Chevrolet Bolt EV Sales Hit New High In July Ahead Of US-Wide Rollout, Volt New Lows

Chevrolet Bolt

AUG 1 2017 BY JAY COLE 139

Chevrolet Bolt EV (picture not available) posted decent results this month ahead of going nationwide in August

In the month that America mostly forgot any plug-in vehicles were available for sale, that is…other than a Tesla Model 3, the Chevrolet Bolt EV saw its sales move higher during the month, setting a new all-time high for the model (for the 4th consecutive month), and was also the best selling plug-in for America!

Despite a news cycle full of all things Model 3, and a constantly evolving discussion on what an extended shutdown at the Bolt EV’s Orion facility really meant, dealers (and customers) across the country were now able to place orders for GM’s EV, with nationwide deliveries starting in August.

Chevy Bolt EV (picture not available) reported to spawn a Buick Crossover int he near future

For July, a total of 1,971 Bolts were sold, a gain of 20% over the 1,642 sold in June.

So far for 2017, 9,563 cars have moved – good for 5th place on the US plug-in top sellers list.

We look forward to seeing August’s results, as it will be the first indication of the true US demand for the car, although with partial/limited stock in many of the 32 new-to-the-Bolt states, September will likely be the best judge of that demand.

For the 18 states already with Bolts, there is no shortage of inventory, as about ~6,000 were on hand on average during the month.

Exclusive: Also, InsideEVs learned just last week that GM will be making good on a promise to use the Bolt EV’s platform for more offerings in the US – with the first to be a Buick Crossover…with new/power seats!  (read the full details here)

The Chevrolet Volt (no picture available) re-took the US plug-in sales lead for 2017 in July!

As for the 2nd best selling plug-in car in America, the Chevrolet Volt, it continued to be sold in July, while at the same time (and somewhat ironically given its near top-selling status in the US) is reportedly being considered to be replaced with a plug-in utility vehicle after this current generation’s run ends in 2022…largely because Americans really seem to hate passenger cars more and more this decade (GM production of cars is off some 32% in the first half of 2017)

And while that timeline sounds like a long way away – and we don’t need to worry about the Volt’s future today, one has to remember that a “quick lead time” for a new product offering by a traditional auto maker is ~4 years.

Electric Cars

Found a picture of one! In all seriousness, the Bolt EV’s sales performance in July was very solid, and hopefully we will see the EV reach the fabled “3,000 mark” in the Fall!

Anyway, back to today!

For July, GM sold 1,518 Chevy Volts, down 36% from the 2,406 moved a year ago.

The July result was GM’s worst with the Volt in 2017; in fact, one has to go back to February of 2016 to find a lower result (1,125).

For the year, 12,450 Volt deliveries have been made, up 1.9% over the first 7 months of 2016 (12,214).

On the inventory side of things, the Summer shutdown at the Volt’s Hamtramck, Michigan facility, helped to take in-stock levels down from a high of about 6,000 in early June to just over 4,000 entering August.

With that said, the 2018 model year production fired up in the 2nd last week of July, so there is a fair about of 2017s still to be moved out ahead of the new edition; if you are in the market for a Chevy Volt, this is probably a good time to pick one up with a nice discount on the hood!

Editor’s Note:  Obviously we are being sarcastic about not be able to find any Chevrolet Bolt EV pics because of the Model 3 – our way of saying there has been a overload of Model 3 content of late, and we anticipate things to settle down and get back to normal this next month.

Categories: Chevrolet, Sales

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139 Comments on "Chevrolet Bolt EV Sales Hit New High In July Ahead Of US-Wide Rollout, Volt New Lows"

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The Bolt sure is DOA. Lol
The VOLT may be a dead man walking, though, unfortunately.

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If the base model 3 isn’t enough then the bolt isn’t enough either. 18 miles is not a relevant difference between the 2 especially when you consider the 3 will get better hwy range due to it’s shape.

How Sociopathic of you…Didn’t I see you own a Rav4 EV, how’s the winter range in it?

I’m not a fan of the Bolt based solely on looks. I’m sure it’s a fantastic performer…but it just looks like an economy hatch…

Volts are another story. We own 2.

However, both will surely fail unless GM finds a way to get their dealer network behind them.

Bolt looks like a dorkmobile …just say it! It seems like a remarkable car that was given un unappealing shel by GM…too bad. Volt selling in lower numbers is a surprise.

