Nov 13

Report: New Buick Regal Will be First to Get GM’s New Hybrid Drivetrain, and Possibly Plug-in

 
2011 Buick Regal

2011 Buick Regal

[ad#post_ad]GM is set to launch a brand new version of its classic Buick Regal sedan.

Discontinued in 2004, the new Regal is a rebadged and slightly redesigned version of the Opel Insignia which is already popular in Europe.  The new Regal which will begin selling next year in the US as a 2011 model will initially be built in Germany for its first 12 to 15 months of production.  It will begin production in North America in 2011.

According to a report in Wards’ Auto, GM will begin production of a mild-hybrid version of the Regal later that year.  This would then be the first vehicle GM makes using its second-generation belt/alternator/starter or BAS+ hybrid system.  The system is reported to achieve 20% increase in fuel economy over standard gas versions of the vehicle.

The new BAS+ system has a 120 V lithium ion pack made by Hitachi and, takes up 24% less space, has 40% less mass, and has 33% more power than the current system, such as the one found in the Malibu Hybrid. That car was discontinued due to weak demand. The new system has slow speed EV only operation, electric assist during acceleration and engine off at stops.

The Regal will launch initially with a 2.4 L 4-cylinder direct injection engine. A 2.0 L turbo model, expected achieve 30 mpg on the highway will follow next year.

Jim Frederico, the Regal’s vehicle line director told Ward’s that the car has the appropriate dimensions to house not only the BAS+ system but also the upcoming 2-mode plugin drivetrain as well.

That drivetrain was initially intended for the Saturn VUE. After Saturn was terminated, GM next said it would appear in a similar-sized small Buick SUV. After those plans were also scrapped from negative public feedback GM hasn’t announced where the drivetrain would debut.

Placing it in this mid-sized sedan may be just the right solution.  What do you think?

Source (Wards Auto, subscription required)

2nd Generation GM BAS+ System

2nd Generation GM BAS+ System

This entry was posted on Friday, November 13th, 2009 at 10:07 am and is filed under Hybrid, New Car. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. Both comments and pings are currently closed.

COMMENTS: 141


  1. 1
    stuart22

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    Nov 13th, 2009 (10:11 am)

    Good news – the Regal name is a good one for GM to bank on; I’m happy they are keeping Buick in their plans for the future. In the long run it’ll pay off.


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    ziv

     

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    Nov 13th, 2009 (10:14 am)

    Buick builds quality vehicles, but they need to do more to shed their Old Peoples Car image. The Voltec option would be a better choice for the Regal, rather than the BAS.
    Grin


  3. 3
    Koz

     

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    Nov 13th, 2009 (10:15 am)

    “Placing it in this mid-sized sedan may be just the right solution. What do you think?”

    I don’t think it is. Towing capability is the differentiating value for two-mode. Otherwise, they are competing head to head with strong hybrids and efficient ICE only solutions. Unless they have SUBSTANCIALLY reduced the price of the two-mode drivetrain, these are destined for low volume and bad press. The BAS 2.0 could sell if the premium is @$2000 or less.


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    Herm

     

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    Nov 13th, 2009 (10:17 am)

    Finally we see the new BAS +, is it correct that its only 30% more power than the older BAS?.. I had thought it would double the power, this will limit the possible mpg improvements.

    Are people willing to pay the cost of this option?.. a 20% improvement on a car that already gets 30mpg would result in 36mpg.


  5. 5
    nuclearboy

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    Nov 13th, 2009 (10:23 am)

    Placing it in this mid-sized sedan may be just the right solution. What do you think?

    I think that is great… The two mode plug in option has been rumored to get into the neighborhood of 60 mpg for the first 20 or 30 miles (until the battery is depleted) at which point it would get the standard hybrid mileage rates.

    Similar to the thinking behind the volts limited EV range, the limited 60 mpg range would be great for many drivers who are willing to plug in each night to save fuel the next day.

    I would definitely consider it as a comfortable commuter car.

    The issue will be the cost. Can GM do this at a reasonable price premium?


  6. 6
    Jim I

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    Nov 13th, 2009 (10:28 am)

    This one is strictly about the price. If the cost to purchase the BAS+ is not immediately justifiable in savings, then there will be no demand. Taking the mileage from 21 mpg to 25 mpg (20%) will not be enough of an increase to spend several thousand dollars more for the same vehicle.

    It is not like the Volt, where it is an entirely new transportation system, with a long term future, and the possibility of cutting out almost all gasoline consumption for daily transportation needs. People will be willing to spend more for that type of a vehicle.

    JMHO

    NPNS :-)


  7. 7
    Flaninacupboard

     

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    Nov 13th, 2009 (10:29 am)

    Interesting it will be built in Germany to begin with. The Insignia is a nice car, hopefully it’s euro styling will go over well (it should, america is pretty used to mercs and beemers by now) and it brings us a step closer to real world cars, which will save us all money in the long run.

    Not sure the BAS+ is strong enough to really be a marketing boon though, the upcoming twin-turbo diesel will use less fuel, and cost less. the 2 mode plugin could be interesting though…


  8. 8
    LauraM

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    Nov 13th, 2009 (10:33 am)

    GM is producing in Germany to sell in America? I don’t see how they can make money on that given the value of the dollar vs. the Euro.

    They do need a competitor for the Prius and the Ford Fusion Hybrid though. I would have thought they would be better of putting the new hybrid system in the Malibu though. Maybe they don’t want people to confuse it with the previous weak mpg gain of the previous Malibu hybrid?


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    Loboc

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    Nov 13th, 2009 (10:43 am)

    I doubt that BAS (or BAS+) will help sell cars. The difference in MPG just doesn’t justify the difference in cost and complexity.

    The 2-mode is looking like a better solution since the AER will be higher.

    Rather than BAS, E85 should be the push. E85 will offset more foreign oil than a 30% increase in MPG.


  10. 10
    Herm

     

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    Nov 13th, 2009 (10:50 am)

    Loboc: Rather than BAS, E85 should be the push. E85 will offset more foreign oil than a 30% increase in MPG.  

    I agree every car made should be E85 capable, also methanol and butanol compatible if it can be done please.

    There wont be much oil displacement unless the US gets heavy into coal-to-liquids production.. I still prefer electrification.

    I really dont thinkwe will see too many of these systems on the road, it has to cost around $2k to $4k at least. Perhaps if they paired with atkinson cycle engines.


  11. 11
    Randy

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    Nov 13th, 2009 (10:52 am)

    30MPG HWY with a 2011 hybrid THats ridiculous I was getting 33MPG Hwy in the 90s with a giant dodge intrepid.


  12. 12
    Tagamet

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    Nov 13th, 2009 (10:53 am)

    Loboc: I doubt that BAS (or BAS+) will help sell cars. The difference in MPG just doesn’t justify the difference in cost and complexity.The 2-mode is looking like a better solution since the AER will be higher.Rather than BAS, E85 should be the push. E85 will offset more foreign oil than a 30% increase in MPG.  

    I agree with you in large part, *but* don’t we need to be doing *everything* we can, as soon as we can. They are not mutually exclusive steps – we need to do it all at one time to get where we need to be.
    JMO

    LauraM
    I agree about the confusion about starting the mfg in Europe given the dollar’s status (or lack thereof)
    Be well,
    Tagamet

    Let’s Just Get The Volts’ Wheels On The Road!!**********NPNS


  13. 13
    Tom M. S.A. Tex.

     

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    Nov 13th, 2009 (10:56 am)

    Very clean looking auto, BUT ! Until we start seeing milage in the 40 + mpg. it is going to be a difficult journey selling in this market.This will not be an inexpensive vehicle competing in a area with a lot to choose from.

    God Bless America,
    Tom


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    Tagamet

     

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    Nov 13th, 2009 (10:58 am)

    I wonder how mpg will be tested in stop and go traffic on vehicles that shut off when stopped. Did the commuter have to sit for 1 minute or an hour, the latter saving more gas. I’m just curious.
    Be well,
    Tagamet

    Let’s Just Get The Volts’ Wheels On The Road!!**********NPNS


  15. 15
    dagwood55

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    Nov 13th, 2009 (10:59 am)

    From the article: “Jim Frederico, the Regal’s vehicle line director told Ward’s that the car has the appropriate dimensions to house not only the BAS+ system but also the upcoming 2-mode plugin drivetrain as well. That drivetrain was initially intended for the Saturn VUE. After Saturn was terminated, GM next said it would appear in a similar-sized small Buick SUV. After those plans were also scrapped from negative public feedback GM hasn’t announced where the drivetrain would debut.”

    Hmmm… I happen to know that GM was having a hard time fitting that system, with a battery big enough to be useful, into a Saturn Vue. Just how well is all that extra hardware going to work in a mid-size sedan?


  16. 16
    hermant

     

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    Nov 13th, 2009 (11:02 am)

    I think that a 20% increase in fuel efficiency is probably enough to justify the additional cost. I am assuming that the option price will come in around $2000 like the version 1 package did. This will justify the upcost in less than half the average life of the vehicle based on fuel savings alone.

    That is plenty enough economic justification for an engine upgrade. I base this on the upcost of diesel engines in modern 3/4 and 1 ton pickups. The upcost is about 15-20% and the cost per mile savings is about 25-30%. Many folks choose the upgrade and it continues to be offered by all three big American manufacturers.


  17. 17
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    Nov 13th, 2009 (11:02 am)

    Loboc: I doubt that BAS (or BAS+) will help sell cars. The difference in MPG just doesn’t justify the difference in cost and complexity.The 2-mode is looking like a better solution since the AER will be higher.Rather than BAS, E85 should be the push. E85 will offset more foreign oil than a 30% increase in MPG.  (Quote)

    In town, an effective and inexpensive BAS system could save a lot of fuel. The problem with BAS-I was that it was very expensive (you could buy a Prius for much less than a Malibu hybrid) and absurdly weak, so it offered very little real-world improvement.

    There’s no reason that BAS-II wouldn’t be a really good choice for quite a number of customers. In particular, GM has to keep the cost under control.


