Can Next-Gen Chevy Volt Bump Up Sales?

DEC 8 2014 BY ERIC LOVEDAY 78

2016 MY Chevrolet Volt Battery Cutaway

2016 MY Chevrolet Volt Battery Cutaway

Camouflaged 2016 Chevy Volt

Camouflaged 2016 Chevy Volt

It’s the question on the minds of most: Will the introduction of the next-gen 2016 Chevy Volt lead to a significant increase in U.S. Volt sales?

Of course, the answer to that depends on whether or not General Motors actually wants to sell more Volts.

Initially, when the Chevy Volt launched back in 2010, General Motors put advertising weight behind its revolutionary plug-in vehicle.  However, GM’s marketing efforts quickly dwindled down to where we are now…no advertising.

Back when the Volt first debuted, General Motors’ then-CEO Dan Akerson set a sales target of 60,000 units per year.  That target was never met and, in actuality, was way too optimistic for the time – thanks in part to a “comfortably under $30,000” price expectation that turned out $40,000 higher.

Today, the electric vehicle space is measurably different than it was back in 2010, yet sales of the current Volt remain lower than expectations.

The real issue (one that been voiced by thousands of current Volt owners) is that GM doesn’t promote the Volt.  If this changes with the introduction of the next-gen 2016 Volt, then sales will no doubt increase.

But how high can sales reasonably go?

Right now, Volt sales are in the range of approximately 1,500 units per month, down considerably compared to average monthly Volt sales in 2013 and 2012.

With the introduction of the next-gen Volt and proper marketing, we think GM could get that average monthly sales figure above 3,000 units per month, which would move the Volt back into the top spot in monthly sales for plug-ins in the U.S.

This time around, GM is not announcing any sales targets, so it’s not clear what the automaker’s expectations are.  We do know that GM hopes to increase Volt sales with Gen 2, but to what level we aren’t sure.

Our guess is that GM will be looking to exceed 40,000 units per year, not quite twice the level of Volt sales in 2012 and 2013.  Anything beyond 40,000 will be a bonus, but that’s the figure we’re setting for minimum yearly Volt sales for GM and the rest of the world to consider it a success.

What are your predictions?

What’s your estimate on annual U.S. Volt sales for Gen 2?  What’s the lowest figure you’ll except to consider the Volt a sales success?  Will GM get behind this Volt by marketing it at the level it deserves?

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78 Comments on "Can Next-Gen Chevy Volt Bump Up Sales?"

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x
Guest
x

the answer is no. It is obvious it won’t but mildly improve on current Weak sales. It is too short of an ev range, inconvenient design (stupid tunnel), too small, compromise by design to keep their gas-engine ecosystem happy. It will fail 100%, most likely mildly improve upon current model.2 years from now they’ll wonder why. As usual management won’t pay for the cretin decission, workers will lose their jobs and tesla won’t be able to keep up with 3 and x orders.
100%.

Spec9
Guest
Spec9

Too short of an EV range? The Volt is the only plug-in hybrid with a decent range . . . the rest of them (Ford Fusion Energi, Honda Accord PHEV, PiP, Ford CMAX Energi, Mitz Outlander, i8, etc.) all have shorter ranges.

I think the Volt is in more need of a 5th seat, more headroom/legroom in the back, lower price, etc. I don’t see more EV range as a high priority.

Christof
Guest

I agree that space is a very big issue. I took my daughters, 8, and 10, for test rides in both a LEAF and Volt. They hated the Volt, felt claustrophobic, and that was all she wrote, I went with a 2-year LEAF lease, even though I was leaning toward to Volt at that point.

David
Guest
David

Agreed,
+1

kubel
Guest
kubel
Too short of range? I guess that all depends on your perspective. This time last year, my commute was 55 miles. I considered a Volt before getting the LEAF, but a Volt was insufficient since I would be burning gas every single day. That thought didn’t sound very attractive- whereas the LEAF was a perfect fit. My commute was within the range of the LEAF and beyond the all-electric range of the Volt- so no need for gas. I’m exploiting pretty much the full potential of the LEAF at 55 miles. But now I live just a few miles from work. Now the Volt makes an absolutely perfect fit since 99% of my driving is within the range of the battery pack AND I have the liberty to drive beyond that on gas if I desire. Not to mention there’s no sacrifice when it comes to performance- I would still have the same feel of torque and linear acceleration that I would get out of a pure electric. So why not get another car like the LEAF? I really enjoy the LEAF. It is in many ways the best car for me. I’ve never really had range anxiety, and generally,… Read more »
Dan Hue
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Dan Hue

I guess you have to be intelligent to understand the Volt. Granted, that is not a given.

