Skip to comments.Hold Off on Buying That Chevy Volt; Price to Drop $10,000 in Face of Dismal Sales
Posted on 05/09/2013 11:24:40 AM PDT by jazusamo
Great news for consumers who are considering buying General Motors' green wonder car, the Chevy Volt. I know how excited those environmentally conscientious Volt enthusiasts can get, but a little patience can pay off big time if potential buyers hold off for a year or so on their purchase. According to GM CEO Dan Akerson and following another dismal month of Volt sales (1,306 in April), the car that defies logic will soon be available for up to $10,000 less money. The good news extends to shareholders of GM as the next generation of the Volt will supposedly be profitable for the company. So, as we say prepare to say goodbye to the current generation of the obsolescent Volt, let's take a trip down memory lane to review how past promises for the car panned out.
The Chevy Volt's taxpayer-funded roots date back to the Bush Administration, with a concept car being developed in 2007. The fact that government funding and subsidies for dubious green projects began under Bush is often referred to by proponents of the Volt, many of whom continue to maintain the political strategy that the best way to defer criticism is to blame the previous administration.
Hype for the Volt initially built up steam as GM claimed that the miracle car would be a savior for both the company and the US auto industry while it made a plea for a taxpayer-funded bailout in 2009. The car was touted to get 230 mpg and would be a "pure EV" that used no gas when utilizing its lithium-ion based battery power source with a gas-powered engine that would be a back-up to only generate power for the battery system as opposed to driving the wheels. Both of these claims turned out to be false.
While GM now indignantly denies that the Volt was "Obama's car" or had political motivations, it sure is hard to ignore the fact that the White House was one of the biggest cheerleaders for what would become the electric version of the Ford Edsel. The Volt hype shifted into high gear as the GM IPO approached. In late May of 2010 the White House announced that they would purchase the first 100 Volts that rolled off the assembly line. President Obama served as the Car Salesman in Chief, visiting the Volt plant in July of 2010 . He took a Volt for a 10 foot test-roll and proclaimed the ride "pretty smooth." He later suggested Americans who felt they could not afford the rising price of gas should buy Volts as a solution.
Dan Akerson played his part as he displayed either a lack of auto industry savvy or an abundance of BS in January of 2011 when he raised sales guidance for the Volt. 2011 would see 25,000 Volts sold as opposed to 10,000. The Obama-appointed Akerson had a vision of a green GM and planned for 120,000 Volts to sell in 2012, up from the previous 60,000 units. The final numbers were an embarrassment as 7,671 Volts sold in 2011 followed by 23,461 in 2012.
The deceit surrounding the overestimated potential and subsequent failure of Volt sales ramped up faster than the aforementioned hype. Akerson and GM's spin on why the Volt did not live up to expectations began with a flat out denial that demand did not exist for the car. Claims were made that the car was in fact so popular that GM could not build the darn things fast enough! This was proven to be an outright lie ( exposed here) as it appeared that GM was focusing on both a political goal of vehicle electrification and a " bait and switch" strategy to drive consumers into showrooms to see the much-hyped Volt only to try and sell them gas-powered Chevy Cruzes. The lack of supply fib was followed by Akerson claiming that a right-wing conspiracy was the culprit for the Volt's woes .
The measly sales for the Volt that did exist were driven by governmental help and an attempt by GM to "manufacture demand" that otherwise did not exist. Tax subsidies along with manipulated lease programs put drivers in Volts for as short a term as two years for low payments - at the expense of taxpayers. The federal government gave money to localities to buy Volts. This was in addition to the purchases by the federal government and military. Crony company GE (manufacturer of charging stations) purchased an undisclosed amount as well.
Despite all of the evidence that lithium-ion based vehicles like the Chevy Volt do not have the potential that we were led to believe that they did, GM and the Obama Administration refuse to acknowledge the facts. Taxpayers continue to be on the hook as Obama now wants to raise the federal tax credit for EVs to $10,000. GM is doubling down on the technology with new plug-in vehicles being planned and promises for a new and improved Volt. The Chevy Volt has been a fiasco that refuses to die as bottomless taxpayer pockets stand ready to continue the funding for an idea spawned out of a dangerous union of a wasteful government and a deceitful corporation.
For those optimists considering the purchase of a Volt that continue to believe GM and Akerson, even after all of the previous lies, I would make the following suggestion. Wait a year to purchase your new shiny, green vehicle. I'm sure Mother Earth will manage to survive the dire consequences of global warming for one more year while you wait. You can then save $10,000 on your purchase while learning more about just how viable the supposedly wonderful technology behind the Volt really is. You may even be able to get some additional money in tax subsidies if Obama has his way. If all goes well, you will be driving the wave of the future in a year's time as the new Chevy Volt finally ramps up and becomes the great success that GM promised. I wouldn't bet on it, though.
