out the pure BEV partisans who apparently haven’t gotten over the EV-1 and feel the need to vent some more.

    Guys, adjust your dosage and buy the Tesla if you want (and if you can, i.e., if the Model S ever makes it into production). No one is going to force you to buy a Volt.

    Clearly, Tesla and GM are approaching the issue from two different perspectives. Each car has its own merits. Is it too outladish to assume that each car will find a share of the market?


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    nuclearboy

     

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    May 1st, 2009 (6:39 am)

    Letterman clearly demonstrates that he has no idea what he is talking about.

    He should have moving text at the bottom of the screen on his show that says ” caution, the man speaking is an idiot. his views should not be taken seriously … “


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    May 1st, 2009 (6:41 am)

    Tesla is a money losing adventure from a bright tech guy. They will go belly up in a few years when their batteries begin to fail. The people who paid this much for the car should be able to find an aftermarket battery replacement.


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    MarkinWI

     

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    May 1st, 2009 (6:50 am)

    Laura M@31 – Yes and no, on all counts. I’m sure there may be some bondholders who are little old retirees. However, most of those folks probably got scared off a long time ago and sold their bonds. And even if they are still there, by all news accounts they are not the ones who killed the deal. A nearly unanimous number (by debt $ number, this is business not a democratic exercise) of bondholders have to agree to a deal at the pre-bankruptcy stage. By all news accounts, the hedgefunds speculators were the strongest opponents to a deal. Just behind them in opposition were the (largely) bailed-out banks. When this gets to the bankruptcy-package stage (about now) agreement from a majority of the creditors (again, $1 = 1 vote)will be the new standard, the hedge funds’ votes won’t be needed, and the administration will cut a deal with the (largely) bailed-out banks. But trying to paint bondholders as a class as poor old folks who simply invested their savings is not an accurate portrayal of the situation.

    On the other hand, the UAW trust fund does provide health care for people who ARE little old retirees and their widows (not unlike my 96-year-old grandmother whose healthcare insurance is provided as a union benefit from a non-auto employer). There are no hedge-fund managers relying upon union-bargained retiree health insurance.

    I have not seen a solid legal analysis of the status of bondholders v. retirees in bankruptcy. By all accounts it is a complicated issue. There are factual details (such as seniority date of the debt) and legal details (benefit derived from work performed) that will come into play. Bankruptcy laws can also change, they are not static. If you’re a bankruptcy attorney, feel free to educate me.


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    May 1st, 2009 (6:53 am)

    We’ve really dragged the morons out of hiding with this thread!

    1) A BEV drags a lot of extra battery around with it almost every day (80% of people drive less than 40 miles per day).

    2) Cost/benefit analysis indicates E-REV is more cost effective than BEV, and may use less gas if you frequently need to rent/use an ICE driven vehicle for long trips.

    3) Although you may think a BEV requires less maintenance than the Volt, you may want to look at Tesla’s quality. A 3 year old Lotus Esprit (low volume production) that I looked at in 1982 had many quality issues (leaking hatchback, unraveled interior trim, electrical equipment mallfunction, etc.). New GM cars have excellent quality. Buick and Jaguar have best initlal quality according to J. D. Power.

    4) ICE’s are actually relatively low maintenance. In the Volt, they will likely only need service once a year (oil change). The battery pack will have a 10 yr/150,000 mile warranty. Come back and talk to us in several years when your BEV has 75,000 miles and needs a new battery pack, and then we will talk about the maintenance costs of a BEV.

    5) The market will decide which is better, BEV or E-REV. My money is on E-REV, and you are certainly welcome to buy a $100k Tesla so that at 15,000 miles per year you can save 100 gallons of gasoline (maybe 135 gallons of E85).

    Talk all the trash you want. The Volt will be here in November 2010, and will probably be a sellout for the first few years.


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    May 1st, 2009 (6:53 am)

    Puts a new spin on “Stupid Human Tricks.”


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    May 1st, 2009 (6:58 am)

    I’m late to the party again.
    I need to start getting up earlier or maybe pay attention more.

    I only read a few comments above, so my apologies if I am repeating.

    Dave Letterman was not entirely incorrect.
    He said Hydrogen is crap. In that, he is right.

    He does appear clueless about the Volt though and simply needs to
    be reeducated. Lyle is perfect for that.


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    May 1st, 2009 (7:26 am)

    22 Charlie H

    C02 – if you charge at night, the energy used is excess anyway. Might as well use it to charge your car. This does not increase C02

    40 miles – there’s nothing wrong with 40 miles if 80% of people drive that or less a day, and by not adding more battery, you keep the cost somewhat reasonable so those 80% might be able to afford one. 200mile BEV.. great.. $125K.. not so great.


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    May 1st, 2009 (7:30 am)

    Wow, there is a new list of Troll around, unless it’s the same guy posting under various “well picked” names.

    Tesla, nice boutique car, that’s what they are, that’s what they will always be. Not that they are not building good cars, they are, but they don’t give them away either. People scream about the 40K the Volt may cost what about the 100K$ the Tesla cost, for a 2 seater with no bagage room.

    And for those that said Tesla has been inovating, no didn’t. They tried to apply that same principle IBM did with PC by going for pieces already existing and putting them together, even the body frame isn’t theirs, it’s Lotus. 100K$ to buy Laptop battery that will stop working in less then 5 years.

    What they did is wake up the car insdustry and for that we should thank them.


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    May 1st, 2009 (7:32 am)

    Everyone is entitled to their opinion, even with their massive platform. This is America.

    Oh, by the way Dave…way to help America rid itself of foreign oil. Idiot.


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    May 1st, 2009 (7:36 am)

    36 Caucus1

    What do you think a Volt is? It’s a BEV with a range extending engine. All the technology is there. All GM has to do is remove the engine. In fact Lyle test drove the “BEV” part of the Volt. Their design is already done. All that’s left is for the cost of batteries to come down to make this feasible as a mass produced car.


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    May 1st, 2009 (7:45 am)

    Letterman is an entertainer… period.

    I’m just glad he’s not a politician trying to centrally plan our future even though he is more intelligent than some of the other rich “progressive socialists” in Congress such as Pelosi, Reid and Fwanks.

    Now we’re getting Al Franken? Now THAT’S comedy!


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    May 1st, 2009 (7:47 am)

    In response to 64.
    Lobbyist.

    Yes, it was partially a joke. I just don’t know about you, but I laugh when it looks like people scrambled to look nice for a youtube video that was filmed in their backyard by their wife or kid. Also, we agreed with our points, but it is the internet and you didn’t catch that..


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    GM Volt Fan

     

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    May 1st, 2009 (7:47 am)

    I’ve been a big Letterman fan for years … but …. Dave just doesn’t realize the COST problems and the RANGE ANXIETY issues you have with purely electric cars like with Tesla’s cars.

    He also doesn’t understand the issues with weight, availability of charging stations, recharge time, battery life, safety, etc. He’s like a lot of people that like the idea of electric cars but they’re too impatient to wait for ones with BATTERIES that can do EVERYTHING that today’s regular cars can do.

    If it was so easy to create long lasting, reliable, heavy duty batteries that could simply replace the IC engine powertrain, I’m sure it would have been done by now. The developments in NANOTECH and lithium ion technology over the last 5-10 years is what is making cars like the Volt somewhat affordable and practical for average middle class people.

    Tesla will make some really nice electric cars in the next 5 years. I love how the new Tesla Model S looks. The question is … can they make electric cars that average people can afford? In 2009 that’s the MAIN problem. In 2019, you might be able to have any flavor of electric car you can think of. Til then, we have to be patient and let the technology develop.


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    May 1st, 2009 (7:49 am)

    I hope the guys who read this blog at GM are paying attention here and see all the work they have ahead of them educating the public. I also hope thay start tis marketing sooner rather than later (after the bankruptcy clears the air, I am guessing).

    I doubt if one of them really knows what the Volt is/does or how most of America uses their cars. In a large part of America, the gas engine will kick on only rarely.

    My commute is 15 miles (30 round trip). My family is all within 40 miles. So daily, I will never turn over the gas engine, including errands. The regular trips to the in-laws will require the gas engine only for the return trip if I don’t plug it in there. And I will not need a second car for the long trips I occasionally take because it is out of my cars range… it does not have a limited range.


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    May 1st, 2009 (7:56 am)

    I finally read thru all the posts. Looks like the Letterman show got some attention, wether it be bad. All the trolls came out last night. I hope they stick around on this site for a while so they can get educated. I think there’s a little fustration with bailouts, and also some Letterman defense going on. Either way, I hope they so some more research than just what the see on a comedian’s show, and post here more often, so when we have more time we can debate their claims.


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    Adrian

     

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    May 1st, 2009 (7:57 am)

    #1, couldn’t have said it better.


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    May 1st, 2009 (8:01 am)

    I have a real world question. I was thinking about the 40 mile range, and what is the 40 mile impact of being stuck in a typical rush hour? You know, where you go 8-10 miles in 45-80 minutes (Chicago, on the Kennedy from downtown to O’Hare as an example)?

    This is more of a beef of MPG, but with an electric car shouldn’t the ratio be hours of use per charge? I doubt it takes that much more energy to go 80 versus 50 miles in an hour… Anyone?


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    May 1st, 2009 (8:03 am)

    The long term goal must be to go all-electric (BEV, battery electric vehicles). But there must also be an interim period to ease most of America into that and give battery technology enough time to come down in cost per mile of electric driving and increase range as well.

    If the Volt comes out with Flex-Fuel capability so that even though it is an internal combustion engine it’s at least not contributing to global terrorists then I will consider it a total success as that much needed stepping stone toward all-electric vehicles. If the Volt is powered by a foreign oil tankful then I’ll pass.

    Although I agree with Letterman that electric cars are the only way to ease so many of our man-made problems (global warming, health issues caused by air pollution, funding terrorism with every fill-up of your tank, and $500 to $700 Billion leaving our country to go to places that don’t much like us) his comments are polarizing and not helpful to those of us trying to help people see the good that BEV’s will do for our country.


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    May 1st, 2009 (8:04 am)

    StevenU @93

    Yes Steve, but the trolls here will tell you that you’re polluting just because the Volt has a range extender…even though it never operates!

    Really…the general public is so uninformed.

    Idiots.


