Jun 25

GM Does Not Expect Dealer Price Gouging on Early Chevy Volts

 

[ad#post_ad]Of the many fascinating topics surrounding the Chevy Volt, probably none evokes as much passion as the car’s price.

The car is likely to MSRP anywhere from low to high 30s but buyers will be eligible for a $7500 tax credit, bringing the effective price likely below $30,000.

There are always concerns, however, about possible dealer price gouging.

When highly desirable new technology products are available in limited supply and at limited locations, economic forces often dictate price escalations. It the simple supply and demand equation.

GM has said they will roll the Volt out gradually in waves, and reports suggest as little as a few hundred copies will make it to showrooms in late 2010. GM has also said only Chevy Dealers willing and able to take on the rigorous technical and training requirements will be given Volts to sell.

So with a symbolic waiting list here of over 51,000 people here and more than 40,000 handraisers on the Chevrolet.com site, and such intensely limited supply, one would think price escalations and bidding wars could turn out to be a big problem. Right?

Not so says GM nor should anyone be putting down deposits yet.

“We haven’t fully determined our go to market strategy, so any talk of a deposit is premature – we haven’t even announced pricing yet,” states GM spokesperson Phil Colley.

“We also aren’t expecting our dealers to overcharge anyone for this vehicle either and will monitor the situation closely when we launch,” he says.

Phil clarifies this statement a bit further saying “we’ll be paying close attention when the vehicle launches and do our best to strongly discourage this kind of behavior as we always do with any GM-branded vehicle.”

I asked Volt spokesperson David Darovitz what if anything GM could actually do to clamp down on this behavior if it is observed to occur.

“We strongly discourage dealers from this activity when it occurs, but we cannot direct their business decisions,” he says. “They are independent business owners.”

So will they gouge or won’t they?

Here’s what GM-Volt commentator Gordon Green had to say yesterday:

I checked with my local Chevy dealer, saying I’d like to order a Volt if I could get it for MSRP.

His comment:

“No I can not guarantee that. The first few will probably be over MSRP.”

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This entry was posted on Friday, June 25th, 2010 at 6:17 am and is filed under Dealers, Financial. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. Both comments and pings are currently closed.

COMMENTS: 174


  1. 1
    FME III

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    Jun 25th, 2010 (6:23 am)

    Gouging is inevitable. It’s the only possible result when you combine market demand for the Volt with human nature.

    Hopefully, by the time I’m in a position to buy my next car — say 2012 or so — there will be sufficient supply that I won’t get gouged. But given all of GM leadership’s recent hemming and hawing over whether to really commit to producing this car in significant numbers, who knows?

    - sigh -


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    nuclearboy

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    Jun 25th, 2010 (6:24 am)

    Simple supply and demand. Some are willing to pay more for the benefit of being first with almost any new “thing” that comes along. That is the way things work. No one is forced to pay more, it is a choice. Many people are more than happy to pay a little more for the rights to be one of the first owners. Anyone who overpays and then complains about it is a fool. If you don’t want to overpay, you might have to wait a little bit.


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    StevePA

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    Jun 25th, 2010 (6:28 am)

    Have to imagine the dealers are awakening to the fact that initial demand will exceed available supply. Given that scenario would expect many of them to charge what the market will bear on vehicles in dealer inventory.
    Is that “gouging”? Guess the definition of that term depends on one’s tolerance for pricing above sticker…
    I believe above-MSRP pricing will be the norm for Gen I, and for awhile with Gen II.


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    RB

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    Jun 25th, 2010 (6:30 am)

    Phil clarifies this statement a bit further saying “we’ll be paying close attention when the vehicle launches and do our best to strongly discourage this kind of behavior as we always do with any GM-branded vehicle.

    He might have said, “Please review what happened with Camaro.”


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    Rashiid Amul

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    Jun 25th, 2010 (6:32 am)

    From the article:
    So will they gouge or won’t they?

    If the opportunity presents itself.

    —————–

    Off topic,
    I am out of here for a couple of weeks. I’m off to Evergreen, CO for a nice vacation.
    Have a fun all.
    This is a great website.


  6. 6
    neutron

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    Jun 25th, 2010 (6:41 am)

    If a dealer “price gouges” they may see a very short term profit and a LONG TERM loss of of customers. Customer loyalty should not be taken lightly. And most of us have long memories if we get “taken.”

    I do trust that GM will have its dealers do the “right thing” and GM will do its part in providing enough VOLTS ASAP. :+}


  7. 7
    Jim I

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    Jun 25th, 2010 (6:43 am)

    Lyle:

    What is with the new “symbolic waiting list” term? That is twice in two days that you have used it.

    Has GM told you in definite terms that your list will not be used in any way, and this is how you are trying to break it to us??????

    As to today’s topic. Pricing to what the market will bear in a given, considering the supply available, and the market they are going to with the initial supply. I can’t imagine a movie star having any problem paying $50K+ for one of the few Gen-1 Volts that will be available in 2011. And GM has no control over what a dealer sells a car for. At that point, the dealer owns the car, not GM.

    When I bought my Crossfire in 2003, it had a sticker price of $35.5K. There were stories of people paying way over $50K for them. When I bought mine, it had a “dealer markup” of $7.5K on it. I just laughed and said, if you really want to sell this car, that is the first thing that goes away. The salesman told me “This is what they are getting in Cleveland.” I said that this is not Cleveland, and unless that goes away, I will start looking elsewhere. The manager tore it off the window. I owned the car about an hour later…….

    Finally, where did you get that picture of my uncle Guido????????? :-) :-)


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    joe

     

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    Jun 25th, 2010 (6:51 am)

    I live in one of the area where GM will sell the Volt. The dealership owner told me some of his mechanics were out of town getting training for the Volt. He also told me he would not sell them over the MSRP….which is good news.


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    RB

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    Jun 25th, 2010 (6:53 am)

    Not so says GM nor should anyone be putting down deposits yet.
    “We haven’t fully determined our go to market strategy, so any talk of a deposit is premature – we haven’t even announced pricing yet,” states GM spokesperson Phil Colley.

    No, no, no, no, no, no, no. Just like an angry 2-year old.
    One feels that Mr Colley really wants to say
    “Lyle, why don’t you just go buy a Prius and stop bothering me?” :)


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    Loboc

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    Jun 25th, 2010 (6:54 am)

    Getting a Volt at or below MSRP for the first couple YEARS ain’t gonna happen.

    Unless, of course, GM decides to make them in some reasonable volume.

    JMO.


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    Roy H

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    Jun 25th, 2010 (7:05 am)

    He speaks like GM is helpless, cannot control their dealers. GM needs to take control. If a dealer has a bad reputation, then dump them. A dealer’s bad reputation reflects strongly on GM’s reputation. Threaten to take away the dealership if they charge over MSRP.

    What?? Technicians taking service courses for the Volt are OPTIONAL?? What about the guarantee that you can buy a GM car and go on vacation and be able to drive into ANY GM dealer (of same brand) for service?
    Again if a Chevrolet dealer will not train its technicians for ALL Chevrolet cars it then take away their dealership license!

    These guys are talking like wimps.


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    Roy H

     

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    Jun 25th, 2010 (7:16 am)

    RB: Phil clarifies this statement a bit further saying “we’ll be paying close attention when the vehicle launches and do our best to strongly discourage this kind of behavior as we always do with any GM-branded vehicle.

    He might have said, “Please review what happened with Camaro.”  

    +1


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    Bob

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    Jun 25th, 2010 (7:21 am)

    It’s not the dealers gouging us that we’re worried about. When the Wii was in such short supply, Best Buy didn’t sell them for $1,000, they sold them at MSRP — and the scalpers that bought them resold them on eBay for $1,000. Just because GM says “We’ll make sure none of our dealers overcharges you” doesn’t mean some enterprising individual isn’t going to go wait in line with some of his colleagues and buy up an entire city’s allocation of 20 Volts or whatever, then turn around and sell them on eBay Motors for $50,000.


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    Jun 25th, 2010 (7:27 am)

    Can’t anyone w/access to GM A-plan discount get the employee price @ dealer invoice, well below the MSRP?


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    firehawk72

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    Jun 25th, 2010 (7:28 am)

    GM, I strongly discourage you from only making 8k Volts the first year, and I strongly encourage you to make 50k the first year. Hmmm, nothing happened.

    Hawk


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    Craig Johnson

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    Jun 25th, 2010 (7:38 am)

    Many Ford dealerships attempted to charge 10K more for the Thunderbird when it came out in 2002. That strategy did not work out to well since Ford had to dump the vehicle due to “poor” sales.

    GM should provide leadership on this issue not weak excuses.


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    storm

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    Jun 25th, 2010 (7:38 am)

    joe: I live in one of the area where GM will sell the Volt. The dealership owner told me some of his mechanics were out of town getting training for the Volt. He also told me he would not sell them over the MSRP….which is good news.  

    Joe,
    Who is your dealer. Is he taking deposits?


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    Eric

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    Jun 25th, 2010 (7:39 am)

    Doesn’t MSRP stand for Manufacturer’s SUGGESTED Retail Price? If a dealer wants to charge an extra $5,000, then go elsewhere, besides different dealers have different overhead cost.

    KEY is don’t let them know you are desperate for a car. Last time I bought a car I sent E-mail to all the surrounding dealers and told them what I was looking for and asked the dealer to send me their best price. When I went to the dealership and saw the car I would get I went to see the finance guy. The finance guy added a charge for the eched glass VIN. I told him I would not pay it and started to walk out. I told him the only thing I wanted to see on the invoice was the agreed price, tax, title and license — nothing else. I got my way.


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    Jimza Skeptic

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    Jun 25th, 2010 (7:40 am)

    Roy H: He speaks like GM is helpless, cannot control their dealers. GM needs to take control. If a dealer has a bad reputation, then dump them. A dealer’s bad reputation reflects strongly on GM’s reputation. Threaten to take away the dealership if they charge over MSRP.What?? Technicians taking service courses for the Volt are OPTIONAL?? What about the guarantee that you can buy a GM car and go on vacation and be able to drive into ANY GM dealer (of same brand) for service?
    Again if a Chevrolet dealer will not train its technicians for ALL Chevrolet cars it then take away their dealership license!These guys are talking like wimps.  

    Roy, Roy, Roy, You must be a young and idealistic person. GM by law cannot dictate pricing or much of anything to the independent dealers. Franchise laws have strict requirements. They also cannot arbitrarily say “OK no Volts for you!”. The only thing GM can do is give awards to dealers that meet the highest of GM standards. They cannot give “bad dealer” awards to the ones that make them unhappy. To pull a dealer franchise is nearly impossible. Bankrupt GM and Chrysler were able to use that to shed dealers, but even then it required court approval. Bottom line is if a dealer is bad in your eyes, don’t do business with that one.

    There will be price gouging or inflation as long as there is someone willing to pay the price. And we are all guilty or would be guilty of the same thing. If you put your house on the market for $100K and someone offered you 95K at an open house and was going to get back to you later in the day to formalize the it, and then someone walked through and you told them you have a verbal offer of 95K and they said wow I really like this house and will give you $105K. Guess what? You would proceed with the $105K and tell the other guy sorry. (OK real estate is a bad example these days but you get the idea.)


  20. 20
    Dave G

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    Jun 25th, 2010 (7:47 am)

    From the article: GM has said they will roll the Volt out gradually in waves, and reports suggest as little as a few hundred copies will make it to showrooms in late 2010.

    This actually doesn’t bother me so much. Let’s give them some time to ramp up the production line properly and work the kinks out. The last thing we need is an bunch of lemons.

    What will show GM’s true intentions is the number of Volts they produce for the 2012 model year. These should go on sale next summer. If GM produces 60,000 of these, we’ll know they’re serious.

    And if those 60,000 are gobbled up in no time, which I think is probable, then GM should produce 100,000 model 2013 Volts.

    Bottom line: Production numbers for the first model year are not that meaningful. What’s important is how fast they ramp up after that.


  21. 21
    Tim Hart

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    Jun 25th, 2010 (7:47 am)

    There is a solution to getting a Volt at MSRP. When you put down a deposit, get an agreement in writing that you will pay the MSRP and no more. I’ve already found a dealer that will do that.


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    ClarksonCote

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    Jun 25th, 2010 (7:50 am)

    I have a great way to prevent gouging… Build enough units initially so that Supply meets Demand! GASP! ;)


  23. 23
    Tom M

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    Jun 25th, 2010 (7:51 am)

    Jim I: What is with the new “symbolic waiting list” term? That is twice in two days that you have used it.