Bolt is awesome. 😉 People want the utility of a CUV or hatch. The Bolt offers that. Also, it looks awesome in Nightfall Gray Metallic.

Volt Sales were hampered by the transition to the 2018 model year. The dealer I buy from, who normally has 15 or so Volts in stock, was down to just one or two in mid-July! And down to six Bolts.

But now Bolt production is back up (20 on the way) and 2018 Volts are being shipped. 🙂

I hope you’re right. I’d hate to think that the high sales were just previous Volt owners trading in their Gen 1’s with only a few exceptions (such as myself) being new to the Volt.

I happen to think the Bolt is beautiful. Mine is a knockout in the metallic orange. Nothing more boring and impractical than a sedan.

I agree, I think the Bolt looks great! (Although I think the Volt and Model 3 look great too. )

I’m happy that we’re getting more EVs that are looking more traditional… and in many cases are superior looking to their gas-powered alternatives.

How sadly banal and conventional of you. Minivans, wagons, and yes, hatchbacks, are all highly practical options well suited to their intended purpose. And all are suffering sales declines due to fashion and status obsessed buyer’s insecurities. Sedans are now in decline for the same reason.

Personally, I have tremendous respect for those who purchase the best tool for the intended job, and have the self confidence to depart from the herd while doing so. Thus the “dorkmobile” label you have applied to the Bolt makes you appear shallow, and the “dorks” choosing one quite thoughtful.

I don’t know why Volt is DMW as long as GM is still selling the Cruze. Just rebadge it as the Cruze Plug-In Hybrid…or get the Volt price down a bit more and completely discontinue the ICE versions.

There are four things the BoltEV has going for it vis-a-vis the Model 3:

* One can get the LT below $35k from the dealers and take the federal tax credit on it. It appears the $35k M3 will not be available by the time the tax credit starts to sunset.

* Hatch as more utility then a sedan

* One can get it today

* FWD is better in snow then RWD (yes, M3 will have AWD but it is not available yet and will cost more)

Personally I think they are different segments; BoltEV is (or should be) targeting the hot hatch ICEs (GTI, etc) whereas the M3 is targeting the luxury sedan ICE (A3, etc).

In fact in the short term I think BoltEV sales will rise when some M3 reservation holders realize they will never get a M3 for $27k.

The medium term is uncertain and depends on where GM takes the Bolt platform. If it languishes it could slowly die. My gut (and hope) says M3 will increase EV acceptance with the general public and all EV model sales will grow as they cannibalize ICE sales more then each other.

The Model 3 targets the BMW 3 series not the Chevy Bolt. At least on price. IMHO the Bolt will compete for sales against the second gen Leaf not the model 3.

Almost 3500 plugins combined. Not too shabby.

The Volt tested side-by-side with a Bolt may be compelling for a “new buyer” to choose the Volt. It’s cheaper, has same Fed credit, has an enormous “gas charger” network out there for trips and is a nice sized hatch cargo area. Also, has nearly seven years of dealership “knowledge” in supporting it.

I can’t see the Volt as going away because it is a compelling argument that it makes even more sense to keep pushing the battery capacity up to 20kWh on board with the vast majority of miles done electrically. This is 1/3 the batteries needed than the Bolt or Model 3. You can make “three EVs” with the cells of just one of these vehicles. This means three times the EV drivers on the road for the same battery input-parts cost.

Volt carries all the baggage of a gas car and all the negatives of early EVs (short range).

No thanks.

I like my Volt although higher range would be nice may be up 120km. I like the gas option so dont have to be stressed out worrying that batteries are going to die. In summer i can go up to 100 k with one charge although i dont like winter time range about65km

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Why would it be only 60% usable? I don’t remember seeing a number that low on any other battery. What are you talking about here?

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That’s 65% and the most conservative implementation. The newer Volt is not that conservative IIRC, but Chevy should definitely stay on the conservative side. Compared to other manufacturers, they definitely still are, and that translates to consistent range numbers without any real degradation.

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The Volt uses 14.0 of 18.4 kWh, so it is way more than 60% and it is about as conservative as you can get. Using just 60% would be wasting pack capacity and gas.
I don’t know how many times my genset has kicked on just a mile or two from home, so I wish my 2013 Volt would use even 70% rather than the 65% it currently uses. The addition of a mere 0.8 kWh of usable pack capacity would get me about 3 more miles AER, which would be a good thing.
Given the newer, long lived chemistries for LiIon packs, I would bet that the conservative usage that GM has used for the Volt is going to disappear as more pack is used with less reserve.