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    May 1st, 2009 (8:11 am)

    charlie h Says:
    April 30th, 2009 at 10:05 pm
    “These auto companies are shining people on… if they were actually working on technology that’s going to be in showrooms, they wouldn’t have to be closing down plants and filing for bankruptcy.”

    Pithy and true.
    ——–
    Charlie H, of all posters on this sight, you truly disgust me. Give me a call next time your in the Detroit area …. I’d love to give you some feedback face-to-face.


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    May 1st, 2009 (8:19 am)

    There are many, many Volt fans here that have much more patience than me concerning the “uninformed”…I salute you all.

    I just seem to get so infuriated when these uninformed people spew mis-information with such authority that all I can do is let them go on being idiots.

    Again, I’m glad there are bloggers here that are willing to spend time and energy attempting to educate these moron’s. And I’m not referring to the individuals you ask pertinent questions, only the trolls who try to inflame the board.

    Thanks Again.


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    May 1st, 2009 (8:19 am)

    96 Adrian

    If you are sitting still in traffic, you will still use some energy due to the radio, heater/ac, pumps, etc.
    Once you get up around 50mph air drag becomes very significant. 80mph would have alot more air drag than 50mph. I dont know if the relationship is linear (i doubt it). I’d have to look for a formula online.


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    May 1st, 2009 (8:19 am)

    I read of review of the new Milan hybrid (very positive review) and it could be the best family car (not SUV) hybrid out there. So I ran some numbers
    MSRP (no options) – $27500 (reviewer said it was a $4k premium for the hybrid)
    using the city MPG, it would use 416.67 gallons a year @15k miles per year. That equates to $833.33 a year in fuel @$2 a gallon. The Milan equivalent gets 20 MPG in the city and uses 750 gallons a year, for $1500 a year in fuel costs @ $2/gallon. A saving of $667 a year or 6 years to pay of the initial investment of $4k for the hybrid.

    I see the Volt competing against the Milan (correct me if wrong) based on size. $27500 is a key number for GM to remember. If I end using 100 gallons of fuel in the Volt (figure trips into the country or just plain forgetting to charge up), that is $200 of fuel in a year or only saving me $633 a year in fuel versus a Milan. I can’t see a place where the Volt costs (~$4.4k or 633 x 7) more than the Milan hybrid if they want to sell it in numbers. If the Volt in the size is smaller than the Milan it gets worse for families to rationalize the Volt.
    Just another way to think about it.


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    Tagamet

     

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    May 1st, 2009 (8:25 am)

    “Too often we…enjoy the comfort of opinion without the discomfort of thought.”
    –John F. Kennedy (or Joe Biden)

    Lots of “empty barrels” on today making the most noise, but such is life. The Volt will stand or fall based on it’s performance and cost. The opinions of a stand-up comic and his followers are irrelevant.
    Be well,
    Tag
    Let’s just get the Volt’s wheels on…. some throats. (Did I say that out loud??)


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    Joe

     

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    May 1st, 2009 (8:27 am)

    From a duplicate Joe on this post at @42

    Whether he “wanted to hurt GM’s image isn’t clear” ??

    Uh, I think GM is “hurting” their own image pretty well without Letterman’s help. GM SUCKS! THEY SUCK! SUCK SUCK SUCK…

    Got it?

    Maybe if GM DIDN’T SUCK – Letterman would show them more respect.

    **********************************************************************************

    Someone else is using the name of “Joe” on this posting.

    Please Lyle, can you do something about this? This not the first time.

    My post is on line #78.

    Thanks, the real Joe.


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    May 1st, 2009 (8:27 am)

    #101, that could be the first big shock the PR people might have to defend. City people will be the majority of the buyers and they see stop and go traffic a lot. So when they see 10, 20, or 30 miles before the engine kicks in, what answer does GM have? GM must be prepared for this.
    I agree the effect is there, but how much? I think hour per charge based on driving habits (three catergories city, combined, and highway) works better for a Volt/E-REV. The 40 mile range doesn’t seem to work for both city and highway (driving 20 and 70 would seem to use different amounts of power).


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    May 1st, 2009 (8:27 am)

    101 Kdawg (me)

    I found a formula…. with out going into all the variables.. the force of the air drag is proportional to the square of the velocity. So there would be a big difference between 50mph and 80mph.


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    May 1st, 2009 (8:32 am)

    Volt should have had a diesel engine to be even greener. All ethanol fuel does is drive the price of corn and everything feed by or made with corn and corn by product upwards eliminating any fuel cost savings. A diesel engine would get better mileage (less fuel/oil) and therefore would give our enemies from Chavez to Iran less of our money while Hydrogen fuel cells are finalized.


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    May 1st, 2009 (8:34 am)

    105 Adrian

    I _believe_ GM’s goal is to get 40 miles on the freeway. It would be higher in city driving. There is debate wether GM would limit their range to 40, even if you were getting better range than that.

    Obviously if you have the AC cranked, stereo cranked, and windows open, you will not get the 40 miles. I think they just need to define the min requirements to get 40miles.

    107 Adrian – that’s the beauty of E-flex. You can use any type of range extending source, since the final power that drives the wheels is electricity.


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    May 1st, 2009 (8:39 am)

    101 k-dawg to Adrian, further Clarifications.

    In stop and go, you could run out of battery power if you need heat or A/C. This is true for any electric.
    If you are not running the AC or heater and assuming the radio is efficient, you will not use much energy in stop and go traffic since the electric engine is not engaged while you are stopped. With the Volts very cool adjustable regenerative braking (I don’t believe Tesla has this), you can capture back a good bit of your energy in this type of traffic.

    As far as speed goes, the faster you go, the more energy you piss away accelerating the air around you. Driving slower will give you more range (or better mpg in a gasoline car).

    The combination of Cd * A * 1/2 rho * V*V gives you the drag force on the car or the Force needed to accelerate the air around you as you drive..

    A is the frontal area of the car
    Rho is the air density
    V is the velocity (V*V is velocity squared)
    Cd is the drag coefficient (if Cd = 0.3 it means you accelerate a tube of air with an area of 30% of your cars frontal area up to your speed as you pass through the air).

    In engineering terms, the work done is the Force * Distance.
    So if you drive 10 miles, the work done by drag force (ie: energy used) is Drag Force * Distance.

    The idea here is that as you speed up, air resistance increases by velocity squared.
    If you double your speed from 30 to 60, the drag force quadruples, and therefore your work (energy used) to move the air quadruples. This energy is small at low speeds but really starts to build up at highway speeds. At speeds of 100 mph, many cars waste all of their horsepower just moving the air.

    Driving slower saves energy. You will get more range from an electric if you drive 55 vs 75 mph.


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    Texas

     

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    May 1st, 2009 (8:42 am)

    I think the best argument is simply that a Volt can be your only car while the Tesla cannot. The Tesla cannot go for more than a few hours of driving before having to be charged for many hours. It’s that simple.

    The Tesla (or any EV for that matter) needs new infrastructure to be able to be your only car (see Better Place). The Volt is ready to go the day it comes out. Ready to be your only love. It’s the perfect transition EV. All you GM haters, let it go.


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    May 1st, 2009 (8:46 am)

    Lyle, you don’t need to go on Letterman. You need to go on the Tonight Show. You and Jay could bash Letterman’s ignorance of the Chevy Volt. Now that would be great! I wonder if Leno would take that one on?

    Todd


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    CorvetteGuy

     

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    May 1st, 2009 (8:47 am)

    Chevrolet should refuse to supply engines and parts for Letterman’s Indy Racing Team. Or, at least pull any kind of sponsorship for his crew. We wouldn’t want his driver being seen in a ‘crap’ car.


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    GAYLER

     

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    May 1st, 2009 (8:47 am)

    Letterman is a spokesman for destruction of American industry. The goal of the Obama Administration is to nationalize all business so all power is concentrated in the government. Letterman is in the business of using the stage to try to weaken business so the process of takeover appears logical. Common sense will eventually take over but not until much damage has been done. The best way to shut Letterman’s mouth is to stop watching his inane show.


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    May 1st, 2009 (8:48 am)

    Regarding air-drag. Power required is proportional to the cube of the velocity.

    From Wiki
    Power
    The power required to overcome the aerodynamic drag is given by:
    Pd = Fd * v = 1/2 p * v^3 * A * Cd

    Note that the power needed to push an object through a fluid increases as the cube of the velocity. A car cruising on a highway at 50 mph (80 km/h) may require only 10 horsepower (7.5 kW) to overcome air drag, but that same car at 100 mph (160 km/h) requires 80 hp (60 kW). With a doubling of speed the drag (force) quadruples per the formula. Exerting four times the force over a fixed distance produces four times as much work. At twice the speed the work (resulting in displacement over a fixed distance) is done twice as fast. Since power is the rate of doing work, four times the work done in half the time requires eight times the power.


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    May 1st, 2009 (8:49 am)

    #96 Adrian

    I think the amount of energy taken in a set amount of miles under normal speeds is quite constant. The time factor would come into play if it was bitter cold [heater] or extremely hot [air conditioning]. With BEV this could be a problem but not with an E-REV Volt.

    Next—–Are the trolls bitter or what?


  115. [...] Link:http://gm-volt.com/2009/04/30/dave-letterman-bashes-the-chevy-volt-on-national-television-wvideo/ Tags: bashes, chevy volt, dave letterman, fact that most people, national television, range extender [...]


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    May 1st, 2009 (9:00 am)

    Todd @ #111 – Sorry, but I have to disagree. If Lyle can go on Letterman and get him to cede ground, then the Volt will gain even more credibility with folks who watch Letterman. Going on Leno and bashing Letterman would not accomplish that, and it doesn’t seem like Lyle’s style to me anyway.


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    May 1st, 2009 (9:02 am)

    Letterman is a spokesman for the destruction of American industry. He is a strong supporter of the socialist agenda of the Obama Administration. Letterman uses the stage to try to weaken American businesses so it appears logical when government takes the businesses over and further concentrates power in the government. The fastest way to shut an ignorant person’s mouth is to stop listening. This means not watching Letterman’s inane show. Buying GM products strengthens the US economy and make it less likely the US will be owned by foreign interests or the government. Letterman and other Hollywood types of his ilk don’t want this.


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    May 1st, 2009 (9:13 am)

    #99, Guido, “Charlie H, of all posters on this sight, you truly disgust me. Give me a call next time your in the Detroit area …. I’d love to give you some feedback face-to-face.”