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    omnimoeish

     

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    Nov 13th, 2009 (11:05 am)

    Koz: “Placing it in this mid-sized sedan may be just the right solution.What do you think?”I don’t think it is. Towing capability is the differentiating value for two-mode. Otherwise, they are competing head to head with strong hybrids and efficient ICE only solutions. Unless they have SUBSTANCIALLY reduced the price of the two-mode drivetrain, these are destined for low volume and bad press. The BAS 2.0 could sell if the premium is @$2000 or less.  

    That’s exactly what I was thinking as I read it. If I read this right, the 2.0L DI engine will get 30 mpg on the highway? Which leads me to believe the 2.4L DI engine will get probably 27-28ish? The Buick Lacrosse already gets near 30 mpg on the highway with no hybrid technology and 3.0L DI engine (with more power), and no lithium ion battery to worry about failing. So they are basically competing within their own brand! This isn’t even Saturn competing with Chevy competing with Pontiac anymore.

    On top of that you’ve got the Ford Fusion which easily beats this thing in mpg and the Prius that mops the floor with them. Should’ve gone with the SUV.


  19. 19
    dagwood55

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    Nov 13th, 2009 (11:06 am)

    Tagamet: I agree with you in large part, *but* don’t we need to be doing *everything* we can, as soon as we can. They are not mutually exclusive steps – we need to do it all at one time to get where we need to be.JMOLauraMI agree about the confusion about starting the mfg in Europe given the dollar’s status (or lack thereof)Be well,TagametLet’s Just Get The Volts’ Wheels On The Road!!**********NPNS   (Quote)

    So, we should do everything we can, yet you require a plug or you won’t buy into it?

    Further, doing “everything we can” in aid of what? Reducing imported oil use? Reducing CO2 emissions? What’s your goal? Whatever your goal may be, there are probably more cost-effective means towards achieving it than a slavish devotion to electric vehicles.


  20. 20
    Herm

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    Nov 13th, 2009 (11:07 am)

    LauraM: GM is producing in Germany to sell in America? I don’t see how they can make money on that given the value of the dollar vs. the Euro.

    Just until they can get production going.. apparently Buick dealers are starving for new products. This may be the downmarket version of the LaCrosse for trifty senior citizens.

    Some good news, apparently the pay Czar is willing to allow GM to hire NEW managers and pay them more than $500k.. maybe they can hire some top talent.


  21. 21
    Herm

     

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    Nov 13th, 2009 (11:07 am)

  22. 22
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    Nov 13th, 2009 (11:10 am)

    hermant: I think that a 20% increase in fuel efficiency is probably enough to justify the additional cost. I am assuming that the option price will come in around $2000 like the version 1 package did. This will justify the upcost in less than half the average life of the vehicle based on fuel savings alone.

    The battery pack is probably under 2kwh, that alone has to cost GM $2k.. and then you have the other gear.


  23. 23
    Vincent

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    Nov 13th, 2009 (11:13 am)

    Build the Riviera Concept Phaaaleezze.

    30 mpg is a complete joke. I get that in an older Audi A4 with all wheel drive.

    Is this the same genius that wanted to build the seriously ugly Buick SUV that got killed of.
    Is the Aztek guy still working in GM.

    The more I read things like this the more Fritz looks like the guy on Monopoly.

    Yes Buick needs more vehicles…but this is just stupid.
    Build the freakin Riviera idiots.


  24. 24
    Schmeltz

     

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    Nov 13th, 2009 (11:33 am)

    This is a handsome sedan and I think it is a plus for the Buick portfolio. My guess on the manufacturing in Europe issue is that GM will soon find a North American plant to roll these out in a year or two. It may be just plain logistically easier to make these in Europe in the beginning since they are already making the Insignias there and have momentum. Just a guess on my part.

    As for the hybrid platform, even though it sounds better than the first generation BAS system, I still don’t know if that is good enough. You are probably looking at a 6-8 mpg advantage to the hybrid vs. regular 4 cylinder. That’s nothing to sneeze at but still is difficult to justify for a few thousand extra dollars and added complexity when gas is under $4.00/gal. Not knocking it, but I just think it is still a hard sell.

    The potential for a Plug-in version may be the makings of a head turner. This news suprises me as I thought the logical choice to make a plug-in would be the Chevy Equinox. Still hoping they indeed deliver a plug-in Equinox, (and Traverse but I digress). Bottom line, GM is doing some interesting things with Buick, and I’m liking it so far.


  25. 25
    CorvetteGuy

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    Nov 13th, 2009 (11:34 am)

    GM should not waste time and money developing any new vehicle that delivers less than 35 MPG. Any existing model should be looking forward to improved systems that push them up to or above 40 MPG.

    I’m sure it’s a nice car, but the Malibu Hybrid boasted a mere 1 or 2 MPG better than the regular model and sales were poor. I hope this one can show at least 25% IMPROVEMENT over the standard model.

    One more thing: If they promote it with TV commercials featuring Tiger Woods, I’m gonna puke.


  26. 26
    dagwood55

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    Nov 13th, 2009 (11:36 am)

    LauraM: GM is producing in Germany to sell in America? I don’t see how they can make money on that given the value of the dollar vs. the Euro.They do need a competitor for the Prius and the Ford Fusion Hybrid though. I would have thought they would be better of putting the new hybrid system in the Malibu though. Maybe they don’t want people to confuse it with the previous weak mpg gain of the previous Malibu hybrid?  (Quote)

    That same thought (euro production vs dollar sales) had occurred to me. GM had the same issue with the Saturn Astra. I have always wondered what the profitability of that vehicle was.


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    dagwood55

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    Nov 13th, 2009 (11:43 am)

    LauraM,

    Also, I agree that the Malibu would be a better candidate. If the Buick brand is going to be about luxury, let’s not confuse that while GM attempts to re-establish it as a luxury brand, rather than as God’s Waiting Room brand.

    But, note I said, “better.” I think it would be better still to have a purpose-built hybrid, like the Prius. That’s a no-compromises design and the interior dimensions, utility and fuel economy were all maximized.

    The engineers at Toyota aren’t magicians and they’re probably not any smarter than the engineers at GM. GM just has to set this as a priority, if it’s going to happen. But it won’t until Lutz (or his replacement) decides to take hybrids and small cars seriously and put some serious money into development.


  28. 28
    CaptJackSparrow

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    Nov 13th, 2009 (11:43 am)

    “That car was discontinued due to weak demand.”

    Translation….
    That hybrid was a piece of sh|t that nobody wanted to buy….
    OR
    That hybrid had sh|tty mpg for the premium….


  29. 29
    CaptJackSparrow

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    Nov 13th, 2009 (11:48 am)

    CorvetteGuy: GM should not waste time and money developing any new vehicle that delivers less than 35 MPG. Any existing model should be looking forward to improved systems that push them up to or above 40 MPG.

    I’m sure it’s a nice car, but the Malibu Hybrid boasted a mere 1 or 2 MPG better than the regular model and sales were poor. I hope this one can show at least 25% IMPROVEMENT over the standard model.

    One more thing: If they promote it with TV commercials featuring Tiger Woods, I’m gonna puke.

    I agree. Any “Hybrid” that get’s below 40MPG is gonna lead to crappy sales. Why in the world would you build a “Mild” hybrid? Cmon, get those MPG’s up! Make a 45MPG Spark!

    Also, any more Howie Long commercials and i’ll puke!


  30. 30
    BillR

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    Nov 13th, 2009 (11:50 am)

    First, the 2.4L engine is the more fuel efficient, while the 2.0 is turbocharged.

    http://www.gminsidenews.com/forums/f70/buick-unveils-2011-regal-sport-sedan-86053/

    I agree with a prior comment, I believe the BAS+ has about 3 times the power of the old BAS, not 33% more.

    If the projected 20/30 mpg with the 2.4L is correct, with the BAS+ this might be 26/34. But this is no better than the current Malibu hybrid!! (note that ave. mpg of ~25 was increased by 20% to ~30 mpg).

    Which makes me wonder how the Equinox with the same engine gets 22/32? To me, this car should get 26/36 in base form, and the BAS+ should kick it up to 32/40.

    I guess we shall see if this BAS+ is worth much.


  31. 31
    Dave K.

     

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    Nov 13th, 2009 (11:52 am)

    CorvetteGuy: should not waste time and money developing any new vehicle that delivers less than 35 MPG

    Most hybrid shoppers with a sticker of 30k in mind want 40+ mpg. I honestly feel 40 is the magic number.

    Car shoppers who are moving up from already owning a hybrid seek new technology like the Voltec extended range electric Volt. Or possibly a VERY strong BEV.

    The saving grace of the new Regal is that it is a Buick Regal. Other than this the introduction is pretty much a non event. JBH

    =D~


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    Vincent

     

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    Nov 13th, 2009 (11:56 am)

    CorvetteGuy: GM should not waste time and money developing any new vehicle that delivers less than 35 MPG. Any existing model should be looking forward to improved systems that push them up to or above 40 MPG.I’m sure it’s a nice car, but the Malibu Hybrid boasted a mere 1 or 2 MPG better than the regular model and sales were poor. I hope this one can show at least 25% IMPROVEMENT over the standard model.One more thing: If they promote it with TV commercials featuring Tiger Woods, I’m gonna puke.  

    Ditto on Tiger woods. Get a cool celebrity that Rocks. No more conservative approach. Get a hot babe on there. Sex sells. Tiger is great but keep his geriatric age group driving golf carts. Not that some mature people don’t look fantastic and not cool…but you get the isea. Kick some ass. Not a patch of turf.


  33. 33
    DonC

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    Nov 13th, 2009 (12:24 pm)

    Given the comments about the increase in mpg versus the price premium, seems the consensus is that Bob Lutz was right in saying that hybrid technology makes little or no sense.

    Interesting article about GM’s attempt to resolve its bureaucracy issues: http://www.nytimes.com/2009/11/13/business/13auto.html?_r=1&ref=business


  34. 34
    Kdawg

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    Nov 13th, 2009 (12:26 pm)

    Don’t forget, all these fuel economy improvements, as big or small as they may be, helps GM’s CAFE number.


