Could Model 3 “Tesla Formula” Design Push Buyers Toward Chevy Bolt?

Tesla Model 3


Model 3

Chevrolet Bolt – A Tesla Model 3 Killer?

Is the small sport sedan styling of the Tesla Model 3 a possible deterrent to sales?

Business Insider is suggesting that since the Tesla Model 3 is not an SUV or crossover, and rather a small sporty sedan, consumers may not be interested. Even further, the publication believes that people may steer toward the Chevrolet Bolt, due to the Model 3’s “Tesla Formula” design.

We have heard all along that the Chevrolet Bolt may be a “Tesla killer.” It came to market first, is about the same price, and offers comparable range to what Tesla is advertising for the upcoming Model 3. The Chevrolet Bolt’s lead designer, Stuart Norris, believes that the Bolt has a huge advantage over the plethora of other automakers that will eventually come to market with long-range affordable EVs. He told Business Insider:

Tesla Model 3

Tesla Model 3

“Actually being in the market is a very big advantage that we have. Being first in the segment, and being able to deliver a product that does what the Bolt does, I think brings an integrity to the product.”

Is being first enough? Samsung is often first, well ahead of Apple in new releases, and then the Apple product surfaces a few years later, and succeeds. Perhaps the Apple product, while later to market, is better? Is this why Apple is taking its time coming to market with its self-driving tech? Wait and watch … live and learn … and then come to market with a better product?

Anyway, I digress …

Yes, the public is fond of CUVs and SUVs. Yes, the Model 3 won’t be a super-practical vehicle. Yes, it’s later to the game, and will likely be much more expensive than the Bolt, as soon as you add a few options. But, 400,000 people placed a paid reservation, knowing most all of this full well. GM’s Norris continued:

“I think the Bolt EV offers something really compelling in the market. I think it’s very much in line with where the market is going. So we feel very comfortable with where the Bolt EV is. I think it’s great that Chevrolet is kind of compared with a luxury brand like Tesla and we think we have a great product in the segment that is going to be very appealing to the customer.”

GM is calling the Chevy Bolt a crossover. However, automotive websites and industry experts have classified it as a compact car.

Regardless of any of this, unfortunately, the Bolt is not quite to expectations. It had a great first month, and it’s holding its own reasonably well with the other top six selling EVs, but it’s not monumental. We have to give it the benefit of the doubt since it’s still not available in showrooms nationwide. But, even in its second, with three more states added, and in April, yet another state, and sales are not prospering. We will have to wait until after September, when the 2018 MY Bolt EV is available nationwide, to get a better picture.

If Tesla keeps on track, it will be making a fair amount of Model 3 sedans by September. Despite the Bolt’s head start, with Tesla filling a multitude of reservations, Model 3 sales will easily surpass Bolt sales fairly quickly.

GM is not bothered by the competition, however. Norris concluded:

“Having more electrification and more electrification entries is great for everybody. But I think that the one thing the Chevrolet brand can bring is a sense of reliability and trust because people know that Chevrolet knows how to build and put cars together.”

“We are bringing disruption through a game changing electrification strategy. But it’s going to be backed up with the dealer network, it’s going to be backed up with the product quality that Chevrolet knows how to sell, service, and look after your product and make sure it’s going to work in people’s everyday lives. So I think that is going to bring us a massive advantage in the electrification space.”

While the Bolt is a truly compelling product, and GM deserves kudos for being first, the fact of the matter is that the Tesla Model 3 and the Chevrolet Bolt are very different cars, and though they will be direct competitors in some ways, they will ultimately appeal to a different audience.

Source: Business Insider

Categories: Chevrolet, Tesla

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116 Comments on "Could Model 3 “Tesla Formula” Design Push Buyers Toward Chevy Bolt?"

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Chevy does not bring a sense of reliability and trust to someone that’s owned them for 40 years primarily because they were cheap. Lots of Bolts have been in the shop with typical Chevy electrical issues.

“Lots of Bolts have been in the shop with typical Chevy electrical issues.”

DO you have a data source for this?

I have only heard of a couple one-off issues personally.

There are over 100,000 first generation Volt owners, the majority of which experience trouble-free vehicles despite the Volt being a “moonshot” development program.