    This certainly persuades me that Detroit cars are built by people who care about providing value and satisfaction to their fellow Americans.

    You should be nicer to taxpayers like me. Without us, the Volt would already be dead and buried.


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    Herm

     

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    May 1st, 2009 (9:13 am)

    My money is on a BEV with either a removable small genset or a medium size genset on a trailer. I dont think you need more than 10-15kw genset either. If you are going for an extended trip, start the genset the moment you get going, and keep it running when you stop for coffee and such.

    The genset will also do double duty for power back up in the house. You could also rent one from Uhaul if you dont have room to keep a small trailer.

    Perhaps you could just attach it to the back of the car somehow, but it would have to be light.

    Perhaps cars could come with standard attachements points on the rear, and then Uhaul could attach their genset to it.

    I think 75 mile E range should remove the range anxiety for daily chores.. but perhaps extra range packages be options when you buy the car.
    …………………………..
    #83 BillR Says:
    May 1st, 2009 at 6:53 am

    5) The market will decide which is better, BEV or E-REV. My money is on E-REV, and you are certainly welcome to buy a $100k Tesla so that at 15,000 miles per year you can save 100 gallons of gasoline (maybe 135 gallons of E85).


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    Van

     

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    May 1st, 2009 (9:15 am)

    Top Ten reasons not to buy.
    10) Tesla costs too much
    9) Model S costs too much
    8) Frisker costs too much
    7) First generation batteries costs too much
    6) Tesla can’t make it to Phoenix from LA
    5) Model S can’t make it to Phoenix from LA
    4) Frisker can’t make it to Phoenix from LA
    3) Next Generation batteries will hold twice the energy
    2) Lots of options will be available in 2012.
    1) Letterman


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    May 1st, 2009 (9:16 am)

    Sorry, but the Volt really is a toycar only fit for people who never leave New York and are stuck in a traficjam anyway. 40 miles range makes it pretty useless for anything but a short to medium comute to work and the occasional shoppingtrip.


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    anon

     

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    May 1st, 2009 (9:22 am)

    GM sucks and the Volt will surely suck as well. A whole bunch of suck.


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    Jonathan Cassidy

     

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    May 1st, 2009 (9:25 am)

    I recommend bombarding CBS with Feedback on this site:

    http://lateshow.cbs.com/latenight/lateshow/#

    Go to bottom of page for feedback.

    I have told them Letterman is out of touch.


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    nuclearboy

     

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    May 1st, 2009 (9:25 am)

    114. referencing k-dawg

    Kdawg. You are right about the power being Velocity cubed but we really are concerned about work done which is proportional to Velocity squared.

    The extra velocity in the power equation is cancelled out by the fact that at the extra velocity, you don’t have to work as long since you get their faster. Double the velocity and you halve the time you have to work.

    The real question is how much energy it takes you to travel a given distance. That is work. Work is proportional to velocity squared (see 109).

    115. Old Man.

    If you travel a fixed distance, the work changes by how fast you travel. You drain your battery more traveling 10 miles at 80 mph compared to traveling 10 miles at 55 mph.

    The range of the Volt traveling at 100 mph max speed may be only 15 -20 miles.


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    May 1st, 2009 (9:28 am)

    #122 Thomas

    Are you just trying to get posters to flame you or do you really not understand the E-REV system of unlimited range?


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    Tagamet

     

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    May 1st, 2009 (9:28 am)

    Quite the trollfest today.
    PDNFTT is usually effective, but they are feeding THEMSELVES (lol).
    Next thread.
    Be well,
    Tag
    /letters


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    May 1st, 2009 (9:29 am)

    I wish people would remember the significant dealer markup that the Volt is sure to see when they mention the “tax credit”. Given the severely limited availability dealers are sure to tack on a $5,000+ “limited release” markup.

    So keep that in mind when doing your 40k-tax credit equation.

    FWIW I’ve seen this happen in this area (DC Metro) on many limited availability cars (especially first release Priuses).


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    Guy Incognito

     

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    May 1st, 2009 (9:33 am)

    After having read some of the YouTube members comments on Lyle’s video “Response to David Letterman’s Bashing of the Chevy Volt” I now realize that as Volt enthusiasts, & as gm-volt.com being the defacto #1 source for all things Volt, we must redouble our efforts to dispel these horrible myths & rumors that are swirling around about the Volt.

    -We have to start an aggressive program to make it known to people that the Volt really is a game changer. That it really will further our goal of reducing/eliminating not just our dependence on foreign oil, but on oil altogether, be it foreign or domestic.

    -We need to get people to understand that if you drive 40 miles a day or less (80% of us do), you’ll never have to buy gas, and if you do drive more than 40 miles a day, your mileage will be almost a 100 miles per gallon.

    -Get them to understand that the Volt is just like any other car, that its as safe as any other car, that its as reliable as any other car.

    Its an uphill battle guys, we gotta’ get moving on this.


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    Ian

     

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    May 1st, 2009 (9:34 am)

    im sorry, who cares?


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    May 1st, 2009 (9:43 am)

    #125 NuclearBoy

    Exactly, That is why, at todays state of developement the E-REV is better for most of us than a BEV.

    But as sure as I am a Volt supporter, if I had money up the ying yang I would own a Tesla as well as a Volt.


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    May 1st, 2009 (9:46 am)

    Is David Letterman one of those people GM burned (alienated) with the EV1? If not, does he know somebody that was burned? GM generated a lot of animosity by aggressively pursuing EV1 for destruction (oh, I mean “recycling”). And just looking at the specs. the volt looks like a poor contender with 40 miles compared to the 1999 EV1 that was EPA certified for 140 miles all electric range using inferior NiMH batteries. Obviously GM can do better than 40 MPC without a range extender. I understand David’s animosity, I don’t even live in California and I think GM treated its customers like “insignificant bugs” (insert your own explicative here).


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    May 1st, 2009 (9:50 am)

    @65, DaV8or,
    >> “Joe” #42 through “Mikey” #59 (except Eliezer #53) = the SAME F-ING GUY!

    Yeah, pretty obvious there’s some shapeshifting going on there. Guess it’s time to lock it down and require registration for people wanting to post.

    I run a forum also, and I can’t imagine what a mess it would be if we didn’t require verified (and hence, REVOKABLE) membership before posting… *shudder*.

    @ #75 TED,
    >> Go Volt Go GM. Go Tesla. Go any company that will get us off of gas.

    Word! A rising tide lifts all boats!


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    Jeff

     

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    May 1st, 2009 (9:53 am)

    Simple – Letterman is getting old and the show isn’t what it used to be. Ridicule what you don’t understand and hope to bring the ignorant mobs (and ratings) with you.

    Get the Volt to the market and I will take two, thanks.


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    May 1st, 2009 (9:55 am)

    Lyle, here’s an idea:

    Call your contacts in GM and ask them to invite Letterman to test drive the Volt when it has the real skin on it, and they are happy with the swap from electric to gas. Just they should make sure the test drive goes 340 miles!

    Here’s another idea. I don’t know if Letterman and Leno make fun of each other, but if they do, then here’s a way for Leno to make fun of Letterman. GM give Leno the test drive and he can make jokes about Letterman as the Volt crosses the 40 mile marker.

    What was more painful watching Letterman was the way he got applause from that line. Strange thing is that he is saying we should already have had electric cars a long time ago, well Mr. Letterman, you’ve just done about all you could to derail that (not like I think you will derail it).


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    May 1st, 2009 (9:56 am)

    Another idea: if someone can get phone number of producers for Letterman’s show, we can all call it!


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    May 1st, 2009 (9:58 am)

    132 Randy C.

    GM COULD do that. Hell, make it go 1000miles on a charge. But people are already b!tching about the $40K cost. Who’s going to spend $125,000 on a car right now (other than Letterman’s)? The magic # now is 40 miles. Call back in 10 years.


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    May 1st, 2009 (9:58 am)

    Todd (#111):

    “Lyle, you don’t need to go on Letterman. You need to go on the Tonight Show. You and Jay could bash Letterman’s ignorance of the Chevy Volt. Now that would be great! I wonder if Leno would take that one on?”

    I wholeheartedly agree. If Letterman asks you to come on, it will be as his latest “running gag” (like Calvert Deforest “Larry Bud Melman” in the old NBC days); I don’t think you could trust him to treat you fairly. Leno would be my choice, too; and you needn’t even mention Letterman’s name on someone else’s show; just show him up by doing it right.


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    May 1st, 2009 (10:02 am)

    “Dave didn’t seem to know or care about the range extender or the fact that most people drive less than 40 miles per day, and of course Mr. Musk wasn’t about to point that out. All he was able to do was nod his head and say “right.””
    ——————————————————-

    Letterman intentionally hit GM with his bias. Letterman is about the most ignorant show host I have ever seen. I stopped watching him many, many years ago because of his had behavior and bias opinions. He is so ignorant as to be considered stupid. IMO.


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    May 1st, 2009 (10:05 am)

    124 Jonathan Cassidy

    Thanks, I left some feedback too.


  140. [...] about the range extender or the fact that most people drive less than 40 miles per day.Link source:http://gm-volt.com/2009/04/30/dave-letterman-bashes-the-chevy-volt-on-national-television-wvideo/ Posted by Andy B at [...]


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    May 1st, 2009 (10:09 am)

    Question:

    If the Chevy Volt raced the Tesla Roadster from LA to NYC, who would get there first?

    Top Speed Volt: 100mph
    Top Speed Telsa: 160mph?
    Range of Volt: 40mi electric, 250 extended range
    Range of Tesla: 200mi

    I know the answer ofcourse, but just highlights the difference between the two. Anyone w/some free time, let me know how many day’s later the Tesla would show up.


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    May 1st, 2009 (10:13 am)

    #33 Nevin

    “That’s all Dave was doing, was venting his frustration with a great American company like GM who have basically let America down by not adopting this sooner, thus making it cheap and affordable now”

    If GM had been able to eliminate 95% of the costs for the EV1 (which was a Million $+ per car, it would still be over $50,000 and seat 2…

    You know what…just drop the whole EV1 Crap…Can GM build a BEV..sure..are they on the 15 list..not htat you know… They are being transparent on THIS car…If you think GM is not interested in a BEV then think again…they haven’t talked about it..the Volt has the attention, but if you want a BEV, then eliminate range anxiety and make a truly useable car..fast charge and the INFRASTRUCTURE to support it..(remember thse posts about GM pushing for that? it aint for the friggin VOLT)

    #54 Brock (+ all you other names you used…)thank you for demonstrating complete ignorance on the Volt. I love to no trip idea..Lets see if you can wrap your pea around this..in A Tesla S you can go 180 Miles (unless you upgrade the battery) and require 24 hours to recharge..kinda kills any real trip..