  35. 35
    Jaime

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    Nov 13th, 2009 (12:26 pm)

    But Tiger Woods is a golf celebrity, which fits right into the demographic of Buick owners. Older reitred people. Seriously, have you ever seen someone under 55 driving a Buick? I haven’t. There’s not a lot of 20 somethings lusting after the latest Buick :)

    And sexy commercials will probably turn off the older crowd who purchase Buicks.


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    CaptJackSparrow

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    Nov 13th, 2009 (12:34 pm)

    DonC: Given the comments about the increase in mpg versus the price premium, seems the consensus is that Bob Lutz was right in saying that hybrid technology makes little or no sense.

    That’s true for GM because of the Union labor costs. If that’s the case then why go into the market at all and waste more money doing it?
    Toyota made sense about it.


  37. 37
    Tom M. S.A. Tex.

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    Nov 13th, 2009 (12:42 pm)

    I’m going to jump in here one more time. I’m an old codger with old fashion economics.
    If GM has so much money to try and produce something like this, why don’t they concentrate on the volt and paying off their government loans. They are like our present administartion, trying to do too many things all at one time. GM needs to get their priorities in line and produce autos that will get 40 + mpg. Because,the federal government is looking at a .66 cent a gallon tax on top of what we already have. Believe me folks, gas is not going to be cheap for ever, and that forever may come sooner than we think.

    God Bless America.
    Tom M


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    LauraM

     

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    Nov 13th, 2009 (12:44 pm)

    Herm: Some good news, apparently the pay Czar is willing to allow GM to hire NEW managers and pay them more than $500k.. maybe they can hire some top talent.

    That is really good news. I understand the resistance to high salaries in bailed out companies. Unfortunately, in a country where overpaying executives is pretty much standard behavior, we can’t expect any one company to go against the trend. At least, not if they want to hire anyone decent.

    GM desperately needs an infusion of outside talent. And they need to pay competitive wages to get it.


  39. 39
    Nelson

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    Nov 13th, 2009 (12:45 pm)

    Well, I think if the new Buick Hybrid can’t boast a 40 mpg or better, they might as well not waist any hard earned (loaned) money to make it. Of course I’m a firm believer in “No Plug – No Sale”.

    NPNS!


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    CaptJackSparrow

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    Nov 13th, 2009 (12:51 pm)

    Nelson: Well, I think if the new Buick Hybrid can’t boast a 40 mpg or better, they might as well not waist any hard earned (loaned) money to make it. Of course I’m a firm believer in “No Plug – No Sale”.

    I second that!


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    Starcast

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    Nov 13th, 2009 (12:51 pm)

    Jaime: But Tiger Woods is a golf celebrity, which fits right into the demographic of Buick owners. Older reitred people. Seriously, have you ever seen someone under 55 driving a Buick? I haven’t. There’s not a lot of 20 somethings lusting after the latest Buick And sexy commercials will probably turn off the older crowd who purchase Buicks.  (Quote)

    LOL I see a lot of 20 somethings driving some very ugly cars. The Cube, element and that rat car come to mind.


  42. 42
    LauraM

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    Nov 13th, 2009 (12:53 pm)

    dagwood55: Also, I agree that the Malibu would be a better candidate. If the Buick brand is going to be about luxury, let’s not confuse that while GM attempts to re-establish it as a luxury brand, rather than as God’s Waiting Room brand.
    But, note I said, “better.” I think it would be better still to have a purpose-built hybrid, like the Prius. That’s a no-compromises design and the interior dimensions, utility and fuel economy were all maximized.

    I agree about the purpose built hybrid. But they have the Volt for that. If they started now, it would take them 3 years minimum to do a hybrid from the ground up. And, hopefully, by then, they’ll have gen2 of the Volt.


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    Nov 13th, 2009 (1:00 pm)

    CaptJackSparrow: That’s true for GM because of the Union labor costs. If that’s the case then why go into the market at all and waste more money doing it?Toyota made sense about it.  (Quote)

    Union labor costs no longer play a role. The current labor cost difference between GM and the foreign manufacturers in the US is essentially zero.
    http://www.breitbart.com/article.php?id=D98G5K080&show_article=1


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    Nov 13th, 2009 (1:01 pm)

    CorvetteGuy: GM should not waste time and money developing any new vehicle that delivers less than 35 MPG. Any existing model should be looking forward to improved systems that push them up to or above 40 MPG.

    #25

    I totally agree. This is the guy who has to sell them, people. Pay attention.

    If it doesn’t get as good of mileage as a Prius, I’m not gonna buy it. Next case.


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    Nov 13th, 2009 (1:03 pm)

    CaptJackSparrow: Cmon, get those MPG’s up! Make a 45MPG Spark!

    #29

    Amen!


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    Nov 13th, 2009 (1:05 pm)

    DonC: Interesting article about GM’s attempt to resolve its bureaucracy issues: http://www.nytimes.com/2009/11/13/business/13auto.html?_r=1&ref=business  

    Agreed–interesting article–particularly about the Cruze delay.


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    Nov 13th, 2009 (1:09 pm)

    Update on “The Volt wheels are on the road” here in Milford.

    I have posted before that I see Volts everyday and if I learned something new I would post it. Well…….

    I was driving next to a Volt on M59 in the dark about 45F out. So it had the lights on and likely the heater. Not much traffic we drove along for a few miles. We stoped at a light I had my window down and turned of my car to see what I could hear, no sound it took off quickly I kept my window down and drove beside the Volt I could not hear any engine noise from it. After a few more miles we stoped at another light I again turned off my car and to my surprise I could hear rhe Volt engine running at low RPM but high enough so I could hear it. The sound did not change as the Volt took off. (Until the guy behind me blew his horn and pointed up to sky with one finger) I drove along with the Volt for a few more miles but I got tired of my wife yelling at me that we past the restaurant miles ago. (She may have pointed to the sky with one finger also)

    I was surprised the Volt gen seemed to be running when it was stoped at the light. What do you guys think? Why would the gen be running when the veh was stoped? Maybe I was hearing something else but I don’t think so.


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    Nov 13th, 2009 (1:10 pm)

    Genfixer: Union labor costs no longer play a role. The current labor cost difference between GM and the foreign manufacturers in the US is essentially zero.

    Respectfully, I highly doubt it. I can only vouch for wages in the electronics market in that wages here in the US that went for $18-$20/hr were paid in Penang Malaysia $50-75$/week.
    I know, different markets……


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    Nov 13th, 2009 (1:30 pm)

    “30 mpg on the highway”
    ha-ha-ha, get rid of extra-hybrid junk, put in a decent diesel and you are good for 40MPG at least with no or little extra cost, better reliability, better milage.
    Or just ask Toyota nicely …
    But would GM listen? I guess not – old dog can not learn a new trick :-)


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    Nov 13th, 2009 (1:31 pm)

    Starcast:
    Update on “The Volt wheels are on the road” here in Milford.
    I have posted before that I see Volts everyday and if I learned something new I would post it. Well…….
    I was driving next to a Volt on M59 in the dark about 45F out. So ithad the lights on and likely the heater. Not much traffic we drovealong for a few miles. We stoped at a light I had my window down andturned of my car to see what I could hear, no sound it took off quicklyI kept my window down and drove beside the Volt I could not hear anyengine noise from it. After a few more miles we stoped at another lightI again turned off my car and to my surprise I could hear rhe Voltengine running at low RPM but high enough so I could hear it. The sounddid not change as the Volt took off. (Until the guy behind me blew hishorn and pointed up to sky with one finger) I drove along with the Voltfor a few more miles but I got tired of my wife yelling at me that wepast the restaurant miles ago. (She may have pointed to the sky withone finger also)
    I was surprised the Volt gen seemed to be running when it was stopedat the light. What do you guys think? Why would the gen be running whenthe veh was stoped? Maybe I was hearing something else but I don’tthink so.  

    Real world reports!! Thank you for your time and effort, despite the one finger salutes.

    Sounds to me like the Volt was in CS mode, but the ICE was at a low load setting (maybe 1200 rpm). While at the traffic light, the genset provided power for the headlights and other accessories, and also replenished the battery pack.

    Upon launch, there was enough energy in the buffer that the Volt’s ICE did not rev up, but just maintained a low rpm/power level (plus there was some regen upon stopping for the traffic light).

    My guess is that until there is a sustained demand that exceeds the ICE power output, or the buffer is low, the ICE maintains its best match for the average power consumption.


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    Nov 13th, 2009 (1:37 pm)

    Starcast: (She may have pointed to the sky with one finger also)

    Bro, that was just her affectionate way of telling you, you’re Number 1!


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    Nov 13th, 2009 (1:39 pm)

    I don’t know if anyone’s noticed; I haven’t read past the first few responses, but that chart looks suspiciously like a cross section of a rather aroused woman’s breast. Who’d have guessed GM’s engineers would have a sense of humor like that…..

    Thank God GM kept Opel. They’ll need the flexibility and high volume potential it gives them to ensure the corporation’s future profitability. The Regal being a rebadged Opel means a low development cost that’ll help defray the added shipping costs getting the cars across the Atlantic.

    Oh – my crystal ball communicated something interesting to me…. that the OK for the Converj was related to the development of the Volt’s range extender. Top GM brass resisted the go ahead, but when they became convinced that the ER system was developed enough to have sufficient refinement for a Cadillac they gave the green light.


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    Nov 13th, 2009 (1:40 pm)

    RVD: “30 mpg on the highway”
    ha-ha-ha, get rid of extra-hybrid junk, put in a decent diesel and you are good for 40MPG at least with no or little extra cost, better reliability, better milage.

    Ya know, I always wondered what you would get if you hybridized a high mileage Diesel. Maybe 45MPG? 55mpg? Higher?


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    Nov 13th, 2009 (1:41 pm)

    Totally off subject, the Seattle Auto Show opened up on Wednesday, and my wife and I attended yesterday. They had a Fisker Karma, a Tesla Roadster and a Cadillac Converj (while not an EV, Ford also had a pretty cool Explorer concept).