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I would much rather use 80% in my Gen I Volt and use less gasoline, even if it raises the chance that my pack will lose AER in a slightly shorter time frame. By the time (10 to 12 years after I bought the car) the pack drops enough for my AER to drop 4 miles, a re-furb pack will cost next to nothing and may even, possibly, give you more AER than the original pack. Ok, that last one is not too likely, but I can wish for it….

Refurb packs will be available and somewhat affordable, but certainly not ‘next to nothing’. I expect you’ll pay $4-5k for a refurb Volt pack. They are a lot bigger than a regular hybrid Prius pack and those are an expensive replacement themselves.

I hear you, Ben. But I am a bit more optimistic about what the re-furb price will be when you turn in your worn out pack. I really think that I will be able to get a 16.5 kWh pack for < $2500 in 6 or 8 years.

Good Ole SVEN

that’s my call too.

2EVsBro — Is that because of the high failure rate for Volt batteries? Do you think your proposed cut in range will solve all the huge number of Volt batteries that GM is having to replace?


Oh, wait, back in reality GM actually has zero problem with having to replace Volt batteries due to battery degradation. In fact, despite a significant number of Volts well into 6 digits of miles on them, battery replacements are actually unheard of:

“a grand total of zero Volt packs have been replaced because of “general capacity degradation”…”

Why would we be so Concerned!!, so very Concerned!! that the Volt uses 80%, and not 60% of the battery?

You sir, after posting for less than a week, have already jumped to the top ranks of worst Concern Trolls posting here. I suggest you re-think your trajectory. It is not going to go well for you if you continue on this trajectory.

Volt has had fewer battery replacements than Teslas – we have NDAs holding Tesla owners back from battery replacement talk on forums, etc. Thousands of Model S Drivetrains were replaced over the years. This is far worse than how the Volt has fared.

Absolutely! The Volt battery pack has been completely rock-solid, avoiding all the problems that early Tesla, Leaf, Fisker, Honda Hybrid, etc. All those companies had to all work hard to resolve those issues back in the early days to get to where they are now.

GM’s excellent battery temperature control system plays a big part of it. Along with always having the ICE to rely upon for extreme cold weather operation which can be stressful to batteries. They built a great system. They just need to put it into about 4-5 more models of cars/CUV’s/light trucks.

Since when is Volt an ev?

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I’m grateful for knowitalls like you that teach the rest of the us the ins and outs of evs. Do you have any other outdated information you want to share?

An EV is an electric vehicle so it can be a BEV or an EREV/PHEV. This battle has already been fought too many times. Most vote for inclusiveness but there are still the occasional purista wandering the EV wastelands muttering that anything with a gas tank CAN’T BE AN EV!

Well, people are, I believe, free to use words in whatever meaning they like. But it makes for easier communication it terms are logical and used in a consistent manner. And I’m sorry, but the logical meaning of “electric vehicle” is NOT a vehicle with a hybrid drivetrain! I’m constantly flabbergasted to see comments like yours that attempt to “correct” people who use the logical terms – call fossil fuel cars ICE, electric-only cars EV, and hybrids… well, hybrid! You may not have gotten the memo, but the incumbents in the car industry are understandably not keen on the EV revolution. No incumbents in any industry are interested in upheaval and revolution. And one of their tricks to delay things have been to call hybrids EVs and further muddy the waters with talk of “electrified” vehicles – a term that they use no matter how little electric propulsion is involved! Do you think Tesla ever intended to include hybrids when they speak of electric cars? Is there ever a good reason to erase the distinction between hybrids and fully electric cars? I don’t know of any except for those where propulsion technology is irrelevant, and then “car” or “vehicle” are… Read more »

In my book the Volt qualifies as a range extended EV, just the same as the BMW i3 REX. Think about it, the Gen 2 Volt has nearly as much electric range as the i-Miev (53 vs 59 miles).

My cut off for an EV vs a hybrid is the following:
1) A plug (obviously).
2) Full power / freeway capability with only electric drive.
3) At least 50 miles of electric range.

By that token the Gen 2 Volt qualifies as an EV. Under normal circumstances the average driver could be expected to drive around town without ever needing to use gas. Most Volt buyers intend to never use gas except when they drive longer distances.