    Rather buy a prius? not that its a bad car but that is as apples to hand granades comparison, …

    Aww why bother…you are on a GM fan site and make the blatantly stupid comment of “I wonder if there is a bias here towards GM”

    No more so than there is on a Toyota fan site, or a subaru fan site or a honda fan site to those respective products…


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    May 1st, 2009 (10:13 am)

    My email to Letterman

    Dave’s lack of knowledge and understanding of electric vehicles was demonstrated by his comments about the Chevy Volt. Not a lot of people have over $100,000 to buy a two seat all electric Tesla that requires over 8 hours of charge to drive not more then 250 miles. There are pluses and minuses with all vehicles but his unbalanced comments are not appreciated. Mr. Lyle Dennis of GM-Volt.com has offered to go on the show to discuss facts but I doubt if that will happen because the media seems to have no real interest in getting the facts straight. So tell Dave that I will make a point of watching other shows instead of his.


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    May 1st, 2009 (10:22 am)

    I heard watching the Letterman show causes cancer!

    (crap.. i’ve sunk to his level)


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    May 1st, 2009 (10:27 am)

    Letterman is a comedian, and he’s got opinions. Just shrug it off….

    Chevy shot their own foot off not investing in new technology and not addressing what their customers wanted.

    The EV-1 was scrapped because of pressure from people within GM were too heavily invested in the technology that it would have replaced in terms of consumable energy.

    I won’t shed a tear for American automakers… they want too much for their product and it’s inferior to what other manufacturers produce.

    They should have saved some of the billions they pumped into producing those “made in the U.S.A.” commercials in the 80s into making a better product.


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    May 1st, 2009 (10:33 am)

    This thread is funny – I dont really know how many people read the entire thread everyday like me but, as someone mentioned above. nearly all the negative flak on this tread is from the Same person. It is obvious by the same language and same writing style used over and over. This dude must have a lot of free time on his/her hands – possibly working for Letterman’s Staff???

    As for the questions about drag – the same is true for any vehicle – not only EV’s. A real world example – I have a 2006 Scion XB with 70K Miles on it. I typically drive 75 on the highway and get around 31MPG. Last summer I took a scenic route to visit my family and did the entire 435 mile trip on a single tank of gas (10.4 gallons used – this is a full tank in the XB) this is 41.83MPG Nearly the same as a prius on the highway. The only difference was that I drove 55MPH the whole trip. In possibly one of the worst aerodynamic vehicles on earth – I was able to achive over 40MPG, this is a real world example of how driving speeds influence range on any vehicles – not just BEV’s…

    GM – my 10K deposit is waiting for you earning interest every day…


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    May 1st, 2009 (10:34 am)

    Wow! The trolls are really out in force today….

    Here is how I look at it. If people think that the two Tesla models are the correct solution, and they have between $60K & $120K to spend on a car, then go for it! Exactly how many cars can they produce per year???

    But I would rather wait for a Volt, which will be produced in real volumes of at least 10K units the first year, and at a price that is affordable by many more people. Oh, and by the way, if you want to take a cross country trip in a Volt, it is not a problem. Try that in your Tesla…..

    The only problem with Lyle going on Letterman’s show is that Dave will do everything he can to cut him off and make Lyle and GM look bad. It would hardly be a balanced debate platform.


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    May 1st, 2009 (10:42 am)

    #146 Tarantulas (and everyone else bashing GM over the EV1)

    Elon Musk said on the show, in the interview, that the Lithium Ion technology was new. And that it was that breakthrough that enabled him to build an effective electric car.

    The EV1 was cost prohibitive, not only to build, but to maintain. I read somewhere that the battery had lasted three years in testing, but only six months on the road. And, due to expensive materials (which is not something mass production could fix), they cost $50,000 to replace. If GM had allowed people to keep their cars, by law, they would have been stuck maintaining them. And signing a liability waiver could have been a PR nightmare. Of course scrapping the program turned out to be the same thing. But they didn’t know that at the time.


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    May 1st, 2009 (10:43 am)

    Get on The Tonight Show with Jay Leno. Do it with one of the production intent versions of the Volt. Get GM to back you up on it and you and Jay can set Letterman and his minions straight. What a crappy segment, what a crappy bunch of BS from Letterman. I am so glad I stopped watching him.


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    May 1st, 2009 (10:47 am)

    Letterman flys to Montana almost every weekend in his jet. Who is he to talk about carbon footprint.


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    May 1st, 2009 (10:53 am)

    coffeetime’s law: The accuracy of information disseminated to the public is inversely proportional to the popularity (“celebrity status”) of the disseminator.

    When Letterman starting lamenting about the electric car’s impact on coal-burning power plants, I just knew that there would be no discussion on how nuclear and coal-type plants fall into the “base load” type of power plants, where they basically output the same amount of energy 24/7/365, contrasting with natural gas-fired turbine and hydro “peak load” plants that can start up and stand down as demand warrants. While increased electrical demand may very well fuel demand for more coal plants (and nuclear, wind, solar, etc.), the fact remains that electric cars will be recharged at night, where they can tap into some of the power that would otherwise go to waste from base load generation plants that never sleep.


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    May 1st, 2009 (10:56 am)

    This is going nowhere. This topic isn’t bringing much “intellectual” feed about Volt stuff and else people might expect from this website.

    Additionally, I fear this blog is aimed for Americans only. The rest of the world seems reduced at “terrorist Oil producers”, chinese and japanese. Poor. Nothing new tho.

    Don’t forget that, in any case, if GM falls into total bankruptcy, VOLT may fall… but not the VOLTEC! Remember OPEL and Ampera’s GM Volt’s sister? It sounds that majority of you seem more concerned about GM kept alive instead of the VOLTEC plateform being a breakthrough to the future of Automotive, which could be relayed under another brand.

    In a side note, what would be the next milestone for America in the next 40 years? discovering public transportation? There you get your 40 miles daily commute without the hassle of buying a car…

    Sorry for my bad english :-/


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    May 1st, 2009 (11:31 am)

    Just posted to the CBS Feedback Form:

    I thought David’s comments on the Volt last night were uninformed at best.

    The Chevy Volt (if it is produced) will have no distance limitation due to the onboard gas generator (ICE) used to power this electric car after the first 40 miles. I know in my current driving patterns, I would use that generator only occasionally on weekends. It is an electric car without the limitations of battery only electric vehicles, including the Tesla models mentioned on the show. Neither Tesla model could make it from my home in MA to see Dave’s show live in NYC on a whim (Round trip of about 400 miles).

    P.S. With all of Dave’s complaining about lack of electric cars, did he lease one of the EV1′s when it was available? Has he purchased a Tesla Roadster or placed an order for the Tesla S? Many of us simply want off foreign oil and both Tesla and Chevy (and all the other manufacturers) are partners (not competitors) in this.


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    May 1st, 2009 (11:34 am)

    #112: Chevrolet should refuse to supply engines and parts for Letterman’s Indy Racing Team. Or, at least pull any kind of sponsorship for his crew. We wouldn’t want his driver being seen in a ‘crap’ car.

    Funny in that I go to the CBS site to complain, and what am I greeted by but a large, full screen ad for a Suturn VUE. I wonder if there will be repercussions from this?


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    May 1st, 2009 (11:43 am)

    I think Dave was not entirely fair to the Volt project leaving out all the generator issues. Never the less both Volt and Tesla are going to stay niche products. The technology has to mature. The Volt looks like a really complicated way of trying to bring a totally new cutting edge battery technology into mass market. I don’t think both the market and the technology is there yet. Lets be honest – batteries still suck big time, they suck in my laptop, which lot 30% of it’s capacity in just over 12 months, they such in my cell phone (have to replace them every year) and they most definitely will such in the first electric cars. This is why GM essentially builds in a spare battery into each Volt and then is going to charge you for 2 more batteries upfront to cover the warranty. So basically Volt comes with 4 batteries 16 KWH each upfront.
    It is delusional to believe that Volt can be produced in hundreds of thousand at a loss and accepted by mainstream car buyers in the US. It will be produced, no doubt about that, cause Obama wants it. It will be sold in some states for few years until the whole thing is phased out as more and more BEV become available with better batteries and longer ranges. Meanwhile the more robust battery tech will slowly gain market share. A simple zero-to-low maintenance EV with robust battery, fast charge capable with range of 150-200 miles will take large market share in 15 years. Meanwhile I am very much interested in the development of the volt since I am very curious to know if this thing is technically possible to make and that the actual performance of the car will be in generator mode.


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    May 1st, 2009 (11:55 am)

    #153 Lawrence

    You’re right–most of the readers/posters on this blog seem to be either American or Canadian. The Voltec platform is built by an American company. And, yes, a lot of Americans care about GM. We like having jobs in this country. Just like I assume that Germans care about Opel, and their jobs. We also care about US taxpayer money. Just like I assume Europeans care about their taxpayer money. Am I wrong?

    No one here (or anywhere) is worried about European terrorist oil producers. In fact, I assumed that at least some Europeans shared our fears about oil money. If I lived in Europe, I’d be worried about Russia’s manipulation of the European oil and natural gas market. Apparently, I was wrong.

    But Americans are worried about what Saudi Arabia does with the oil money even if you aren’t. I think after 911, we have reason to be. And, yes, we think that Osama Bin Laden is evil. And, yes, he is funded with oil money. And, yes, we think that the Volt will help in that regard. If you think we’re being ethnocentric–that’s your problem.

    We do care about Voltec (and EVs) being the future of Automotive. And, I’m hoping that the Ampera (and the Volt) is built even if GM sells Opel and/or goes bankrupt. Because it does benefit everyone. But there’s no guarantee of that…


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    May 1st, 2009 (11:56 am)

    #146: Chevy shot their own foot off not investing in new technology and not addressing what their customers wanted.

    Maybe some customers, but they ARE making what many of their customers want, large trucks and SUV’s. Didn’t you read the sales figures just a few months after gas prices maxed out? TRUCK sales were up more than any other segment. We really need to change the American people’s thoughts on this topic before any of this makes a real difference.