    If you haven’t seen a Tesla before in person, well, all I can say is that it looks like a toy that one would drive on a DisneyLand ride. I swear, your butt is like 5 inches off the pavement, max. The Fisker, on the other hand, is like “Wow!”. It was all roped off, and even the handlers within the ropes were not allowed to sit in the car.

    The Converj was just AWESOMELY COOL, although it was up on a rotating stand where you couldn’t get to it. Most definitely, it is not your father’s (or grandfather’s) Cadillac.

    Even though we went mid-day during a work day, there was a pretty nice crowd that grew into the late afternoon when we split. Something about seeing and sitting in a new car that still gets folks stoked.


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    Nov 13th, 2009 (1:43 pm)

    gm-bas.gif
    Hmmm, does the shape of this graph remind you of anything…


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    Nov 13th, 2009 (1:45 pm)

    stuart22: I don’t know if anyone’s noticed; I haven’t read past the first few responses, but that chart looks suspiciously like a cross section of a rather aroused woman’s breast. Who’d have guessed GM’s engineers would have a sense of humor like that…..

    You sick bastard!
    I think you meant small breasts?
    Maybe when they improve the performance it’ll be a “D” cup.

    AHAHAHAHAHAHAHAAAA!!!!

    Sorry Miss Laura, I’m a baaaaad boy, bad bad boy.


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    Nov 13th, 2009 (1:47 pm)

    DonC: Given the comments about the increase in mpg versus the price premium, seems the consensus is that Bob Lutz was right in saying that hybrid technology makes little or no sense.Interesting article about GM’s attempt to resolve its bureaucracy issues: http://www.nytimes.com/2009/11/13/business/13auto.html?_r=1&ref=business  (Quote)

    If Bob Lutz was referring specifically to GM’s hybrid technology as making little or no sense, then he was absolutely right. If he was referring to Toyota’s hybrid technology, then he was thoroughly and entirely wrong, as up to 20K people per month shelling out hard cash for HSD have amply demonstrated.


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    Nov 13th, 2009 (1:48 pm)

    Dave G: gm-bas.gif
    Hmmm, does the shape of this graph remind you of anything…

    H( . y . )TERS!!!!!!

    Speaking of, it’s almost lunch time.


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    Nov 13th, 2009 (1:53 pm)

    Off topic: Lot’s of interesting EV news on the big Leaf launch today on this twitter feed:

    http://twitter.com/NissanEVs

    Interesting pics of the plug bay and other goodies. The car and batteries are going to be produced in the USA. Big day for EVs.


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    Nov 13th, 2009 (1:56 pm)

    CaptJackSparrow: Bro, that was just her affectionate way of telling you, you’re Number 1!  (Quote)

    Or maybe she was saying the Volt was #1…………Ya that must be it.


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    Nov 13th, 2009 (1:59 pm)

    BillR: Real world reports!! Thank you for your time and effort, despite the one finger salutes.Sounds to me like the Volt was in CS mode, but the ICE was at a low load setting (maybe 1200 rpm). While at the traffic light, the genset provided power for the headlights and other accessories, and also replenished the battery pack.Upon launch, there was enough energy in the buffer that the Volt’s ICE did not rev up, but just maintained a low rpm/power level (plus there was some regen upon stopping for the traffic light).My guess is that until there is a sustained demand that exceeds the ICE power output, or the buffer is low, the ICE maintains its best match for the average power consumption.  (Quote)

    Every thing you posted sounds right to me.


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    Nov 13th, 2009 (2:01 pm)

    Newly appointed VP Sales Susan Docherty impressed giving a Regal interview with FOX this morn. Anyways. Certainly there’s no coincidence in GM backing out of selling Opel and Susan conducting the LA Regal commencement jamboree yesterday. (That is, the intertwining of Opel resources and a resurgent Regal.) Could this lead to Opel and GM diminishing brand? Susan’s work is really cut out-she needs to pacify Germany leadership and Opel’s unions.


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    Nov 13th, 2009 (2:10 pm)

    Dave G:
    Hmmm, does the shape of this graph remind you of anything…  

    Can you imagine having to stand up in front of GM’s top brass and have to give a presentation with this chart….. BWAHAHAHAHA (I couldn’t do it with a straight face)


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    Nov 13th, 2009 (2:20 pm)

    I like that Opel will start production of the vehicle and allow actual demand to determine if / when domestic production is begun.

    It also is consolation to Europe that Ampere production will initially stay in the US.


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    Nov 13th, 2009 (2:26 pm)

    I would rather GM use the economy of scale to put BAS or BAS+ on ALL cars. This technology is the minimum we should be doing to preserve what precious fossil fuel we have left regardless of the cost.

    Consequently strong hybrids, EREVs and BEVs should be heavily featured in the lineup as well


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    Nov 13th, 2009 (2:31 pm)

    dagwood55: Reducing imported oil use? Reducing CO2 emissions? What’s your goal? Whatever your goal may be, there are probably more cost-effective means towards achieving it than a slavish devotion to electric vehicles.

    I don’t have a slavish devotion to electric vehicles, I have a slavish devotion to anything that can keep our economy from a generation of negative real growth and indebtedness to foreign governments.

    The rest of the world may be in our debt for the freedom the world enjoys, the quality of health care innovation and other technology, But the rest of the world will enjoy our collapse.

    One of my favorite movie scenes is “THE LIFE OF BRIAN” when John Cleese is talking about how they hate the ROMANS and DEATH to the ROMANS, and he says “What have they ever done for us”, and they keep adding to the list “other than aqueducts, sanitation, roads, irrigation, education, wine, security peace, etc., etc., etc.” what have they ever done for us. Well thats America and no one will help us when we are down.

    So we need to help ourselves. Probably the easiest thing any economist or sane person would agree we could do is build an industry that eliminates importing oil. That would create more jobs and keep money in our economy cheaper and easier than anything else. There is no down side to it (except after the fact when oil prices fall because we aren’t importing it any more).

    Everything else we need to do is way too complicated for the dimwits in washington (witness everything else they’ve ever done up to and including current health care proposals).

    How about $8,000 cash for next 3 million (24 billion is about 4 days of our current DEFICIT SPENDING) cars that don’t use oil for at least 40 miles daily range and a law that says all non comercial vehicles must have at least 40 miles daily range without using oil by say 2016.


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    Nov 13th, 2009 (2:35 pm)

    seems like a warmed over Chevy malibu hybrid with a new badge.


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    Nov 13th, 2009 (2:35 pm)

    tom: How about $8,000 cash for next 3 million (24 billion is about 4 days of our current DEFICIT SPENDING) cars that don’t use oil for at least 40 miles daily range and a law that says all non comercial vehicles must have at least 40 miles daily range without using oil by say 2016.

    24 BILLION AND BY 2016 IT WILL PROBABLY SAVE US OVER A TRILLION A YEAR IN TRADE DEFICITS


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    Nov 13th, 2009 (2:36 pm)

    Starcast: I was surprised the Volt gen seemed to be running when it was stoped at the light. What do you guys think? Why would the gen be running when the vehicle was stopped? Maybe I was hearing something else but I don’t think so.  

    Why wouldn’t it? The engine is in a sweet spot supplying juice to the battery when the vehicle is stopped. The engine is running at a constant rate with as little stopping and starting and change of throttle as possible. That’s the whole beauty of having the engine decoupled from the starts and stops of the road. If the battery were to fill up, the engine will just shut off later on, but there’s no point in messing with the sweet spot until it is.


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    Nov 13th, 2009 (2:39 pm)

    tom: 24 BILLION AND BY 2016 IT WILL PROBABLY SAVE US OVER A TRILLION A YEAR IN TRADE DEFICITS

    i REALLY Am going to have to proofread before I send without the edit feature.

    It will save us over a trillion a year by 2025 when most all cars don’t use gas except as range extender (assuming 500 mile battery isn’t cheap by then).

    I know only 44% of oil is used in cars. we also need to convert some trucks to natural gas, buses to electric, some home heating to other sources, and then we’ll have created more jobs in our country and not be sending all that money overseas.

    Obamas plans to have everyone either working in the health care industry or being treated by it isn’t a very good plan.


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    Nov 13th, 2009 (2:44 pm)

    dagwood55: If Bob Lutz was referring specifically to GM’s hybrid technology as making little or no sense, then he was absolutely right. If he was referring to Toyota’s hybrid technology, then he was thoroughly and entirely wrong, as up to 20K people per month shelling out hard cash for HSD have amply demonstrated.

    #57

    Alas, I can only agree. Bob Lutz, LOL.


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    Nov 13th, 2009 (2:48 pm)

    Jaime: Off topic: Lot’s of interesting EV news on the big Leaf launch today on this twitter feed:

    #59

    It’s big news on the local radio today. They are having a road show all over CA. They are at the mall in Santa Monica today. Lots of people here have suggested that GM do the same with the Volt. It looks like Nissan’s stealing a march here. Hello GM???


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    Nov 13th, 2009 (3:01 pm)

    Randy: 30MPG HWY with a 2011 hybrid THats ridiculous I was getting 33MPG Hwy in the 90s with a giant dodge intrepid.  

    The 30MPG is for a non hybrid Regal and with the BAS added,to it, it will get 20% more MPG. I think that is great! I don’t understand all the negativity. I’m sure the price will not be much more than the old BAS hybrid. Twenty percent is a great increase for a low cost hybrid even at two thousand dollars more.


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    Nov 13th, 2009 (3:14 pm)

    DonC: Given the comments about the increase in mpg versus the price premium, seems the consensus is that Bob Lutz was right in saying that hybrid technology makes little or no sense.
    Interesting article about GM’s attempt to resolve its bureaucracy issues: http://www.nytimes.com/2009/11/13/business/13auto.html?_r=1&ref=business

    GM’s weak hybrid technology didn’t make sense. But that’s because it paled in comparison to its competitors. Ford’s doing really well with the Ford Fusion hybrid. And, unlike the Prius, the regular Fusion is right next to it for people to compare mpg vs. price. So, clearly people are willing to pay a substantial premium for extra mpg. Even if it probably won’t save them money in the long run.

