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Chevrolet Volt
GM isn't going to let a little thing like a lack of money prevent the Volt from coming to market in 2010

General Motors has been in a downward spiral all year with lagging sales and losses in the billions. GM and its cross town rival, Chrysler, asked Congress for monetary assistance to stave off bankruptcy by the end of the year. In the end, the Senate failed to hand over even $14 billion USD to the two struggling Detroit giants.

Now as the White House mulls what plan it will present to help GM and Chrysler stay in business during 2009, GM is stating that it will bring the Chevrolet Volt to market no matter what. This confidence in the Volt program comes despite that fact that GM announced yesterday that it would halt the production on a new engine assembly plant which will produce the 1.4-liter gasoline engine/generator for the vehicle.

Despite the setback with the engine assembly plant, billions of dollars in losses, and a production schedule that leaves little room for error, GM is still committed to bring the Volt -- and the Chevrolet Cruze -- to market by the end of 2010 as it has always stated.

If the engine assembly plant is unable to be completed in time to get the production Chevrolet Volt and Cruze out the door in 2010, GM will be forced to rely on one of its overseas facilities to produce the engine according to the Wall Street Journal. Interestingly enough, the Chevrolet Cruze is already available in overseas markets like South Korea albeit with a 1.6-liter four-cylinder engine -- two years ahead of the car’s North American launch.

"Everything that involves heavy cash outlays obviously is under review," said GM spokeswoman Sharon Basel on Wednesday. "Our intent is to still go forward with a new facility bringing that engine to Flint, Michigan."

"Although we are temporarily absolutely stopping all work on everything, the Volt will be out as originally scheduled," added one GM executive.

GM is banking on the Volt to bring it some of the same positive press that has been bestowed upon the Toyota Prius. However, the Prius and its rival, the Honda Insight, have base prices below the $24,000 mark. The Volt, however, will be priced near or will surpass the $40,000 mark before a $7,500 tax credit.

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Chapter 11
By therealnickdanger on 12/18/2008 3:19:11 PM , Rating: -1

The Volt seemed practical when gas was $4/g, but with the barrel continuing its decline - maybe even as low as $25/b - it definitely doesn't seem like a worthwhile vehicle right now. After all, Prius sales just recently tanked. Conditions may be different in 2010, but it sure is a risky thing for GM to continue given its current condition.

RE: Chapter 11
By Smilin on 12/18/2008 3:23:39 PM , Rating: 5
Gas will be 4/gal again. Next year, year after that, 5 years from now. They have to plan for it. Not planning for it is one of the big reasons they are in this mess. Every time an excuse has come along allowing them to stop innovating they have.

Risk also doesn't really apply to GM at this point. They are going to go bankrupt. Do SOMETHING. If it turns out to be a bad call then nothing changes.

RE: Chapter 11
By omnicronx on 12/18/2008 3:28:09 PM , Rating: 2
They have to plan for it. Not planning for it is one of the big reasons they are in this mess.

RE: Chapter 11
By The0ne on 12/18/2008 4:08:03 PM , Rating: 2
It's amazing how so many people can't realize this simple point. Relying on the consumer and not doing anything else is a sure failure.

RE: Chapter 11
By fuser197 on 12/18/2008 3:30:06 PM , Rating: 2
RE: Chapter 11
By dagamer34 on 12/18/2008 3:41:36 PM , Rating: 3
And prices have dropped below $40. OPEC cutting production doesn't mean much right now.

RE: Chapter 11
By FITCamaro on 12/18/2008 4:10:14 PM , Rating: 3
To believe oil prices won't be rising in the future is pretty stupid. Yes they're low now and they'll probably stay low for I'd say 6 months or so. But as the economy (hopefully) eventually recovers, oil prices will rise.

RE: Chapter 11
By zombiexl on 12/18/2008 4:57:37 PM , Rating: 2
But as the economy (hopefully) eventually recovers

You hope and I'll live n the real world. Our government and the incoming government are doing all they can to destroy our country.

By the end of his first term (maybe first year) we'll be shelling out 40% a paycheck (not including FICA and Medicare) at a minimum to support bailouts, universal health care, increased social programs (like NY is trying to do while hurting so bad and raising welfare), etc.

We are in for some hard times, the worst is yet to come. As our forefathers roll over in their graves and gun sales climb for what many fear is a revolution on the verge of happening, you keep believing things will get better.

RE: Chapter 11
By rudolphna on 12/18/2008 5:30:23 PM , Rating: 1
Excuse me? I live in New york. Im not aware of these problems you speak of. Its not living in a fake universe, what he said. The reason gas prices are so low, is that demand is low, and supply is high. There is an overstock of fuel, so the prices go down. As the supply is cut back, and the economy reovers, demand will go back up, and supply will fall short. Especially with OPEC cutting back such important areas, that cannot be restarted in minutes. If gas goes back up, it will probably hit even $5 a gallon, before supply comes back up to match demand.

RE: Chapter 11
By Reclaimer77 on 12/18/2008 5:33:23 PM , Rating: 2
If you aren't aware of how screwed up New York is, then you are like those idiots in Chicago who were actually "shocked" to "discover" how f'ed up their own government is.

RE: Chapter 11
By The0ne on 12/18/2008 5:53:58 PM , Rating: 2
I believe it can be said that no one knows how F--- up they are in until something really bad happens or until an outsider shows them. It's not a fault of anyone IMO, just people usually behave.

RE: Chapter 11
By Ringold on 12/18/2008 6:04:02 PM , Rating: 2
I think the market has shown this year that gas prices above $4/gal may not be sustainable; demand destruction may end up keeping it lower. Note the sustained monthly decrease in miles driven.

I also think credit should go to Masher. He called how this whole thing would go in oil early this year, when people were saying $10/gal was right around the corner and the peak oil catastrophe was here.

RE: Chapter 11
By technohermit on 12/18/2008 7:03:25 PM , Rating: 3
You don't read anything but DT then. NY sucks, I live here too. They are going to tax iTunes purchases, non-diet soda purchases, etc. And my property taxes are going up 8.25%. School taxes will go up on top of that because Paterson cut 700 million from the school budgets. Not the spending, though!!!! DONT CUT THAT NY!

RE: Chapter 11
By Reclaimer77 on 12/18/2008 4:58:49 PM , Rating: 3
Even at $4 a gallon, thats not enough to convince me to buy a $40k plus vehicle from a company who is either bankrupt, or should be soon.

And if my taxes go to bailing them out, then strictly out of spite and a loss of respect, I will never buy from them anyway.

RE: Chapter 11
By Doormat on 12/18/2008 4:59:16 PM , Rating: 2
Futures for the next year indicate that:

Futures for months further out increase, not decrease. Dec 09 contracts for crude are at $54 (at the time of this post), vs about $36 for January delivery.

"Let's face it, we're not changing the world. We're building a product that helps people buy more crap - and watch porn." -- Seagate CEO Bill Watkins

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