Since the Bolt EV doesn’t have the added complexity of an engine to extend range like the Volt, I see no issues why it won’t be inherently more reliable than many other vehicles being produced today.

His source is his buddy Hugh Jazz.

“There are over 100,000 first generation Volt owners, the majority of which experience trouble-free vehicles despite the Volt being a “moonshot” development program.”

And DO you have a data source for this?

Yes go to Volt stats and see how many miles people have done….cannot get 300k miles in less than 10 years with poor reliability typically.

There isn’t any doubt the Volt 1.0 has a superior reputation for reliability. If you doubt it, just Google (for example) “2012 chevy volt reliability”, or better yet check out the car’s long-term road test at

Unfortunately, the same can’t be said of the Volt 2.0.

Lots of Bolts? Funny I have not heard this. Could you source your info please.

It will be interesting to see if Bolt sales go up when the model 3 is available. Kind of like how Volt sales might be going up, not because the Bolt shares showroom space, but because people are cross shopping the Prius Prime.

A Chevy dealer here in the KC area has a couple Bolts listed. I can deal with the M3 wait… The biggest things making me re-consider my reservation are the spartan interior and the missing binnacle, a word I never knew until the M3 reveal. However, with a list price of $44k, the Bolt Premier feels way over priced. Even when considering the tax credit.

Most Model 3 reservation holders won’t even be able to sniff the $7.5k credit. Nor a $35k price tag.

Interestingly by the time the Model 3 hits full production probably sometime in 2018 Chevy will be getting close to hitting their 200,000 number as well. If the Volt and Bolt combined sales are 30K-40K this year then by the start of 2018 they could be over 150,000 already sold before the M3 ramps up. That will give GM only until the end of 2018 or first half of 2019 before they hit the wall. Less time if the Bolt and Volt continue to increase in sales this year.

Went back to Inside EVs Scorecard and added up all sales of Bolt, Volt, Spark EV and ELR to date. GM has sold 135,163.

If Bolt and Volt sales even stay flat for the rest of the year then they will reach 155,163 by the beginning of 2018.

I did a little math too and Tesla sold around 122.064 vehicles so far in the US. But it is likely that Tesla will reach around 200.000 at the end of the year or early 2018. Then Tesla buyers only get half of the tax credit for another year or was it half a year. I don’t remember anymore…But it will enable many Model 3 owners nonetheless to get the full tax credit.

Here’s my understanding of the phaseout of the tax credit:

A manufacturer hits 200,000 electric vehicles sold in a given quarter. Say Q1 2018. Phaseout starts the second quarter after the threshold is crossed, Q3 2018 in this example, and customers receive 50% of the original credit for the first two quarters of phaseout, which would be Q3 and Q4 2018. Then customers receive 25% of the original credit for the 3rd and 4th quarters of the phaseout, which would be Q1 and Q2 of 2019.

I’ve been waiting patiently for the SUV body style (as has everyone else in Colorado), either PHEV or EV with enough range to get from Denver to the mountains. Why isn’t Europe’s Mitsubishi available here yet?

I think the “3” is safe – it has too many reservations. Even if 1/2 cancel that is still a very large 170,000 vehicles.

Many people like it simply because it is a Tesla, others like the very convenient fast-charging availability, and others share Musk’s Vision.

The only negative I can think of on the ‘3’ is the lack of a dashboard, but younger people will accept this because it will seem like an extension of their phones; the smallish trunk will probably be augmented by an additional front storage compartment.

I purchased a BOLT ev, but it is not a perfect vehicle. I bought it almost solely because it has the best battery range of an inexpensive electric.

It is true that the BOLT ev may be a more practical vehicle than the “3”, but “3” buyers won’t care. They’d consider the “3” the beauty and the BOlt the ugly duckling.

Yes but can they SELL 170,000 in 3 years?

Based on the initial paid reservations of ~400,000 (almost certainly a lot higher by now), I think there’s little doubt of it.

The real question is, can Tesla make 170,000 M3’s in 3 years. Ramping up production that fast will be a serious challenge for a still fairly new auto maker like Tesla.

When/if my Model 3 reservation comes up you can bet your PlugShare app that I’ll be cross shopping it with the Leaf and Bolt. I love me some hatchback utility but let’s not forget the Model 3 will be two feet longer than the Bolt. That is not insignificant in terms of space. A longer wheelbase means better highway manners too.