Alternatives like the Prius Prime, Ford Fusion Energi and Ford C-max Energi are only “hybrids”. They don’t have enough electric range to realistically be expected to be driven without the gas engine kicking in, and the Ford cars can’t even generate full power without the gas engine.

By this token I also didn’t like the Gen 1 Volt. I thought it was a crappy hybrid that didn’t count as a “true EV”, but the improvements in Gen 2 won me over.

If it has a tailpipe it’s not an EV.

(⌐■_■) Trollnonymous

An EV doesn’t swallow OPEC Jizz after 53miles when that puny 16.5KWh that uses only 65% of the capacity is depleted.

Tell me, what does the Volt do when the gas is stale or when it gets cold?

Yup, you guessed it, it kicks you back to the ICE age.

Now name an EV that does any of that?

Oh yeah, that exhaust pipe should’ve been your first clue it’s not an EV but whatever….

(⌐■_■) Trollnonymous

Isn’t it great to be able to intentionally omit the ICE entirely to help your failing argument?

You remind me of a bag of Vinegar and Water used on a warm evening in Summer for women.

Jay, just curious – (curiosity killed the cat) – any insight into why all of EVsBro posts got deleted? I don’t remember all the content, I know this one post I’m replying to now was clarifying that EV’s include PHEV’s.

I don’t remember if there was harsh tone in this post, but I didn’t think it was as derogatory or worse than a post below stating, “An EV doesn’t swallow OPEC Jizz…” 😉

I still think GM should keep the Volt around in a super-niche performance offering versus killing it in favor of a Voltec SUV (AWD Volt SS…just do it GM!), but if the Volt does fall on the sword and a Voltec Equinox-ish vehicle takes its place, I won’t shed any tears.

If I had a say… I think Chevy should offer a second model of the Volt with a lower range and price. Say, 30 mile range. Under 30k starting price. Compete more directly with the Prime.

Remove just enough battery pack from the back to make it a proper 5-seat sedan.

Also, I think the Volt or similar car will stick around. I do not think the Bolt and Model 3 are the vehicles people cross shop very often. Very few people are BEV or bust buyers. I think the Volt and Model 3 are closer competitors. Both are great looking cars and work well for long distance driving.

Volt lite? Millivolt? 😉

With the Gen 2 this approach could be very attractive. I’d prefer they make Voltec variants of other popular (and larger) sedans, give those 30-50 mile EV ranges, and call it a day.

(⌐■_■) Trollnonymous

A GMC Terrain with Voltec and AWD would be a nice offering.

Even if they get it out within 2 years it will beat the Outlander to market.

If you want that, just buy a used Gen-1 Volt. $16k or less in some places.

I have a 2013 Volt. It’s great! But if they could get a new Volt at a cheaper starting price, with a bit more room in the back seat for the occasional 5th person? I think it would walk the line and compete with the Prime and the Model 3.

I don’t necessarily think that will happen, it is just what I would like to see.

As battery costs go down, I hope the Volt will continue to get cheaper. They’ve cut the price a lot since release of the first gen.

I actually hope they don’t add more electric range, and instead keep lowering the price. I think the Volt is actually a great car and it has a lot of potential. I’ll be a bit sad if they discontinue it.

Not so smiley now. Nice Touch Mod.

Yup,looks like about 0.00002% of the Model 3 reservation holders jumped ship 😉

Are they all in CA? I live in MA and I’ve seen only 3 of them. I’ve seen more Prius Prime’s and I8’s on the road.

I have seen only one here in L.A. area since it started selling. I’m not sure where they sell. Volts on the other hand are all over the place.

About 85% of them are.

Sounds about right to me. I don’t expect less than 2000 a month for the rest of the year. So 23000-25000 in the US looks likely to me. With a few thousand abroad.

The Bolt should approach 28000 for the year I think. Not bad for a freshman! 😀

Hey, the Bolt is DOA, remember??? No one want sto buy a “dorkmobile”. These thousands of people that keep buying Bolts in increasing numbers are just GM fanbois. Lol

I’m glad you are impressed with the sale numbers of the first “ev for everyone”…you are among a very few. But yes, it’s definitely not dead…hopefully not for a long time.

When GM wants to move something, they certainly have a habit of offering ridiculous incentives or highly subsidized leases…Perhaps a 17% or 20% cashback sale is in order at some point in 2017…

They could start by just giving the full $7500 EV rebate in the lease instead of holding back half of it.

At least some GM products seem to be on the up, down 15.4% YOY in July, Ouch !