David Murray
Guest
David Murray

Well, I think GM could easily be selling 4,000 or more per month of the current generation of Volt if they actually tried. If all of the dealers were also motivated, that figure might be closer to 5,000 or even 6,000.

So I think a lot of it will have to do with GM’s mindset on it and the dealer’s mindset on it.

For those badmouthing the Volt (like the commment from x above me) I should mention that even with the “weak sales” the Volt still takes the #2 spot in plug-in sales for this year, well ahead of Tesla.

Josh
Guest

Agreed.

If GMs target is anything less than 5,000 vehicles per month, they are wasting their time and effort. They should be trying to wipe out the Prius and PIP with the Gen 2 Volt.

leaf owner
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leaf owner

Agree – Prius is their main target….not the leaf.

koz
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koz

Agreed on everything excepts Volt’s sales being well ahead of Model S, unless you are referring to lifetime sales.

eddie
Guest
eddie

If GM had dealers that were interested in selling the Volt, they would be selling at much greater volumes. Odd that one dealer was mentioned recently that is selling 1/3 of his/her volume with one car (i.e. Volt). My guess would be it is easier and more profitable to sell other vehicles, so that is what the dealers do…

Lou
Guest
Lou

The issue here is more related to price and advertising. If the price is lower, and the advertising is higher, this car will definitely sell. I am thrilled with my used 2012, with its “measly” 35 mile range. It does exactly what it purports to do, and increasing the range, adding a 3rd seat(important for some, but not me)allowing the use of regular unleaded gas, will do a lot to make this car more attractive to average buyers. It’s a Chevy, not a Caddy, not a Tesla, and Chevy buyers tend to be middle class people, for whom price matters. If GM can retain the quality edge this car has in their portfolio, it could do really well.

Lou

pjwood
Guest
pjwood

“price and advertising”. Add profit, as the third variable and I think that’s it. What drives promotion will be a higher profit margin than something else that GM feels it can sell you. Then, they’ll move the Volt.

And yes, doing what they say it does matters big, in a world with Ford, Kia and 100+ million dollar fraud lawsuits.

Assaf
Guest
I think the problem is a combination of 1. lack of promotion as mentioned in the article – not just ads, but also dealership education/incentives (which is where Nissan excels with the Leaf), and a general embrace of the Volt as a flagship GM car (again, the contrast with Leaf is illuminating). 2. lack of a clear target market segment. The Gen 1 car as a stand-alone product is an engineering marvel. However: – Its interior space is too cramped and it lacks a 5th seat to attract the compact/midsize family segment; – It is way to expensive (and a bit too large overall) to compete in the 4-seat subcompact segment; – Its overall positioning as a Cruze sibling under the Chevy brand, falls short as a sporty drivers’ car a la the Ford Mustang, even though it does have the performance to fit the bill. This, combined with the lack of dealer education, probably makes it a non-starter in most GM dealer lobbies. It is really hard to sell a segment-misfitting car to begin with, and even more so when the common dealer salesman still doesn’t dig the technology and how the Volt is positioned vs. alternatives. The obvious… Read more »
Christof
Guest

I agree — more space, and promote it as a family car that gets you around 80% of the time on low-cost electricity. My two kids hated the interior of the Volt, loved the LEAF (and I have to give you that I wouldn’t want to sit regularly in the back seat of the current Volt), and I went with a LEAF, even though I was leaning toward the Volt.