    That is a really interesting article. Given what they said, it’s actually amazing that GM has managed to improve quality as much as they have. Hopefully, the changes they’re making means that they’ll build on that, and turn things around. If the quality is there, the buyers will follow.


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    Nov 13th, 2009 (3:30 pm)

    Jaime: But Tiger Woods is a golf celebrity, which fits right into the demographic of Buick owners. Older reitred people. Seriously, have you ever seen someone under 55 driving a Buick? I haven’t. There’s not a lot of 20 somethings lusting after the latest Buick
    And sexy commercials will probably turn off the older crowd who purchase Buicks.

    I think they’re trying to change that, so that they can appeal to younger buyers.


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    Nov 13th, 2009 (3:30 pm)

    stuart22: Can you imagine having to stand up in front of GM’s top brass and have to give a presentation with this chart…..

    LOL


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    Nov 13th, 2009 (3:41 pm)

    Back to the subject at hand, I have a really low opinion of hybrids that have been converted into PHEVs. Once the plug-in market settles in, the obvious differentiator will be the amount electric range, which means a big battery…

    That’s why I believe most successful plug-ins will be bottom up designs from scratch like the Volt, rather than “let’s see how much we can shove into this existing design”, which is what most PHEVs are.


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    Nov 13th, 2009 (3:42 pm)

    Noel Park: Lots of people here have suggested that GM do the same with the Volt. It looks like Nissan’s stealing a march here. Hello GM???  

    GM is not done developing the Volt.. wait a few months.


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    Nov 13th, 2009 (3:55 pm)

    Off topic, but what the heck….
    Previous discussion about adding a “flat tax” to gas lead to some interesting comments.

    Well, looks like those who wanted the gas tax, will be pleased, but then what about the electricity tax, that Obama is proposing with his “Cap and trade” scheme.

    A $600 billion energy tax to create a ‘cap and trade’ system to trade carbon dioxide on Wall Street and devastate jobs in manufacturing states like Michigan. It is estimated this plan could raise the price of gasoline by up to $1.27 a gallon and raise electricity prices up to 68%.


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    Nov 13th, 2009 (3:58 pm)

    nuclearboy: Placing it in this mid-sized sedan may be just the right solution. What do you think?I think that is great… The two mode plug in option has been rumored to get into the neighborhood of 60 mpg for the first 20 or 30 miles (until the battery is depleted) at which point it would get the standard hybrid mileage rates.Similar to the thinking behind the volts limited EV range, the limited 60 mpg range would be great for many drivers who are willing to plug in each night to save fuel the next day.I would definitely consider it as a comfortable commuter car.The issue will be the cost. Can GM do this at a reasonable price premium?  (Quote)

    If GM can come out with a BAS+ system that includes a strong enough Li-Ion battery (with plug-in capability) to drive about 20 miles, they will have a winner. If that first 10-20 miles of driving can achieve something like 60+ mpg, the buyers will line up. This will appeal to Buick’s core ‘older’ demographics as many of these customers do not drive far – they are just around town. The system would have to be simple and not have too many gizmo’s inside the car.

    However, if the new BAS system is just a little better than what the Malibu Hybrid offered, it is DOA, IMHO. Just not enough more – and by 2012 it will be going up against a wide range of other alternatives – and the ultimate question will be WHY? and HOW MUCH? There needs to be a hook to justify the price – and 20% more fuel economy just won’t get it done. This car will need the plug-in capability to be successful.


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    Nov 13th, 2009 (4:02 pm)

    If GM can come out with a BAS+ system that includes a strong enough Li-Ion battery to drive about 20 miles, they will have a winner. If that first 10-20 miles of driving can achieve something like 60+ mpg, the buyers will line up.

    Just to clarify, the 60+mpg rating was for the two -mode (transmission based electric motor) system not the BAS. It would be cool, however, to have a BAS++ system that could do that also. At that point you are belt driving the engine. It is probably wiser and cleaner to use the transmission based electric motor of the two-mode.


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    Nov 13th, 2009 (4:06 pm)

    Noel Park: It’s big news on the local radio today. They are having a road show all over CA. They are at the mall in Santa Monica today. Lots of people here have suggested that GM do the same with the Volt. It looks like Nissan’s stealing a march here. Hello GM???

    The volt is too close to production to make changes, so I wouldn’t say the Volt. But the Spark is a great candidate for a 100mile range EV. Why they won’t sell them here I’ll never know.
    http://autos.maxabout.com/cars/chevrolet/spark-ev-electric-vehicle/cvid1486


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    Nov 13th, 2009 (4:07 pm)

    Herm: GM is not done developing the Volt.. wait a few months.

    #78

    I don’t see any evidence to indicate that the Leaf is any more “developed” than the Volt. And Nissan is getting a bonanza of free publicity and “green” PR mileage out of this.


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    Nov 13th, 2009 (4:12 pm)

    JEC: A $600 billion energy tax to create a ‘cap and trade’ system to trade carbon dioxide on Wall Street and devastate jobs in manufacturing states like Michigan. It is estimated this plan could raise the price of gasoline by up to $1.27 a gallon and raise electricity prices up to 68%.

    It shows these policticians just don’t care about anything but whomever is paying them or got them elected.

    Why anyone would want to raise electricity rates is beyond me. The Gas tax completely different as everyone know the prices of gas does not reflect the military costs, the trade deficit costs etc.

    We need cheap energy to drive economic growth.

    Taxing gas will lead to economic growth for EVs.
    EVs will lower cost of electricity when there are millions of them because it will allow the charging of cars to EVEN OUT the daily load. This has been talked about but not fully appreciated how allowing the electric companies to control when cars are charged (in return for lower rates, of course you can still plug your car in during PEAK AC TIME 100 DEGREES OUTSIDE but you ‘d pay a higher rate) will allow them to produce electricity at a constant rate all day and LOWER electric rates.


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    Nov 13th, 2009 (4:16 pm)

    Dave G: That’s why I believe most successful plug-ins will be bottom up designs from scratch like the Volt, rather than “let’s see how much we can shove into this existing design”, which is what most PHEVs are.

    The Prius PHEV from Toy is supposed to get 10AER up 64mph??…….if my old memory is correct. They say 2010 for fleet and 2011 for Pat Q. Pubic. No price yet though.

    http://bit.ly/n10gd


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    Nov 13th, 2009 (4:20 pm)

    JEC: A $600 billion energy tax to create a ‘cap and trade’ system to trade carbon dioxide on Wall Street and devastate jobs in manufacturing states like Michigan. It is estimated this plan could raise the price of gasoline by up to $1.27 a gallon and raise electricity prices up to 68%.

    LOL LOL LOL Obama LOL LOL All I can do is laugh so I don’t cry.


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    Nov 13th, 2009 (4:28 pm)

    —————
    Herm: Some good news, apparently the pay Czar is willing to allow GM to hire NEW managers and pay them more than $500k.. maybe they can hire some top talent.
    —————–
    LauraM replied
    That is really good news. I understand the resistance to high salaries in bailed out companies. Unfortunately, in a country where overpaying executives is pretty much standard behavior, we can’t expect any one company to go against the trend. At least, not if they want to hire anyone decent.

    GM desperately needs an infusion of outside talent. And they need to pay competitive wages to get it.
    ——————-

    I dont think everyone is motivated by high salaries. I think you can find great talented people that actually care about the company they are working for and who’ll work for reasonable wages. I would actually be concerned about hiring someone that only cares about how much money I paid them, and not really about the job at hand.


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    Nov 13th, 2009 (4:37 pm)

    Jim I: It is not like the Volt, where it is an entirely new transportation system, with a long term future, and the possibility of cutting out almost all gasoline consumption for daily transportation needs. People will be willing to spend more for that type of a vehicle.

    People will be willing to spend more only because the Volt will not be diluted with another powertrain option. Pehaps by positioning the new Regal with a choice like a high performance near luxury model vs. a cutting edge high mileage model customers would see a distinction. Without some kind of distinct difference, I wouldn’t anticipate customers spending 2 or 3 thousand dollars for basically the same car to save 40 gallons of gas each year .


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    Nov 13th, 2009 (4:42 pm)

    About queasiness during GM commercials; it isn’t the celebrity endorser which threatens my lunch, for me it is just the phrase:

    “On the highway.”

    ‘Our Chevy Blah beats the Toyota Crampy “On the highway.” That means WE WIN!!!!!!!’

    ENOUGH already!!!

    It’s painfully obvious to any viewer, even without checking the figures, that this emphasis on highway mpg reflects GM’s inability to match city numbers.

    By the very statistics used to justify the Volt concept, outstanding mileage “On the highway” is relevant for only about 22% of drivers who do most of their driving ON THE FREAKING HIGHWAY. (“About 78% of drivers have a daily commute of under 40 miles,” which is the AER “sweet spot” for the Volt). This 22% might be as likely to look at something diesel powered from Europe to get even better over-the-road efficiency.

    Buick wants to start in 2011 with a hybrid which probably cannot outperform a 2009 Ford. Brilliant. And by the way, the article merely says that a plug in of the new BAS is possible, it gave no timetable for that.

    My advice to Buick is simply this: Do not offer a non-hybrid Regal. This will move it’s prospects from “doomed” to “poor.”


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    Nov 13th, 2009 (4:47 pm)

    JEC: It is estimated this plan could raise the price of gasoline by up to $1.27 a gallon and raise electricity prices up to 68%.

    Uh huh, and we all believe that right, just like we believed that real estate will never go down and Wall Street knows best.


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    Nov 13th, 2009 (4:47 pm)

    Who says the BAS II+ system has to cost $2000?

    The entire system save the battery is no more expensive then the equipment that it replaces or at most a few dollars more. BMW is planning on making Start-Stop standard on it overweight cramped vehicles. So is Mercedes. The BAS II + should be a standard fitting on upgraded C, D and E segment cars for upscale Buick and Cadillac cars.

    Chevrolet will have it VOLT as a hybrid. Cadillac will have the Converj and probably the dual-mode for the SRX SUV. The dual-mode is an ideal offering for the boat owner, probably on a Lambda as it is ill received on the BoF Suburban. Buick doesn’t have a hybrid offering. It needs one, for its Salesmen to talk about. BAS II+ for the Sedans and dual-mode for the Enclave.