    Has GM told you in definite terms that your list will not be used in any way, and this is how you are trying to break it to us??????

    Jim,

    I think that’s pretty apparent by now. The limited supply and select markets alone would make it very difficult. Lyle has been upfront about the fact that he has no connection to GM, heck they even made him change the name of it from the Volt Waiting List to the Volt Want list. That was a while ago but they didn’t want the people who signed up to think they were “in line” to get one.
    I would think the fastest way to get a Volt is to check occasionally with your local dealer and tell them you would like to put a deposit on one as soon as they will accept deposits. Maybe you can leave your contact info and ask the manager to call you when he get any information about when the process will begin.
    Lyle has done an outstanding job here and we should all be very thankful for his work over the past three years but I haven’t read anything that would support that GM is going to use the list for anything but to gauge support for the car.


  24. 24
    Rashiid Amul

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    Jun 25th, 2010 (7:52 am)

    All of this price stuff kinda makes me happy that I am not in the correct geographical location for the first wave.

    But isn’t this simply the law of supply and demand?
    GM is keeping the supply short. Demand is going to be high.
    This is a no brainer. The dealers are going to make a killing. :(


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    JohnK

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    Jun 25th, 2010 (7:56 am)

    I don’t know what to say. I’ve put down a deposit (twice). Both times it was with a promise of MSRP. Lyle warned me about the first one not being quite right. The warning was too late. The second is in Michigan, which should be legitimate. Now a GM exec says that too is not right. Actually, unless GM takes ordering under their own wing I don’t see how they can say that it is improper for dealerships to take deposits and make commitments. GM has been very open about the design and many aspects of the engineering of the Volt, but their marketing has “fallen a bit short”. Come on GM, this is a world class car, let’s seem some world class salesmanship. Please get you act together. I am expecting to take delivery in five months, don’t know the price, don’t know if I will have a choice of color or options. Now, who knows, maybe I won’t get a car for another year. I have hope because I’m number 2 in line at a dealership that is in the shadow of the GM tech center. But the uncertainty of being whipped around is NOT a good thing. I don’t blame either dealership. But I’m on the verge of blaming GM. After all it is just a few months from launch. What the HECK is going on??? Maybe it is time for Mr. Whitacre to provide a little “guidance” to the marketing folks. Seems like it is past the eleventh hour in terms of marketing.


  26. 26
    JohnK

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    Jun 25th, 2010 (8:00 am)

    On a related note, I’ve seen more than one announcement that GM is planning their IPO (stock offering) in the middle of November. Is that a coincidence that it is about the same time as the Volt launch? I don’t think so. But if they botch the Volt launch maybe they will botch the IPO too. Come on GM. Get that act together. We want good things for the Volt and for GM.


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    JohnK

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    Jun 25th, 2010 (8:02 am)

    Rashid, have a good vacation. Hope you enjoy the beauty of nature that is in abundance in that area.


  28. 28
    RB

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    Jun 25th, 2010 (8:03 am)

    JohnK: On a related note, I’ve seen more than one announcement that GM is planning their IPO (stock offering) in the middle of November.Is that a coincidence that it is about the same time as the Volt launch?I don’t think so.But if they botch the Volt launch maybe they will botch the IPO too.Come on GM.Get that act together.We want good things for the Volt and for GM.  

    Good points. Volt and the IPO are very likely related, as the former possibly will be used to create PR that will help with the latter, which will need help.


  29. 29
    Herm

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    Jun 25th, 2010 (8:10 am)

    Jim I: Lyle:
    What is with the new “symbolic waiting list” term? That is twice in two days that you have used it.
    Has GM told you in definite terms that your list will not be used in any way, and this is how you are trying to break it to us??????

    Jim, can you imagine ANY possible way that GM could use Lyle’s list?.. they dont even want a pre-order system. The way it has worked (for probably 100 years) is that dealers buy cars from manufacturers and then sell them to you at a profit.. the dealers OWN the new cars. If a dealer ordered a car for you, and you prepaid, then that is a different story.. that seems to be rare now.

    I still dont know why you cant buy a car from a manufacturer directly.


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    Baltimore17

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    Jun 25th, 2010 (8:12 am)

    Dave G:
    This actually doesn’t bother me so much.Let’s give them some time to ramp up the production line properly and work the kinks out.The last thing we need is an bunch of lemons.What will show GM’s true intentions is the number of Volts they produce for the 2012 model year.These should go on sale next summer.If GM produces 60,000 of these, we’ll know they’re serious.And if those 60,000 are gobbled up in no time, which I think is probable, then GM should produce 100,000 model 2013 Volts.Bottom line: Production numbers for the first model year are not that meaningful.What’s important is how fast they ramp up after that.  

    Clear, rational, realistic. I’d vote a +10 if I knew how.

    “The last thing we need is an bunch of lemons”


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    Tom M

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    Jun 25th, 2010 (8:15 am)

    Jim,

    Looking back to past posts Lyle has said these things:

    “Along the way of this list’s growth and recognition I received gentle pressure from GM. Their legal department once politely requested I change the name from waiting list. You will now notice it is called the Want List, simply indicating that these are people who want a Volt.”

    “Unfortunately, I cannot say GM will utilize the list as I had initially hoped.
    Most indications I have gotten from them have not suggested they will.”

    So Lyle has told us exactly what the list is, he’s not “breaking it to us” now.


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    Frank D

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    Jun 25th, 2010 (8:16 am)

    GM must be responsible for their dealers behavior on this. I reject the notion that “simple” economics are in play here. With the needed government subsidies and the need for a responsive consumer, I expect that the early adopters will be very well informed and not subject to any manipulation.


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    Jun 25th, 2010 (8:19 am)

    RB: Good points. Volt and the IPO are very likely related, as the former possibly will be used to create PR that will help with the latter, which will need help.  

    and releasing the cost and mpg numbers for the Volt near that time will create the most free publicity possible.


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    Zachary Taylor (Jackson)

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    Jun 25th, 2010 (8:20 am)

    We also aren’t expecting our dealers to overcharge anyone for this vehicle

    In a related story, GM also does not expect competition, a dishonest politician, or the imminent rising of the Sun.

    More, after this:


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    Eco

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    Jun 25th, 2010 (8:21 am)

    Not only will you have to pay over MSRP, but you won’t get to test-drive it first either. Not in 2010, and probably not 2011.

    The best part will be the badger salesperson telling you “well if you can’t afford a volt there’s always a new Malibu!”

    I would actually buy popcorn and a soda to watch the reaction of first adopters to
    THAT suggestion. (That’s a thinly veiled word of advice to GM, that if you fail to advise dealers NOT to say that, you may have a customer-relations problem.)

    If you want to be the first on your block to own one, you have to reconcile yourself to paying over MSRP. Anything else is not capitalism.

    My projected purchase date for a non-volt erev is 2015. When 5 years of data show that the cost of repairs that you paid over five years IS LESS THAN A MONTHLY CAR PAYMENT, THEN I might buy one. Might.

    Maybe by then I’ll have recovered from the financial catastrophe of owning a Pontiac.


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    WK4P

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    Jun 25th, 2010 (8:33 am)

    Neutron said:

    “Customer loyalty should not be taken lightly. And most of us have long memories if we get “taken.”
    ………………………………………………………………………………………………
    Having spent nearly 20 years in the car business let me assure you there is little customer loyality in the business. It’s funny, both dealers and customers want you to think there is. But if a dealer can make a few hundred bucks on a “loyal” customer he will and if a customer can save a few hundred bucks by going somewhere else he will do that as well. It’s business pure and simple.

    Anyone who pays over MSRP for a Volt (or Leaf, or anything else) is not getting “taken”, they are paying a premium for satisfying their ego by being the first to own something. Most of us will wait a year or two and buy a Volt at $100 over invoice like any other car.


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    Nelson

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    Jun 25th, 2010 (8:36 am)

    “We strongly discourage dealers from this activity when it occurs, but we cannot direct their business decisions,” he says. “They are independent business owners.”

    I guess GM is tossing the great “Overall Customer Experience” notion for the Volt out the window. Maybe they think a customer being told they have to pay above MSRP because of demand is a great experience. NOT!

    I won’t pay a cent over MSRP + TAX + Tire Fee + Shipping + Registration + ????

    NPNS!


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    ronr64

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    Jun 25th, 2010 (8:37 am)

    Who is at fault? The dealer for taking “too much” money for the car or the consumer for paying “too much”? One cannot happen without the other.


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    CorvetteGuy

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    Jun 25th, 2010 (8:38 am)

    Bob: It’s not the dealers gouging us that we’re worried about. When the Wii was in such short supply, Best Buy didn’t sell them for $1,000, they sold them at MSRP — and the scalpers that bought them resold them on eBay for $1,000. Just because GM says “We’ll make sure none of our dealers overcharges you” doesn’t mean some enterprising individual isn’t going to go wait in line with some of his colleagues and buy up an entire city’s allocation of 20 Volts or whatever, then turn around and sell them on eBay Motors for $50,000.  

    My son was one of those Wii resellers and he was very happy about it. He is doing something similar right now with the new iPhone. I’ve never understood eBay, but he knows how to work the system.


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    Jun 25th, 2010 (8:39 am)

    29 Herm: Jim, can you imagine ANY possible way that GM could use Lyle’s list?.. they dont even want a pre-order system. The way it has worked (for probably 100 years) is that dealers buy cars from manufacturers and then sell them to you at a profit.. the dealers OWN the new cars. If a dealer ordered a car for you, and you prepaid, then that is a different story.. that seems to be rare now.

    Herm– I can imagine gm having a system that works like the one nissan has set up for leaf. It’s the same state laws, same kind of independent dealer network, but a different plan.


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    Mark Z

     

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    Jun 25th, 2010 (8:40 am)

    I’ll gladly buy that “Volt” in the picture for $495!


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    Jun 25th, 2010 (8:40 am)

    33 Herm: and releasing the cost and mpg numbers for the Volt near that time will create the most free publicity possible.  

    Indeed so.


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    Jun 25th, 2010 (8:43 am)

    Zachary Taylor (Jackson): In a related story, GM also does not expect competition, a dishonest politician, or the imminent rising of the Sun.More, after this:  (Quote)

    LOL It’s not like this is something new. If you want to be first you pay a price. If you don’t like the price one dealer gives you call another one.


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    John W (Tampa)

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    Jun 25th, 2010 (8:45 am)

    I talked to a friend of mine who is a dealer in Arkansas and he told me they would not be selling over MSRP. When I asked why he said because they value their large amount of repeat business and have just decided to never charge above MSRP.


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    CorvetteGuy

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    Jun 25th, 2010 (8:45 am)

    Someone here, who also works at a dealership, posted that their policy would be MSRP for bonafide previous customers and $1,000 over for anyone else. Considering our dealership may only get 2 this year, that sounds more than fair and I have already suggested that to the owner of out store. We will see.

    Also, that is not a picture of me but I do have a shirt similar to that :)


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    Jun 25th, 2010 (8:49 am)

    Whoa, that pic looks so much like the Chevy salesman I bought my van from in 1994. Greased hair, big belly, 1970s polyester suit, etc. Nice guy but wow… “not saying all salesmen are like this” I went in a couple years later for an oil change and they said he was deceased. I don’t think he had any gold chains though.

    No, of course the dealers won’t “gouge”, but just wait for the $600 cloth protectant, $800 pinstripes, $1200 wheel treatment, $200 for nitrogen in the tires, etc, etc.


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    Jun 25th, 2010 (8:50 am)

    Tim Hart: There is a solution to getting a Volt at MSRP. When you put down a deposit, get an agreement in writing that you will pay the MSRP and no more. I’ve already found a dealer that will do that.  

    Any dealer can do that. It does not mean they will give you the first one they receive. If another customer walks in and offers $5000 over, do you think the Sales Manager is going to say “No”?


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    Jun 25th, 2010 (8:51 am)

    Eco: The best part will be the badger salesperson telling you “well if you can’t afford a volt there’s always a new Malibu!”

    How about “Here is a Cruze it looks a lot like a Volt in fact it is built on the same platform. It seats 5, gets 40 mpg and cost half of the Volt price. Want to drive one?”