Justin W.
Guest

I agree with the article and David Murray. Most people have heard of my car when I mention I have a Volt yet 98% of them think it’s all EV or know nothing else about the car besides the name and that it’s somehow electric. Once they start inquiring about the car their curiosity leads them to a dealer and they buy one or say they would have but for the lack of 5 person seating. Improve the marketing of the car and sales will increase dramatically.

x
Guest
x

I am not badmouthing the volt, I wish it would’ve been better – I am disappointed. Did you see on many forums the amount of interest and awe for tesla from regular people (not only investors). Think what GM with the vast resources it has could do by building not 200 but 500 or more Superchargers, cross use them with Tesla’s and a 2-300 mile car for say 50k today with say 5% profit only.
They couldn’t keep up with the orders, mine included! And they COULD do it today with the amount of enginnering and resources they have.
But no. The gas-engine ecosystem (huge), + the oil friends have to be kept happy first.

4000 cars a month you say that is close to nothing, like nissan’s or tesla’s today (under 1%) considering the market’s size.

What’s irritanting is they COULD do it.

Sri
Guest
Sri

To compare a 35K car with a 70K+ beast is not not only illogical but insane beyond comprehension. I cannot afford a Tesla (for the sake of my economic well-being) and I can afford a Volt/Leaf. I went with Volt because it has 5-star safety rating and 40 mile Electric range works for most of my usage and still gives me an option to travel when I choose to.

David Murray
Guest
David Murray

Yep – I get REALLY tired of people badmouthing other plugin cars by comparing them to a Tesla. If a Tesla cost $35,000 before incentives, then I’d agree with those statements. But when I can buy two well-equipped Volts for the price of one base-model Tesla and still have money left over, that should make it obvious that there should be no comparisons drawn between these cars. Same with Leaf vs. Tesla arguments.

x
Guest
x

I am comparing the Volt not with the S, which indeed would be irrational but with the Model 3. The Volt will be MY2016 most likely, the Model3will be 2017 , maybe released at the end of 2016, only one year, later than the volt, and I believe that musk will keep his word, i.e. 35.000$. So I am comparing volt (with GM resources) with the model 3.

I don’t like comparing apples to oranges either.

David Murray
Guest
David Murray

Well, Musk may “keep his word” but if you look at the way Tesla advertises the price of the Model-S they always bake in the $7,500 federal credit. So we can assume it is likely the $35,000 car will really be a $42,500 car. Where the Volt will likely be starting around $30,000 to $35,000.

x
Guest
x

In that case you would be right to say that I am simply badmouthing volt (by doing inadvertent comparisons)
But I think he’s on record as saying that it would be 35k BEFORE incentives, he was asked about it. So I am hoping for an apples to apples comparison.

PS I don’t own a tesla, most likely won’t afford one in the future either don’t own TSLA either. But I would really like to see this foreign oil addiction end asap.

ModernMarvelFan
Guest
ModernMarvelFan

He also said Model X was going to be released in 2014.

Is that $35K in 2013 money or 2018 money?

Big difference.

Rob Stark
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Rob Stark

He said $35k or half the cost of Model S.

Shall we go into GM broken promises?

ModernMarvelFan
Guest
ModernMarvelFan

Talking about GM’s promise gives you no credit on talking about Tesla’ broken promise.

The fact is that those things aren’t true.

John Hansen
Guest
John Hansen

If the Model 3 existed today, and if it meets our expectations, and if it costs $35k, then it’s a valid comparison.

However, it doesn’t exist, we don’t know if it will meet our expectations, and we don’t know if it will be $35k, so your comparison is… apples to non-existent apples?

x
Guest
x

You are right. 🙂

I can only hope he’s going to keep his word. So far I think he deserves that (S quality, gigafactory, etc).

But in the meanwhile you’re right. plus , the X is not helping me either! 🙂

All the best.

kdawg
Guest

Volt has over 70,000 driving around the US. Model 3 = 0.

I think you are a “purists” and don’t like anything with an ICE. I’ll be shopping 200 mile BEVs in 2018/2019, but I’m loving my Volt TODAY.

Different strokes for different folks.

x
Guest
x

I think you’re right on all counts.

Spec9
Guest
Spec9

The Model 3 doesn’t exist. You are comparing vague promises to a car that actually exists. That is an apples to really great-tasting oranges that will be 25 cents a pound in the future, we promise!

pjwood
Guest
pjwood

Well, if you don’t become an “x” – visitor of IEV, than perhaps you’ll understand the position the majors are in to deliver an economical car. Tesla certainly can’t, and we could argue isn’t even thinking about it (D&X).