Ford down 7.5%, FCA down 10%

I wonder how much Volt sales have to do with inventory. Anyone know the inventory levels nationwide?

As a local example, the two larger Chevy dealers here have an aggregate of 2 Volts in stock, compared to 19 Bolt EVs.

I have never seen them come close to having a combined 19 Volts in stock.

Annnnd I just found the inventory levels for the Volt in the article, I apparently can’t read.

4,000 down from 6,000, and that’s nationwide. Compared to 6,000 Bolt EVs in a limited amount of states. I can’t help but wonder how many Volts would sell if people could actually find a configuration they like that’s ready to buy. Outside of California, that seems impossible.

They are in danger of dropping below the inventory needed to support the sales numbers they need for the rest of the year to hit their 30K target.

This is only around a month of supply, and for their dealer-stock sales method, that is really at the bare minimum to provide the number of different configurations that buyers might want to take home the day they first visit the dealership.

It is now very clear that the reason why they had a 100+ days worth of inventory built up was so they could make it through the scheduled summer shutdown and line reconfiguration without drying up their national supply.

The re-configuration of the assembly line to produce more Bolts should quickly take care of the low national inventory.

Since Dealer Inventory sales have about a two month delay between cars being put into the pipeline and sales being booked as final. (70 day target for average days on lot for cars put into a new pipeline.) So the full impact of ramping up National sales won’t be fully known until Oct, possibly Nov.

Yup DHAM was on an extended shutdown as well and the Volt just started 2018MY production. Inventory numbers are down a bit. I figure once the 2018’s start rolling and the 2017 model year deals come out the sales should see a small boost again.

My local dealer, which usually has no more than 10 Volts in stock at any time, had 21 BOLTS in stock a couple of days ago, compared to 9 Volts. I’m wondering if some dealers are starting to order Bolts in favor of Volts (even though they have allocations for more Volts).

Though that’s sorta counterintuitive, since VOLTS will bring more service revenue than Bolts.

Maybe they are hoping to sell both to customers. They come for the Bolt and leave with a Bolt and Volt… one for around the town and the other for longer trips if needed. heh heh

That’s exactly what we have planned. Turned in the tdi jetta and got a volt for the long trips. Turning in the tdi gulf and going for the Bolt at the first of the year.

Headline and pic talk about Chevy Bolt and you can’t ‘find’ a picture of a Chevy Bolt? Give me a break.

Hey, came here hoping to read about the bolt. What’s the matter? people not caring about your tesla stuff anymore? Need to shove it down our throats? I know this isn’t real journalism but come on

Wait, they added a tiny picture of a Bolt at the bottom. Though if you squint and stare long enough, it starts to look like a Model 3.

Awwww someone is butt hurt

Too bad you dont have a Tesla with Ludicrous. You could hit the “No, I want my Mommy” button

(⌐■_■) Trollnonymous

Bruh, that’s an additional “Premium feature/upgrade” on Tesla’s.

Nice to see pictures of the Model 3 in a Bolt sales article. I guess it’s OK because we have no idea when we’ll actually see a Model 3 sale.

Hey, *30* Model 3s were “sold”! To Tesla employees…who probably had to sign an NDA prior to taking delivery and can’t actually say anything about their cars. And we still don’t know the official battery sizes, detailed performance specs, or even have access to a Monroney sticker or official EPA fuel economy ratings.

But hey, officially 30 have been sold!

Model 3 has sold more than the Bolt ever will in its existence and its not even out yet.

Think about that

I thought about it, and it’s complete nonsense.

Unless they fix something, the more they sell, the worse their financial condition will become. Especially when needing to build another pair of factories which will stretch the company to a very crazy make or break point. Tesla may be able to sustain sales to keep Fremont and Nevada going but double that? It is very hard to tell the net decade’s EV take rate at this point.

This is a common business thing. Bookings are not sales.

A business would take one sale over ten bookings any day.

Not saying that the M3 reservations are not utterly staggering, but it is an apples-to-oranges to compare sales to reservations.

(⌐■_■) Trollnonymous

“Found a picture of one! ”

OK, I get it……..LMAO

Funny peeps. (◔/‿\◔)

lol, Hook line and sinker!

(⌐■_■) Trollnonymous

In the voice of Elvis Presley…..

“Thank you…….thank you very much”
٩(- ̮̮̃-̃)۶

Happy to see Bolt sales gradually building. Hope that accelerates in coming months as nationwide inventory becomes plentiful and end-of-model-year discounting kicks in.