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    Jun 25th, 2010 (9:04 am)

    That is so true. I wanted to look at the the Prius years ago and walked on a dealership, a salesperson tried to push me to the used car section and I could not get him to show me a prius so I left and complained to Toyota and the dealership invited me back. I have never been back to Toyota ever since.

    neutron: If a dealer “price gouges” they may see a very short term profit and a LONG TERM loss of of customers. Customer loyalty should not be taken lightly.And most of us have long memories if we get “taken.”
    I do trust that GM will have its dealers do the “right thing” and GM will do its part in providing enough VOLTS ASAP.:+}  


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    Jun 25th, 2010 (9:04 am)

    Eco: but you won’t get to test-drive it first either.

    I have already discussed this with our General Manager. Since the “rollout” of the VOLT will be very limited, (a couple hundred dealers in my opinion), I have asked him to grind on GM to get GM to let us “borrow” one of the pre-production models to give test drives, and to use to take orders with. He is working on it. I’m not real hopeful, but I give him credit for trying. I am certain they will NOT allow us to run up HUNDREDS of test drive miles on a brand new unsold unit.


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    Jun 25th, 2010 (9:19 am)

    With Lyle’s list stagnating at about 50,000, and the more official Chevy Volt wait list at around 40,000. I think There will probably be about 40-50,000 early adopters. Probably figure paying over MSRP until 2012 at least, then who knows. It might be the new Wii or iPhone where they sell more and more every year and can hardly ever keep up with demand because the more people buy them, the more stylish and trendy they become.


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    Jun 25th, 2010 (9:35 am)

    Rashiid Amul: I am out of here for a couple of weeks. I’m off to Evergreen, CO for a nice vacation.

    You enjoy the nice cool weather and great scenery and anything else you’ve got cooked up. But don’t forget us — think how you’d use Mountain Mode when driving around!


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    Jun 25th, 2010 (9:43 am)

    “I’m glad at least the Volt and Leaf are being produced. I can’t remember how many dozens of Volt and Leaf competitors have been bragged about since I joined this site nearly 2 years ago, and all are still vaporware.” Omnioesh

    Read this quote under the forum post about the Audi e-tron not being produced. I just want to remind all of you that last I heard about 2 weeks ago there were only a few Leaf Pre-production vehicles out there, it’s hard to believe but that’s what a Nissan rep told a journalist. For all we know Leafs might not hit mass production for another year or two. If anyone has credible facts that disprove this statement let me know.


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    Jun 25th, 2010 (9:44 am)

    Bob: It’s not the dealers gouging us that we’re worried about.When the Wii was in such short supply, Best Buy didn’t sell them for $1,000, they sold them at MSRP — and the scalpers that bought them resold them on eBay for $1,000.Just because GM says “We’ll make sure none of our dealers overcharges you” doesn’t mean some enterprising individual isn’t going to go wait in line with some of his colleagues and buy up an entire city’s allocation of 20 Volts or whatever, then turn around and sell them on eBay Motors for $50,000.  

    I suspect that will not happen. For one person or even 20 to get Volts to sell at that big a markup would be a surprise. And that many dollars could be invested to get better returns other places. But it is an interesting idea…


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    Jun 25th, 2010 (9:45 am)

    CorvetteGuy: If another customer walks in and offers $5000 over, do you think the Sales Manager is going to say “No”?  

    Yup. That’s just the way rationing works. As nuclearboy pointed out, it’s really just supply and demand. Either the price rises or you have a line or people flip the cars or whatever. In anyk case you have a problem if MSRP is below market price. Having the dealers sell above MSRP leaves a bad taste in the mouth of the consumer — though prices below MSRP seem perfectly fine — but until supply equals demand at MSRP someone has to end up with the surplus dollars.

    A partial solution would be to allocate the car by customer, which is essentially what Nissan seems to be doing with the Leaf, but that’s not the way it’s been done for fifty years so I’m thinking GM won’t go that route. A more complete solution would be to make more so that the supply equaled the demand at MSRP.


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    Jun 25th, 2010 (9:46 am)

    Guess it going to depend on how greedy dealers think they can be and how anxious early adopters are going to be.

    Sounds like there might not be anything GM can legally do to prevent above MSRP sales. Buyers just saying NO would be effective if we could all stick to it, but some probably won’t.


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    Jun 25th, 2010 (9:53 am)

    Yet another GM spokesperson using language that can mean anything to respond to a question. What does “over charge” mean? It is left up to the listener to infer his or her own answer. Now if he had said, “we will ensure the dealers do not charge more than the MSRP” that would have meaning. But as the article so clearly demonstrates, that is not at all what GM actually said.


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    Jun 25th, 2010 (9:53 am)

    CorvetteGuy: Someone here, who also works at a dealership, posted that their policy would be MSRP for bonafide previous customers and $1,000 over for anyone else.

    Maybe GM isn’t the only entity not thinking outside the box. How about holding a “Green” or “End Dependence Day” event and auctioning the car off? People generally get less fussed at auctions than pricing over MSRP because the process is more transparent. You could also make a contribution to an appropriate charity to dampen any irritation that might be engendered in customers. As part of the celebration you could also feature the Cruze and the Malibu and whatever other vehicles you deemed appropriate since those vehicles do reduce fuel usage.


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    Jun 25th, 2010 (9:55 am)

    It appears that GM honestly believes the current planned production numbers will be able to meet demand. I have a hard time believing that when I see how fast Nissan got 13,000 people to put down $99 for a car that is also only available in a handful of markets at first. But Nissan is advertising like crazy and trying to build the demand to sell in high volume. So far GM is not. If anything people here are starting to suspect GM has a plan to sabotage demand. And rightly so given their history with the EV-1. GM claimed repeatedly there was no demand for the car yet I knew plenty of people (myself included) who wanted one if it had been available in their market (Seattle for me) and for sale not just lease.

    Given Teslas model S deposit numbers (1000s) for a 50k car and Nissan 13k+ for a 27k car it probably comes down to price which GM conveniently has not yet announced. Put an effective 40k price on it and there will be volts on lots by mid to late 2011 I bet. Demand is a bit of a self fulfilling prophecy…


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    Jun 25th, 2010 (9:55 am)

    RB: Herm– I can imagine gm having a system that works like the one nissan has set up for leaf. It’s the same state laws, same kind of independent dealer network, but a different plan.  

    No guarantee Nissan dealers wont “gouge” either, no matter what Nissan promises… read their releases.. basically they say your protection is that you should go to a different dealer if they attempt to gouge. My idea about a foolproof system is that you make a deal with a Nissan dealer, arrange for payment etc.. then they get your reservation number and they order the vehicle from Nissan for delivery. I suspect all that Nissan can do is to exert un-official pressure on their dealers.. but nothing too overt or they will get sued.


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    Evil Conservative

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    Jun 25th, 2010 (9:57 am)

    zimwolfe: That is so true. I wanted to look at the the Prius years ago and walked on a dealership, a salesperson tried to push me to the used car section and I could not get him to show me a prius so I left and complained to Toyota and the dealership invited me back. I have never been back to Toyota ever since.  (Quote)

    Back in 94′ I was fresh out of college, had a job making good money and was looking for a car. I wanted to buy a Trans Am. I want to a local dealer and asked about the car which had just come out in a new body style and were hard to find. The sales man looked at me turns to another salesman that was reading a paper and laughed. I walked out and bought the car at another dealer 40 miles away. The next year I was having a switch replaced and want back to the first dealership. The service guy commented on my car and asked if I bought it here? I said no and told him the story. I have never been back to that dealer and steer people clear.

    The dealers better treat Volt customers right or they could hurt in the long run.


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    Jun 25th, 2010 (9:57 am)

    Steve: Guess it going to depend on how greedy dealers think they can be

    I’m hardly one to defend car dealers but aren’t consumers who want to buy cars BELOW market prices every bit, or perhaps even more, “greedy” than dealers who want to sell AT market prices?


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    Jun 25th, 2010 (9:59 am)

    omnimoeish: With Lyle’s list stagnating at about 50,000, and the more official Chevy Volt wait list at around 40,000. I think There will probably be about 40-50,000 early adopters. Probably figure paying over MSRP until 2012 at least, then who knows. It might be the new Wii or iPhone where they sell more and more every year and can hardly ever keep up with demand because the more people buy them, the more stylish and trendy they become.  

    I think there are more grass-roots (like half-a-million) early adopters that are sick-and-tired of oil companies and oil countries and oil spills.

    We (Americans) are innovative and forward thinking. It’s not much of a stretch to buy a car that looks and feels like our trade-in and yet has high technology underpinnings.

    I think we will very quickly reach a tipping point where electric cars and strong hybrids will overtake sales of traditional ICE cars. Just look at Prius. Who’d of predicted that the gas-hog SUV-driving Americans would buy millions of these ugly puppies?

    The LEAF site (that is conveniently linked from here) says it all: New car, New fuel, New gas station (your garage).

    This message resonates with people in a profound way.

    My neighbors are not stupid. They don’t like being called ‘small people’ by the giant foreign oil company CEO and they are not taking it any more! He can take his fancy yacht and ….


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    Jun 25th, 2010 (10:00 am)

    Zachary Taylor (Jackson): In a related story, GM also does not expect competition, a dishonest politician, or the imminent rising of the Sun.

    +1. Hard to believe anyone gave you a minus for this. Not only is it true it’s pretty darn funny.


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    Jun 25th, 2010 (10:04 am)

    Dave G: The last thing we need is an bunch of lemons.

    Seems like this represents how confident you are in GM and GM engineering. I don’t think there are going to be any huge issues. Will there be issues? Of course there will be. But I hold GM and its engineers in high regard so I don’t think we’ll see more issues than with other cars. That’s not to say I’m right of course.


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    Jun 25th, 2010 (10:11 am)

    Roy H: If a dealer has a bad reputation, then dump them.

    Ba ha ha ha ha ha ha ha! GM can’t even eliminate dealers it doesn’t want? Why? Because car dealers are a political force. They’ve managed to leverage that political power into a series of market distorting state laws that don’t really allow GM to dump them. And even when theoretically GM could, such as after the bankruptcy last year, there was a stampede in Congress, especially by Republican members shouting about how wonderful the free market is, to prevent GM from doing what it would have in a normal free market.

    Campaign contributions speaking louder than principle or good judgement. Shocking. Simply shocking.


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    Jun 25th, 2010 (10:13 am)

    Rashiid Amul: I am out of here for a couple of weeks. I’m off to Evergreen, CO for a nice vacation.

    #5

    Gee, you mean you’re not going to drag along a laptop and check in with us every day from Evergreen, LOL? Probably not a good idea though. I have a mental picture of your wife breaking the computer over your head the first time you tried it.

    Seriously, when I go on vacation I do not look at computers, or check in with my business whatsoever. If the thing can’t run itself for 2 weeks, then shame on me. Stay away from CNN as much as you can as well. Have a great time.


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    Jun 25th, 2010 (10:19 am)

    WK4P: Anyone who pays over MSRP for a Volt (or Leaf, or anything else) is not getting “taken”, they are paying a premium for satisfying their ego by being the first to own something. Most of us will wait a year or two and buy a Volt at $100 over invoice like any other car.

    #36

    Well said. +1


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    Jun 25th, 2010 (10:22 am)

    Tom M:
    Jim,I think that’s pretty apparent by now. The limited supply and select markets alone would make it very difficult. Lyle has been upfront about the fact that he has no connection to GM, heck they even made him change the name of it from the Volt Waiting List to the Volt Want list. That was a while ago but they didn’t want the people who signed up to think they were “in line” to get one.
    I would think the fastest way to get a Volt is to check occasionally with your local dealer and tell them you would like to put a deposit on one as soon as they will accept deposits. Maybe you can leave your contact info and ask the manager to call you when he get any information about when the process will begin.
    Lyle has done an outstanding job here and we should all be very thankful for his work over the past three years but I haven’t read anything that would support that GM is going to use the list for anything but to gauge support for the car.  

    ====================================

    Herm:
    Jim, can you imagine ANY possible way that GM could use Lyle’s list?.. they dont even want a pre-order system. The way it has worked (for probably 100 years) is that dealers buy cars from manufacturers and then sell them to you at a profit.. the dealers OWN the new cars. If a dealer ordered a car for you, and you prepaid, then that is a different story.. that seems to be rare now.I still dont know why you cant buy a car from a manufacturer directly.  

