Bolting The Volt

It hasn’t been easy for the Chevy Volt.  Announced with great fanfare as the electric hybrid, alternative energy car of the future, the Volt has had problems getting traction with consumers.

The most recent news is that some Chevrolet dealers don’t want to take their allotment of Volts.  The sales of the car have been disappointing — only 7,671 were sold last year — and there have been some concerns about the risk of fires in the Volt’s battery packs, which led to a government investigation that concluded the cars weren’t at a greater fire risk.  Whatever the reason, dealers are balking at accepting lots of Volts and devoting precious showroom and on-the-lot space to a car that most consumers apparently don’t want.

Some people hoped that the Volt would lead General Motors back to profitability.  The Volt hasn’t filled that role.  And dealers are pretty reliable barometers of consumer demand.  If hordes of potential buyers were flooding dealerships demanding a Volt, the dealers would be perfectly happy to sell them.  The fact that dealers don’t want even a modest allotment of the cars is a strong indication that America isn’t quite ready to be an electric car nation.

 

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2 thoughts on “Bolting The Volt

  1. When syllogisms attack: the fact that dealers don’t want to stock Chevy Volts is only an indication that consumers don’t want that specific car; it tells us nothing about consumer demand for hybrid cars. Perhaps the Volt is unsuccessful because it is facing lower priced competition. The Volt’s MSRP is $31,645. The Toyota Camry Hybrid’s is $25,900, the Prius V is $26,400, the Hyundai Sonota Hybrid’s is $25,850, the Ford Fusion Hybrid’s is $28,700, and the Honda Insight’s is $18,350 (to name a few). Perhaps consumers just don’t want to pay more for a hybrid Chevy.

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  2. I’m not in this particular market at this time – but I believe the Volt is a “Plug in,” whereas almost all of the other “Hybrids” are not. The “Leaf” is also a plug in, and I don’t believe any of the plug in models are selling well at all. All Hybrids together comprise only about 2% of the U.S. auto market. I suppose there is a place for most of these new cars, but I don’t believe the place for a “Smart Car” for example (not a hybrid, I believe), is on the interstate.

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