We are enjoying the degraded Leaf now so any more usuable range is icing on the cake and will allow weekend trips without using the ICE.

Actually the Bolt has more legroom AND headroom in both front AND back then the Model S.

Bill: now that you have had the car for a few months, how about a detailed review? I would love to see it’s size and range, driving characteristics and such. Has the car measured up to your expectations? Cold weather comments?

I thought about making a video, as I did with “car charging on a budget”, but there are too many magpies here who will claim that my video is either fake, etc. And then there will be those who say any criticism of GM or the design makes me a GM HATER, just as I have been accused of being a Tesla hater (when Musk himself thanked me for my purchase of the ROADSTER).

Not you Lou – you are always level headed.

Perhaps just ask a question and I’ll do my best to answer it.

That’s unfortunate you’ve been treated that way. Unfortunate because the motions in the world have prevented me from getting a glimpse of useful information from someone who actually has the vehicle. I’d be inclined to watch anything posted about how the Bolt performs, and hope someone like Ian Sampson does a daily blog, it is very useful when researching the options.

As GM recently admitted in their Financial reports, they still don’t know how to make money on cars with a plug, so I have reservations anyone can put GM’s EV and EREV/PHEV oferings above Tesla’s.

However, GM does have a fairly large Engineering Team, so if they would just give them some space, they could likely really deliver a great EV, too!

Bolt is a compliance car, with negative margin in non-ZEV markets. The most critical parts of the car are designed by/outsourced to LG. Bolt was rushed to market in attempt to divert interest away from Tesla.

And Tesla is compliance company, with negative net margins on everything it makes, still alive due to income tax credits, ZEV credits, transferable state tax credits and regular share sales.
How does attaching “compliance” name-calling tag helps you argument?


Still don’t understand investment? Better get some lessons before you invest (or short ?) anything.

zzzzzzzzz is already shorting Tesla stock. That’s why he’s always so bitter and negative! 😉

See: “Tesla’s Stock Success Has Cost Short Traders $3.7 Billion This Year”

You must be quite negative on Amazon too if that’s your POV!

His point isn’t to be negative on TSLA, it’s to point out the hypocrisy of claiming the Bolt is a compliance car, while it is being rolled out across the US, and already also sold in Canada, Norway, South Korea, etc.

Unless South Korea is now a CARB state? 🙂

I dunno if calling the Bolt EV a “compliance car” is actually hypocrisy. Maybe it’s just stupidity.

But yeah, if the Bolt EV is a “compliance car” then so is every single EV made today, including Teslae.

How about 50 billion bailout of gm?

Does it count gm’s income?


I mean government motor

Oh my, her he goes again.

You do realize that the components LG is producing for Chevy are all Chevy’s designs and engineering. Those designs are owned by Chevy, but they went with a supplier that has expertise and capability to produce. Automakers can’t cost effectively make all the components that go into a vehicle.

“…a supplier that has expertise and capability to produce.”

Ummm… no. Not at all.

LG Electronics is primarily a maker of consumer electronics. Its automotive division is brand new and untried, and I find it amazing that GM was willing to take a chance on such an inexperienced auto parts maker for the entire Bolt EV powertrain.

In fact, I’m beginning to wonder if the “distribution problem” that supposedly has been holding up Bolt EV sales for months now, is actually a problem with getting enough powertrains from LG Electronics.

And if not, well let’s start a rumor anyway. (Just kidding!) 😉

I hate to break it to you, but NO electric car manufacturer has figured out how to make money yet. That is why there are so many incentives from the government. Look at the country that leads in electric car sales – China. One misstep in incentives led to decimated sales. That’s not really something to write home to mama about. Tesla may look like Apple, but Tesla has negative margins and Apple has a quarter of a trillion dollars sitting in the bank. There is a long road ahead for the EV industry, whether the fanbois know it or not.

“…Tesla has negative margins”

Pure FUD. Tesla has a gross profit margin of about 22-25%. The only reason that FUDsters have any excuse to claim Tesla “isn’t profitable” is because the company keeps reinvesting all profits in future growth.