    ===================================

    Tom M: Jim,Looking back to past posts Lyle has said these things:“Along the way of this list’s growth and recognition I received gentle pressure from GM. Their legal department once politely requested I change the name from waiting list. You will now notice it is called the Want List, simply indicating that these are people who want a Volt.”“Unfortunately, I cannot say GM will utilize the list as I had initially hoped.
    Most indications I have gotten from them have not suggested they will.”So Lyle has told us exactly what the list is, he’s not “breaking it to us” now.  

    ==================================

    I have been to my local dealer, and I am #1 on the list.

    I thought I remembered Lyle mentioning something that there might still be a surprise for us here from GM concerning the list.

    I hoped that maybe Lyle could work a deal with GM to take five or ten Volts and have a lottery for the members of this site. It is the least that GM could do for our support!!

    But that still does not really explain the new “symbolic” name change.


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    Jun 25th, 2010 (10:23 am)

    DonC:
    Seems like this represents how confident you are in GM and GM engineering. I don’t think there are going to be any huge issues. Will there be issues? Of course there will be. But I hold GM and its engineers in high regard so I don’t think we’ll see more issues than with other cars. That’s not to say I’m right of course.  

    I agree. There may be some minor issues. With all of the information that has been on this site and how open GM has been about the evolution and testing of the VOLT this should be a great and exciting car to own and drive.


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    Jun 25th, 2010 (10:29 am)

    “We haven’t fully determined our go to market strategy…..”

    What? Really? In case you haven’t noticed, let me direct your attention to the counter that appears on this site from time to time: 157 days and counting.


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    Jun 25th, 2010 (10:32 am)

    CorvetteGuy: I have asked him to grind on GM to get GM to let us “borrow” one of the pre-production models to give test drives, and to use to take orders with.

    #50

    A total no brainer for GM, IMHO. I cannot understand for the life of me why they don’t have a program to do exactly that all over the country. Not for the first time, I nominate you for GM “Marketing Manager Of The Month”.

    As to the shirt, John Retsek once famously said that “All of those car salesmen in the polyester suits didn’t leave the business. They just moved to the leasing office.” Maybe not so much in The Year Of Our Lord 2010.


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    Jun 25th, 2010 (10:34 am)

    omnimoeish: It might be the new Wii or iPhone where they sell more and more every year and can hardly ever keep up with demand because the more people buy them, the more stylish and trendy they become.

    #51

    “From your lips to God’s ear.”

    Tagamet

    +1


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    Jun 25th, 2010 (10:37 am)

    Noel Park:
    #5Gee, you mean you’re not going to drag along a laptop and check in with us every day from Evergreen, LOL?Probably not a good idea though.I have a mental picture of your wife breaking the computer over your head the first time you tried it.Seriously, when I go on vacation I do not look at computers, or check in with my business whatsoever.If the thing can’t run itself for 2 weeks, then shame on me.Stay away from CNN as much as you can as well.Have a great time.  

    ==========================================

    Rashiid – Have A Great Time!!!

    Noel: I am with you. When I can get out of here, I tell everyone that the only time they should call me is if the building is on fire. But then I also say that there is nothing I could do about that anyway, so you might as well not call me about that either!!!


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    Jun 25th, 2010 (10:40 am)

    DonC: +1. Hard to believe anyone gave you a minus for this. Not only is it true it’s pretty darn funny.

    #64

    john1701a, LOL? +1


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    Jun 25th, 2010 (10:43 am)

    Jim I: But that still does not really explain the new “symbolic” name change.

    #69

    Maybe he got another call from GM’s legal department, LOL.


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    Jun 25th, 2010 (11:00 am)

    Tom M: Lyle has done an outstanding job here and we should all be very thankful for his work over the past three years but I haven’t read anything that would support that GM is going to use the list for anything but to gauge support for the car.  

    I haven’t read anything that would support that GM is going to use the list for anything but toor even to try to gauge support for the car, or even for something as basic as providing acknowledgement, information and help to potential customers.

    There, I enjoyed that Tom, thanks.


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    Jun 25th, 2010 (11:03 am)

    RB: Phil clarifies this statement a bit further saying “we’ll be paying close attention when the vehicle launches and do our best to strongly discourage this kind of behavior as we always do with any GM-branded vehicle.He might have said, “Please review what happened with Camaro.”  

    That’s what I was thinking.


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    Jun 25th, 2010 (11:04 am)

    All GM needs to do is start a pre-registration program to purchase the Volt at MSRP.

    The MSRP already has dealer profit built in – a reasonable profit. (That’s how they sell ICE cars below MSRP). They won’t starve.

    Simply sign up for a Volt at your local dealer. Deposit at least $2,000.00 – this MUST be a non-refundable deposit, to ensure the customer REALLY wants to buy the Volt. Anyone willing to put up a $2000.00 non-refundable deposit is not going to casually say “Nah, it ain’t my style” and walk away.

    The dealer would electronically transmit Volt orders to GM headquarters. This would give GM management a REAL picture of who’s willing to buy, and who just wants to look. They could then base the amount of Volts manufactured on the amount of REAL buyers, not just hand-raisers.

    GM would deliver Volts to the dealers in the order that they were pre-ordered. There would be no arbitary limit on Volt production, other than the amount of units pre-ordered. You put $2000.00 down, you get a Volt – that simple. Guaranteed delivery if you pre-order.

    Wake up, Mr Lackluster – this is a sure fire way of determining Volt sales in advance. Don’t be scared – be bold. I want my Volt ASAP, and I’ve got the down payment to prove it.


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    Jun 25th, 2010 (11:29 am)

    Eco: Not only will you have to pay over MSRP, but you won’t get to test-drive it first either. Not in 2010, and probably not 2011.

    Well, actually, a dealer mark-up means there might be some Volts on the lot. So you might get your test drive. If GM somehow manages to stop dealers from adding a mark-up, expect them to sell much much faster.


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    Jun 25th, 2010 (11:35 am)

    Evil Conservative: Back in 94′ I was fresh out of college, had a job making good money and was looking for a car. I wanted to buy a Trans Am. I want to a local dealer and asked about the car which had just come out in a new body style and were hard to find. The sales man looked at me turns to another salesman that was reading a paper and laughed. I walked out and bought the car at another dealer 40 miles away. The next year I was having a switch replaced and want back to the first dealership. The service guy commented on my car and asked if I bought it here? I said no and told him the story. I have never been back to that dealer and steer people clear.
    The dealers better treat Volt customers right or they could hurt in the long run. 

    Dealers can do a lot to hurt themselves. A dealer in my area had been in business for at least a generation. They had a bad reputation and old customers constantly said don’t go there. Then the city helped to put together a new auto mall.

    You would think that in moving to the new location the dealer would have a huge celebration call all the friends and old customers to celebrate the move right?

    The dealer finally did the right thing though. They quietly changed their name and started operating in the new store. After a generation of chances to build good will in town, they found the value of their good will and their name, was less than nothing.


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    Jun 25th, 2010 (11:38 am)

    DonC:
    Seems like this represents how confident you are in GM and GM engineering. I don’t think there are going to be any huge issues. Will there be issues? Of course there will be. But I hold GM and its engineers in high regard so I don’t think we’ll see more issues than with other cars. That’s not to say I’m right of course.  

    I don’t think there’s any disagreement with Dave G, nor doubt in GM’s capabilities to produce a good, solid product. But, rather, if GM were run by the subset of GM-Volt posters who want 3000 Volts per week starting in September, and the factory and suppliers tried for that rate at that early stage, quality would suffer. GM knows this, as does every car manufacturer around the world.

    The phrase “learning curve” has real statistical backing. Just because GM built 80 verification vehicles a year ago, and just because they can build several hundred pre-production vehicles this summer, doesn’t mean that they can build thousands a month this fall — and here’s the most important thing — with the zero defects that modern new car buyers expect and demand.

    300 with zero defects in a calendar quarter this summer.
    300 a month with zero defects in October, 2010.
    300 a week with zero defects in April, 2011.
    300 a day with zero defects in September, 2011.


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    Jun 25th, 2010 (11:40 am)

    Here’s my solution. As much as I want, and in spite of the fact I’ve been following the Volt and this site for a couple years now, I will not pay over sticker, period!

    I bought my Acadia back in 2007 when it first came out, had to shop around due to this same issue, but finally found the one I wanted, loaded to the rafters, plus, plus, plus… absolutely beautiul car, latest and greatest bells & whistles, but I would not pay over sticker, and I won’t for a Volt either.

    …don’t complain if you do because you’re actually the cause of the problem.


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    Jun 25th, 2010 (11:40 am)

    LauraM: Well, actually, a dealer mark-up means there might be some Volts on the lot. So you might get your test drive. If GM somehow manages to stop dealers from adding a mark-up, expect them to sell much much faster.

    I wish that were true Laura but I really think that there will be such a demand, and such a short supply, that if a dealer wanted to add $5,000 on top they would still find buyers. People will travel from other states if they find a dealer that has on on the lot and gladly pay the premium to be one of the first to have one.
    I know many here will say ” I won’t pay a dime over sticker” and perhaps that right, but the fact remains if a dealer wants to this they can. They will have people lining up to overpay to have a first-year Volt.


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    Jun 25th, 2010 (11:42 am)

    Rashiid Amul: Off topic,
    I am out of here for a couple of weeks. I’m off to Evergreen, CO for a nice vacation.
    Have a fun all.
    This is a great website.

    Have a great time in Colorado.


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    Jun 25th, 2010 (11:54 am)

    Bob: It’s not the dealers gouging us that we’re worried about. When the Wii was in such short supply, Best Buy didn’t sell them for $1,000, they sold them at MSRP — and the scalpers that bought them resold them on eBay for $1,000. Just because GM says “We’ll make sure none of our dealers overcharges you” doesn’t mean some enterprising individual isn’t going to go wait in line with some of his colleagues and buy up an entire city’s allocation of 20 Volts or whatever, then turn around and sell them on eBay Motors for $50,000.

    I could be wrong, but flipping generally doesn’t work as well for cars as it does for things like the wii. There’s a reason “used” cars go for a lot less money. It’s a huge investment, and there are a lot of potential safety issues, and a lot of people want to know for sure that no one drove it or damaged it or did anything to violate the warranty before you buy. And, personally, I would be even more concerned with the Volt since it has a lot of new technology

    There might be so much demand for the Volt, that people will pay enough over MSRP even from an unauthorized dealer to make it worthwhile. But, personally, I tend to doubt it.


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    Jun 25th, 2010 (12:01 pm)

    “We haven’t fully determined our go to market strategy, so any talk of a deposit is premature – we haven’t even announced pricing yet,” states GM spokesperson Phil Colley.

    Some people say timing is everything. I wonder where those guys work at?


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    Jun 25th, 2010 (12:02 pm)

    Loboc: I think there are more grass-roots (like half-a-million) early adopters that are sick-and-tired of oil companies and oil countries and oil spills.

    We (Americans) are innovative and forward thinking. It’s not much of a stretch to buy a car that looks and feels like our trade-in and yet has high technology underpinnings.

    I think we will very quickly reach a tipping point where electric cars and strong hybrids will overtake sales of traditional ICE cars. Just look at Prius. Who’d of predicted that the gas-hog SUV-driving Americans would buy millions of these ugly puppies?

    The United States is a very diverse country. In more ways than one. There are a lot of people who care about the environment, oil independence, and energy security. And then there are people (I know a few) who couldn’t care less. I would imagine that most of the SUV drivers won’t be interested in Volts. (Yes. I know there are some people who actually use them. But I suspect that’s the minority.)

    That said, I agree that GM is vastly underestimating the demand for this car.


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    Jun 25th, 2010 (12:06 pm)

    Tom M: I wish that were true Laura but I really think that there will be such a demand, and such a short supply, that if a dealer wanted to add $5,000 on top they would still find buyers. People will travel from other states if they find a dealer that has on on the lot and gladly pay the premium to be one of the first to have one.
    I know many here will say ” I won’t pay a dime over sticker” and perhaps that right, but the fact remains if a dealer wants to this they can. They will have people lining up to overpay to have a first-year Volt.

    Absolutely, dealers will be able to charge hefty premiums. Especially if GM sticks with their planned production schedule. (Although I suspect that if dealers are getting away with charging those types of premiums, GM will have no choice but to up production, whether or not they want to.)

    But if they don’t charge premiums, the cars will move faster. Or, at least, have longer waiting lists. If they have waiting lists at $5000 over list price, they’ll go to $6000, or $7000. Or even $10,000. And at some price point, supply will equal demand.

