GM Says if Volt Needs Battery Changes it Will Make Them
December 5, 2011 12:22 PM
comment(s) - last by
It's too early in the investigation to know if changes are needed
The Chevrolet Volt is the first and only extended range EV on the U.S. market today. The Volt has been in the spotlight recently after the NHTSA found that
two of three vehicles
caught fire after side impact testing. One of the vehicles that caught fire didn’t burst into flames until three weeks after the crash test. The other started sparking and smoking immediately after the test.
Understandably, GM is eager to get to the root of the problem with the Volt fires. GM's Mary Barra, VP of global product development for GM said, "I have engineers working shoulder-to-shoulder with the NHTSA engineers right now," said Mary Barra, vice president of global product development for GM. "We are looking to say, 'Are there some design changes that we can make — something more robust in this location or that location or this component?'"
However, the automaker does note that any changes would need to be rigorously tested both at GM and with outside sources.
GM also says that if the investigation determines that changes need to be made to the design of the battery packs, it will make those changes as quickly as possible. She also points out that there still isn't any indication of just how long the investigation into the fires will last.
GM's Mary Barra with a Chevrolet Cruze [Source: GM]
GM is taking the concerns of the roughly 6,000 Volt owners in the U.S. seriously and has offered to
loan Volt owners
a different vehicle until the investigating is completed. GM has also noted that if a Volt owner wanted to
sell their Volt back
to GM, it would buy the car back. Originally, it sounded like all the Volt owner had to do was ask and GM would buy their car back. Some statements that Barra made make it sound as though a buyback isn't a given in each case. Barra said, "First, we're going to have a conversation and understand their specific concern."
She added, "But if, as we go through that process, we get to a point where we think it's the right thing to do for that customer to protect the customer's satisfaction and show that General Motors puts the customers first, then that's what we'll do."
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RE: This car was complete fail...
12/5/2011 7:24:57 PM
You are entirely missing the point..
This car is a gimmick, just like the Prius was and remains to be. So, you're a rich yuppy with the typical sense of guilt over your own prosperity, so you think -- let's go green!
So, you buy an overpriced car filled with hundreds of pounds of batteries containing poisonous rare earth metals, not realizing that you will never pay off the price premium with the savings in gas, and will have a much worse effect on the environment in the long run (batteries in landfills, more coal burnt for power). Just goes to show you can sell any product as long as you identify the trends..
Nothing will really change lacking a serious investment in hydrogen powered vehicles (or some incredibly futuristic method of propulsion). Notice I said 'vehicles', not 'technology' -- keep in mind that one of the first internal combustion engines ran on hydrogen from electrolysis in 1807, more than 60 years before gasoline ran it's first engine. We've had the technology for decades -- time to stop making excuses and put it to use.
RE: This car was complete fail...
12/6/2011 3:18:33 AM
I find that all the people who bash the Volt have never driven one and lean towards conservative issues. For the later, I am still trying to find out how the success of the Volt in any way became representative towards the Obama administration. I just wish people were not so politically charged and accept technology for what it is.
Aside from that, I have never spoken to a person who drove the Volt and did not like it. People complain about the price of a volt more than a Hummer or Tesla. It is not the most expensive vehical around.
"It looks like the iPhone 4 might be their Vista, and I'm okay with that." -- Microsoft COO Kevin Turner
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