This is exactly what did when it was growing to become the largest retailer in the USA. And people whined that “isn’t profitable” back then just like they are about Tesla now. Those same people now forget the “inconvenient truth” that has been consistently profitable for less than two years!

I dunno, 400,000+ reservations seems like the definition of “interested” to me.

The Bolt is certainly not a Tesla “killer” but it is possible that the low sales figures of the Bolt is because people are waiting for the model 3 to compare with the Bolt before doing a purchase. That could mean a significant number of people will cancel their model 3 reservation to go with Bolt (or LEAF for that matter) if they are not happy with the minimal interior of the 3 and the performance of the base model. The top model of the 3 will of course outperform the Bolt significantly but that model will also be significantly more expensive than the Bolt so they are probably not direct competitors.

I do think the model 3 will sell quite well but perhaps not as well as the reservations might have you believe. I expect at least 100k reservations be cancelled instead of leading to sales once the car is out and people get to examine it up close.

Not everyone even really cares about performance so there might be some M3 reservations that jump ship because they aren’t concerned with performance and they like the Bolt’s hatch layout and higher seating.

But those that are comparing performance, even the bare-bones M3 will still have more performance than the Bolt. It will be rear wheel drive and hit 60 in at least 6 seconds compared with the Bolt’s ~6.5.

Not a huge difference but combined with rear wheel drive, lower stance and likely a lower curb weight (steel and aluminum frame with smaller pack) it will make for a more notably sporty ride.

The Model 3 is ~two feet longer than the Bolt. The 3 will not be lower weight, it will be heavier because it’s a bigger car.

Correct. And the Bolt’s body is mostly aluminum.

Rick (no, not that Rick)

The 400K reservation holders are all men. When they actually go to buy the cars, a good number of their wives will say “hell, no”. The number of reservations is a mirage (or a clever Tesla fund raiser, depending upon your viewpoint).

Poor Rick. Obviously yet another case of TES (Tesla Envy Syndrome) by a stock shorter.

Tesla envy happens when other people have, ahem, long positions and yours is too short. — Jim Whitehead

The opposite could also happen. I tried to buy a Bolt, but when my wife saw and sat in it, she balked. “Wait for the 3,” she instructed. I sighed. “But a tall hatch makes more sense for me, I need space for my dog!” I protested. I cannot report what she suggested I do to my dog…this is a family site…but I’m pretty sure the dog wouldn’t care for it either.

Emotive reservations will probably cancel. Logical reservations will probably purchase. If the wife said “hell no”, that would most likely happen when you put $1k down on the reservation knowing the price is at least $35k and no guarantee of the subsidy. The reservations started after the reveal, so people know it is a sedan from the outset, so if you really want a hatch then you really wouldn’t put down a reservation (except see emotive comment above). The comment from Elon that it would be like a spaceship gave people hope of a HUD, if that was never the case then Elon should have squashed that rumour quickly. But showmanship is the name of the game, so that was never going to happen. The risk now is a backlash because the perceived hype is now not there.

It was commented that Tesla expected something like 100k reservations, and reservations FAR exceeded their expectations, and they even ramped up production volume as a result. Apart from the ramp up, I think Tesla would be very confident with this product release.

I think the disappointing Bolt sales paint a different picture. Chevy may be first to the game, but it seems the majority of buyers are holding out for the Tesla Model 3. I am not in the market for a new EV right now, but if I was considering either of them I would go with the Tesla hands down.

Europe may be a different story though. I think the Bold will do great in Europe, if GM will allocate enough units to it and lets PSA /Opel have as many as they can sell.

M3 is a dream so far, with the bar raised high on par with imaginary a bit smaller but more up-to date Model S. Wait until you see it in real life, after it will pass testing stage of sales to employees and insiders – automakers normally call it pre-production. You may find it is just another expensive economy car (like Bolt), or you may find it closer to a dream, but it will be some time later anyway. Meanwhile the market and competitors will not stand still, including the same Bolt/Ampera-E.

At $35k it will certainly be an economy car in the EV class. The options will be where the luxury comes into it, I expect.
In 2012 my Leaf was expensive, but it did have features that higher spec models had, Auto lights, Auto wipers, folding mirrors, stuff like that. A lot of that is now pretty common, so the little touches to give the car a bit above average class is getting harder I think. ACC would be one area that Tesla can give that little bit of class that is not common on all cars yet. No doubt with their big sensor suite they can do some fancy things that are not actually Auto Pilot, but set their car apart from others.