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    Nov 13th, 2009 (4:47 pm)

    kdawg: dont think everyone is motivated by high salaries. I think you can find great talented people that actually care about the company they are working for and who’ll work for reasonable wages. I would actually be concerned about hiring someone that only cares about how much money I paid them, and not really about the job at hand.

    Absolutely, there are people who care about things other than money. However, in my experience, people who are willing to take dramatically lower salaries generally gravitate towards nonprofits or the government. Or a place with a higher quality of life than GM can offer.

    GM is in a hard place right now when it comes to recruiting. They need outside influence. Desperately. And they really can’t afford to take a risk on someone without a track record. That means they need to find someone who will probably still be in demand other places.

    It’s not like GM can really offer anything else in the way of an inducement. It’s probably the most high risk low reward employer in the country. Except for Chrysler. A lot of people hate them for getting bailout money. The city and the state they’re located in are hurting financially, which will have a direct impact on the quality of life of anyone who moves there. And there’s no guarantee whatsoever that the company will be around in five years.


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    Nov 13th, 2009 (4:48 pm)

    Jackson: fewer of drivers who do most of their driving ON THE FREAKING HIGHWAY.

    lol……
    Many many times, “Highway” driving is just like City driving. Stop and Go. Very rarely, if you are a commuter, you are at speeds above 50mph.


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    Nov 13th, 2009 (4:49 pm)

    Just for reference, in 2008 at the Geneva Auto Show, GM introduced the BAS+ system.

    Here is a sample of what the system is supposedly capable of, 48 mpg in a combined city/hwy cycle.

    http://green.autoblog.com/2008/03/03/geneva-08-saab-9-x-biohybrid-concept-ethanol-hybrid-solar-a/


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    Nov 13th, 2009 (4:53 pm)

    stas peterson: Who says the BAS II+ system has to cost $2000?

    So how much is it really? Isn’t there supposed to be a battery in there somewhere? Just asking cause I dunno much about it other than a belt driven motor is attached.


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    Nov 13th, 2009 (4:54 pm)

    CaptJackSparrow: lol……Many many times, “Highway” driving is just like City driving. Stop and Go. Very rarely, if you are a commuter, you are at speeds above 50mph.  (Quote)

    Then Why, Oh Captain, my Captain, do hybrid systems make such a dramatic difference on City mpg figures, and virtually none at all on Highway figures?


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    Nov 13th, 2009 (5:07 pm)

    Jackson: Then Why, Oh Captain, my Captain, do hybrid systems make such a dramatic difference on City mpg figures, and virtually none at all on Highway figures?

    Because the EPA testing doesn’t test for bumper to bumper traffic for highway tests. I think it’s more like a treadmill for this, but of course I could be wrong. Most of the electrical boost is applied in city style driving. And highway gets less boost. This is because fuel consumption is at it’s least efficiency therefore it’s augmented with the electric motor at a higher rate than highway treadmill.


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    Nov 13th, 2009 (5:51 pm)

    Noel Park:
    #78I don’t see any evidence to indicate that the Leaf is any more “developed” than the Volt.And Nissan is getting a bonanza of free publicity and “green” PR mileage out of this.  

    I notice that the Volts riding around dont even have the final configuration headlights yet.. the Nissan Catfish II unfortunately seems to have been finished. Perhaps Nissan is just 3 months ahead of GM.


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    Nov 13th, 2009 (5:54 pm)

    “20% increase in fuel economy” Yawn. Ditch it. GM just doesn’t get that they need a BIG bump up for a customer to justify spending a lot more.


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    Nov 13th, 2009 (5:55 pm)

    Keeping Buick was about China, period. It is such a bigtime status symbol there.

    I am at a loss to figure out how GM can fix Buick’s “elderly” image in the US. Maybe it is not a bad thing for a brand to focus on that demographic? It will be very large as boomers retire. Perhaps GM should sell Buicks as the distinguished, understated alternative to Caddys?

    Jaime: But Tiger Woods is a golf celebrity, which fits right into the demographic of Buick owners.Older reitred people.Seriously, have you ever seen someone under 55 driving a Buick?I haven’t.There’s not a lot of 20 somethings lusting after the latest Buick
    And sexy commercials will probably turn off the older crowd who purchase Buicks.  


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    Nov 13th, 2009 (5:55 pm)

    stas peterson: Who says the BAS II+ system has to cost $2000?
    The entire system save the battery is no more expensive then the equipment that it replaces or at most a few dollars more. BMW is planning on making Start-Stop standard on it overweight cramped vehicles. So is Mercedes. The BAS II + should be a standard fitting on upgraded C, D and E segment cars for upscale Buick and Cadillac cars.

    true it replaces the alternator and starter on a regular car but you still need a bigger battery… I could see one of these new cheap CNT lead acid batteries replacing the existing starter battery. How much do you think the lithium battery costs?


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    Nov 13th, 2009 (5:59 pm)

    CaptJackSparrow: Because the EPA testing doesn’t test for bumper to bumper traffic for highway tests. I think it’s more like a treadmill for this, but of course I could be wrong. Most of the electrical boost is applied in city style driving. And highway gets less boost. This is because fuel consumption is at it’s least efficiency therefore it’s augmented with the electric motor at a higher rate than highway treadmill.  (Quote)

    … and perhaps the EPA test reflects what most of us actually experience outside of SoCal; long, lonely stretches of Interstate; not the distributed urban congestion of the left coast. I daresay that most of our non-California readers actually get or exceed “highway” mpg in their multi-state, freeway driving, and find bumper-to-bumper, below 50mph speeds a rarity out in the hinterland.


  103. [...] [Sources: War&#100’s &#65uto Worl&#100 - sub req’&#100 | GM-V&#111lt.&#99&#111m] [...]


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    Nov 13th, 2009 (6:14 pm)

    Herm: How much do you think the lithium battery costs?

    Here’s a 12VDC Car Starter battery. Li 100AH & 10C pulse at 1000A
    http://www.thunder-sky.com/pdf/20095493010.pdf


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    Nov 13th, 2009 (6:26 pm)

    Herm: I notice that the Volts riding around dont even have the final configuration headlights yet.. the Nissan Catfish II unfortunately seems to have been finished. Perhaps Nissan is just 3 months ahead of GM.

    #97

    Alas, you could very well be right. Maybe they kept their plans under wraps until they were a lot closer to a saleable product than GM did. Of course Nissan had the advantage of not needing the car as a fig leaf to help them to secure a taxpayer rescue.

    I personally doubt that the BEV is going to catch on that quickly, but then nobody ever went broke ignoring my business advice, LOL. If there is another big runup in gas prices, who knows? And if Nissan can really produce 100K + units/year, they could get a giant foothold in the market before the Volt really gets going.

    For sure it’s going to be fun watching the Nissan BEV vs. GM PHEV shootout.

    I still think that it would be a very good move for GM to do something similar, sooner rather than later.


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    Nov 13th, 2009 (6:31 pm)

    Jackson: … and perhaps the EPA test reflects what most of us actually experience outside of SoCal; long, lonely stretches of Interstate; not the distributed urban congestion of the left coast.

    #100

    Well lucky you is all I can say.

    And I do agree that quoting “highway” mpg, and conveniently ignoring “city” and “combined”, is very misleading. In fact, I find it to be a refuge of scoundrels, and I instantly turn off on the ad. Shame on GM, one of the worst offenders, for doing it so consistently.


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    Nov 13th, 2009 (6:33 pm)

    After several off topic comments, let me just get back to the question at hand.

    I am not interested in a Buick Regal, least of all with the BAS.

    LJGTVWOTR!!


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    Nov 13th, 2009 (6:40 pm)

    Jackson: … and perhaps the EPA test reflects what most of us actually experience outside of SoCal; long, lonely stretches of Interstate; not the distributed urban congestion of the left coast.

    #100

    Having visited the “right coast” recently, NYC in particular, I would say that their traffic congestion meets or beats anything we have here in the dreaded SoCal. We rode into the City from Long Island on the train at more or less commute time, and those “Interstates” looked like they could have easily been the 405. Although, if you believe the study that comes out of Texas (totally unbiased, of course) every year, the 405 is the worst in the country. I bet Dallas is nothing to brag about, come to that, LOL. It’s not only the “left coast” brother. it’s nation wide.


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    Nov 13th, 2009 (7:15 pm)

    Jim I: Taking the mileage from 21 mpg to 25 mpg (20%) will not be enough of an increase to spend several thousand dollars more for the same vehicle.

    Yup.

    The 2010 Ford Fusion (6 spd auto, 2.5l) gets 22/31/25. Why would anyone want the expense and complication of the hybrid when you could get the same mpg with “conventional” technology?

    /p.s. I suspect Ford may be “sandbagging” their mpg’s somehow in order to meet Mulally’s stated goal of every model increasing mpg every year. . . . kind of like some computer companies (Apple) do by slowly feeding in already developed technology year to year.
    //If so, it’s a smart marketing play by Ford, but it irks me a little bit.


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    Nov 13th, 2009 (7:20 pm)

    Starcast:
    LOL I see a lot of 20 somethings driving some very ugly cars. The Cube, element and that rat car come to mind.  

    You just proved the point. You see a lot of them. How many Buick’s do you see?…without walkers in the back seat. and bleached hair with the same bleach used to bleach their clothes….do you realize the Cadillac buyer demographic literally died off…Get real.
    This Regal is nice looking…but where the heck are the marketing people within GM. Throwing darts at Fritz pics with a mustache and playing hit the Monopoly geek…

    Any Buick Regal with a Turbo should be marketed as a “Grand National” with wide wheels, spoiler and a performance suspension. WTF…wake up…


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    Nov 13th, 2009 (7:28 pm)

    dagwood55; lauram; CSJ –> on the success of Toyota and Ford hybrid sales.

    If you think that selling one hybrid Camry for every 100 standard ICE Camrys or selling one hybrid Fusion for every ten standard ICE Fusions is a success, then Toyota and Ford have made hybrids “worth it”. Looked at realistically, hybrid variations have been a bust across the board. Bob Lutz was right: At current gas prices they just aren’t a compelling choice.