Chevy should be aiming for at least 4,000 Bolts sold in December during the tax credit rush.

Glad to see they had a decent month. I was starting to think they might not hit my production prediction.
Submitted last November.

(⌐■_■) Trollnonymous

I believe in August they will exceed 2K.

Because those on the M3 list that were disappointed for one reason or another will scoot out of line and opt for the Bolt.

Yes, fence-sitters are now in a position to get off the fence.

Just in time for the traditional end-of-year ramp up in EV/PHEV sales. 4th quarter numbers are going to be very interesting this year.

Some of them may actually wait for Leaf2…i’m hopping Nissan will came up with something good.

Glad to see Bolt sales rising. Maybe GM will take them seriously if they start pushing the supply. Frankly this should be the Bolt’s time to shine. With T3’s not yet being sold to general public it’s still the only long range affordable option on the market. I don’t know why GM didn’t hit this harder.

Interesting of the July numbers

1,832 Retail sales
139 Fleet sales
1,971 total sales

Would like to know who the fleets are. Lyft? Other?

Could be some municipalities replacing their ICE…

Mainly Lyft and Maven probably.

And the random sale to state/govt orgs like the USPS, which bought a couple of Bolts for mail delivery in VA.

I honestly don’t get why GM would want to cut the Volt. A lot of people are two car families and the Volt would make a great commuter/sometimes travel car. Maybe in about 10 years when there are more high AER EVs available it could be retired, but I think it’ll be at least that long before there’ll be enough of them with enough available quick chargers to retire it.

I really don’t appreciate the censorship here. Haven’t read the messages, so it could be something like holocaust-denying for all I know, but judging from the replies it doesn’t seem like other readers were all that bothered. I’m old enough to judge for myself, thank you, and I really can’t do that when you judge, on my behalf, what is fit for me to read.

Can’t you please consider sending Disqus or similar!? Then we can know when someone replied to something we wrote, edit and correct mistakes in our own comments (until someone replies), block users from our personal view at will, flag comments as inappropriate, spam etc. – and you can still ban users if they just keep posting advertisements and such.

I wish you’d take a stand for free speech here! This seems to me like “political censorship” – or perhaps some personal beef of some kind. If it’s one of those, banning is abuse of power, and that sucks – even though this isn’t exactly a political forum.

I’m going to go the other way. This comment section will become a viper pit if things keep going the same way they are.

I think the mods need to proactively indicate that discussion of the topic is the key and people should cease to attack others. We’ve got so many people calling others trolls that we effectively have anti-troll trolling now.

Mods, please indicate to people to stick to the topic please.

My two cents.

I believe those comments were from a banned personage. So, the sentence, auto-comment delete.
At least that is my conjecture from comments above.

I very much age that it’ll be interesting to see what the Nationwide demand is, and that we won’t see until September. But I also think the demand is, or may be, evolving. Given the Model 3 hoopla one might think it should collapse (I’m certainly not confused about which car provoces greater desire in me!), but I actually don’t think so. The cars are so different that I think they’ll appeal to very different buyers. Some would be uncomfortable in a Tesla – there are plenty folks who want to avoid standing out, or send the message that they think they’re someone. And if you have a dog, the Bolt is the best EV you can get short of the much more expensive Model S (or even more expensive X). My guess is that EV ignorance & inexperience is still so widespread that Bolt sales will continue to climb as more people get to see them, ride in them, listen to happy owners, and drive them. Every Bolt on the road contributes to people gaining familiarity and experience with the cars, and if this is what really sells the cars, one should expect sales to climb steadily in percentage… Read more »

While I agree with your whole comment, I want to stress your point about market education/psychology. I’m stunned by the number of people who see my Leaf and claim they had no idea there was such a thing as a 100% electric vehicle for sale in the US. When I tell them my car is a 2013, they almost fall over.

The reasons for this are obvious — the almost complete lack of manufacturer advertising of BEVs, plus the radical change they represent. But it’s still a hurdle we have to get over for the kind of BEV adoption we’d all like to see.

The Bolt vs Model 3 sales race for 2017 is getting interesting. If GM can get to about 3,000 a month (to use their 30,000 for a year count) then Tesla will have to get their ramp up just right to pass the Bolt before the end of the year.

Of course it is unlikely to be any kind of contest next year. The Model 3 should sell many times what the Bolt does next year.

