[ad#post_ad]The Chevrolet Volt is a 4-seat compact car. Almost since the day the Volt concept was first unveiled, enthusiasts have dreamed about and suggested GM also move the technology into other types of vehicles.
Indeed over the years GM has illustrated several concepts including the sporty Cadillac Converj, the large form Opel Flextreme GT, and the most recent Volt MPV5. Yet despite all the enthusiasm and multiple concepts, GM has yet to publicly commit to building another Voltec-powered vehicle besides the Volt.
As part of a recent exit interview, I had the chance to ask former GM vice chairman Bob Lutz why.
What are your feelings about spreading Voltec into other vehicle types? Are you looking at other cars and have there been other models that have been scrapped like the Converj?
I just can’t get into that at this point, but its clear that the whole Voltec architecture is compatible with our whole global compact car architecture. So basically any vehicle in that size class, whether an SUV or a van or an MPV or whatever, could basically pretty easily adopt the Voltec technology.
It could also be scaled up to larger cars like Malibus and Buick Regals and stuff like that. There are no current plans to do any of that. I think what we all want to do is to let us see how this works. Lets start with the Volt. The reason it’s so good to start with the Volt is that Chevrolet is our global brand. So we can sell it around the world as a Chevrolet . Let’s get experience with the technology, let’s see how customers react, let’s see how price competitive it is in the marketplace in terms of the value that customers see in the market.
And finally lets see what happens to fuel prices. If fuel gradually goes to five dollars a gallon I think well see a lot more interest in the Voltec concept.
My point is, Lyle, it could very easily be expanded to other GM vehicles and architecture.
So you need initial feedback on all those levels to make that determination?
Yeah and we can go an awful long way with the Chevrolet Volt before we have to introduce something else.
The first step would be..and I’m dreaming now OK? Let’s say we had to constantly constantly increase capacity. Let’s say we had to put a Volt plant into China and a Volt plant into Europe and we were finally building half a million Volts per year. I think that would be wonderful and if we’re at that level I guess my successors at GM would say ‘hey maybe its time to expand this concept to other vehicles.’
This entry was posted on Thursday, May 6th, 2010 at 6:22 am and is filed under Original GM-Volt Interviews, Voltec. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. Both comments and pings are currently closed.