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    May 1st, 2009 (12:03 pm)

    People will try to bash the Volt, but they all are Toyota Prius owners I am sure.


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    May 1st, 2009 (12:15 pm)

    It’s a shame that he felt the need to show his ignorance. It’s also a shame that many people still think Mr. Letterman is relevant. The video response is excellent. Let’s continue to educate the public.


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    May 1st, 2009 (12:28 pm)

    Lyle, your response would look much more serious if you would have used a tripod. Get one, they’re inexpensive (just make sure that you buy a video tripod and not a photo tripod, the difference is that video tripods are able to tilt the camera smoothly and photo tripods can’t do that).


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    May 1st, 2009 (12:38 pm)

    [...] extender or the fact that most people drive less than 40 miles per day.Read the full story here:http://gm-volt.com/2009/04/30/dave-letterman-bashes-the-chevy-volt-on-national-television-wvideo/ May [...]


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    May 1st, 2009 (12:38 pm)

    General Motors is doomed–regardless of how well the Volt does–and I am excited to see it’s demise. Before you get your panties in a twist, I am by far more excited to watch Ford die, and die it will. General Motors, Ford, and Chrysler have manufactured the crappiest cars on the planet for the last 50 years, and as much as they’d like you to believe otherwise, it’s their fault that at this point in time we’re looking at an electric car with a 40 mile range. (range extender? piss off)


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    May 1st, 2009 (12:42 pm)

    Herm (#120) hit the nail on the head. If you have a pure BEV and need to go on an extended trip, rent a small generator that’s pulled on a trailer and charge on-the-go. Why lug that weight around inside an E-REV ALL the time if you only need it for the occasional out of range trip?

    I have to admit that I’m jaded against GM, for the past 5 years I’ve written the various arms of the company asking for something fuel efficient. Every year they put something out, it comes up less efficient than the previous model year. I’m driving a 50mpg Geo Metro (91) and a 40mpg Saturn SL (99). I was on the list for a Smart Car, until I found out it only got 40mpg. I wanted a Mazda 2 deisel 70mpg (not available in the US). Every avenue for a new car that I find acceptable is denied in some form or another. I want my next car to have significantly better efficiency or I want to stop using oil altogether. If I can have neither of those, then my automotive budget goes into public transportation.

    Speaking of public transportation, the electric trolley system that was so popular in the last century, who’s demise was also ‘helped’ by GM: http://www.pbs.org/opb/historydetectives/investigations/410_electric_car.html

    and the show transcript: http://www.pbs.org/opb/historydetectives/pdf/410_electric_car.pdf


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    May 1st, 2009 (12:51 pm)

    Not to mention the Tesla doesn’t have reverse…


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    May 1st, 2009 (12:55 pm)

    156 alex_md

    You realize that GM is not using cheap laptop batteries like Tesla is right?


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    May 1st, 2009 (12:58 pm)

    147 Nick D.

    Correct. Isn’t that why they made it 55mph on the expressway years ago… to save gas? I dont know.


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    May 1st, 2009 (1:25 pm)

    #82 MarkinWI

    Chrysler’s bondholders are secured creditors. This places them firmly at the head of the line in a bankruptcy proceeding. No one is debating that. That’s why the administration offered them cash.

    And people are worried about the impact this will have on the credit markets, and the bankruptcy code in particular. Not just me.

    http://online.wsj.com/article/SB124113732498675505.html#articleTabs%3Darticle

    By the way, this will not help your grandmother if the employer she gets her health insurance from goes bankrupt. (Assuming the union in question isn’t as well connected as the UAW.) If they wanted to help out retirees with health insurance by altering the bankruptcy code, that would be fine. That’s how the law works. It would affect the credit markets, but people would know about in advance, and adjust the price of debt accordingly. But what they’re doing is making an exception based on the UAW’s political connections. And I find that appalling.

    http://www.nytimes.com/2009/04/30/business/30uaw.html?em

    As far as the bondholders–most older retirees I know favor the “buy and hold” strategy. And they don’t pay too much attention to the news. And many grew up regarding the “big three” as institutions. I know my grandmother finds the idea of a GM bankruptcy inconceivable. So, my guess is that not too many of them sold. But, of course, it’s impossible to know who has what.


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    May 1st, 2009 (1:25 pm)

    #152 Coffee

    “When Letterman starting lamenting about the electric car’s impact on coal-burning power plants, I just knew that there would be no discussion on how nuclear and coal-type plants fall into the “base load” type of power plants, where they basically output the same amount of energy 24/7/365, contrasting with natural gas-fired turbine and hydro “peak load” plants that can start up and stand down as demand warrants. While increased electrical demand may very well fuel demand for more coal plants (and nuclear, wind, solar, etc.), the fact remains that electric cars will be recharged at night, where they can tap into some of the power that would otherwise go to waste from base load generation plants that never sleep”

    Makes it seem like the Tesla is WORSE than the volt….


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    May 1st, 2009 (1:56 pm)

    A follow up to my range questions. I do understand the drag and the equation presented via the physics occurring. Gearing helps to overcome the drag where the RPM can be kept low even at 75MPH, and I assume the same gearing approach will be used in the Volt. Therefore the power to overcome drag shouldn’t need to be as high if a 6 speed trans is used.

    So, GM should make sure they present the mileage correctly. Cars in the south will use air about half the year, therefore they might barely ever see the 40 miles. It is about educating the people (tough when they go through American public schools) who would buy besides the initial group (many of you guys/gals).

    Granted GM might not be around if Unions and the government control the company…


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    May 1st, 2009 (2:09 pm)

    To me 250 miles is more than I would ever want to drive without stopping for rest, sleep, eat, etc. So basically after the first 250 miles for me it does not matter what is the remaining range. If the car can do 4-5 hours with average speed 50 MPH that should be enough. Never ever in my life I have driven the car for more then 5 hours straight. So for me and many people like me, if there is a socket at the restaurant, mall, hotel, swimming pool, gym I am all set to drive from Maine to Florida (not that I ever do this as long as jets still rule the sky).


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    May 1st, 2009 (2:14 pm)

    Here is what I sent to the feedback section of CBS commenting on David Letterman’s ignorance. It seems these comments would apply to some of the posters here also.

    David Letterman’s show regarding electric vehicles was a joke, right? How could anyone who is involved with automobiles be so uninformed?
    His comments about the Chevy Volt show how little he knows about the concept of a serial hybrid vehicle that goes 40 miles on battery only and then uses a tiny gas sipping engine to recharge the battery so that it can go as far as 400 miles on one tank of gas at 100 miles per gallon. I am so dissappointed with his remarks because I thought he was much brighter than he appeared on that show. Shame on him for misleading his viewers so blatantly just to get a few laughs.


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    May 1st, 2009 (2:27 pm)

    re: k-dawg

    I know, I know, new batteries. I sure hope they last longer then the laptop ones. The problem is we will not know that for a fact until at least 5 years after the Volt is out there.
    In medicine we are trained to only trust hard evidence, not what the drug company claims or even the data obtained from one or two studies. Way to many times after a new drug in cleared by FDA and hits the market it is not performing the way it was supposed to even after undergoing 10-15 years of testing and basic research.
    So though I am being very optimistic about the future of electric transportation I am not certain if it will take a form of REV. In my opinion it will take a major breakthrough or many years of evolution for the EVs to become cheaper, more reliable and better performing then ICE. (my guess 15-20 years).


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    May 1st, 2009 (3:14 pm)

    173 Alex – I agree on the future of battery tech. For me living in a colder environment, I would need a min of 250mile range., in cold weather, without worry of damaging the batteries. I dont want to spend 50k on batteries for 80KWH of power. My guess was also in the 10-15 year frame for this technology to get there. At least with the Volt they are doing accelerated testing 24X7 (something that you can do in engineering, not sure about in medicine). Supposibly, they are to get 10 years of use out of the battery in 2 years of testing.


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    May 1st, 2009 (3:17 pm)

    I understand a show has to be fun, but it doesn’t have to be that ignorant!

    There are lot’s of uncertainties ahead about energy costs, ecological costs, technology evolution and revolution in fuel-cells, batteries, (bio/renewable) fuel synthesis and refinery, regulations, taxation, etc. that’s not to GM alone to sort out.

    America lacks PUBLIC POLICY on energy, and even GM – the once greatest industrial empire – can’t do it where government and the people should.

    Even unpopular, Ford is right, you need higher taxes in gasoline and may be in oil/carbon. Current unsustainable oil prices are a kind of “dumping” against alternative energy sources and developers. People need to put their work, investments and effort where the solution to the problem is.
    http://www.autobloggreen.com/2009/04/22/bill-ford-calls-for-an-increased-gas-tax/

    Auto industry bashers don’t face the fact’s there are different roles to be played, and even though industry may have been lobbing the wrong side, “The People” (as in “We The People”) must act through congress and the administration to have their role played right.

    Even in a market driven economy, Legislation and Taxation set the ground for the markets and it has to be on COMMON PUBLIC INTEREST!
    The industry has to be profitable IN that context.

    Volt is no solution for GM’s immediate cash problems, but an efficient Flex-Fuel Range-Extended Hybrid, is an important option for the near future, as it uses the existing infrastructure with higher efficiency.

    The Plug-in option and the bigger battery modules sufficient for a typical daily use – those 40 miles – gives another option to source the energy for transportation.

    This Flex-Fuel Plug-in Hybrid goes as far as it gets to give choice (elasticity) to the markets, to adapt to practical fuel/energy source prices, even though it carries overheads (in price and weight).

    In some decades the best options will be sorted out, and the overhead won’t be necessary any more, but they are now.

    I truly believe that Volt’s proposition is right.
    1) Range-Extension, even though costly, is a must, for a general use car;
    2) FlexFuel ICE is highly desirable for E10-E85, or even to E100 as in Brazil;
    3) Plug-In-Hybrid, with batteries included and maintained by the owner is the best option, as opposed to Shai Agassi’s “Better Place” / Renault-Nissan where you rent them, or the miles used.

    Hope GM makes a great job (the execution is up to you) in bringing the technology in a practical and affordable way to the mass, and helps everybody in cleaning the environmental mess we are in, while having fun.