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    Nov 13th, 2009 (7:43 pm)

    Vincent: This Regal is nice looking…but where the heck are the marketing people within GM. Throwing darts at Fritz pics with a mustache and playing hit the Monopoly geek…

    You don’t need to be Yoda to realize the new Regal hybrid looks way more stylish than your father’s 99′ Buick Regal.

    =D~


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    Nov 13th, 2009 (7:46 pm)

    DonC: If you think that selling one hybrid Camry for every 100 standard ICE Camrys or selling one hybrid Fusion for every ten standard ICE Fusions is a success, then Toyota and Ford have made hybrids “worth it”. Looked at realistically, hybrid variations have been a bust across the board. Bob Lutz was right: At current gas prices they just aren’t a compelling choice.

    No. I think selling a Hybrid product that people are buying makes the product a success. Selling Hybrids in this current economy the way they are now makes the product a success.

    I’m not interested in what ICE cars they sell per Hybrid. That’s not the point. The point is the high mileage Hybrid product is selling and the BAS+, ++ or whatever is a big $$$ loss.

    At current gas prices these products are still selling and if gas prices do go up they will probably sell more till something better comes out. So at current prices, the company that makes a profit on their Hybrid sales, to me that makes sense.


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    Nov 13th, 2009 (8:22 pm)

    Dave K.:
    You don’t need to be Yoda to realize the new Regal hybrid looks way more stylish than your father’s 99′ Buick Regal.=D~  

    Do you actually have a point to make…that would be good.


  115. [...] [Sources: Ward’s Auto World - sub req’d | GM-Volt.com] [...]


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    Nov 13th, 2009 (9:20 pm)

    I JUST WANTA TO SAY THERE IS A VOLT ORDER FOR SALE ON EBAY.. I AM HOME FROM WORK FOR 20 MIN .. I DON’T KNOW IF IT IS REAL OR NOT.. BUT I LL POST THE AUCTION..

    http://cgi.ebay.com/ebaymotors/ws/eBayISAPI.dll?ViewItem&item=110457010419&viewitem=&sspagename=ADME%3AB%3ASS%3AUS%3A1123


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    Nov 13th, 2009 (9:36 pm)

    DonC: dagwood55; lauram; CSJ –> on the success of Toyota and Ford hybrid sales.If you think that selling one hybrid Camry for every 100 standard ICE Camrys or selling one hybrid Fusion for every ten standard ICE Fusions is a success, then Toyota and Ford have made hybrids “worth it”. Looked at realistically, hybrid variations have been a bust across the board. Bob Lutz was right: At current gas prices they just aren’t a compelling choice.  (Quote)

    Toyota sells about as many hybrid Camrys as Camry XLEs. Further, the hybrid Camry cost relatively little to do, the HSD system is the same, although the ICE is different.

    And the big money and units for Toyota is in the Prius. They’ve done up to 21K in a single month. Margins have been very good, all along, so the car has been good for dealer relations.

    It’s GM’s hybrids that don’t make any sense. GM built pitifully weak BAS hybrids and charged a $4500 premium for them. People rightfully saw that as a huge lose and shunned them. GM built fantastically complex and expensive two-mode hybrid and put it into a truck with a $20K markup, cheerfully offering to sell this $20K option to people who couldn’t care less about fuel economy and who, if they did, could save a ton of money by buying a smaller vehicle..

    Also, it’s a small thing, but Toyota got a little extra revenue for HSD by licensing it to Nissan. Development of HSD has been profitable for Toyota. Lutz shouldn’t have spent his time mocking Toyota, he should have spent his time studying what they were doing and figuring out how to do it better.


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    Nov 13th, 2009 (9:42 pm)

    That Volt on E-Bay is being sold by a “dealer” that has ZERO feedback. Why do I smell a skunk?


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    Nov 13th, 2009 (10:12 pm)

    BAS+ ?

    To be true, if GM comes with another Hybrid to market, It should be better than or equal to Focus/Prius hybrids. Else they are going to loose. BAS already demonstrated how to fail . The expectation for a hybrid at Malibu size is 40+ mpg (60 -70 mpg for becoming a winner ,As GM now use the words winner more, 60-70 is the need ). I don’t think GM can afford another loose game.

    The BAS+ may work in China/India as the hybrid market is still evolving (may be some times in cruze also : 44 mpg + 20% of 44 mpg = 52.8 mpg,good for cruze as of now. ). In north America people are used to seeing Prius ( come to Vancouver, Canada – all most all taxis are Prius )

    Another Q is The same engine offers 32 mpg on an SUV and 30 on a Sedan ? – something wrong , it should be min 36mpg and hybrid should make it 40+ for sure.

    Where is the third hybrid system Cars which GM was developing ? (too many hybrids from GM ( BAS, BAS+, 2 Mode,EREV and one more only for sedans) ).

    Where is a winner/comparable one to HSD ?


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    Nov 13th, 2009 (10:36 pm)

    V=IR: DonC: Interesting article about GM’s attempt to resolve its bureaucracy issues: http://www.nytimes.com/2009/11/13/business/13auto.html?_r=1&ref=business
    Agreed–interesting article–particularly about the Cruze delay.

    2nd that. Too bad GM didn’t just spell this out when the announced the delay. It seems a lot more acceptable now.


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    Nov 13th, 2009 (10:37 pm)

    Dave G: Back to the subject at hand, I have a really low opinion of hybrids that have been converted into PHEVs. Once the plug-in market settles in, the obvious differentiator will be the amount electric range, which means a big battery… That’s why I believe most successful plug-ins will be bottom up designs from scratch like the Volt, rather than “let’s see how much we can shove into this existing design”, which is what most PHEVs are.  (Quote)

    Fortunately, support for 100 km/h electric-only has been part of the Prius design since 2003.

    Battery shortcomings have been the hold back.


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    Nov 13th, 2009 (11:08 pm)

    john1701a: Fortunately, support for 100 km/h electric-only has been part of the Prius design since 2003.

    I drive over 100km/h (62MPH) very frequently, but this problem could be solved by replacing the permanent magnet MG1 with an induction motor of similar size and weight, so Toyota could fix that fairly easily if they wanted to make a stronger PHEV.

    john1701a: Battery shortcomings have been the hold back.

    Yes, exactly. Doing a proper design for a large battery pack would require a new chassis, which is essentially a new car. From what I’ve heard, Toyota has no plans to design a new chassis capable of holding a large battery.

    Bottom line: The Prius planetary gear drive train could be tweaked to make a very nice strong PHEV, but as you say, the battery is the tough part.


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    Nov 13th, 2009 (11:19 pm)

    Unni: BAS+ ?
    To be true, if GM comes with another Hybrid to market, It should be better than or equal to Focus/Prius hybrids. Else they are going to loose. BAS already demonstrated how to fail . The expectation for a hybrid at Malibu size is 40+ mpg (60 -70 mpg for becoming a winner ,As GM now use the words winner more, 60-70 is the need ). I don’t think GM can afford another loose game.

    Its a low cost option, nothing at all like the Prius or Fusion.. probably around $2k or less.. it uses a 15kw motor and provides lots of torque at low speeds, a good match for the turbo 2.4l used in the Equinox. If GM offered this across their whole line of cars it could save a lot of oil.


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    Nov 14th, 2009 (1:23 am)

    CaptJackSparrow:
    No. I think selling a Hybrid product that people are buying makes the product a success. Selling Hybrids in this current economy the way they are now makes the product a success.I’m not interested in what ICE cars they sell per Hybrid. That’s not the point. The point is the high mileage Hybrid product is selling and the BAS+, ++ or whatever is a big $$$ loss.At current gas prices these products are still selling and if gas prices do go up they will probably sell more till something better comes out. So at current prices, the company that makes a profit on their Hybrid sales,to me that makes sense.  

    Actually I think the question was whether the premium for a hybrid was “worth it”. The vast majority of buyers have said it’s not. This is pretty much what most posters here said about the Regal. A $4K premium for 20% or 30% better mileage has very limited appeal.

    You’d have to think that hybrids have been money losers. You have a huge amount of development cost which isn’t being spread out over many vehicles. The Fusion Hybrid is supposedly a big success and Ford has sold something like 10K of them. The Camry Hybrid or the Civic Hybrid are far worse/better examples since they’ve sold far more slowly.

    I just think the facts indicate that while GM hasn’t made any money on its hybrids, outside of the Prius — and that’s not a slam dunk — other companies haven’t had much better luck. They may have sold more units but not enough more to make a difference. Given the size of these development efforts, selling 10k or 2k units a year doesn’t make a significant difference.


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    DonC

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    Nov 14th, 2009 (1:50 am)

    dagwood55:
    Toyota sells about as many hybrid Camrys as Camry XLEs.Further, the hybrid Camry cost relatively little to do, the HSD system is the same, although the ICE is different.And the big money and units for Toyota is in the Prius.They’ve done up to 21K in a single month.Margins have been very good, all along, so the car has been good for dealer relations.It’s GM’s hybrids that don’t make any sense.GM built pitifully weak BAS hybrids and charged a $4500 premium for them.People rightfully saw that as a huge lose and shunned them.GM built fantastically complex and expensive two-mode hybrid and put it into a truck with a $20K markup, cheerfully offering to sell this $20K option to people who couldn’t care less about fuel economy and who, if they did, could save a ton of money by buying a smaller vehicle..Also, it’s a small thing, but Toyota got a little extra revenue for HSD by licensing it to Nissan.Development of HSD has been profitable for Toyota.Lutz shouldn’t have spent his time mocking Toyota, he should have spent his time studying what they were doing and figuring out how to do it better.  

    You’re completely muddling the issues. If the question is whether consumers will pay a premium which covers the cost of any company’s hybrid technology, the question is “no”. If the question is whether a company can profitably market a “green” car by using that hybrid technology then the answer might be “yes”. IOW the Corvette may be a profitable car for GM, but that hardly means that GM could take the Corvette engine, stick it in a Malibu, and convince people to pay the premium needed to cover the additional cost. Just as the success of the Corvette is based on far more than the engine size, the success of the Prius is based on far more than HSD.