Tesla has yet to prove to you just what 2017 holds. Think about it. Their historic role may go down as making more happen, than they actually deliver on themselves. Without Tesla, Volt2 might have rolled back into one of the plethora of other 10kwh alternatives, all to fizzle on $2 gas and “hybrid, the way forward”.

Thank you, Tesla.

ModernMarvelFan
Guest
ModernMarvelFan

Yet, you are comparing a vaporware Model 3 which doesn’t even exit in prototype with a model that is about to be released in 6 months…

Good job at illustrating your lack of logical thinking…

Taser54
Guest
Taser54

You are comparing a car that has been in production with an alleged car that doesn’t even have a mule on the road. Gotcha.

Josh
Guest

If you compare the “value” for the price, the Model S compares favorably with other plug-ins. By value I consider performance, features, range, SuperCharging, storage, infotainment, etc.

Unfortunately even though Model S is a good “value” at $80 – $90k, it still doesn’t make it affordable.

David
Guest
David

Tesla is NOT successful because of its price.

GM proved that with the ELR. They managed to fail on an amazing degree while having an extremely high priced car.

Spec9
Guest
Spec9

Yes . . . but it really depends on the price.

suresh
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suresh

i personally think volt is a really good car. i am really surprised why its not able to compete with leaf. the only reason i bought a leaf instead of volt is price. there is a huge 10k difference. on top of it GA give 5k credit to leaf extending the lead by 15k. if GA gave the same tax credit to both volt and leaf, it would have been a tough call.

Stephen
Guest
Stephen

Incentives play a big role as you say. The sales tax exemption in WA only applies to the Leaf. Consequently they are everywhere and the Volt is still fairly rare. WA included the i3Rex this year. If they had done that for the Volt there would have been an increase here.

pjwood
Guest
pjwood

These multi-thousand dollar distinctions are true, and play out differently in lots of states. MA allows the Volt the full 2,500, where they phase down all other non-16kwh PHEVs.

FocusEV
Guest
FocusEV

The WA sales tax exemption also applies to other EVs besides the Leaf. I just bought a Ford Focus EV and it qualified. Please don’t spread misinformation.

Brian
Guest
Brian

The Volt is a compact car. It would sell better as a midsized car. What most people seem to miss is that this is more than just headroom and a 5th seat. This is a full, functional trunk. The Volt’s 10cu.ft. trunk is just too small for a family’s road trip car. The Volt is great for the single guy/gal with one car. For a family such as mine, it’s a misfit. It is too small to be our roadtrip car. But since my wife and I have two cars, we don’t need them both to cover long distances. The Leaf won for us hands down, and I think other multi-car families are deciding the same thing.

If GM REALLY wants to sell the Volt, they would make it a crossover or compact SUV. This is a hot market segment. If they continue to stay in the compact/midsized car segment, I’m not convinced GM’s heart is in their electrification efforts.

eddie
Guest
eddie

Reminds me of the Accord…sales seemed to really take off once they added a few more inches and stopped being in the compact class in the US.

Josh
Guest

If the Gen 2 Volt doesn’t bump up sales, they will have to pull the plug on it. If it hits 50 mile AER, has a 5th seatbelt (so they can market 5 seat), and has an MSRP that starts with a 2, 50k – 60k per year should be their target.

If GM makes a VoltUV also (for ~$8k more), they should be targeting 30k – 40k units on each vehicle.

David
Guest
David

So far it looks like GM hasn’t fixed the issues ailing the Volt. The cabin is not larger, not taller. There isn’t really a 5th seat. There isn’t more emphasis on electric range over the ICE.

Having a hybrid begs the question, why. Invariably the reason is to save money by driving electric vs. gas. But this becomes a cost issue. With gas prices heading below $3/gal, the 2016 Volt will do no better.

I know its a controversial sentiment, but I think GM needs a pure electric, i.e. non-hybrid, BEV, and be serious about it. Their legacy crushing the EV1 casts a long shadow. They don’t really seem in the game. Pushing CCS, just to delay quick charging rollout. Going out of their way to support Michigan’s anti-Tesla bill. The ELR commercial…

GM is not proving to be an EV advocate.

x
Guest
x

+1

Rick Danger
Guest
Rick Danger

Well said!

kdawg
Guest

David says, “The cabin is not larger, not taller. There isn’t really a 5th seat. There isn’t more emphasis on electric range over the ICE.”
—–
It is larger. The whole platform it is on is larger. There is a 5th seat from what has been discussed by those who saw the reveal. There was emphasis on electric range as it was increased.