    ——–

    After that, I do need and recommend a bit of music therapy ;-)

    (http://www.lyricsdomain.com/26/zz_top/chevrolet.html)

    ZZ Top » Chevrolet Lyrics

    In a flat forty-one with my strat on the door
    We was goin’ to the country for what we came for.
    I’m sure you’ve smelled the trees in the air.
    The best of motor cruisin’s just the joy to get there.

    I was approachin’ simonton down by the cotton gin.
    There was old man berkman trying to flag me in.
    He asked if I would stay awhile and if I needed gas.
    I said, no thanks, anyhow I don’t drive too fast.

    Hallelujah, hallelujah,
    Ride my chevrolet.
    Hallelujah, hallelujah,
    Ride my chevrolet.

    I took the road down to cinco
    Through that red brazos river land,
    Done hit that freeway at sunset.
    Now the big city lights are at hand.

    Hallelujah, hallelujah,
    Ride my chevrolet.
    Hallelujah, hallelujah,
    Ride my chevrolet.


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    May 1st, 2009 (3:17 pm)

    170 Adrian

    There is no transmission in the Volt


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    May 1st, 2009 (3:18 pm)

    I have been following this site since I learned about the Volt back I forget how long ago… but I know it was when it was only a thought and pretty little picture

    I have also followed many other companies, including Tesla motors.

    I have been a silent reader in all of this, and the more and more I heard about the Volt the less likely I am to buy one now

    why is it two canadian students can take less then 700$ (canadian) and built an electric car that travels 9 to 15 miles on ancient lead acid batteries, meanwhile a major company like GM can only boast 40? there are not too many electric car companies, but there are many backyard inventors withought the big budgets who are pulling it off, imagine if some of them created a plugin electric with range extendor

    I am not bashing the Volt, I was genuanly very happy when it was announced, but now im just unsure, the cost in the short and long term are both substantial and there is no long term gain on it, its still more cost effective to purchase a hybrid.

    I am just really dissapointed in the car companies right now, and as much as they did unfairly make fun of the Volt, letterman after all is just trying to make people laugh, Tesla’s all electric cars, and the idea that you have to start expensive then mass produce to the world is often times how it has to happen, not everyone had a flushing toilet at first. and a range extendor in their cars would be riddiculous distance, so you could do that extra long trip, or just drive around town, and the charge time is roughly the same as the Volt… am I missing something?


  177. 178
    k-dawg

     

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    May 1st, 2009 (3:42 pm)

    177 Mike P
    “meanwhile a major company like GM can only boast 40?”
    ———–

    They could do more.. but it doesnt make sense to do it. 40 miles is their goal, as that covers 80% of all drivers. If you want more range, you will have to pay more. The estimate is approximately $10K for 16KWH which will reliable get you 40 miles. Do the math. Just because some people use some cheap batteries that work once, doesnt mean that will fly with a mass produced car. Even Tesla is using relatively cheap batteries. What kind of life do you expect on those. GM must make the car reliable gets 40 miles from the start of life to the end of life 10 years later. Let me see some kids do that for $700.


  178. 179
    Noah Nehm

     

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    May 1st, 2009 (3:54 pm)

    Here’s a tip for the management at GM:

    As soon as you get the actual Volt prototypes on the road, and after most of the technical issues sufficiently ironed out, you should get a team of engineers to make a cross-country road trip. (Detroit to LA on Route 66 or equivalent?) It would put to rest the idea that the Volt can only go 40 miles.

    It would also be an opportunity to put the Volt under the kind of stress only a long trip would produce.

    Oh yeah. And it would be fun too. What better PR could you have?


  179. 180
    Tall Pete

     

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    May 1st, 2009 (4:35 pm)

    Times are hard and people are struggling. They need to blame something or someone for their misery.

    AIG ? Who can really feel passionate for an insurance company / traders ?

    People are passionate about cars. GM bashing is the easy thing to do to vent some frustration. But let’s not skip to conclusions too soon because :

    1) Tesla batteries are not proven to last 10 years. Actually, I read many times that it’s assumed they will only last 3 or 4 years. If such should be the case, I’m not sure they will be considered heroes very long. Who knows exactly how seriously they tested the longevity of the batteries ? Laptop batteries aren’t exactly long lasting.

    2) A small startup selling a few thousand cars (hundreds at the moment) can make mistakes and people will forgive. GM does not have the luxury of failing AT ALL. It must work exactly as predicted or better.

    3) Although 20% of the population needs more than 40 miles of AER and might not see the Volt as enough of an electric car, a potential market of 80% of the population isn’t bad.

    4) Tesla is selling for 109,000$. How many can afford that ? Volt will be high 20K after tax break (hopefully) and still considered too expensive ?

    Come on people. Some will want BEV, some will want EREV and some others will wait for the technology to become cheaper. As long as we get this thing going, it will improve over time. Let’s focus and forget M. Letterman misguided comments.


  180. 181
    Mark Z

     

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    May 1st, 2009 (4:56 pm)

    The VOLT owners will get the last laugh while driving past an out-of-power Tesla on the side of the road.

    “Get a VOLT,” they will shout as they continue on their way.

    (One can hope that Letterman is sitting in that Tesla!)


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    Adrian

     

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    May 1st, 2009 (6:27 pm)

    176 k-dawg, really? I would have thought it would have had one. I guess I need to read the tech posts more often. :) I am surprised there is no gearing.


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    jdsv

     

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    May 1st, 2009 (6:28 pm)

    # 72 Bowie : ‘In all honesty, you and other supporters of the big 3 should be less interested in “debating” Chevy’s merits, and more interested in shutting up and being schooled by this guy. Last I checked, Musk wasn’t in line for government bailout money.’

    I’m a fan of what Elon Musk is doing. That being said..

    Tesla isn’t profitable yet, never has been in its history, and GUESS WHAT:

    http://www.nytimes.com/2008/11/30/business/30digi.html?_r=1

    They DID get in line for taxpayer money.

    NPNS!!!! =D~~


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    MarkinWI

     

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    May 1st, 2009 (6:34 pm)

    LauraM @168- I’ve seen the bondholders referred to as both secured and unsecured. I’ve also seen legal outlines referencing a higher status for post-retirement benefits as a form of delayed compensation. I know for a fact that wages (and many other things) are ahead of even secured creditors in line. So it is not at all clear to me at this point what the status of the bondholders will be in bankruptcy.

    My point about retirees was not that bankruptcy would be good for them. I just think that your portrayal of bondholders as retirees who have sat on their bonds is dubious at this point. You’d have to be really out of it at this point to not recognize that Chrysler and GM are in deep dog doo. Again the news accounts seem pretty clear that it is the hedgefunds and banks that killed the Chrysler deal, and I do not see how any individual bondholders would have the power to make that statement untrue.


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    Michael Robinson

     

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    May 1st, 2009 (7:32 pm)

    Letterman’s anger at the bailouts resonates in one sense. I don’t
    see enough money going toward hydrogen. Lithium ION batteries
    are awesome, but building a car around them is ridiculously
    expensive. We should be driving hydrogen powered ICE’s with
    battery assist now. Evidently, the hydrogen infrastructure that
    is needed to make hydrogen practical nationwide would cost
    about $9 billion. That’s not bad if it’s true. When I talk about
    infrastructure, I am talking about 6500 stations fueling 1000 cars
    a day. Evidently, the hydrogen used to purify gasoline could be
    used to power 135 million fuel cell cars.

    Go Chevy Volt hydrogen, pressured tanks and all. If the 350C
    to release hydrogen from a hydride problem gets solved, drop
    the pressurized tanks.

    One thing is for sure GM, you’ve got to get below $40k. Why go
    with a gasoline range extended vehicle when Tesla for almost
    the same price offers a pure BEV with a fairly decent range?
    Over a hundred miles, that makes a good commuter car.

    I’m not a fan of battery electric vehicles that don’t have a
    range extender. I want the range extender to be a fuel
    cell, but commercialization of fuel cell cars is still 4-5
    years away. GM, design the gas/electric Volt so that
    the range extender can be replaced with a fuel cell and
    hydrogen storage system. Make the roof a solar collector,
    most Volts will be sitting in open parking lots with sun hitting
    the roof.


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    batman!

     

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    May 1st, 2009 (8:11 pm)

    Aww…… just cuz dave letterman can afford a Tesla (unlike probably most of us) is maybe why he is biased towards the Tesla. Let’s face it; people like to show off thier wealth! I mean, there is no way im gonna buy a 100 grand car! Electric or not……Now, i dont kno if this is true, but here goes:Duz anyone onthis site wanna buy a 100k car?! I mean, if i could afford a Tesla, sure, I’d choose it over a volt anyday(no offense GM! but if i had a billion $s, id take the flashy sports car!) The thing is, the Volt is a better choice for the average working person. This is partially why David L., not being an “average working person”, u know with his show and all, likes to buy a more, um, average working talk show host(?) -type car.


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    Daniel

     

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    May 1st, 2009 (8:13 pm)

    Letterman threw free thought out the window a long time ago in favor of serving the cause of his social class…

    Incidentally he hasn’t been funny since, but he’s been really mean, if you find that funny then…well…I feel sorry for you…

    He is serving celebrity interests here…The Tesla is the ‘California Approved’ electric… And GM has been deemed evil-doers by Michael Moore, so they will never get a fair shake…a lot of this gov interference is directly due to that and I think deep down most of us know that….


  187. 188
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    May 1st, 2009 (11:33 pm)

    #184 MarkinWI

    Chrysler’s bondholders are secured. And, you’re right. Chrysler’s secured debt is held by banks, hedgefunds, and private equity funds. However, the money in those hedgefund and private equity funds includes pension funds, retirees, and charities. Yes, some of that money belongs to wealthy individuals, but not all. Regardless, they are by and large less sympathetic than the UAW retirees.

    But the law isn’t supposed to be about how sympathetic you are. It’s supposed to be about your legal rights. And you are right. Current worker’s compensation comes first. But calling the VEBA obligation “worker’s compensation” because it’s delayed compensation is a major stretch. And I doubt it would be very helpful. Worker’s compensation is expressly limited in the bankruptcy code to $10,000 per employee, and must be for wages incurred within either 180 days of the filing, or the debtor ceasing business.

    http://www.law.cornell.edu/uscode/11/usc_sec_11_00000507—-000-.html

    GM, on the other hand, has quite a few individual bondholders. But their debt is mostly unsecured. Some of their debt is secured, but not by particularly valuable assets, so any advantage is questionable. (GM is already giving away Saturn for free. The plant in Tennessee is newer, and therefore valuable, but since it’s in Tennessee, its very politically expendable.)