    Personally, I’d have a hard time paying anything over MSRP. The way I see it, if I’m not driving it, someone else is. And they’re reducing our oil dependency just as much as I would.


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    Jun 25th, 2010 (12:30 pm)

    The Grump: All GM needs to do is start a pre-registration program to purchase the Volt at MSRP.
    The MSRP already has dealer profit built in – a reasonable profit. (That’s how they sell ICE cars below MSRP). They won’t starve.
    Simply sign up for a Volt at your local dealer. Deposit at least $2,000.00 – this MUST be a non-refundable deposit, to ensure the customer REALLY wants to buy the Volt. Anyone willing to put up a $2000.00 non-refundable deposit is not going to casually say “Nah, it ain’t my style” and walk away.
    The dealer would electronically transmit Volt orders to GM headquarters. This would give GM management a REAL picture of who’s willing to buy, and who just wants to look. They could then base the amount of Volts manufactured on the amount of REAL buyers, not just hand-raisers.
    GM would deliver Volts to the dealers in the order that they were pre-ordered. There would be no arbitary limit on Volt production, other than the amount of units pre-ordered. You put $2000.00 down, you get a Volt – that simple. Guaranteed delivery if you pre-order.
    Wake up, Mr Lackluster – this is a sure fire way of determining Volt sales in advance. Don’t be scared – be bold. I want my Volt ASAP, and I’ve got the down payment to prove it.

    I am with you 100% on that plan! If GM could actually follow through with it, the ‘good press’ alone would double sales! Will it really happen? I doubt it.

    On a similar note, does anybody here know what the breakdown “by State” is for Lyle’s Unofficial List? How many are from California? How many would come to CA to take delivery?


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    Jun 25th, 2010 (12:36 pm)

    Dave G: Bottom line: Production numbers for the first model year are not that meaningful. What’s important is how fast they ramp up after that.

    Agreed.

    We have to remember that the 2011 model year is really a 1/2 year introduction. 8,000 units is still 8 times more than all Teslas produced so far :) And, they’ve been at it for three years.

    I have always maintained that GM knows how to build a million cars and knows how to ramp production. They build hundreds just turning the line on and off to test their build process.

    I’d be happy to get Volt VIN #100,000. Especially if it’s a 2012 model!


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    Jun 25th, 2010 (12:39 pm)

    Van: What does “over charge” mean?

    A sales transaction can only be completed by a ‘willing buyer’ and a ‘willing seller’. Otherwise there is ‘no deal’. So the person that pays $1,000 OVER is just as willing as the person who pays $1,000 UNDER. When someone actually claims they were “gouged”, what they are really saying is that they are suffering from “Buyer’s Remorse”, and that could happen to anyone no matter what they paid.


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    Jun 25th, 2010 (12:57 pm)

    WANT LIST:

    When I started it long ago (May 2007), it was my hope to use it to demonstrate to GM the demand was significant enough for the car that it would compel them to build it. I also hoped it could serve as a true waiting list that one day GM would take from me and honor.

    As it grew large, GM became more concerned about it than enamored with it. They asked that I change the name.

    Recently they started their own “interested parties” list but have never announced any pre-ordering plans or plans to honor that list in any way.

    Every time I have a chance to speak with someone in marketing I ask if they can use the GM-Volt list in any way. The response is almost always negative.

    GM has some kind of plan on how the first Volts will be sold but they remain tight-lipped about it, though they will announce it sometime between now and November.


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    Jun 25th, 2010 (1:01 pm)

    A few calculations. US population exposed to pent up demand for EREV technology 310,000,000. South Canada population exposed to pent up demand for EREV technology 8,000,000. North Mexico population exposed to pent up demand for EREV technology 17,000,000.

    Empirical evidence:

    Based on similar category; all electric car pre-sale list introduced online by Nissan April 20, 2010. May 24 2010 all electric car by Nissan sold out world wide for 2010-2011, new reservations list closed after over subscription. Nissan EV’s available 8500 in US through March 2011? Production of cars competing in category – none, out of category; 250 total, $110,000 two seat roadsters.

    EREV Volts available 8000. Projected production of cars competing in category 0.

    Nissan has hands raised in one month for all of it’s 8500 EV’s. GM, which sells vastly more cars in the US, will offer a longer range EREV, and will have 8000 vehicles available for sale??????

    Conclusion:

    Hmmm, I wonder if there will be any chances for premiums over MSRP?

    GM please send my consulting fee for this study to:

    http://www.ThisisthewaylifeisnowdoSOMETHING.com consultants.

    Appropriately this is a dead link.


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    Jun 25th, 2010 (1:06 pm)

    Baltimore17:
    300 with zero defects in a calendar quarter this summer.
    300 a month with zero defects in October, 2010.
    300 a week with zero defects in April, 2011.
    300 a day with zero defects in September, 2011.

    Yep, that’s a good way to show what ramping up really means in real terms.

    And 300 Volts a day is about right. If you run the line 240 days a year, that’s 72,000 Volts.


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    Jun 25th, 2010 (1:06 pm)

    Lyle: Every time I have a chance to speak with someone in marketing I ask if they can use the GM-Volt list in any way. The response is almost always negative.

    #93

    Frightening!


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    Jun 25th, 2010 (1:08 pm)

    Baltimore17: The phrase “learning curve” has real statistical backing. Just because GM built 80 verification vehicles a year ago, and just because they can build several hundred pre-production vehicles this summer, doesn’t mean that they can build thousands a month this fall

    If “learning curve” statistics requires that GM only sell 10K Volts for the first year, can you please explain how GM managed to sell 100,000 (99,872) Camaros during the first year. Also your projected numbers are way off. GM hasn’t announced plans to make 300 Volts a day. Had such an announcement been made I doubt you’d see so much kvetching about the production numbers.


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    Jun 25th, 2010 (1:11 pm)

    Lyle: As it grew large, GM became more concerned about it than enamored with it. They asked that I change the name.

    I have to wonder if GM management doesn’t feel like they’ve got a “Voltenstein” on their hands.


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    Jun 25th, 2010 (1:15 pm)

    Lyle: GM has some kind of plan on how the first Volts will be sold but they remain tight-lipped about it, though they will announce it sometime between now and November.

    Given the Volt Dancers and the Volt Song we can hardly wait. ClusterSomething springs to mind.

    How funny that GM is worried about your site. Apparently Not Invented Here is not a river in Arkansas. With respect to GM Marketing, sometimes it’s just better to close it down and start over. In the digital age the idea of controlling your message isn’t going to work. You have to accept that fact and figure out how to ride the bronco.


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    Jun 25th, 2010 (1:34 pm)

    DonC: If “learning curve” statistics requires that GM only sell 10K Volts for the first year, can you please explain how GM managed to sell 100,000 (99,872) Camaros during the first year. Also your projected numbers are way off. GM hasn’t announced plans to make 300 Volts a day. Had such an announcement been made I doubt you’d see so much kvetching about the production numbers. 

    I can understand not wanting to make too many cars, for any number of reasons, but unless too many is 8001 instead of 8000, I don’t understand what the danger is. Fear of public reactions? Fear of dealer reactions? Fear of press and reviewer reactions? Fear of JD powers? Fear of defects? Fear of ramping up to meet demand this year so fast that they can’t sell enough cars next year? Fear of selling too many early at a net loss?

    And why is it so critical that their marketing plan leaves at least 51,000 Volt fans sitting on our hands just now? Are we the only ones to find that frustrating?


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    Jun 25th, 2010 (1:34 pm)

    DonC: With respect to GM Marketing, sometimes it’s just better to close it down and start over. In the digital age the idea of controlling your message isn’t going to work. You have to accept that fact and figure out how to ride the bronco.

    At least, it’s not going to work with a high-tech (and expensive) product.

    GM keeps trying to market the Volt like it’s soda-pop. Not like it’s a tour-de-force of technology. Seems a very odd approach, to me.


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    Jun 25th, 2010 (1:47 pm)

    CorvetteGuy: A sales transaction can only be completed by a ‘willing buyer’ and a ‘willing seller’. Otherwise there is ‘no deal’. So the person that pays $1,000 OVER is just as willing as the person who pays $1,000 UNDER. When someone actually claims they were “gouged”, what they are really saying is that they are suffering from “Buyer’s Remorse”, and that could happen to anyone no matter what they paid.  (Quote)

    Exactly right Corvette Guy. The MSRP is not some divine number…the correct price is the one that buyer and seller agree on. It’s GM’s business to build the number of cars that maximizes profit/return on investment despite their Government Motors nickname. If that results in a price that is more than I am willing to pay then so be it…..I don’t own a Porsche either even though I’d like to for fun weekend driving.


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    Jun 25th, 2010 (1:54 pm)

    Rashiid Amul: Off topic,
    I am out of here for a couple of weeks. I’m off to Evergreen, CO for a nice vacation.
    Have a fun all.
    This is a great website.

    Have a great vacation. You will be missed!


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    Comedian

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    Jun 25th, 2010 (1:57 pm)

    A guy walks into a Bar in China Town, the bartender says “Herro, what can I get for you” The man responds “I’ll take a Stoli with a twist”. The bartender thinks for a second and then says “Once upon a time there were Four Bears”


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    Jun 25th, 2010 (1:57 pm)

    I would expect to see more dealers in California getting the lyons share of Volts. Yes it does go to supply and demand, a dealer can always go down in price so I do expect the initial vehicles to be well over MSRP and if they do not sell at the higher price the dealer can always mark them lower but I doubt that they will have to.


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    Jun 25th, 2010 (2:00 pm)

    So will they gouge or won’t they?

    Like many aspects of the Volt, this one too can be overcome by GM ramping up and supply the Volt in big numbers and across the country. The slow limiting roll out causes all kinds of problems, both actual and perceived. GM has to commit to the Volt from day one. It is not a specialty car, it will be a main stream car if GM permits it. They have a true winner and don’t realize it. America wants off of oil and GM has the answer. Build it and they will come (and buy)!


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    Jun 25th, 2010 (2:01 pm)

    CorvetteGuy: A sales transaction can only be completed by a ‘willing buyer’ and a ‘willing seller’. Otherwise there is ‘no deal’. So the person that pays $1,000 OVER is just as willing as the person who pays $1,000 UNDER. When someone actually claims they were “gouged”, what they are really saying is that they are suffering from “Buyer’s Remorse”, and that could happen to anyone no matter what they paid. 

    Whatever makes you sleep better at night.

    Just kidding.


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    Jun 25th, 2010 (2:08 pm)

    Frank B: So will they gouge or won’t they?Like many aspects of the Volt, this one too can be overcome by GM ramping up and supply the Volt in big numbers and across the country.The slow limiting roll out causes all kinds of problems, both actual and perceived.GM has to commit to the Volt from day one.It is not a specialty car, it will be a main stream car if GM permits it.They have a true winner and don’t realize it.America wants off of oil and GM has the answer.Build it and they will come (and buy)!  

    Anyone who has a problem with GM taking a new technology and for 1 year wanting it to be a little more controlled and put all their resources behind important markets, I.E. Washington (Politicians) and California (Celebs/Free Press) and (Environmental Journalists) is just impatient and not thinking too straight. Year two. 50 to 60 thousand is a good number, thats 200 to 250 thousand Volts in the next 5 years. These aren’t cheap cars. I think we will all be happy if GM can even sell that many from now until late 2015. I’m tired of hearing they aren’t making enough when they haven’t even started selling em yet and we have no idea the real demand


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    Jun 25th, 2010 (2:08 pm)

    RogerE333: Whoa, that pic looks so much like the Chevy salesman I bought my van from in 1994. Greased hair, big belly, 1970s polyester suit, etc. Nice guy but wow… “not saying all salesmen are like this” I went in a couple years later for an oil change and they said he was deceased. I don’t think he had any gold chains though.No, of course the dealers won’t “gouge”, but just wait for the $600 cloth protectant, $800 pinstripes, $1200 wheel treatment, $200 for nitrogen in the tires, etc, etc.  (Quote)

    I know you kind of cover it in the “etc, etc”, but don’t forget the deluxe power cord at $595 (you don’t want that crappy standard one) Oh and how about a travel cord just in case you want to charge when traveling overnight. You better get all 3, 110, 220 and 480 for every possibility. With the special 3 pack discount that will be $1495…. And the dealer prep charge $1265. (had to make sure no water got on it because it is electric) LOL ;-)


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    Jun 25th, 2010 (2:21 pm)

    DonC: Baltimore17: The phrase “learning curve” has real statistical backing. Just because GM built 80 verification vehicles a year ago, and just because they can build several hundred pre-production vehicles this summer, doesn’t mean that they can build thousands a month this fall

    If “learning curve” statistics requires that GM only sell 10K Volts for the first year, can you please explain how GM managed to sell 100,000 (99,872) Camaros during the first year. Also your projected numbers are way off. GM hasn’t announced plans to make 300 Volts a day. Had such an announcement been made I doubt you’d see so much kvetching about the production numbers.

