[ad#post_ad]Today General Motors announced that Washington DC will join California and Michigan as an initial market for Chevrolet Volt rollout. The rollout region will include the nation’s capital and its suburbs.
“Concentrating Volt sales in these three key initial markets allows us to give our first customers a high-quality experience,” said Jim Campbell, Chevrolet general manager. “In addition to geographical considerations, each market also has progressive local and state government leaders and utility partners who are crucial in bringing electric vehicles to market.”
GM has also developed an agreement with DC utility companies Pepco and Dominian to take delivery Chevy Volt fleet test vehicles. These vehicles will join a total fleet of 100 cars nationwide that will remain in the hands of utility companies for a demonstration and learning project funded by a $30 million DOE grant.
GM also reports they have tested the 80 pre-production Volts on over 250,000 test miles, and that some of those cars are in 24 hour/7 day per week operation. Cars have been tested in the extreme heat of Death Valley and the extreme cold of northern Canada. 300 pre-production battery packs have already been built.
GM has not confirmed if these three markets are the only initial ones which will be announced, nor how many cars will be allocated to each through the end of this year. There are reports that the company hopes to begin rollout even sooner than the projected November deadline.
‘We could announce additional retail markets later,’ said GM spokesperson Dave Darovitz.
Pricing has also not been announced, though the GM Chairman and CEO Ed Whitacre recently told GM-Volt.com it would be in the “low 30s,” without specifically referring to the $7500 tax credit.
It is expected Mr. Whitacre will be named permanent CEO of GM today.