    But that doesn’t mean that they have no rights. Unsecured debt with the same priority is supposed to be satisfied pro-rata. That means the bondholders are entitled to the same amount as the UAW–per dollar owed. Which means they should wind up with more equity in the new GM than the UAW.


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    May 2nd, 2009 (12:43 am)

    I understand that many of you that are employees of GM are upset about what was said about your product and what was said about the Tesla product. I feel, as a Consumer, that GM has let me down. I currently own two wickedly old GM products. An 88′ pickup and an 89′ caprice. The reality is that I will be buying a car in the next year or so after my wife and I relocate. (I am finishing college and she is going to pursue her masters) I can’t buy a Tesla and I don’t plan on buying a GM product. It is obvious because of circumstance that I can’t buy a Tesla due to its sticker price but what is my alternative with GM. I am concerned about fuel economy because of potential commuting in the Wash/Metro area. I want to drive a GM product that can provide me with better fuel efficiency than a foreign product, but is there one? Let me know, I want to know!


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    Louis

     

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    May 2nd, 2009 (4:08 am)

    After reading these comments, I couldn’t help but think, “Odd unanimity.” For an Internet site, everyone seems to be on the same page, writing from the same perspective and agreeing with one another…a little too much. Am I correct that many of these comments are salted? Anywho, mileage aside, I think Dave’s best questions are related to timing–why aren’t we further along than this? A Volt, by 2011? By any measure, that’s pretty disappointing from a consumer product and environmental viewpoint. Why is America’s great auto industry so slow to turn?


  190. 191
    mdlnamemike

     

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    May 2nd, 2009 (4:56 am)

    Not a Letterman fan but I agree, even though the Volt seems to have a couple of good things about it, I can’t get over the 40 mile limitation that’s completely unacceptable and GM has dropped the ball.


  191. 192
    Tracy

     

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    May 2nd, 2009 (5:03 am)

    For a long time we have been slaves to the oil companies and much of our economy has been built around the infrastructure of the ICE powered vehicle. I personally was concerned with what would happen to all of the businesses within this infrastructure, mainly gas stations when battery operated cars took over. When I heard of the Volt and it’s concept of being a battery operated car which carries it’s own ICE generating system for when the batteries get low, I thought, wow this is the perfect solution to ease off of fossil fuels and give these businesses a chance to blend in by becoming battery charging /swapping stations or something on that order. My belief is that a big part of these govt bailouts are going to be funded with big taxes at the pump and $6 to $8 a gallon gas as it is in Europe is not out of the question. I hope everyone here has purchased their Volt by then because $40,000 a copy might buy you a clean used one when this occurs. Battery, hydrogen and superconductor technology still have some developing to do, the serial hybrid automobile and natural gas powered trucks are the best bridge to the future available at this time IMHO.


  192. 193
    Willi Schär; loves Tesla and Volt

     

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    May 2nd, 2009 (5:34 am)

    I follow this website already for a while (living in Switzerland). Actually I don’t really understand what people are so excited about. GM and all the other car companies were actually building the cars you consumers wanted to buy. Who of you over there in the USA cared for the gas millage of this oversized vehicles. Now suddenly things changed..(true cost of importing oil from friendly countrys as Saudi, Venezuela…) and all are screaming why didn’t they build the right cars!! Well it is because you guys wouldn’t buy this cars anyway. Just for your information my car gets a millage of 40mpg. The car before (VW Lupo 3L) roughly got 60mpg but was then too small for my expanding family. Of course this are Diesel cars. And the price at the pumps over here in Switzerland is roughly 8$/gallon, and that is close to be the lowest price in Europe. I heard you guys screaming until here when the fuel price in the USA reached 4$/gallon. Conclusion: I think Tesla is the greatest car there is, I plan to get one if my finance ever allow. And GM-Volt is the second greatest car, and probably will agree better with my wallet size. Go go Tesla…go go GM-Volt.


  193. 194
    Nate Gnau

     

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    May 2nd, 2009 (8:08 am)

    “48.
    ep Says:
    May 1st, 2009 at 12:44 am

    well, Lyle, you care to enlighten us on why was the EV-1 was pulled…?”

    Well, EP, Care to do a LITTLE research before trying to be a smart aleck…? The reasons for killing the EV-1 have been common knowledge for quite some time now. Look around next time, before you decide to spout off BS comments.

    Same goes for any of you EV-1 “fans” that decide to bring up the ire of all GM Supporters. And please quit beating this spoiled and long-dead horse!

    (I realize that by posting this, I, too, am beating a dead horse by even replying to these dumb, uninformed comments. Lyle, I apologize.)


  194. 195
    Mike D

     

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    May 2nd, 2009 (12:47 pm)

    Letterman looked like a tool when he pretended to get electricuted by the steering wheel. I know he’s joking, but it’s one of those jokes that makes someone look ignorant and stupid and like they don’t really know anything about cars to begin with, especially when it’s so bad that you have to SAY “ahhhh i’m getting electricuted!!” while you’re convulsing. If Jay Leno’s script people told him to do and say that, he’d go “No…that’s completly retarded.”


  195. 196
    Mike P

     

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    May 2nd, 2009 (1:56 pm)

    178 k-dawg

    700$ every two years, fully electric car, less maintenance. The more simple your machine, the less likely it is to break, ok, oil the electric motor, go ahead on your way, done.

    In the long run having cheap batteries to replace is still easier to maintain then having transmission problems, the pistons that can go and all the other joys a traditional gas powered engine provide, and just the fact that the volt has the range extender means it will have to be maintained in some way, the more I hear about the volt, it seems to be a shift into the right direction, but still relying on outdated technology. How many of us are slaves to regular maintenance on our cars and trucks?

    Hey stick a stick a solar panel glass roof on the Volt and you just extended the range on a sunny day when your parking it at the mall, would add a bit into the cost, but recharge it, instead they worry about adding a bit more horsepower to the backup engine, couldn’t a simple 49cc motor generate enough power? And if it doesn’t have enough power, how much power are we talking? Electricity prices do affect “MPG” in some way; you are just changing the order of the fuel source

    181 Mark Z

    Maybe tesla will add a crank :D hand power!!

    But then when the car has engine problems, how much will it be to find the expert car mechanic // electrical engineer? You have to make sure the motor generates your power properly, so your regular car problems just got more complicated.

    everyone don’t get me wrong, I am for the Volt, it is in the right direction, I’ve just seen too many idea’s get thrown out for mediocre solutions, because this site is proof that one persons persistent ambitions can change minds and idea’s, and today people are more interested in buying into an idea and a name more than an actual product, and the Volt is not available to the average person in its price range, it’s a mid size family who will buy this

    Meanwhile Canadian physicist john Hutchison has invented what he calls “infinite batteries” sure, not much voltage for a small one, they generate more energy in sunlight.. But they also give constant voltage in pure darkness. I do believe in desperation more creative solutions and far stretches of the imagination are what advances us, at one point the earth was flat, and we walked everywhere we wanted to go.

    Sorry Lyle, kind of deviated from the subject of your site, so I shall stop my post here, I am always following this site and the Volt with much interest

    -Mike


  196. 197
    Mike

     

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    May 2nd, 2009 (2:35 pm)

    all the morons that are bashing dave here are completely clueless. Dave is saying that all this should’ve happened over 20 years ago, and they’re only showing up with it now. Why? cuz teh fossil fuel industry completely ignored electric cars etc because they were making huge amounts of profit. Now that the oil prices & the crisis has surfaced, those huge profits are gone. SO now they’re jumping on the electric bandwagon. Dave is just furious over the fact that we could have done this decades ago and the technology could’ve been much better by now than what it is. The impact on global warming would’ve been insanely less than what it is now. Dave is completely on the ball here, kudos to him! I like him even more now


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    jdsv

     

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    May 2nd, 2009 (3:14 pm)

    Excellent wrap-up, Mike. I suppose the concept of a car like the Chevy Volt, previously ignored and now manufactured by ‘teh fossil fuel industry’, is evil and Dave was right to discourage us from buying it. Everyone should pass on this car and keep driving their SUVs until all cars are suddenly electrified.

    NPNS!! =D~~


  198. 199
    Mark Burton

     

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    May 3rd, 2009 (6:50 am)

    After seeing this interview, i think GM put the wrong man on TV. We all know that Letterman is an idiot and that he was always going to send this up. Elon Musk was not fluent in his answers and frankly, let Letterman walk all over him – the interview was just not fluent. I think that the concept of the Volt is brilliant, i just hope that they make them for us in England – it would suit our small island perfectly!!.


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    wwskinn3

     

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    May 3rd, 2009 (6:24 pm)

    Get him down there for a test drive. Who knows – he might love it. He’s not bright enough to hold on to a single train of thought.


  200. 201
    Donthegreek

     

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    May 3rd, 2009 (9:40 pm)

    I agree with letterman. 40 miles ain’t enough. Everyone i talk to…lots of blue collar workers i work with agree….we want to be able to go to the mall and back on nothing but electric power….so i want a 100 mile range at the very least…150-200 miles would be awesome!
    I think the average “joe” wants a lot more than 40 miles.
    And the average “Joe” wants this Volt afordable..if its over $30,000 it won’t be
    .And the revised sheetmetal is very boring to look at.


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    Donthegreek

     

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    May 3rd, 2009 (9:41 pm)

    Ohh. one more thing…many of the “Other” car manufacturers are already bragging they can beat the 40 mile thing….i guess time will tell.


  202. 203
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    May 4th, 2009 (1:55 am)

    @ Mark Burton : Where did I say that “the fossil fuel industry = evil”. It has nothing to do with good or evil, you’re just trying to make a joke out of my post. Dave isn’t saying you shouldn’t buy this car. The idea behind the car is good, but 20 years overdue. And now GM wants us to buy this sportscar to “help finance the refining of electrical cars”. Again, they should’ve done this years ago already. Doesn’t it make you mad that this is only happening now? We already could have had viable electrical cars by now, surpassing the ones that run on gasoline.