    If consumers were willing to pay for HSD then Toyota and Ford would be able to add HSD to any model in their line and see the hybrid outsell the standard ICE model. That doesn’t happen. In fact, when they’ve tried it hasn’t worked — buyers won’t pay the premium.

    Those are just the facts. If gas goes to $5/gallon this might change. But Lutz’s point, which is really inarguable, is that at $3/gallon hybrid technology is a solution in search of problem. Note that this may not even be strictly rational, it just reflects the unreasonably high discount rate people apply to cost saving technology.

    FWIW, Voltec is really no different. Volts and Leafs will quickly displace the Prius as the “green” car of choice, but more general success will depend on gas prices and how well these companies can market the advantages of EV driving.


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    NZDavid

     

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    Nov 14th, 2009 (7:50 am)

    If the BAS+ is standard for this car it will do OK, give the salesman something to talk up, and help with CAFE.

    If not it’s as dead as the Dodo, DOA, popular as Bernie Madoff, you get the metaphor.

    Make an ICE version of the Volt and sell it $15,000 cheaper and bye bye Voltec. Most people will only pay a premium for a vehicle that is unique and/or has bragging rights. The Prius has both, The Volt will have both. The hybrid Camry, looks the same as the ICE version with some small badges tacked on. Yawn, wonder why it doesn’t sell that well for the premium?

    And YES, I realise that the bloggers here, including me, don’t fit into the ‘most people’ category, when it comes to Voltec.


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    JEC

     

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    Nov 14th, 2009 (8:15 am)

    Actually, the correct ratio of Ford Fusion hybrid sales to ICE is 1 of every 5. Lets not throw out numbers like this w/o facts.

    http://www.examiner.com/x-1995-Green-Car-Examiner~y2009m11d13-Ford-Fusion-and-Ford-Fusion-Hybrid-are-bestselling-domestic-car-sets-sales-records

    DonC: dagwood55; lauram; CSJ –> on the success of Toyota and Ford hybrid sales.If you think that selling one hybrid Camry for every 100 standard ICE Camrys or selling one hybrid Fusion for every ten standard ICE Fusions is a success, then Toyota and Ford have made hybrids “worth it”. Looked at realistically, hybrid variations have been a bust across the board. Bob Lutz was right: At current gas prices they just aren’t a compelling choice.  


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    JEC

     

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    Nov 14th, 2009 (8:22 am)

    More “facts”

    “The EPA rates the Fusion Hybrid at 41 mpg rating in the city and 36 mpg on the highway”
    ===================================================
    Jim I: Taking the mileage from 21 mpg to 25 mpg (20%) will not be enough of an increase to spend several thousand dollars more for the same vehicle.

    carcus1:
    Yup.The 2010 Ford Fusion (6 spd auto, 2.5l) gets 22/31/25.Why would anyone want the expense and complication of the hybrid when you could get the same mpg with “conventional” technology?/p.s. I suspect Ford may be “sandbagging” their mpg’s somehowin order to meet Mulally’s stated goal of every model increasing mpg every year. . . .kind of like some computer companies (Apple) dobyslowly feeding in already developed technology year to year.
    //If so, it’s a smart marketing play by Ford, but it irks me a little bit.  


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    john1701a

     

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    Nov 14th, 2009 (10:27 am)

    Herm: Its a low cost option, nothing at all like the Prius or Fusion.. probably around $2k or less.. it uses a 15kw motor and provides lots of torque at low speeds

    But it is only an ASSIST hybrid.

    Having only 1 motor available, which must keep in sync with the engine and is not actively cooled, limits avability.

    That’s very different from FULL hybrids.


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    Unni

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    Nov 14th, 2009 (12:15 pm)

    Herm:
    Its a low cost option, nothing at all like the Prius or Fusion.. probably around $2k or less.. it uses a 15kw motor and provides lots of torque at low speeds, a good match for the turbo 2.4l used in the Equinox. If GM offered this across their whole line of cars it could save a lot of oil.  

    In my view , they can make it a standard and not calling it a hybrid ( just like a new starter ) if 2k or less offers 20% improvement and 5 k or less offers 50% i will go for the 50% because i fill gas every week.

    to get the cost back they have to spread it across models ( let them try BAS+ as a standard feature in Aveo and Sparc ) .


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    Herm

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    Nov 14th, 2009 (12:24 pm)

    john1701a:
    But it is only an ASSIST hybrid.Having only 1 motor available, which must keep in sync with the engine and is not actively cooled, limits avability.That’s very different from FULL hybrids.  

    Assist Hybrid, but I just prefer to call it a mild hybrid, not a strong hybrid like the Prius or Fusion or a BEV like the Volt.. its also a LOT cheaper. It is similar to the Honda Insight, but with a stronger motor.. if the BAS + was coupled to a compact car it would get similar or better gas mpg as the Insight. The Insight uses a 10kw motor, the BAS + is 15kw.. the original BAS had only a 5kw motor.

    The part I dont understand is why the unit was not integrated into the ICE itself.. direct gear drive vs belts, same thing goes for starters and alternators. They could have made it permanently engage the flywheel, in the same position where the starter is now. GM needs to bring this to all their cars, not an option.


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    Van

     

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    Nov 14th, 2009 (12:50 pm)

    Off topic – GM continues to talk E85, but I am unaware of the schedule to make E85 available. In California, if my information is correct, there are only three E85 pumps in the whole state, one near Sacramento and two near San Fran.


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    john1701a

     

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    Nov 14th, 2009 (2:12 pm)

    Herm: It is similar to the Honda Insight, but with a stronger motor.. if the BAS + was coupled to a compact car it would get similar or better gas mpg as the Insight. The Insight uses a 10kw motor, the BAS + is 15kw.. the original BAS had only a 5kw motor.

    Civic hybrid uses a 15 kW motor.

    How will the A/C (and defroster) be powered in Regal ?


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    stas peterson

     

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    Nov 14th, 2009 (3:28 pm)

    A Regal-Iinsight is about equivalnet to what the Honda hybrid is when the Regal is equipped with Bas II+. Except the Regal is a a midsize and or D-segement car while the Insight is a smaller “big B” or small C-segment vehicle. So the mileage improvement wouldn’t be quite equivalent, but almost.

    Not bad, especially if you made it standard or a upscale addition for only a few hundred bucks, not bad at all….


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    Herm

     

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    Nov 14th, 2009 (5:00 pm)

    john1701a: How will the A/C (and defroster) be powered in Regal ?  

    Probably in the conventional way, remember this is not a full blown BEV, its just a low cost option that can save a lot of oil if its widespread.. I imagine eventually all manufacturers will have to do it to meet CAFE. I believe GM already has an electric AC in use in some other car, electric power steering is fairly common already.

    I can see a lot of advantages to a sealed electric AC heat pump system, efficiency and longevity.. you wont have refrigerant leaks out of a completely sealed system.

    The Equinox is already getting 32mpg, and that is amazing. The BAS + option will allow a normal level of aggressive driving and still retain that mileage.


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    JBFALASKA

     

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    Nov 14th, 2009 (9:35 pm)

    My big purchase decision is always quiet and quality. I’ve owned 3 Buick Regals and two are in the garage and the other I sold to my friend. Buick and electric is a match made in heaven.


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    LauraM

     

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    Nov 15th, 2009 (11:19 pm)

    DonC: If you think that selling one hybrid Camry for every 100 standard ICE Camrys or selling one hybrid Fusion for every ten standard ICE Fusions is a success, then Toyota and Ford have made hybrids “worth it”. Looked at realistically, hybrid variations have been a bust across the board. Bob Lutz was right: At current gas prices they just aren’t a compelling choice.

    To add to everyone else’s previous comments, the Fusion is now one of the top ten vehicles sold in the US. Yes. Most of those are the non-hybrid versions. But I have to wonder how of much the non-hybrid sales are a result of the halo effect of the fusion hybrid? People hear the rave reviews of the hybrid, come in to look at it, and then wind up with the cheaper regular fusion.

    http://www.examiner.com/x-1995-Green-Car-Examiner~y2009m11d13-Ford-Fusion-and-Ford-Fusion-Hybrid-are-bestselling-domestic-car-sets-sales-records


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    john1701a

     

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    Nov 16th, 2009 (12:51 am)

    LauraM: But I have to wonder how of much the non-hybrid sales are a result of the halo effect of the fusion hybrid?

    Sorry, like many, you’ve been greenwashed if you think a hybrid is necessary for the halo effect.

    GM advertises their “33 MPG highway” non-hybrid Malibu a lot. How many consumers are attracted by that, but then end up buying a less expensive or more powerful model instead?


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    Shock Me

     

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    Nov 16th, 2009 (4:48 pm)

    Under-50 Buick owner here.

    GIve me a VOLTEC powered Buick Velite!

    Or at least a VOLTEC La Crosse.

    The 2010 La Crosse is nice for a pure ICE though. Reminds me of the Holden Commodore.

    In any case my next Buick will be VOLTEC powered or there won’t be a next Buick. I can wait. ….Mostly.


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    Brian in Austin

     

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    Nov 17th, 2009 (4:11 pm)

    Too bad the Buick SUV was killed by consumer feedback and lack of demand. The shame is that the Saturn VUE 2-mode hybrid had plenty of interest from Saturn owners. Was Buick “really” the brand to keep vs. Saturn? I only know one person with a Buick and it’s my 60-year old uncle. I see many Saturns on the road every day. Killing Saturn was the last great mistake of the old GM. They paved the way to the future with Saturn then abandoned it. And why the heck would anyone keep GMC when you have Chevy? I’d like to support GM when they have good products (My Satrun 4-door sedan has gotten 32 MPG for the past 14 years), but most of their crucial decisions (besides the Volt) have been idiotic.


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    Shane

     

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    Nov 18th, 2009 (11:04 am)

    The fuel usage in the chart looks good but I really don’t understand the engine off. Does the car turn the car off and then turn it back on? Wouldn’t that be bad for the starter motor?