I’m sticking with my prediction of 22K Bolt EVs for 2017.

An interesting race will be the race to 200,000 plug-ins in the US.

Current leaders are:

GM = 146,377
Tesla = 130,576
Nissan = 110,845
Ford = 96,000

Given Tesla’s rollout, the 200k units will hit right about the time the Base model comes out. I think they will see cancellations and possibly “call it” and not deliver the base model because “nobody wants it”.

The repeat of “S40 gate”. =)

It isn’t crazy to think so.

Of course, they can just boost the “base” range to 250 miles and add $3K to the base cost of $35K and call it “fair” upgrade due to low demand…

There is big demand for the base model, people wanting the larger battery are going to squeal when they realize it increases their monthly payment by $160/mo.

Sure everyone wants the bigger battery but everyone wants a bigger boat than they end up buying too

I agree and I think it will be a confluence of three things: * The demand for the $35k version will lessen somewhat when the tax credit sunsets and price-sensitive buyers drop out of the reservation queue. * Tesla may fall a little shy of their production targets (likely do to things they can not control in the supply chain, labor pool, etc). * Demand for the premium M3 will remain very strong It would be logical business and consistent with what Tesla has done in the past — if there is a pool of buyers willing to pay more and there is a production constraint, sell to the highest. The one thing I don’t think they’ll do is ‘call it’ and drop the 220-mile M3 anytime before Q4 2018. That would be a PR nightmare. I do, however, think they’ll keep pushing it out farther and farther so that there effectively will never be a $35k M3. Only when it is plainly clear it is not going to happen will they drop it. This is why I think the BoltEV has a bright future; I really think we will never see a $35k M3. The best bet for an… Read more »

Conversely, based on the above three points I long felt the only hope for seeing an affordable Tesla this decade was if Tesla prioritized the $35k M3 first.

When they solidified that the $49k version was going out first in the reveal that hope was dashed.

In summary based on the M3 reveal and the expectations around Leaf 2.0, GM appears to own the ‘affordable long range EV’ market this year.

I’m a little concerned as to what will happen to EVs once the credits are gone. GM is on track for the credits to run out in 2019. Maybe this is why they don’t seem that eager to push the Bolt and Volt? They know that when the credits are gone the sales will fall through the floor and/or profitability will decline severely as they cut prices. So, they’re actually slow walking the production to give time for battery costs to come down? It’s actually crazy that even Ford appears to be almost half way to the phase out. What does that leave? Honda, Toyota and VW with a ton of credits left? It’s really messed up that the late adopters right now appear to be in line to benefit from the decline in EV tech the most. They held back, and now they’ll be able to sell their cars much cheaper than the competition that paved the way. The EV credits never should have been allocated per manufacturer. Or maybe the first 100K could be by manufacturer and the second out of a global pool. Of course if we had a Democratic Congress and President maybe we could see… Read more »

I would be surprised if the program continues after GM and Tesla hit their numbers. This government especially, doesn’t want to be in the business of tilting the playing field against US companies.

Well, I am sure the news that GM is about to kill the Volt doesn’t help the sales…

There was no such news.

There was an article that 4 years from now GM might replace the Volt with a different shaped vehicle.

It was a speculative article. And for a long time from now.

What’s funny about that topic, is that 2 of my friends who don’t know much about EVs, both said to me “Hey did you hear, GM is going to cancel the Volt!”

“It was a speculative article. And for a long time from now.”

Not arguing that the “news” isn’t true.

But since it is covered all over the “news”. A lot of people have heard about it.

Volt was clearly listed among the 6 cars that GM “might” kill.

that is how rumors get started. Someone heard something from someone that something might happen…

But in today’s world, rumors are spread fast and often becomes the “truth” to many people.

I have observed the same effect. GM needs to do a better job of thwarting leaks!

I said it before and I’ll say it again: Just where in tarnation are these cotton pickin Chevy Bolts hiding out? Despite an alleged glut of inventory, the nearest Bolt available for sale is at a dealer near Pittsburgh, 86 miles linear distance (more like 100 miles on the road) from where I live in Ohio. There are zero, nada, zilch Bolts for sale anywhere in Ohio, never mind the supoosed national availability. I just verified this seconds ago on the Chevrolet web site. I has hoping a new calendar month would unearth some local inventory, but no.

The more desirable Bolt Premier model has even more limited availability, approaching that of hen’s teeth.