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    May 4th, 2009 (9:42 am)

    Lyle – I still say that GM should keep the SKY or SOLTICE as a 2 seater sports EV. This would be popular with single and couples with no kids. It could get approx 150 miles per charge. One company is already doing conversions of the SKY and claims that mileage. (I’m currently looking for a used one to convert). THIS WOULD GIVE GM ANOTHER NICH IN THE MARKET ESPECIALLY SINCE THEY ALREADY HAVE THE CAR. IF GM DOESN’T OFFER A SMALL SPORTS EV THEN SOMEONE ELSE WILL. I don’t want a mid size sedan – I want something sporty.


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    May 6th, 2009 (3:46 pm)

    Unfortunately, perhaps luckily, Letterman isn’t a forum for rational thought or logic so he probably won’t have Lyle on. If most his viewers realize he’s a tart when talking such drivel it won’t matter what he says anyway. That guy hasn’t been funny since he velcroed himself to the wall… now that was funny.


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    Tom

     

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    May 6th, 2009 (8:49 pm)

    #171 Alex MD – So for me and many people like me, if there is a socket at the restaurant, mall, hotel, swimming pool, gym I am all set to drive from Maine to Florida (not that I ever do this as long as jets still rule the sky).

    You don’t know your Tesla recharge times Alex, at the regular 120v@12a it would take 40 hours to recharge, at 240v@12a, it’s 20 hours. Glad you have all that spare time Alex.

    #201 And Donthegreek – so i want a 100 mile range at the very least…150-200 miles would be awesome!

    The Tesla goes about 200 miles for about $110,000. And you are complaining about the price of the Volt? How much are you willing to pay to buy your 150-200 miles? $110,000? I just don’t think so.


  206. 207
    buy your own engine

     

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    May 11th, 2009 (3:17 pm)

    ByrdbrainI guess you were taking a nap last time gas shot up to 45 in a few months? yeah, that will neeeeeever happen again.


  207. 208
    Why Does Tesla Keep Bashing the Volt? | FollowGreen.com

     

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    May 12th, 2009 (3:48 am)

    [...] get far more electric range, sometimes even leading people to believe that the Volt will have a total range of 40 miles. And, most recently, he called the Volt’s 160 horsepower engine [...]


  208. 209
    Why Does Tesla Keep Bashing the Volt? | Ethical Investments

     

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    May 12th, 2009 (8:45 am)

    [...] get far more electric range, sometimes even leading people to believe that the Volt will have a total range of 40 miles. And, most recently, he called the Volt’s 160 horsepower engine [...]


  209. 210
    EnergyByEarth.com » Why Does Tesla Keep Bashing the Volt?

     

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    May 12th, 2009 (9:39 am)

    [...] get far more electric range, sometimes even leading people to believe that the Volt will have a total range of 40 miles. And, most recently, he called the Volt’s 160 horsepower engine [...]


  210. 211
    UpDog

     

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    May 12th, 2009 (12:14 pm)

    Top 10 reasons not to watch David Letterman

    10 He talks from a position of celebrity unburdened by facts
    9 He doesn’t care if he’s accurate or not
    8 He’s willing to make Elon Musk guilty by association, when Mr. Musks comments don’t go nearly as far to the ridiculous as his own
    7 He’s willing to slam a car that many have their hopes and dreams (deservedly) pinned on
    6 He’s willing to insult us by telling us how to think
    5 He’s willing to demonstrate his own arrogance not once, but repeatedly
    4 He’s willing to set ‘the message’ of Detroit’s (America’s) technical progress back 4-10 years in the minds of many casual watchers
    3 He’s willing to spread a toxic message (that happens to be inaccurate) to millions at a time when a positive message (that happens to be accurate) wouldn’t be so bad
    2 He’s willing to sell out the work of thousands and the excitement of millions to appease whoever is in the chair next to him and sell advertisement space
    1 He lacks the cojones to have Lutz or our own Lyle on the show

    Question to the list:
    What were the products advertised during the show?


  211. 212
    pay per click keywords

     

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    May 14th, 2009 (4:38 pm)

    Good luck finding a hydrogen plant near home to fill up.


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    May 14th, 2009 (7:41 pm)

    wow. I suddenly realize why GM is in the financial straits it is. Too many people think like you and are completely ignorant about capitalism.


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    landtrust

     

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    May 16th, 2009 (12:32 am)

    haiduz. Your comment made me realize just how much Andy Kauffman would have loved to get on HDTV.


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    All Cars Must get 42 MPG by 2016 *cough* | Going Like Sixty

     

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    May 18th, 2009 (7:28 pm)

    [...] That’s about the only way that car makers can make this deadline. They will have to make more David Letterman endorsed (not) Chevy Volts and add more subsidy to make them even close to being affordable in order to rely less on gas [...]


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    political opinion

     

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    May 22nd, 2009 (12:44 am)

    yeah…. about that…Lets use electricity to produce some hydrogen then use the hydrogen to produce electricity! sound smart P


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    Mike Tesla

     

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    Jul 20th, 2009 (12:23 am)

    I hate to say it but Dave is right. I drive over 150 miles a day for work. A 40 mile range (20 in each direction) would hardly get me a third of the way to work. Usually Dave just disgustingly comments about teenage rapings but in this case he is on the money.


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    employee time management

     

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    Jul 22nd, 2009 (2:44 am)

    Yes…. Based on foreign technology… wake up young man. You have no idea about the auto industry.


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    DaveB

     

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    Aug 16th, 2009 (4:32 pm)

    Here are some “truth and facts” regarding the upcoming 2011 Chevy Volt being designed by GM (Government Motors?):
    BACKGROUND: the car Is being designed to be used only for short trips of 40 miles or less powered by a 375 pound 16kw Lithium Ion battery that has been restricted to 10kw and a 149hp electric motor. This provides about 4 miles of driving per kilowatt hour of electricity for a maximum of 40 miles. In other words the cost per kwh of electricity divided by 4 yields the electric only cost per mile. It has been estimated that this will serve the daily needs of most users going to and from work. The car is then to be plugged into a standard AC electric outlet and recharged during the night and be ready in the morning for another daily 40 mile trip. Learning from their previous electric car disaster the EV1, GM is also including a 100hp gasoline engine with 7gal gas tank that will drive a large generator that will power the electric motor directly if/when the battery can no longer do so. This is take place primarily when the driver continues to operate the vehicle after driving it for 40mi and not recharging it. The gas powered generator is not allowed to recharge the battery under any circumstances.
    PRICE. I do not know many people who are ready, willing and able to pay $40,000 for a small car to drive back and forth to work on a daily basis especially when they learn what the “real” mileage figures are. Sure there are a few that will buy it but not nearly enough to make this product profitable. And all of the current “hype” that it gets 230mpg is all smoke and mirrors as new measurement standards are still being developed by the EPA.
    ELECTRICAL RATES SUMMER: Most areas of the country have “tiered” electrical rates based upon the monthly amount of usage and the time of year. During the middle of summer in CA electricity costs $.115 for each of the first 338kwh (Tier 1), $.131 for each of the next 101kwh (Tier 2) and $.259 for each of the next 237kwh (Tier 3). After using 439kwh of electricity for the month Tier 3 level is easily reached due to AC requirements. Any additional usage such as charging an electric car would be at the $.259kwh rate.
    ELECTRICAL RATES WINTER: are $.115 for each of the first 403kwh (Tier 1), $.131 for each of the next 121kwh (Tier 2) and $.247 per each of the next 283kwh (Tier 3). After using 524kwh of electricity for the month Tier 3 level is easily reached due to heating requirements. Any additional usage such as charging an electric car would be at the $.247kwh rate.
    ELECTRICAL MILEAGE: using the data above it will cost me about $.0625 per mile ($.25kwh divided by 4 miles per kwh = $.0625) which “equates” to about 48mpg in gasoline terms with gas at $3.00 per gallon. Today’s gasoline prices are going down and electric rates going up putting a damper on the long term outlook for all electric cars. Additionally, charging a Volt on a daily basis will add 300kwh of monthly electrical usage to your bill for a total of $75.00
    GASOLINE MILEAGE: When driven more than 40 miles the Volt is no better than most hybrids on the market today that cost a whole lot less and deliver about 50mpg. If used in this mode it would be more efficient to remove the large battery, generator and electric motor and run directly from the gas engine. Of course this would defeat the whole purpose of this design.
    DUAL SYSTEM: when everything is running according to plan the gasoline engine, tank and generator are “excess baggage and costs” used only for an emergency. I think that it would be a lot smarter to eliminate them and have warning lights indicating when the battery is getting low and will need recharging. The EV1 was too limited in mileage for this to be effective.
    LONG TRIPS: if the driver wishes to use this car for trips longer than 40 miles or on vacation the battery becomes 375lbs of “excess weight” and there is no easy way to temporarily remove it for this usage. I think that GM should include a switch that will allow the driver to recharge the battery while driving more than the 40 mile limit making it more like all of the hybrid vehicles that are now available.
    DAILY RECHARGING. most people are not going to like having to plug in their car every night to recharge it especially in the winter or when it is raining. Additionally many drivers do not have easy access to an AC outlet, especially those who live in apartments and some condominiums.
    LITHIUM ION BATTERY: we have all been using these for the last 10 years in our cell phones and laptop computers and I have not experienced one to last more than 3 years with good functionality. And we do not subject these devices to outdoor summers of Arizona or winters of North Dakota. The battery in the Volt costs about $8,000 and will have to be replaced about every 3 years regardless of what the warrantee states. GM will not be able to continue to support or sell additional Volts until this problem is solved which will require a totally new design which is being partially funded by our government at this time. The question that needs to be answered is when does the battery go bad? When you can only drive 39, 38, 35, 30 … miles before it needs to be recharged?
    DEPRECIATION: With technology changing so rapidly the value of a 2011 Volt will decrease rapidly but what else is new?
    SUMMARY: There is one option that could make the Volt a viable method of transportation. That would be the use of Solar panels to provide the electrical power needed. A home PV system with a minimum of 2kwh of peak power should pay for itself within a few years at the Tier 3 rate for electricity. During the day this system should be able to store enough power to recharge your car at night for no cost. Additionally, if corporations would install solar systems in their parking lots employees could charge their vehicles during the day while they are at work. Of course all of this only works in areas of the country that receive enough sunshine throughout the year.


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    john

     

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    Sep 6th, 2009 (2:08 am)

    Don’t read this mile long of comments.

    GM (Govt motors) is FAIL

    Don’t buy that crap.