    There was plenty of complaining about the Camaro backlog. And the wait list turned into a pr mess for GM as people on the waitlist watched people drive off in the dealer demo car at $5000 over list price. No matter what GM does, they’re never going to make everyone happy.

    Although I suspect that that particular PR problem had a very big silver lining. It gave a lot of publicity to the fact that GM had built a car that at least some people wanted to buy….


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    Jun 25th, 2010 (2:31 pm)

    CorvetteGuy: A sales transaction can only be completed by a ‘willing buyer’ and a ‘willing seller’. Otherwise there is ‘no deal’. So the person that pays $1,000 OVER is just as willing as the person who pays $1,000 UNDER. When someone actually claims they were “gouged”, what they are really saying is that they are suffering from “Buyer’s Remorse”, and that could happen to anyone no matter what they paid.

    Agreed. If you buy at a mark-up, then you have to know you’re paying to get a hot car right now. As long as the dealer is honest about it…

    Off topic question: Is the Camaro still selling?


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    Jun 25th, 2010 (2:39 pm)

    jeffhre: Fear of selling too many early at a net loss?

    BINGO


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    Jun 25th, 2010 (2:43 pm)

    It will be kind of hard to price gouge someone on a vehicle that is simply unavailable.


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    Jun 25th, 2010 (2:43 pm)

    Lyle: When I started it long ago (May 2007), it was my hope to use it to demonstrate to GM the demand was significant enough for the car that it would compel them to build it. I also hoped it could serve as a true waiting list that one day GM would take from me and honor.

    As it grew large, GM became more concerned about it than enamored with it. They asked that I change the name.

    Recently they started their own “interested parties” list but have never announced any pre-ordering plans or plans to honor that list in any way.

    Maybe they are worried about a repeat of the Camaro fiasco? Only worse. And this time with Who killed the Electric car in the background?


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    Jun 25th, 2010 (2:58 pm)

    LauraM: Off topic question: Is the Camaro still selling?

    #111

    Check out #138 on yesterday’s thread.


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    Jun 25th, 2010 (3:03 pm)

    carcus3:
    I have to wonder if GM management doesn’t feel like they’ve got a “Voltenstein” on their hands.  

    We’re not near as annoying as those EV1 zealots over at PIA.

    Speaking of PIA, I read Sherry Boschert’s “Plug-in Hybrids: The Cars that will Recharge America”. (Sherry is the president of PIA and reported earlier that Volt would be offered in BEV version within 6 months of launch.)

    Although the timeframe and data are old (and in some cases interpretive), the book is a fair estimation of what the EV world looked like in 2006. It’s kind of like the who-killed-the-electric-car documentary as far as content. Along with some forward-looking views of what could be. The book is not highly technical. More like a hobbyist (or maybe lobbyist?) point of view.

    What I did not like were words such as ‘murdered’, ‘eviscerated’ etc that are action/escalation words not really needed to make the points. Also GW was sprinkled about liberally. I guess ‘literary license’ would be a good descriptive phrase for the tone.

    In the last chapter (this was 2006) there was a hint that GM had something in the works for the 2007 auto show. Later, it turned out, the Volt was born.

    Overall, an easy read, but, the ‘facts’ should be taken with a grain of salt.


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    Future LEAF Driver

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    Jun 25th, 2010 (3:10 pm)

    Well, at least deposits for the LEAF were placed after the price was announced so Nissan dealers would have to honour those prices whether the base or higher model.

    There’s no price announced for the VOLT yet, so placing a deposit for it is pointless unless you have in it writing that the dealer will honour MSRP (provided he’s on the list to even get any VOLTs), otherwise the price will be what the demand will bear per previous comments re: WII, iPhone, etc.

    With a limited production run of 8,000 VOLTs, one should expect prices over MSRP or just wait for Gen 2 in 2012…

    GO EV !!!

    Herm:
    No guarantee Nissan dealers wont “gouge” either, no matter what Nissan promises… read their releases.. basically they say your protection is that you should go to a different dealer if they attempt to gouge.My idea about a foolproof system is that you make a deal with a Nissan dealer, arrange for payment etc.. then they get your reservation number and they order the vehicle from Nissan for delivery. I suspect all that Nissan can do is to exert un-official pressure on their dealers.. but nothing too overt or they will get sued.  


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    Faz

     

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    Jun 25th, 2010 (3:14 pm)

    Wow, here is what I got back from a dealer when I inquired about placing a deposit:

    Here are the details. The deposit will be $2,500. The vehicle will not be sold at MSRP. There will be a mark-up in accordance to the market. People in front of you as of now is 4. As far as the deposit being refundable, it usually is not, but you could speak with my GM about it if that was a must when you come in. The reason behind that is we are only ordering the Volts right now for people who really want them. That means the non-refundable doesnt usually even come up. Let me know if that answers your questions.


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    Future LEAF Driver

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    Jun 25th, 2010 (3:32 pm)

    “more concerned about it than enamored with it” – This part of your comment is what concerns me that GM is still thinking like the old GM, too bad… :-( Probably has something to do with the price & the current economy..

    Well thanks for your efforts Lyle. Even if GM’s not using the list ( I was at 8900 something) at least it showed the interest for the VOLT! Look forward to reading about your adventures with your VOLT, lucky guy!

    GO EV !!!

    Lyle: WANT LIST:When I started it long ago (May 2007), it was my hope to use it to demonstrate to GM the demand was significant enough for the car that it would compel them to build it.I also hoped it could serve as a true waiting list that one day GM would take from me and honor.As it grew large, GM became more concerned about it than enamored with it.They asked that I change the name.Recently they started their own “interested parties” list but have never announced any pre-ordering plans or plans to honor that list in any way.Every time I have a chance to speak with someone in marketing I ask if they can use the GM-Volt list in any way.The response is almost always negative.GM has some kind of plan on how the first Volts will be sold but they remain tight-lipped about it, though they will announce it sometime between now and November.  


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    Nelson

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    Jun 25th, 2010 (3:37 pm)

    Lyle: WANT LIST:GM has some kind of plan on how the first Volts will be sold but they remain tight-lipped about it, though they will announce it sometime between now and November.  (Quote)

    Whatever GM’s plan is, it better be fair to all types of incomes. The Volt has a limited tax credit for the first number of buyers, if they’re only available to the wealthy then the credits turn out to be a rich man’s tax shelter. That credit should not be available to anyone making over $200,000 a year.

    NPNS!


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    LauraM

     

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    Jun 25th, 2010 (3:52 pm)

    Noel Park: LauraM: Off topic question: Is the Camaro still selling?

    #111

    Check out #138 on yesterday’s thread.

    Oh. Oops. Thanks. I didn’t have a chance to finish yesterday’s thread…


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    Jun 25th, 2010 (4:05 pm)

    The Volt has competition coming fast, from many manufacturers. If charging excessively, the market will drag it back to MSRP quickly enough. No worries – I prefer the Volt in my driveway, or the Tesla S over the Nissan Leaf, or German hybrids.

    Good luck to us all.


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    Jun 25th, 2010 (5:49 pm)

    JBFALASKA: Good luck to us all.

    #122

    Thanks. I think we’re gonna need it! +1


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    Jun 25th, 2010 (5:50 pm)

    OT

    Looks like we may have a winner in the “cellulosic diesel” department.

    (If being scooped up by 2 of the 6 “supermajors” is any indication)

    Total: Partnership With Amyris For Biomass Fuels And Chemicals
    http://online.wsj.com/article/BT-CO-20100623-705159.html

    Amyris Enters Into Off-Take Agreement With Shell
    http://www.businesswire.com/portal/site/home/permalink/?ndmViewId=news_view&newsId=20100625005192&newsLang=en


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    Jun 25th, 2010 (5:56 pm)

    Loboc: Getting a Volt at or below MSRP for the first couple YEARS ain’t gonna happen.Unless, of course, GM decides to make them in some reasonable volume.JMO.  (Quote)

    Here’s my comments to Lyle about VOLT pricing in Sept 2009 – they still hold true today….

    Lyle, Happy to respond – I have commented on the site on this subject in the past – although I must say many of the site’s readers have apparently not experienced the best dealership practices in the past based on their comments. This is truly one of those subjects where “all dealers are not created equally”. Feel free to take a quote from below… Once I began thinking about it, I was compelled to just write a full story! Chevy VOLT Pricing: A Dealer’s Perspective As a long-time Chevrolet dealer, I am extremely excited about the pending consumer launch of the Chevy VOLT. I truly believe that GM’s EREV technology is a game changer. On the subject of vehicle pricing, for every 100 people you will get 100 different responses. GM has invested huge sums of money into the VOLT concept; and they have every right to expect some type of return on their investment. As American Taxpayers have invested in GM over the past year, they too have a right to a return. And dealers will incur significant costs leading up to the introduction of the VOLT and they should expect a return. Some will argue with this last one, but what many consumers don’t realize is that with the introduction of each new model and new technology, each manufacturer requires each dealership to make investments in required special tools (which can only be purchased from the manufacturer) and training of employees. The ‘special tools’ can amount to investments of well over $10,000 on some models – and will likely be significantly above that amount for the VOLT. Training consists of a wide range of courses for technicians and others; some offered via computer and some require travel for multiple days of hands-on training. Each dealership pays for their employee’s costs as well as their time. On a typical new model, these costs may only be $3-$5,000; but on an all new model like the VOLT, they will likely be well above that. Now do some math. There will be about 3,600 Chevrolet dealers after the dust settles from GM’s bankruptcy. Take the first year’s estimated production of 10,000 VOLTs, and that is less than 3 per dealer. Logic says that GM will want to concentrate the distribution to certain targeted markets, so let’s say that only 1/3 of Chevy dealers get a VOLT the first year. That takes you to an average of about 8 or 9 VOLTs per dealer. Having spent likely $15,000 to $20,000 on direct VOLT costs, the dealer will try to re-coup these costs as quickly as possible. Welcome to the world of ‘additional dealer mark-ups’, ‘price gouging’ or whatever other term you want to use. Speaking for myself and my dealership, KARL Chevrolet, we have NEVER charged over MSRP for any new model. Since 1927, when my grandfather opened the dealership for business, our dealership’s reputation for fairness has grown. Over the years, I absolutely believe this has been the right thing to do and has resulted in our dealership doing more business over a longer period of time. We also believe in selling locally to those consumers most likely to return to us for service; which mostly covers Fairfield Couunty in CT and Westchester County in NY. We look to build long-term relationships that are good for both our business and our customers. Sure, you could always ‘get rich quick’ by charging more to the first few folks who buy a model, but not only will they remember; they will also tell their friends and neighbors. So just when supply catches up to demand on any given new model, we have our customers out telling their friends and neighbors what a great deal they got; while some of our competitors’ customers are out telling everyone how they got taken. All dealers are not created equally – ask around – and don’t fall for it. Here are a few scenarios to consider:
    The ‘Big Deposit to guarantee a slot’. Beware of dealer’s looking to take a large deposit ‘guaranteeing you a spot in line’. There are plenty of stories where supply and demand comes in – think of the long line at the latest hot night-club. A guy steps out of a limo in front of the place, looks at the 100’s of people in line, and calmly slips the bouncer a $100. What happens? He’s in and you’re still standing in line. Welcome to the world of moving wait lists – those willing to pay more can move up the list.
    The ‘Auction’ or highest bidder. There are some stores that just will not take advance orders. They are content to wait until inventory arrives at the dealership, particularly on new models, and have an auction to see who will pay the most. eBay has accelerated this concept, as you’ll see many new models listed. Just take a look at what happened with hundreds of new Camaro’s sold on eBay.
    The ‘Required Extras’. Some dealers will take a new model and add on anything and everything they can think of from fancy wheels to stripes to ‘protection packages’ all in an effort to increase their margin. Some of these extras may add value for you, but likely not all of them.