David says, “GM is not proving to be an EV advocate.”
——-
I guess if having the most EV’s on the roads in the US, the largest battery lab in the US, and 3 different types of plug-ins makes you not an advocate, then we don’t have any advocates.

x
Guest
x

But no supercharger network, no plan for one, no plan for a serious battery factory (even tesla’s gigafactory is just a start I hope it’s only the first in the hundreds that are to come) , no fast-charging system supported => no long range trips =>niche EVs, like the Leaf.
I blame the management, they are short sighted.

I’ve followed Lyle’s blog daily and really hoped that the Volt 2.0 would be something Else , >100miles, optional tiny ice, fast-charger network.
Maybe the 3.0

Stephen
Guest
Stephen

So it doesn’t meet your ideal, so it is a failure. The Leaf and Tesla don’t meet mine for various reasons, but I still think of them as successes.

kdawg
Guest

GM uses the SAE approved CCS network for DC fast charging on cars that it makes sense to DCFC (larger battery EVs like the Chevy Spark EV). They have a huge battery factory in Brownstown, MI, and the cells are sourced from a huge factory in Holland, MI. Currently GM is not battery-constrained, so no need to build a gigafactory like Tesla. They also use the latest battery tech from suppliers and will use the supplier that can provide the best product for the application. LG seems to be getting more & more contracts. If they feel they need to build a Gigafactory to meet their contracts, LG should.

x
Guest
x

I knew about the CCS but also I know that there are practically zero CCS charging stations in North-America.

Speaking of them being advocates of Evs in your view, why is it that the Spark is West coast only?

For sure the demand is not up-there, but out of the ~23k (apparently)people putting deposits for the X, and the thousands waiting for the 3, don’t you think that the there’s significant room to stimulate demand, with a low profit, available, all-electric car?
Instead they came up with the ELR.

My guess is that they do get why tesla’s potential customers are that many and why is this incredible (maybe not even justified) almost social movement, with so little $ spent on marketing, but the reason they came with the these – the big hit named ELR and now with volt 2.0 with mildly improved electrical range – is because they really do want to keep the gas engine around as much as possible.
One can only guess why is that.

ModernMarvelFan
Guest
ModernMarvelFan

“I knew about the CCS but also I know that there are practically zero CCS charging stations in North-America. ”

I live in California and there are plenty of CCS in various locations around CA and it is growing daily…

It takes time to add CCS. At least all the new CCS aren’t just added at dealership…

kdawg
Guest

There is a large demand for the Spark EV outside of California but GM is not selling it outside of there. I’m sure this is a CARB play, and also GM has a new long range BEV based on the Sonic platform coming, so why even bother w/a nationwide rollout of the Spark EV at this point?

I don’t think GM has an “agenda” to keeping the ICE around. They will build what the public wants and what sells. That’s why they still make full size trucks alongside the Volt. This usually turns into a debate about profits, but when the public demands EVs on a mass scale, GM, and all automakers will have to respond. We have not reached critical mass yet.

x
Guest
x

I hope you are right on the new Sonic -based long range EV. It remains to be seen. Yes, like the 3!

Wish you all the best! (nice Christmas hat! 😉

eddie
Guest
eddie

Why on earth would I want to stop to use a Supercharger network every 50 miles? The entire point of the Volt is a Supercharger in the trunk until better batteries atleast past 2020…aka gas.

pjwood
Guest
pjwood

-1 If it bags 50 miles of range, it will be in a field of two, i3 REx and Volt.

BEVs will threaten to strand you, if you play games, and at best the other ~dozen PHEVs will deliver ~20 miles, from $96,000 Porsches, down to the Plug-in Prius. There, Porsche and Prius, same sentence!

If GM is the foil of the all-battery makers, than so be it. Popularizing PHEV is a whole lot better than expensive H2, or natural gas. The Volt is the bright side of those dark directions.

ModernMarvelFan
Guest
ModernMarvelFan

So Volt doesn’t fit your “purist” view.

Well, sorry to say that Puriest don’t own the entire market.