My daily driver is a 2011 LEAF, and it is getting to be time to think of a refresh. At this rate, my next purchase might wind up being an almost as elusive Prius Prime – at least I have seen one for sale on a lot about 30 miles from here.

Ohio has some pretty low electricity prices too. Good market for Bolts when the fuel is cheap.

Yes indeed electricity is curiously inexpensive here. I live near Cleveland, and our city has its own ditribution system which purchases power from several of the regional generation companies. My rate works out to about $0.13 per KWh, any time of day. I figure on a comparison of cost per distance for electric versus gasoline, electric is like getting better than 100 MPG. Electic driving was more rewarding a few years ago when gas was around $4.00 per gallon. Even at the current $2.40 per gallon, electric still has a pretty good cost advantage over gas. (Cost of the car not withstsnding.)

They’re all out here in CA.

I definitely believe that GM is splitting the EV sales between the Volt and Bolt. The latter, being the “new thing”, may be the one drawing them in before buyers decide the Volt is more practical for their needs (i.e. long range travel specifically). Still, it is nice to see the sales numbers rising a bit especially in a “Model 3 gets all the love world. I couldn’t help but wonder though if GM were happy or sad at the Model 3 introduction. I mean they already knew the car would be a looker, be fast, have supercharging, and have the “got to have it” factor – and none of that changed (and are big wins for Tesla). What they didn’t know was how availability, range and pricing would play out. As it turns out, the those may have all played out a bit better for GM than they hoped. Seeing things like how only $49K+ models will be available initially, and $59K for a fully loaded model and knowing Tesla’s $7500 rebate will expire sooner than Chevy’s (putting bigger distance between the two cars than the MSRPs would suggest) all probably plays in Chevy’s favor. As Wade notes, I… Read more »

Do you compare the Volt to the base battery of Model 3 or bigger battery? The big one is a $49k car right now, while the base doesn’t exist.

Volt’s range definitely beats the big battery model 3. And after tax credits and so on, possibly just about a half the price of the maxed-out Model 3.

Of course, the mapping features of Model 3 beats everything. Chevy going with Apple Carplay and Android Auto allows them to roll with the changes of these platforms, though.

Now where can I buy a cheap Apple iPad Pro and some duct tape and install that in my Volt?

Good question on “which one” to compare to. Since I’m a “get it loaded” type of guy you could have a loaded Volt for what, $42K vs. a loaded base 3 for $47,500 (not including FSD pipe dream) or the big battery car for $56,500. Given the Model 3 is larger and quicker, your best comparison is likely to the base car. The $5500 delta is probably “worth it” for a lot of folks (me included). With GM’s street price probably at least $3K less (way more in some areas) then that delta becomes $8500. Now add in the variability of rebates. Sure, Tesla will run out, but GM has produced a lot of cars too and every day their own rebate gets closer to running out as well. Still, at the lower end buyer’s are a LOT more price conscious and that $7500 is REAL MONEY. Now add it other bizarro things like the state of Texas (where I live) and the fact that their soon to be reinstated $2500 rebate is only available to cars “sold in Texas”(i.e. “NOT Tesla) and suddenly, in a worst case scenario a loaded based Model 3 could end up costing $18,500 more… Read more »

I was honestly not expecting the Bolt to outsell the Volt at all this year, or any time in the near future. So, the results this month game as a big surprise.

Interestingly, looking at GM’s* combined EV sales for the year we can see:

Month: Total (Volt/Bolt)
Jan: 2733 (1611/1162)
Feb: 2772 (1820/952)
Mar: 3110 (2132/978)
Apr: 3099 (1807/1292)
May: 3383 (1817/1566)
Jun: 3387 (1745/1642)
Jul: 3489 (1518/1971)

*Mainstream cars only, ignoring Chevy Spark and Cadillacs

So, overall EV sales have been on an increasing trend, with the mix slowly shifting in the Bolt’s favor.

I wonder if what might have happened is early on people came in to Chevy dealerships looking at the Bolt and were turned off by the high price, or maybe they even showed up at dealerships where it wasn’t available yet. That resulted in a some people simply settling for the Volt instead. But now as Bolt availability increases and also discounts get better, more of them are going through with the purchase of the Bolt?

Hey Jay, this story doesn’t have a Chevrolet tag to be viewed under the Chevrolet link either. Maybe sales usually don’t? I thought they did though when model specific… Just trying to find links to point people to and realized these were missing.