“I think the disappointing Bolt sales paint a different picture.”

To me, the picture it paints is that many people in the country still don’t have access to buying one, and furthermore, many that do have access are waiting for discounts and the initial hype to wear off.

Further still, many don’t know a Bolt EV even exists because advertising for it doesn’t really exist yet, and sadly, may never exist. However, I’m cautiously optimistic that once the 200,000 vehicle tax credit threhold is hit, these kinds of vehicles will be marketed aggressively by GM.

Once people realize they won’t be getting their true $35k Model 3 anytime soon, quite a few will ditch their 3 reservation and get a Bolt (or even perhaps a Leaf 1.75). And revisit the 3 when their new EV lease is up in 3 years.

I could bet you they won’t! You fail to understand that many of the reservation holders are Tesla fans first and maybe then EV advocates second.

In the end the end the Model 3 will be production constrained for the next few years. Yes a crossover would have had even more demand but I think the number of tesla vehicles sold between now and 2019 (Model Y release) would be the same. Yes I would have preferred a hatch on Model 3 but I am not going to by a Bolt just to get this feature. I have looked the Bolt and it really is quite small/cheap looking like an economy car. The charging infrastructure for me is a huge reason to pick the Model 3. I currently have 2 electric cars and know the challenges from current available infrastructure. The Model 3 has an attractive expensive appearance. It will complete well with most of the German midsize sedans and probably pull some buyers from their Camry’s and Accords. Given GM recent statements on reducing the cost of the Bolt I don’t think they will even try to sell more at a loss. My view is the Bolt should have been a $50K Cadillac. (obviously with a more attractive design.) They would be focused on selling more rather than reducing cost on what they have.

“In the end the end the Model 3 will be production constrained for the next few years.”

That’s true, but with Gigafactory 1 supplying batteries, the Model 3 will be less production constrained than any other EV, with the possible exception of BYD’s EVs.

But I think the real difference will be that Tesla actively promotes the Model 3, whereas Chevrolet mostly ignores the Bolt EV, and some or many Chevy dealers actively anti-sell it.

I think the dealers are the Achilles Heel of EV’s. Most don’t understand them, their margins are reportedly not as high, they perceive negative impact due to less servicing, and they really just want to do what they have always done. Auto manufacturers should be pushing hard to support Tesla with direct sales, maybe only for EV sales, maybe for everything. But traditional Auto manufacturers are also stuck in their rut and don’t seem able to get out. There’s big dollars at stake. Tesla are investing because they have to as a startup. But established Auto manufactures seem reluctant to invest, even though it would seem they should have the resources to do so. Dealers I think will play the biggest part in traditional manufacturers transition to EV’s. The manufacturers who recognise this and can work with their dealer network to change things will reap big dividends. Diesel Gate might actually be to VW’s advantage because it is forcing them to do something they should have been doing anyway, and they will actually have a lot of control over the product they install. They actually have a unique opportunity to create something akin to the Tesla SC network, albeit they… Read more »

Spent extended time with a Bolt. Electric propulsion aside, for me, the issue with Bolt is that it feels like an econobox.

And at its price, that will not cut it. Conversely, the Volt (differences aside) feels and drives like a small luxury sport sedan. (Its secret sauce IMO)

IMO – the Bolt will appeal to the EV zealot, and needs to be in the 22-27k range for mass appeal. Presumably, that is the price range the car was designed for once enough cost can be extracted. Until then, early adopters pay quite ‘perceived value’ premium for the privilege of traveling 238 +/- miles for about 40k or less MSRP.

This will appeal to some…

I agree that the M3, not having a proper hatch, is a strategic miss out of the gate, but what do I know with 400k reservations.

I finally saw a Bolt in person charging next to a Leaf. I didn’t realize how SHORT (in length) the Bolt is. And that it’s tall makes it seem even smaller than the Leaf. I’m sure it makes efficient use of space (like a gas Honda Fit), but it still caught me off guard.
From what I’ve seen the Tesla Model 3 will be two feet longer than the Bolt. That is not insignificant.