The only reason that LEAF even has a chance right now is due to the FREE car program in GA. Even with that, its sales goal still hasn’t met the 3,000/month production goal set by Nissan for this year.

Anthony
Guest

The Volt 2.0 will have the improvements needed over the first gen model – 5th seat, 50 miles EV range, better MPG.

I also think they’ll hit their target of $30,000 base price before incentives. The 2.0 model is built from the ground up, but doesn’t have the belt-and-suspenders approach of Volt 1.0, so with the battery packs being half the price of gen 1 and other cost efficiencies built into the car, it can hit that $10,000 price reduction that was talked about.

But does GM market it successfully? Can they educate the consumer to understand the difference between a pure EV and an plug-in? If you say the car gets 50 miles on battery power, do they say, “that’s stupid – you have to charge it every 50 miles!” or do they understand that when you run out of battery you switch to gas seamlessly?

If GM can educate the consumer, then they can make it work, especially at 22,500 after rebates.

x
Guest
x

People are not that stupid, they will understand. I am not sure if the significant complexity (long-term reliability) is worth it.

The problem is they could’ve done so much more, especially if the battery price reduction is the one you’re claiming.
(if indeed the S85 battery is ~25k that would imply an achievable as of today 55kW, i.e. 200 mile smaller car (smaller than the S60) battery for 15-20k. So a 35k smaller, simpler car is not out-of-question as of today.

But politics prevented that.

ModernMarvelFan
Guest
ModernMarvelFan

The people who criticize the Volt are usually the BEV purist who fail to release that even with all the incentives, LEAF ONLY marginally sell better than the Volt and especially due to the EXCESSIVE incentives that LEAF get over the Volt.

If you take GA away, the difference between Volt and LEAF are almost negliable, that is despite the fact that current Volt don’t get HOV stickers in CA (ran out) while LEAF still does.

The Volt2.0 can ONLY be successful if all the incentives are “even out” and Volt gets more traction in the NON-traditional state. That is a very difficult case since the gas price is so low.

Also, out of compliance state, BEVs face about 2 to 3 models to compete for the same market, while Volt faces no less than 8 different model of various PHEV/BEVx/EREV offering…

Despite all that, Volt is still holding up relatively well, that speaks volumne for itself.

If Volt2.0 doesn’t succeed at least somewhat comparing to the Volt1.0, then you can kiss it good bye and the entire PHEV segament unless government is going to force some of kind Plugin options…

RedLeafBlueLeaf
Guest
RedLeafBlueLeaf
Well, this LEAF owner doesn’t hate Volts. In fact when I meet a Volt owner I see a kindred spirit and enjoy trading stories about our EVs. I did test drive the Volt, I certainly can see the attraction, decided against it primarily on the lack of interior space, and I hope the 2nd generation one succeeds. However, I’m not a big fan of GM. And to be honest I suspect that a lot of people in the Volt’s target market feel the same way I do, which I’m sure hurts sales. For years they were my main customer and I saw the management ineptitude up close and personal. I owned a GM car that was touted as having finally solved their reliability problems and was constantly fixing everything on it, eventually selling it after 8 years when it developed the habit of the engine turning off at highway speeds with no warning – and the dealers denied ever having heard about it (although there were customer web sites specifically about this issue) and despite numerous repair attempts not being able to fix it. I’ll be honest, given their inability to make a reliable basic engine like a pushrod V6… Read more »
ModernMarvelFan
Guest
ModernMarvelFan

Of course, there will always be GM haters who refuse to give Volt its chance. That is just facts.

I have always said if Volt was a Toyota brand, how much better it would sell…

That is beside the point here.

The point that I am trying to make is the fact that BEV purist has been hating Volt since day 1 even though it has the MOST EV range among all EREV/PHEV/BEVx at the time. Only the newly released i3 REx beat it in EV range, but failed at “REx” portion with its “useless” tank size to truly make a long distance car.

How many BEV purist hate on the Prius Plugin or Ford Energi cars?

There are almost as much hate coming from the Fox News watching EV haters toward the Volt as those tree hugging BEV purist.

That shows how resilient Volt is and how good a car it is despite all that hate.

Do you think people would be as forgiving if Volt has the same battery problem as the LEAF? I seriously doubt it.