    ****

    BOTTOM LINE: GM will sell every VOLT it builds at whatever price it establishes to those franchised Chevrolet dealers who are authorized to sell the VOLT. “Authorized” is a wide-open term that GM exclusively controls – area of the country, training requirements, facility investments, marketing requirements, and many other standards of measure. Each of those dealers has to figure out how to recoup those investments. The “Manufacturers Suggested Retail Price” is just that. When websites like Edmunds “True Market Value” come up with selling prices well over MSRP, as they do on many import models, why doesn’t anyone complain? It is a free market …. but there are still dealers who will stick to the MSRP in an effort to build their long-term business – you just have to look to find them.

    Be patient… the VOLT is not going to get here any sooner based on how much worrying about price happens…


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    Herm

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    Jun 25th, 2010 (6:04 pm)

    Nelson: Whatever GM’s plan is, it better be fair to all types of incomes. The Volt has a limited tax credit for the first number of buyers, if they’re only available to the wealthy then the credits turn out to be a rich man’s tax shelter. That credit should not be available to anyone making over $200,000 a year.

    Dont you think the rich are paying an excessive part of the tax burden?


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    Zach

     

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    Jun 25th, 2010 (6:37 pm)

    I bet the Volt is gonna be all over ebay! It’s going to be insane! I’m guessing $55,000.


  128. [...] GM Does Not Expect Dealer Price Gouging on Early Chevy Volts [...]


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    Noel Park

     

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    Jun 25th, 2010 (7:09 pm)

    Herm: Dont you think the rich are paying an excessive part of the tax burden?

    #126

    You’re kidding, right?


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    Jun 25th, 2010 (7:10 pm)

    Zach: I bet the Volt is gonna be all over ebay! It’s going to be insane! I’m guessing $55,000.

    #127

    All the more fun for us, LOL. I can wait.


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    john1701a

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    Jun 25th, 2010 (7:29 pm)

    Noel Park: john1701a, LOL? +1

    I already got what I needed. Hanging in there yesterday finally revealed the true nature of what was feared. Some honestly believe there’s no way a person can show support for more than one automaker, especially when it’s in the form of pushing one for rapid advancement. Whatever. Taking the “too little, too slowly” as encouragement to take each step without pause is good advice even without any competing technologies.


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    RB

     

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    Jun 25th, 2010 (7:47 pm)

    Lyle: WANT LIST:When I started it long ago (May 2007), it was my hope to use it to demonstrate to GM the demand was significant enough for the car that it would compel them to build it.I also hoped it could serve as a true waiting list that one day GM would take from me and honor.

    As it grew large, GM became more concerned about it than enamored with it.They asked that I change the name.Recently they started their own “interested parties” list but have never announced any pre-ordering plans or plans to honor that list in any way.

    Every time I have a chance to speak with someone in marketing I ask if they can use the GM-Volt list in any way.The response is almost always negative.

    GM has some kind of plan on how the first Volts will be sold but they remain tight-lipped about it, though they will announce it sometime between now and November.  

    The only way to explain this seemingly irrational behavior on the part of gm marketing is (1) to decide they are dumb and dumber, or (2) to wonder what it is about Lyle’s list that is getting in the way of what gm is trying to do.

    As irritated as I get with them, I do not think they are dumb.

    So, what is it about Lyle’s list that is in their way? One can only speculate. Perhaps they feel they have used up Volt’s value as bait for federal funds and are thinking in terms of a short product lifetime using “there’s no demand” as an excuse. (The Ev-2 plan.) Doesn’t seem likely, but could be. But there is something they are thinking about that Lyle’s list makes more difficult.

    More positively, maybe Lyle’s list still is doing its original job, keeping the pressure on. :)


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    DonC

     

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    Jun 25th, 2010 (7:54 pm)

    Herm: Dont you think the rich are paying an excessive part of the tax burden?

    Tricky question. First, don’t fall for the gambit that you just look at income taxes. Look at payroll taxes as well — at some point a tax is a tax. Second, look at the capital gains rate and the rate for hedge fund managers and so forth. Third, define rich, keeping in mind that because of the AMT the rate for people making $250,000 is much higher than for people with income of $500,000. Fourth, keep in mind that the more assets you have the more you benefit from expenditures like those for national security.

    Once you factor these things in it’s pretty clear that the rich do not bear an unfair burden. Not having looked at it much, my SWAG would be that getting back to the rates from the Reagan years would more or less even things out.


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    Jun 25th, 2010 (8:23 pm)

    I’ll be waiting for Volt 2.0 because I want the E-85 version so price gouging shouldn’t be an issue. Just hope I can still get the tax credit by then.


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    Jun 25th, 2010 (8:29 pm)

    john1701a: Some honestly believe there’s no way a person can show support for more than one automaker, especially when it’s in the form of pushing one for rapid advancement.

    I’d find that easier to believe if you had ever supported the Volt here, instead of dissing any point we bring up as proof that it is a pointless exercise doomed to failure (and explaining what would be considered acceptable — to you).

    john1701a: Hanging in there yesterday finally revealed the true nature of what was feared

    “Hanging in there” proved only your dogged persistence; which I must admit has been impressive, if not admirable.


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    Zachary Taylor (Jackson)

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    Jun 25th, 2010 (8:44 pm)

    Lyle: When I started it long ago (May 2007), it was my hope to use it to demonstrate to GM the demand was significant enough for the car that it would compel them to build it. I also hoped it could serve as a true waiting list that one day GM would take from me and honor.

    I used to work with someone who had built an extremely elaborate and useful fan site for Ford. He was their unpaid booster for years. He went to a Ford dealership to buy a new car, and did not call attention to himself as anything other than a potential Ford customer. A few minutes after the information was taken back to ‘seal the deal,’ the salesman came out and announced, “Mr. [x], we know who you are. I’ve been authorized to offer you the car at cost.” Ford, it seems, remembers it’s friends; and flagged his information to show up in a routine Ford computer search.

    Perhaps Lyle’s list could still serve as a source of people eligible to get a Volt at MSRP, whenever the cars become available enough, and they go to a dealership to buy one.

    You know, based on the tenor of the comments, lol.


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    Jun 25th, 2010 (8:53 pm)

    Since when is asking questions dissing? That use to be considered constructive.

    Anything outside of the status-quo is considered trolling now. Replies have turned into a sense of paranoia, loaded with insults.

    Try doing what was asked for long ago. Put together that tech-faq. List the intentions of GM for year 1, 2, and 3. Do something other than just complain. Think about how helpful making easy-to-find info will be as choices expand and efficiency interest grows.

    The market is no longer brand loyal. People what to know more. It’s electric motors verses those without.


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    Jimza Skeptic

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    Jun 25th, 2010 (8:53 pm)

    Nelson:
    Whatever GM’s plan is, it better be fair to all types of incomes.The Volt has a limited tax credit for the first number of buyers, if they’re only available to the wealthy then the credits turn out to be a rich man’s tax shelter.That credit should not be available to anyone making over $200,000 a year.NPNS!  

    Nelson, FAIR? Who told you life is fair? GM and the dealers are in this to make money. Not to some how systematically please each group of consumers. Obviously they want everyone happy, but that can’t happen right now. My guess is that they are going to price Volt 1.0 at least at $46,495 if not higher. There is demand, so why not get all you can. After all someone has to pay for all the development cost. I would prefer to wait until Volt 4.0, when all the problems are worked out, costs are reduced and development was paid for by the “RICH” people.


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    Jun 25th, 2010 (9:19 pm)

    john1701a: Since when is asking questions dissing?That use to be considered constructive.Anything outside of the status-quo is considered trolling now.

    When you ask pointed questions to emphasize what isn’t available, it isn’t so much constructive as passive aggression: “So, why don’t you do [x]? Oh, that’s right, you can’t No, the specs, price and timing are not to be had. Not by you from us, or from GM to us. There. Are you happy, now? Hmm. Didn’t think so. How is it that you think we can declare what GM will do? Maybe you should hang out at the official site.

    We get a lot of “outside the status quo” here, but all of it isn’t trolling. Most trolls have a season, become bored, and move on. You might be too persistent to be a real troll. You might be closer to a mild would-be saboteur. Nevertheless, you seem to want something from us which isn’t available, and you’ll continue to annoy us until you have some sort of satisfaction. I guess that means you’re here forever; since it’s clear to me that you can’t be satisfied.

    Replies have turned into a sense of paranoia, loaded with insults. … Do something other than just complain.

    Look in the @#$% mirror, you sanctimonious b@$t@rd.

    Think about how helpful making easy-to-find info will be as choices expand and efficiency interest grows.

    I’m sure that once published data is available, Lyle will consider putting something together for the site. We have a rough idea what to expect from many, many dribbles and crumbs of information over time, but that is far from a concise source for a faq.

    The market is no longer brand loyal.People what to know more.It’s electric motors verses those without.  

    Go back and read just this thread again; do we seem to be slavishly brand loyal to you? Are you actually paying attention? Maybe you’re too busy projecting your own psychological needs on us to really see the group of increasingly frustrated would-be supporters we’ve become (for the most part)? We want GM to succeed. We want to own and drive what has been developed. Will GM deliver? (The rest of you stop reading, I’m going to torture him): Stay Tuned!!! (preferably to the official GM site).


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    Jun 25th, 2010 (9:43 pm)

    john1701a: Since when is asking questions dissing? That use to be considered constructive.

    Please point out the questions in the following comment you made yesterday (to refresh your memory, several people had cited a poll done on gm-volt.com concerning the motivations of those here who wish to buy a Volt):

    jeffhre: Symbolic of what, any suggestions?

    john1701a:

    Since there is no recent reaffirmation of interest based on the latest information, some of those older tallies cannot be verified as valid to count.

    They don’t represent a commitment to purchase anyway. Are many interested, of course. Will they actually buy one, probably not. That’s the norm for autoshow turnover.

    Those seem like authoritarian declarations to me, Mr. Injured Party. You come here not to add to the discussion, but to judge it. Not to push for anything positive, but to tear down whatever constructive thought has been expressed.

    GO HOME, you transparent hypocrite.


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    Jun 25th, 2010 (10:24 pm)

    DonC:
    Tricky question. First, don’t fall for the gambit that you just look at income taxes. Look at payroll taxes as well — at some point a tax is a tax. Second, look at the capital gains rate and the rate for hedge fund managers and so forth. Third, define rich, keeping in mind that because of the AMT the rate for people making $250,000 is much higher than for people with income of $500,000. Fourth, keep in mind that the more assets you have the more you benefit from expenditures like those for national security.

    Income tax is an appropriate way to look at it, payroll taxes are for specific purposes such as retirement and unemployment insurance. The national security argument is odd, the freedom and life of a rich man is worth the same as that of a poor man… yet a rich man can do more for society while a poor man is a burden. I guess the $7500 tax credit is the opposite of a progressive tax.


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    Terry Boult

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    Jun 25th, 2010 (10:29 pm)

    I think I’m 157 on the wait list here and even though I can afford whatever I want, pricing and availability will be important to long term viability and I don’t see a viable long erm, then then I’m not sure I’d buy into the volt. I’ll hoping GM is good enough to be lookintag the long term, but local dealers will not. (Though GM might be playing games for the potential IPO)

    While it is fair for dealers to chard what the market will bear. I think the Government should amend the tax credit rule to only provide tax credits if the car is sold at or less then the MSRP. I don’t mind dealers making an extra buck from those first few willing to pay excess; But I resent the tax payers, including me, paying for credits to make the car more affordable and jump-start sales if there there is sufficient market demand to take the car above MSRP. I’ll actually be happy if the volt is so successful no tax credits are even given.


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    Jun 25th, 2010 (10:51 pm)

    Terry Boult: Though GM might be playing games for the potential IPO

    An easy-to-forget factor, and highly likely. Thanks for the reminder.

    Terry Boult: While it is fair for dealers to chard what the market will bear

    chard?

    “beet lacking swollen root; grown as a vegetable for its edible leaves and stalks”

    “Flesh. May refer to either the flesh of an animal or the flesh of a fruit”

    “A town and civil parish in Somerset, England, near the Devon border; A surname”

    ???


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    Jun 26th, 2010 (12:16 am)

    Terry Boult: I think the Government should amend the tax credit rule to only provide tax credits if the car is sold at or less then the MSRP.

    I like that!!!! Is it legal?