It’s interesting that the Volt is selling better now that the Bolt is out. I expect some check out the Bolt and say “you know, I’d like to drive electric but think I’d prefer something sexier/cheaper/that I can confidently road-trip in,” and the salesman can point them right to the Volt. It’s slower and less roomy, but curb appeal and transaction price matter.

GM sells ICE (toxic old technology)…Tesla sells EV (clean innovative technology) I’m going with Tesla model 3

What a great way to “prove” to those ICE companies that EV technology doesn’t sell, causing them to stick with ICE.

Although to be clear, supporting the company that is exclusively EV is also an important statement to make. We need people buying EV’s from every manufacturer. 🙂

Tesla whores out CARB ZEV credits and sells them to these ICE-selling companies, enabling them to keep selling the “toxic old technology”, as you say.

Tesla is no saint. They are all in it for the $$$$, just like every other manufacturer. Except they still need to figure out the making money part, as Tesla bleeds hundreds of millions every quarter.

Amazon plowed money back into there company for a long time losing money each quarter. Having a long term vision is more important than what many companies do today which is only worry about the net quarter. Tesla wants to be a leader building the Model3, solar panels, energy storage, Autonomous Vehicles, Model Y, Semi Truck, Pickup Truck expanded service centers and charging stations. Tesla is leading the future the old car manufacturers are only playing catch up.


I’m amazed at the tribalism here.

Tesla should be praised by all EV enthusiasts. They nearly singlehandedly kicked GM into action building the Volt. They exist primarily to help respond to the climate emergency.

It goes both ways. For example, BMW (like GM) is often dissed for not dumping their legacy ICE business fast enough, which BTW is millions of cars per year, supporting tens of thousands of families and entire regional economies, yet they are on course to sell 100,000 plug-in cars this year, with the drastic cuts to emissions that this entails. Don’t they deserve encouragement rather than scorn (from some)? Tesla is doing much good, but so are others who have entirely different constraints.

Most of the anti-Tesla comments are not motivated by politics or tribalism. Most of them are motivated by greed; by Tesla stock shorters and by Big Oil shills. Shorters are bitter over losing so much money shorting TSLA, and Big Oil shills are growing increasingly scared about how EVs are going to cut into their income.

bro, what’s wrong with earning money? Of course, Tesla wants to make money lol…do you still live with your mommy and daddy and are looking for a job? Lol

Somwhere domthosenhundreds of millions go?
Gigafactory is happening by magic?

bro1999 wrote:

“Tesla whores out…”

If there was any lingering doubt that bro1999 is a serial Tesla bashing FUDster and troll, he just removed it.

In some way I agree with this. I would love to see all the Tesla vans converted to EV so then they can claim 100% EV in their factories, etc. I liken this to the 80’s when Apple stores were trying to sell me Mac’s and yet they had IBM in their back office. You want me to buy your product, but actually we don’t fully believe in it ourself. Tesla is sort of the same in this regard.

It would be relatively easy, I would think, if back yard DIY can convert, how much easier for a company that builds cars to convert?

I wonder about the environmental credentials of people who insist on waitng for one particular model of EV, driving an ICE car in the meantime.

Bolt sales are slow because, outside of the internet echo chamber, EVs are as rare as unicorns, and as mythical. I know this crowd will find it hard to believe, but normal people, like my wife, can’t tell one car from another. To most people, without an obsessive interest in cars, EVs don’t exist yet. They may have heard of them, but they have never SEEN one. My neighbor has been driving a Leaf for four and a half years, and the guy who parks next to her didn’t know it was electric ,for years, until he asked her what she thought of gas prices. 🙂

Warren lol I’m going to get a unicorn vanity plate for my 2016 leaf lol

The Bolt looks fugly, FWD on a BEV is stupid, the chopped off back window is non-aerodynamic and also requires a rear window wiper due to the vacuum that collects dust, dirt and grime.

I like the sporty sleek design of the M3 and won’t even consider buying a Bolt … GO TESLA!!!

Spoken like a true TSLA fanboi. Lol

Who is not a Tesla fan boy? Girls? Stock shorts? People who just want to watch the world burn?

Rick (no, not that Rick)

Or over 99% of the car buying public?

I’m proud to be a Tesla fanboy, or “fanboi” if you prefer.