That speaks for itself.

jzj
Guest
jzj

1. If you own only one car, and will regularly exceed the 80 mile range of most EVs and can’t afford a Tesla, the Volt is great.
2. If you own two cars, make one a pure BEV, and make the other a plug-in like a Volt if possible.
3. Don’t go crazy over-thinking this: one size will never fit all.

Bill Howland
Guest
Bill Howland
Man, so many haters on this BLog. 1). “The VOlt isn’t electric enough.” – Yeah, decreasing gasoline consumption by an order of magnitude isn’t good enough for the experts. 2). “It is too small”. – Yup, and you can’t really buy a full sized CAR from anyone any longer other than Mercedes, BMW, and Rolls Royce. They only offer SUV’s now. The model S is decently sized, but you’d have to be one of the rarefied few who can afford an “S” and still have a second gasoline powered vehicle when you need to go more than 130 miles in the wintertime. 3). “GM isn’t serious about building EV’s”. This is like talking about someone’s mother.. The 2016 VOlt is literally better in (most) every way, yet people are complaining like it is much much worse than my 2011. I remember the comment made on InsideEvs a few days ago where the Prius’ construction was compared to a Plastic hunk of junk whereas the Volt was compared to a TANK. Toyota is the one who’ll have quality problems here, not Chevy. I’m seeing more and more volts driving by since they lowered the price. I can just imagine how many… Read more »
ModernMarvelFan
Guest
ModernMarvelFan

They are hating b/c they know that new Volt will take away LEAF sales…

x
Guest
x

🙂

come on….

voltVictor
Guest
voltVictor

Bill,
You said, “Not sure why, but in Western NY the Leaf just isn’t popular at all.” I will tell you why. I have a 2012 Nissan leaf. When the temperature goes below 20 degrees Fahrenheit I get 48 miles of range. when you allow for a five mile buffer you have only 43 usable miles. If the temperature goes below 10 degrees your usable miles are even less. In western New York it isn’t uncommon to see temperatures in the teens every winter. This is one of the reasons I believe the Nissan leaf sales aren’t doing better in that area and Canada.
The present Volt only seats two adults. That is not a car for the masses. The next Volt will seat four adults. It is an engineering marvel. I think it will exceed the expectations of even General Motors. It will be my first Chevy Car. I think it will be the best selling electric vehicle for the next few years (until the Germans see the light).

Bill Howland
Guest
Bill Howland

Victor, thanks very much for the explanation.

Incidentally, I test drove a Leaf when they first appeared at Mike Barney Nissan. I thought it was a very nice well designed effort, however the lack of range killed the deal for me, and I tried a 2011 Volt, which as it turns out I’m quite pleased with it.

Hopefully, the 2016 volt will be even better.

ModernMarvelFan
Guest
ModernMarvelFan

The BEV purist will always hate on Volt. For some reason they seem to hate the Volt even more than other “non-plugin” hybrid. But yet Volt has average more EV miles than LEAF.

So, instead of focusing on the practibility of what Volt has done for the EV community, they instead of chasing the ideal for absolutely useless points.

Despite all the hates coming from those purist, GM haters, Fox news watching conservatives, I think Volt is actually holding up pretty darn well.

Next generation better does well. If it doesn’t, it won’t help any other automakers to make a longer EV range PHEV/EREV/BEVx. They will just tell their planning team, see, nobody wants a long EV range. It will just cost more than. That 11 miles PiP is more than enough…

We don’t want that.

x
Guest
x

I don’t know about other “purists” but I , for one, as disappointed as I am with Gm’s pace (i.e lack of will to offer what people really want, see Tesla+superchargers) , however , I am still considering leasing a Volt !
I might take one up for 3 years with a good lease deal, until the 3 hits the market and hopefully Ford / Nissan /GM will really start to compete. I have 3 kids however so it might not work for me.
I do agree that driving a Volt today does more than waiting for 3 years for a hypothetical car.
So , no hate here, sorry. 😉 Just reasonable disappointment.

ModernMarvelFan
Guest
ModernMarvelFan

We all want more. Even as a Volt owner, I wish there is 60 EV miles and more performance. I wish there is an Equninox PHEV. But if Volt doesn’t even meet GM’s sales expectation why would GM invest more?

Same logics goes to other EV makers.