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    Jun 26th, 2010 (12:45 am)

    Just wanted to show everybody that the Tar Heal state North Carolina is getting electric charging stations and I hope it grows out here as well in Washington State too. Here is the link.

    http://www.newsobserver.com/2010/06/18/539103/triangle-to-be-proving-ground.html


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    Jun 26th, 2010 (1:36 am)

    Herm: Income tax is an appropriate way to look at it, payroll taxes are for specific purposes such as retirement and unemployment insurance. The national security argument is odd, the freedom and life of a rich man is worth the same as that of a poor man… yet a rich man can do more for society while a poor man is a burden.

    Arguing that only income taxes should be considered and that payroll taxes should not be counted because they are used for “specific purposes” is absurd given how they’ve been used historically. For the last fifty years those payroll taxes have funded both the specific purposes AND the general budget. Basically at the end of the day money is fungible and there are taxes and expenditures. But if you want to separate income and payroll taxes, then rich people have been freeloading for the last fifty years since the amount paid in income taxes has fallen far short of the revenue which should have been raised through these taxes.

    Not sure why you’ve gone off on the “freedom” tangent. Rich people by definition have more stuff than poor people, and the more stuff you have the more it costs to protect that stuff. This is pretty much Progressive Tax 101.


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    Jun 26th, 2010 (1:38 am)

    jeffhre: Is it legal? 

    Yup. But enforcement would probably be a nightmare.


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    Comedian

     

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    Jun 26th, 2010 (3:29 am)

    Comedian:
    Anyone who has a problem with GM taking a new technology and for 1 year wanting it to be a little more controlled and put all their resources behind important markets,I.E. Washington (Politicians) and California (Celebs/Free Press) and (Environmental Journalists) is just impatient and not thinking too straight.Year two. 50 to 60 thousand is a good number, thats 200 to 250 thousand Volts in the next 5 years.These aren’t cheap cars.I think we will all be happy if GM can even sell that many from now until late 2015.I’m tired of hearing they aren’t making enough when they haven’t even started selling em yet and we have no idea the real demand  

    I’m really suprised to see +4 this late in the postings.. Thanks guys!


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    Itching4it

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    Jun 26th, 2010 (3:36 am)

    Terry Boult: While it is fair for dealers to charge what the market will bear. I think the Government should amend the tax credit rule to only provide tax credits if the car is sold at or less then the MSRP. I don’t mind dealers making an extra buck from those first few willing to pay excess; But I resent the tax payers, including me, paying for credits to make the car more affordable and jump-start sales if there there is sufficient market demand to take the car above MSRP. I’ll actually be happy if the volt is so successful no tax credits are even given.  

    Maybe I’m just being naive, but I don’t get all this deification of MSRP. I see that as a rather arbitrary number that the manufacturer sets; perhaps high to give dealers a leg up on a profit, perhaps low to encourage sales. The last thing I would want would be for GM to manipulate MSRP to guarantee that the government will give a tax credit.

    I also don’t really care whether I pay above or below MSRP. I don’t hate car dealers. I know they’ve been through rough times like most of us, and they have to rescue their business. What I do care about is how much I have to pay for the car. If MSRP were to be $30K I wouldn’t mind a bit paying well above that. If it were $45K I’d be out of here unless I could get well under it.


  150. [...] GM Does Not Expect Dealer Price Gouging on Early Chevy Volts [...]


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    Jun 26th, 2010 (6:52 am)

    Jim I: Lyle:What is with the new “symbolic waiting list” term? That is twice in two days that you have used it.Has GM told you in definite terms that your list will not be used in any way, and this is how you are trying to break it to us??????As to today’s topic. Pricing to what the market will bear in a given, considering the supply available, and the market they are going to with the initial supply. I can’t imagine a movie star having any problem paying $50K+ for one of the few Gen-1 Volts that will be available in 2011. And GM has no control over what a dealer sells a for. At that point, the dealer owns the car, not GM.When I bought my Crossfire in 2003, it had a sticker price of $35.5K. There were stories of people paying way over $50K for them. When I bought mine, it had a “dealer markup” of $7.5K on it. I just laughed and said, if you really want to sell this car, that is the first thing that goes away. The salesman told me “This is what they are getting in Cleveland.”

    You had me reaching for the +1 until you mentioned you bought a Crossfire for MSRP! Wow! Because we all know what happened later in that car’s history, how they sat on lots for months and dealers were begging people to take them for $1000s less than MSRP – even trying to throw in a Neon or something in a two-car deal. Man, the Crossfire was one of the great marketing flops!

    I guess that shows us how hard it truly is to predict fair market value for any car – nonetheless one that takes some chances in it’s format or approach. That said, any dealer who gouges me won’t ever see me think of them as anyone I would recommend to a potential client, in fact, quite the opposite – word of mouth can kill a dealership.

    RECHARGE!

    James


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    Jun 26th, 2010 (7:02 am)

    Zachary Taylor (Jackson): Perhaps Lyle’s list could still serve as a source of people eligible to get a Volt at MSRP, whenever the cars become available enough, and they go to a dealership to buy one.You know, based on the tenor of the comments, lol.  (Quote)

    OK, I’m screwed! L :) L

    RECHARGE!

    James


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    Jun 26th, 2010 (8:12 am)

    Zachary Taylor (Jackson): sanctimonious b@$t@rd

    Zachary Taylor (Jackson): transparent hypocrite

    With language like that, what kind of outcome is being hoped for?


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    Daniel

     

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    Jun 26th, 2010 (8:38 am)

    Dealers are what make car buying a lousy experience.

    I’d much rather be able to buy direct from the manufacturer, and have my vehicle serviced at manufacturer-owned & operated service centers.


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    pjkPA

     

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    Jun 26th, 2010 (8:41 am)

    Demand will determine price… I’ve seen many people pay sticker or over sticker for much lesser vehicles!!!

    Considering he VOLT being superior technology… and the leadership role they have played… I do think GM deserves a lot of credit to starting the stampeed… because of GM we will have many better options in a few years!!!

    What we need is FAIR TRADE to keep the technoloy rolling!!!

    Post the price of the VOLT in ALL MARKETS!!! You sured don’t have a problem showing the price of foreign cars in our market!


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    storm

     

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    Jun 26th, 2010 (9:23 am)

    The Grump: Simply sign up for a Volt at your local dealer. Deposit at least $2,000.00 – this MUST be a non-refundable deposit, to ensure the customer REALLY wants to buy the Volt. Anyone willing to put up a $2000.00 non-refundable deposit is not going to casually say “Nah, it ain’t my style” and walk away.

    Sounds like what I have been saying. Are GM execs really that dumb?


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    Jun 26th, 2010 (9:32 am)

    I agree, the number one deterrent against dealer price gouging though, will be this community right here. Each dealer will only be able to sell a handful of volts the first model year. Dealers don’t want to get a bad reputation. Every one on this site who lives in an area where he or she will buy a volt will report back the buying experience. GM will make it clear that a lotta eyes will be on with respect to us early buyers. Any cases of funny business will be reported here right away and the volt community will speak out…


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    Jun 26th, 2010 (9:56 am)

    john1701a: With language like that, what kind of outcome is being hoped for?  

    Your permanent departure.

    I know, some of us are just Quixotic.

    Some of us.


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    Steverino

     

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    Jun 26th, 2010 (10:59 am)

    jeffhre: And why is it so critical that their marketing plan leaves at least 51,000 Volt fans sitting on our hands just now? Are we the only ones to find that frustrating?

    Perhaps GM Marketing does not understand the power of Social Media Marketing (Blogs, Twitter, FaceBook, Digg, etc.) and the role these word-of-mouth venues can play in successful new product role-outs. People are often afraid of things they do not understand. In extreme cases, people try to kill that which frightens them. I don’t think GM Marketing is trying to kill GM-VOLT.com, but they may indeed be a bit unsure and not know quite what to do with it. A wary, half-measure embrace is the result.


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    Jun 26th, 2010 (11:06 am)

    One more time I’ll make the suggestion to study Two-Mode history.

    The opposite outcome happened there. Why follow the same pattern?

    Lack of constructive effort caused it. Rather than address the technology itself by sharing design detail and real-world data to earn merit, focus was set elsewhere.


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    Noel Park

     

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    Jun 26th, 2010 (11:27 am)

    Zachary Taylor (Jackson): You know, based on the tenor of the comments, lol.

    #136

    Oh, oh. I think I’m in trouble, hahaha.


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    Jun 26th, 2010 (11:34 am)

    DonC: Arguing that only income taxes should be considered and that payroll taxes should not be counted because they are used for “specific purposes” is absurd given how they’ve been used historically. For the last fifty years those payroll taxes have funded both the specific purposes AND the general budget.

    #146

    Scott Burnside has a really good column in our local paper today about the historic use, and misuse, of the “Social Security Trust Fund”. It totally bears out your argument


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    Jun 26th, 2010 (11:43 am)

    Itching4it: I don’t hate car dealers. I know they’ve been through rough times like most of us, and they have to rescue their business.

    #149

    Good point. +1


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    Jun 26th, 2010 (11:44 am)

    john1701a: With language like that, what kind of outcome is being hoped for?

    #153

    Disappearance.


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    Jun 26th, 2010 (5:22 pm)

    “GM has some kind of plan on how the first Volts will be sold but they remain tight-lipped about it, though they will announce it sometime between now and November.”

    Who’s making this car anyway? “GM has some kind of plan..” They have been building cars for 100 years… I’m sure they know how they are rolling out the VOLT…

    I don’t think making a web site and gathering some names … no matter how good I think this site is…and I do think this is the best Volt site… entitles anyone to to demand anything from GM.

    Bottom line is … GM is doing this right and we just have to wait for the VOLT to roll off the assembly line in due time. I have no problem with that.


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    Jun 26th, 2010 (9:33 pm)

    storm: Joe

    In the DC area. This dealer will not accept any advanced deposit, but he will notify me when he gets one.


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    Jun 26th, 2010 (9:49 pm)

    I want a series hybrid. The Volt is the first mass produced car that is a series hybrid. I will sign up on a wiating list with deposit, but I wont pay a drealer gouge or greater price than MSRP. If this happens I will wait for the market to become normal before I purchase.


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    Jun 26th, 2010 (10:37 pm)

    Throwing 3 or 4 cars to a dealer doesn’t seem like a reasonable way to allocate the initial production.


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    Greenies eagerly await coal powered car – Jim Report

     

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    Jun 27th, 2010 (11:42 pm)

    [...] Motors promises the car will be powered by up to 3% renewable energy over the life of the vehicle. And they don’t that dealers will overcharge either.  Oh happy day! This entry was written by admin, posted on June 28, 2010 at 12:29 am, and filed [...]


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    Jun 28th, 2010 (3:53 am)

    GM may not expect it, but I certainly do. We’ll see what happens. Since they haven’t released the final pricing yet, it could be they’ve priced the shortage price into the MSRP so supply and demand actually will meet.

    Really, that’s what matters, is your final out-the-door (possibly less later rebate) price. The bottom line. If the MSRP plus dealer markup is still a good value vs. supply then it will sell at that price. If their pricing/supply is far off target and there’s large dealer markups for more than a short time, then that does not bode well for the new GM management, really.


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    Jun 28th, 2010 (9:51 pm)

    I almost would be happy to see demand for the Volt being much greater than GM manufacturing capacity resulting in higher than expected prices, as this would be great incentive for other manufacturers to produce competing designs. I said almost, because that won’t help me get a Volt in 2011. I hope that I can get one in the second half of 2011, but suspect it may work out that I wait until sometime 2012.


  172. [...] GM Does Not Expect Dealer Price Gouging on Early Chevy Volts [...]


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    Jun 29th, 2010 (11:01 am)

    Notice all the barking, but no actual bite?

    Shouldn’t that be a clue about more than just random blog posts being needed?

    What exactly will a newbie searching for information about Volt find?

    Think about how chaotic facts are. Where is that easy resource to draw interest and retain it for those researching the purchase of a Volt? Think about how long they are willing to hunt.

    Heck, shouldn’t the large increase in the number of trolls we a wake-up call that more is needed? Why leave opportunities for them like that? The enthusiasts can’t just react. Waiting has penalties.


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    Jul 6th, 2010 (9:13 pm)

    Steverino: In extreme cases, people try to kill that which frightens them. I don’t think GM Marketing is trying to kill GM-VOLT.com, but they may indeed be a bit unsure and not know quite what to do with it. A wary, half-measure embrace is the result. 

    I don’t like any OEM sites that I have seen. Flash heavy, slow, unresponsive, pictures by museum artifact photographers, “yada yada yada” copy writing. Are they all done by the same “guy”?