Somehow I doubt you’d be in here making so many Tesla bashing posts if you were not bitter over how much money you’re losing on shorting Tesla stock! 😀

Go Tesla!

See: “Tesla’s Stock Success Has Cost Short Traders $3.7 Billion This Year”

I personally am very unlikely to consider the M3 because of its too small back seat with compromised headroom.
I like the Bolt’s shape very much.

I don’t think Tesla has released any real specs yet so I don’t think we can compare the actual hip, shoulder, leg and headroom yet to the Bolt’s stats to come to that conclusion.

This review shows that the back seat of the Bolt is by no means cavernous. It’s also a very narrow car coming in 1″ more narrow than the Volt which is pretty narrow.

That’s what many have said. The Bolt EV has better rear seat headroom, but it’s also narrow. Very likely the Model 3 will have considerably better shoulder and hip room.

But what about legroom? For me, that’s always the biggest issue with sitting in the rear seat.

The Bolt has more legroom and headroom in both front and backseats then the Model S. There is no way the Model 3 will be larger than the Model S.

Yep. I suspect folks can get a pretty good preview of the 3’s packaging by sitting in a Gen 2 Volt. Sexy outside, snug inside, and dubious for adults in back.

Hehe, yeah, the Bolt ev is the only car I’ve ever owned that has a larger back seat than front seat…

And I’m sure your DOG would love the folding split rear seats so that during a long trip the dog can look out both the back and side windows and not feel couped up..

Then there are others who say the BOLT LOOKS like a dog, that is why dogs love the car.

Poor Bolt.

I actually like the fact that it is unobtrusive in its appearance, unlike the ROADSTER which kept the local cops more than interested in it and would stop me since such a rich car must have a driver who is either drunk, on drugs, or without proper documentation.

I think it should do well as people start seeing them, and the what’s that thought comes into their minds.
It’s a decent car with some slight problems and a least one catastrophic failure, but by and large it is receiving rave reviews from owners.

As a pre-event M3 reservation holder and canceler, I can say that buying my two EVs LAST YEAR, was a much better decision than waiting for the M3 or Bolt. Both do not meet my daily needs as well as my Volt/Rav4EV combo (both 2014s, mid or end cycle, zero problems besides toyota recalls that were fixed in 2 hours). Also both cost less used than one new Bolt or M3. I have saved hundreds of gallons of gas and pounds of CO2 from being emitted. I know exactly where my electric power comes from as well. My utility averages around 26% renewables a year. Once Electrify America gets going, the Rav4 will get quickcharge DC upgrade and be a great little mountain traveler and local tow machine hopefully.

Good luck being beta testers for the first 20k or so M3 buyers! And good luck when they are used, tesla wants your service business and thus will not give you access to Tesla toolbox…could be quite the lawn brick!

For those suggesting the answer to no speedo is velcroing your phone on the dash on a BRAND NEW car. ROFL and TSLA SHEEPLE

Thanks for cancellation of reservation, one less person in front of me lol

I bet I can get a used one before a lot of people get their $35k one.


Just shows Tesla will take money from anyone. Even LMJs (Loud Mouthed Jackasses).

And thanks for cancelling your reservation. That certainly improves public perception of Teslae owners.

Small??? It’s bigger than a Prius, which holds 4-5 adults.
So, no.

In my case that would be impossible. I have already tried several electric cars and the comfort that you have in a Bolt is null. Even the electric Kia Soul that is not so good looking is way more comfortable that the bolt. The second thing that I want to mention is that the features that Bolt has are way far from Tesla’s. And finally, Bolt is a super mini and the model 3 is a compact, two different scopes so, not fair to compare

How do you drive a Chevy Bolt from Phoenix to LA?

The longer range is nice, but the lack of charging infrastructure means any Bolt owners who live in Phoenix are stuck in Arizona.

Are you starting this again? Get on PlugShare and figure it out for yourself dimwit.

Dan is 100% correct.

I just went on Plugshare, filtered to CCS and it appears you can bounce between Phoenix and Tucson. Any other direction or beyond Tempe and you are SOL.

Here we go again. It’s 256 miles between CCS stations. At reduced speed or with lunch charging break you can make it.

You’re such a non-PlugShare user!

Yep, this is the key.

Trying to rely on the CSS charging patchwork to get anywhere is a huge bummer, especially with all the lame BMW 24 kW chargers polluting the map.