Why can’t Tesla build Model 3 first before Model X? That is what I want, right? B/c it makes sense for Tesla since Model X is based on Model S and it will be higher profit model while waiting for Gigafactory to be completed…

How about Nissan? Why doesn’t it offer a 200 miles LEAF now? Why doesn’t it offer a Rogue PHEV? How about an Infiniti QE60? (60kWh BEV) Why can’t Infiniti do more?

Of course, we always ask for more. But that doesn’t mean we should give credit where it is due.

ModernMarvelFan
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ModernMarvelFan

shouldn’t…

We need “edit” capability at insidev

x
Guest
x

True, agreed on all points.

It is just that from all the companies you’ve mentioned ,I would think that GM is the most likely to have the means and the depth to offer not only incremental improvements but a game-changer. Well, maybe you’re right and I’m simply too impatient.

Do wish you all the best.

QCO
Guest
QCO

Putting all this silly anti-Volt rhetoric aside, back to the topic at hand: Will the Volt 2 be a sales success?

It will depend mainly on GM advertising and promotion, which I believe will be ramped up significantly because Volt 2 has a key attribute not found in Volt 1 – Cost reduction leading to higher unit margins.

GM has invested a huge amount in Volt 2 cost reduction, so there is a significant incentive for them to drive up sales using the usual methods, which include much more advertising and more than 1 trim/pricing level. They are taking it mainstream.

There really was no point in spending any more on Volt 1 advertsing since it won’t generate much margin. Besides, the Volt 1 is already the best selling plug-in. You could say it has done its job by proving the market does exists for its unique EREV plug-in configuration.

The GM commitment (investment) on making Volt 2 commercially viable is really the important point that seems to get lost in the story.

ModernMarvelFan
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ModernMarvelFan

Well said.

The success of it is really important to the entire EV community until the first affordable 200 miles BEV.

NeilBlanchard
Guest

GM has promised widespread sales of BEV’s. And they should build a 150-200+ mile BEV – we know they know how to.

The 2nd gen Volt needs to at least equal the Prius in hybrid mode – 50MPG is entirely doable. They would do well, I think, to make it far simpler – a true serial hybrid where the ICE only charges the battery, seems to be the way to go.

The 2nd gen Volt needs to have enough rear seat head and legroom for tall adults, and middle seat for a short adult / child. GM needs to realize that seats do not have to be thick – comfort comes from good ergonomic design, and slim seats weigh less and take up a lot less room; leaving more room for people.

If they want to claim it is an EV with a range extender, then it needs an L3 QC CHAdeMO charger, and at least a 6.6kW L2 charger.

Bill Howland
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Bill Howland
“…If they want to claim it is an EV with a range extender, then it needs an L3 QC CHAdeMO charger, and at least a 6.6kW L2 charger….” It uses GM’s MEGACHARGER system when the juice runs out. All GM’s electrics to date use a 3300 watt charger – world wide -, and it is the one size that just coincidentally happens to be compatible with just the ONE offering. Even the Spark EV, although have a DC connector, only has the 3300 watt charger. That said, you would think at some point, GM is going to offer a second 3300 watt charger a la Tesla with the model S. I know I’d like a Dual Charger “VOLT” since then I’d get double the miles for the same amount of money at most public chargers. But I’m not going to lose sight of the EV forest for the 3300 watt tree. I like my volt enough that, heck, if it only had a 900 watt charger I’d still buy it. (Since I only have one level 2 EVSE, my Roadster charges at around 7kw, so my volt has to charge at 110 while the Roadster is charging (I’m a pretty… Read more »
Christof
Guest

Given the fact that Big Oil is awakening to the very real threat that plug-ins pose to its monopoly, the general lack of knowledge out there about EVs, the push for hydrogen vehicles — these cars would just see Big Oil transformed into Big Hydrogen, and, if they won out over plug ins, would rob plug-in drivers/advocates of the No. 1 positive to plug-ins: comparative fueling independence that allows you to stick it to Big Oil, OPEC, ISIS, etc. — it would be nice to think that all of us plug-in drivers, whether we drive a LEAF (that’s me), a Volt, a Tesla, etc. could be a little less hard on each other, and turn our sights, together, on the bigger foe: Big Oil and the status quo of gas only vehicles.