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President Obama with a Chevrolet Volt

Rep. Mike Kelly (R-PA)  (Source:
Despite recent issues with the Chevrolet Volt's battery, GM expects increased Volt sales for November and a recent survey found that Volt customers are satisfied. A GOP lawmaker may, however, ruin EV success by fighting the $7,500 tax credit

General Motors Co. may have hit a few speed bumps this year with the Chevrolet Volt extended-range EV's battery-related incidents, but things seem to be looking up with an expected increase in November Volt sales and a recent survey that confirmed Volt customer satisfaction.

The Chevrolet Volt had its best-ever sales month in October 2011, but according to GM Spokesman Jim Cain, November Volt sales are expected to surpass the previous month.

In October, GM sold 1,108 Volts, which was the first time it had outsold the Nissan Leaf EV since April. For the year through October, GM sold a total of 5,003 Volts.

Experts say that it is now very unlikely that GM will meet its sales goal of 10,000 Volts sold in 2011, but GM predicts increased sales in November over the month of October. The final sales figures for November have not yet been released.

Perhaps the reason for increased sales expectations is Volt customer satisfaction. According to a recent survey by Consumer Reports, Chevrolet Volt owners "love their cars."

The Consumer Reports survey, which was released Thursday, is based on over 314,000 opinions of 2009-2012 model year vehicles. The survey found that 93 percent of Volt owners who participated said they'd buy the EV again.

However, the survey was conducted only a few months after the Volt hit showrooms, and mainly consisted of early buyers and enthusiasts. The survey was also taken before the formal investigation of Volt/lithium battery safety began.

Earlier this year, the Volt underwent a series of tests at a National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) facility in Wisconsin. Three weeks after a side-impact crash test on May 12, the Volt went up in flames while parked at the facility, catching nearby vehicles on fire.

This sparked a NHTSA investigation, where three more Volts were tested November 16, 17 and 18. One battery had normal results while another emitted sparks and smoke, and the third caught on fire one week later. The NHTSA is now conducting a formal investigation of the vehicle's safety.

The Volt may be seeing the upside of a nasty situation for now with a potential sales increase and customer satisfaction, but one GOP lawmaker is looking to throw a wrench in the EV industry's success by fighting the $7,500 tax credit.

Rep. Mike Kelly (R-PA) told Congress Wednesday that he wants the $7,500 tax credit for EVs to cease because he says electric vehicles have not met desired goals and the tax credit only benefits the wealthy. He specifically noted that the annual income of Volt owners is $175,000.

"[The Volt] has become the poster child of President Obama's failed green agenda," said Kelly. "Like many green initiatives promoted by this administration and bankrolled by the American taxpayer, the electric car is better in theory than in practice; has limited consumer demand; is heavily subsidized; and has fallen short of reaching targeted goals. Despite the fact that the federal government has no business subsidizing a product that a manufacturer could just as easily promote through rebates and other buyer incentives, the tax subsidies are largely going to the affluent few who can actually afford to buy an electric car, which costs anywhere between $40,000 and $97,000."

Kelly's "like many other green initiatives promoted by this administration" comment was more than likely referring to this year's Solyndra disaster, where the U.S. government loaned solar panel company Solyndra $535 million in 2009 despite warnings that the company would go bankrupt. Solyndra filed for bankruptcy on September 6, 2011.

Sources: The Detroit News, The Detroit News

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RE: A Republican in the House
By Chadder007 on 12/1/2011 11:37:54 AM , Rating: -1
.....but they won't kill the tax incentives to Big Oil? :)

RE: A Republican in the House
By idiot77 on 12/1/11, Rating: -1
RE: A Republican in the House
By Ringold on 12/2/2011 11:30:20 AM , Rating: 2
Your mentality leads to Greece. Tax rates could go to 100% for people making over 250k a year and it likely wouldn't close the deficit this fiscal year. Thats assuming they stayed, which real world experience shows that the rich can be footloose, so we'd never get that 100%. Not to mention the open question of how an economy can invest to create jobs without people with money.

The sooner we accept the "working people" are either receiving too much government support and/or aren't paying in enough, the more likely the US is to avoid the fate of so much of Europe.

RE: A Republican in the House
By YashBudini on 12/2/2011 11:55:56 AM , Rating: 2
Greece is in trouble because tax evasion spread from the rich to the middle class. Many rules being forced upon Greece in their agreements deal with proper tax collection. The national sales tax created a huge underground economy.

It's true government workers used to have many benefits, but their civil service pay structure is much like what the US had decades ago, lots of benefits and puny salaries.

Greece is also overwhelmed with illegal aliens, Albanians cross the border just like Mexicans, and the crime that comes with them (not "it" R77). Jobs are also outsourced to Eastern Europe. Now factor in a small revenue base, total the size of a large city, along with military spending and other national needs, and what outcome would one expect? Oh, did we miss the fact that the national economy was heavily dependent on tourism? And how's tourism been since Wall St collapsed the global economy?

RE: A Republican in the House
By deltaend on 12/1/2011 12:20:22 PM , Rating: 3
.....but they won't kill the tax incentives to Big Oil? :)

Probably because you would scream and blame Republicans if gas prices rose even higher and thereby prices on anything that requires transportation (everything). Of course, you blame them for tax breaks on oil anyway, so I guess the common denominator is that you plan to blame Republicans for all problems. Don't worry, you aren't alone, most people in the world are not open minded enough to take the good with the bad and try to reserve judgment until all the facts become evident. It eventually becomes a kneejerk reaction to blame your political opposite for all of your perceived problems.

RE: A Republican in the House
By Rajeve on 12/2/2011 9:48:20 AM , Rating: 1
Dear Sir,
research this independantly. The oil tax "breaks" are a misnomer. The word is a inaccurate. What really happens is the companies are told that their taxes are, example 30%, then the Govt comes back pretending they worked hard at bringing that 30% down to 20%. They the Govt folks turn around to the public (along with a willing media) and tell them, "hey, those fat cats are getting a 10% tax break". Then the govt also turns around and takes nearly a dollar of taxes (state & Fed)from EACH GALLON sold for $3.70!!! The Govt makes money like bandits and you blame the oil companies!

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