Mark Modica is an NLPC Associate Fellow.
I might let them give me one if it was free. After all, my taxes have already paid for it.
Now, it will be cheaper than ever to burn my house to the ground.
I hear ya. Obama’s been trying to up the tax credit for a year or more, if he’s able to do that we’ll be paying more for the dang things for.
You couldn’t give me one.
But how much you gonna pay to dispose of the huge enviro problem? Bet they don’t just let you drop the battery off at the dump.
Yet the car still has it’s true believers.
Man: This sounds like a great business decision
Lowering the price on a car that already cost you more to build than you can sell it for.
The smart thing to do would be to call Obama and tell him the POS won’t sell so we are going to stop making it. If you don’t like that KMA.
Put it in your back yard, (cover with tarp), put it up on jackstands, and use it to power your house during emergencies.
Good point. That is one of the issues they have soft peddled throughout this whole exercise - after all it is the thought that counts and don't worry about the unintended consequences.
10k should be the total price!
I’ll consider one when the price reaches -$10,000.
I'm with you. You couldn't pay me to take any GM car. I am boycotting all of that corrupt company's products forever. [The Corvette is a sweet car, one of the very few from GM, but there are alternatives from reputable manufacturers. ]
Not to mention that if you have a DOLT, how much is it going to cost you to replace that battery? Plus, the disposal fee like on tires. Only bigger. MUCH bigger.
IOW, $10K more tax dollars per car.
Have any of you even sat in one? If they drop the price $10000 it will be very popular. It is a great car that has only the problem of high price. I get a new car every couple of years and I can truly say that the Nissan Leaf that I lease is the best car I have ever had.
Oh, don't worry about that. I will be holding off for quite a long time.
A true Volts person would be willing to pay the highest price possible to save the earth and not take advantage of poor sales to get a lower price.
Whazzamatter, you value your garage or sumpin?
GM admits they’re losing money on every Volt sold now however they will not say how much.
They cannot continue to lose money on them forever and Uncle Sugar won’t be there much longer because they’re selling our GM stock.
If they cut the price $10,000 or close to it we don’t have any idea how that new model will compare with the present Volt. It’s quite evident they’re going to sacrifice a lot if they’re going to make the car profitable.
Is GM gonna rebate $10K to the chumps that already bought one?
...until hell freezes over.
They really may be onto something here! Drop the price even more, even give them away free. Then make it up in volume!
Well, that’s the kind of dot com logic that everyone keeps yearning for because it worked so well in the Bill Clinton years....
Buy one for the golf course, you will have the best lookin golf cart out on the links...
Wasn’t it 2011 Motor Trend Car of the Year, EUCOTY 2012 European Car of the Year and Belgium’s Clean Fleet Car of the Year 2013.
I know that there are many buyers that would like to buy the “car of the year” just for barging rights.
I might buy one to give all the commies a tune up. Stick the positive up their ass and the negative on their nose and fire the thing up.
Yep, its won those and many more awards but they still can’t sell enough to make them profitable. Maybe cutting the price will work for them. :-)
Only problem is price? Just out of curiosity how would you get your Leaf from Spokane to Boise, as I can drive in one tank ~400 miles. Transporter?
I rode in one last month at the New York Auto Show.Not impressive at all.Also...slightly off topic...there’s a Tesla “dealership” in a mall near me.I stopped in recently and found out the following...sticker=$80K...range with a full charge=300 miles (with a stiff tail wind)...time needed to charge the battery from empty to full=22 hours.How does the Leaf do on questions #2 & 3?
Range is just one of many reasons why l'll never consider an EV.My diesel (40mpg highway...21 gallon tank) can,with some luck,do 800 miles on a tankful.
If it don’t run on gas you can stick up your backside!!!
I wouldn’t have one if it was free!!!!!
I just drove a very full minivan from FL to TX, by way of St Louis. I still got 22 mpg even with all seats down and stuffed with gear.
I can easily drive a Prius over 400 miles on one tank, but it will never replace a Silverado or T&C extended van. Two very different needs.
If willk drives mostly city driving and is back home every evening, then the EV cars work for him in that application.
and how long do you have to wait to charge the leaf?? Only a dolt would like a Volt...
I thought I was pointing that out.
I have nothing against EV applications for the right niche; just sold an electric scooter that I really liked.
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