GM could still change their mind and use the Tesla super chargers! If they cared about doing everything possible to move EVs.

Another person that doesn’t know how to use PlugShare.

Pot, meet kettle!

I guess I was using PlugShare wrong when I traveled 1800 miles between Texas and Colorado and back in my 2013 FFE.

I think May sales of the Bolt might paint quite a different picture. The Bolt was supposed to hit dealer lots in Colorado in May but there is virtually zero Bolt inventory in Colorado right now. Either the pre-orders are sucking up delivery or GM is not shipping Bolts to Colorado yet.

With the $5,000 state rebate Colorado should be a huge market for the Bolt. If GM can get Bolts to Colorado we should see sales numbers jump. If inventory doesn’t improve in Colorado by the end of the month and sales numbers don’t significantly improve for May then we know GM is not keeping up with demand.

Rode my 230 mile range, electric assist bicycle to the Chevy dealer yesterday, to see their first Bolt. It was in the shop getting checked out by the mechanic. He said it was already sold. My wife thinks this car is perfect. It will be our last car. If you have to ride around inside a box, this is as good as it gets. 🙂

Just rode to our local farmer for eggs. I rode no-hands most of the 14 miles. Does that count as autopilot? 🙂

God! I hate big cars. Small cars save lives.


Who would be turned off by a compact sedan (Model 3) and lean towards a subcompact crossover (Bolt EV)?

“But it’s going to be backed up with the dealer network”

Yeah, sure. When I enter a Chevy dealership and ask for an electric car around here (Iowa), they laugh at me and try to sell me a pickup truck or a SUV. Welcome to the real world.

Ugh. Business Insider as the source is sure to lead to ridiculous clickbait nonsense. Once again this adage is proven true.

I recently test drove a Bolt. Below is a link to a 360 photo of the interior shot from the rear seat. I’m 5′ 10″ and the other guy is 6′ 3″. There was more room than I thought, but the interior quality feels like a $14k car. The MSRP of ~$44k feels pretty high for what you get. I don’t like the front wheel drive steering feel, but I think most people don’t even care or notice.

We have had a Smart ED, two BMW i3s and Tesla Model S. I would put the Bolt more like the Smart than the BMW i3.

Yes, it feels like an econobox on the inside.

For me this is a problem.

I believe the Model 3 will outsell the Bolt simply because of prestige, not because of utility or practicality.

Looks wise, the Model 3 looks sportier and people like sporty. On a similar note, if the Model 3, like the Model S, can out accelerate other luxury cars that cost many times more, it will sell. All that is required is the dragtimes videos and you got free advertising. This is what elevates the car to a whole new level… something that is different, looks decent with sex appeal, and puts more expensive cars to shame… without bankrupting the average joe.

The only thing going for the Bolt, when compared to the Model 3, is utility. Everything else is second. When the Model 3 reaches production, the Bolt will have to sell for a lot less.

Sure wish we could see some specs on this M3 thing you talk about.

Wow, how many electrons were seriously inconvenienced to write this pile of absurdities?

1. All the best-selling cars (not light trucks) in the USA are sedans. None of them are hatchbacks like the Bolt EV. The idea that sedans are a “turn off” for American buyers is ridiculous.

2. The Chevrolet Bolt EV may be a “Tesla killer”?!? Seriously, who would still be making that claim? Just look at the disappointing sales numbers for the Bolt EV!

Nothing to see here. Move along, move along!

I get what Business Insider is saying here. Midsize and compact sedan sales have been trending steadily down for several years now (with several marginal models recently discontinued altogether), while compact and subcompact CUV/SUV sales have been trending steadily up (with even pretty marginal models selling well). But people still don’t buy hatchbacks, even though a CUV is just a hatchback with a body lift kit. So the trend might help the Bolt if it looked like a Chevy Trax or Honda Hr-V…but to my eye it looks more like a Chevy Sonic or Honda Fit. There’s no AWD option or goofy oversized tires or cheeseball plastic fender flares or unsightly wheel well gap in sight on the Bolt.

Most Bolt Test drives will not convert to sales because of the horrible front seats. Fix the seats, fix the sales numbers; but GM does not care since they have been silent on this issue for ~6 months.