Print 30 comment(s) - last by Jedi2155.. on Jan 31 at 6:12 AM

GM now working on making Volt image better

GM is hard at work on fixing the tarnished image of the Volt after the fire investigation. The Volt drama started when a crash tested vehicle caught fire three weeks after being tested while sitting in the parking lot of a government test facility. The fire was large enough to damage vehicles nearby.
GM's CEO was called to testify before a House panel as part of the investigation into the fire and the methods in which the fire was disclosed. The day after the testimony was given; GM has acknowledged that the fire investigation had an impact on sales. GM started airing a new commercial on TV stations around the country that focuses on the Volt in an effort to improve the car's image.
The new commercial is called "Morning in Hamtramck." Hamtramck is the city where the Volt is constructed and is a suburb of Detroit. The commercial sees the Volts rolling down an assembly line on the main street of Hamtramck. The commercial touts the Volt as "the car that America had to build" and the commercial says that GM built the car for "for our town, for our country, for our future."

The commercial is perhaps the most visible part of the efforts to buff the tarnish off the Volt image. GM North American VP Mark Reuss sent a letter to Volt owners around the country this week that thanked the owners for their support. Despite GM offering to buy back Volts from worried owners no one asked for their car to be bought back. GM also offered loaner vehicles until the investigation was complete.
Detroit News reports that Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood was at the Washington Autoshow and noted that he is satisfied that the Volt is safe. LaHood also denied GM was given any preferential treatment in the investigation. There were some allegations that the delay in telling the public about the fire in testing, which spanned months, was preferential to GM. LaHood also said that it would have been inappropriate to disclose details on the fire until the investigation was complete.

Source: Detroit News

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RE: I feel warm and cuddly
By jonmcc33 on 1/27/2012 11:14:24 AM , Rating: -1
I completely agree that the Volt suffers from bad PR. Unfortunately, it's not just the battery which is really minimal, there is a campaign by oil companies to spread false rumors

Bad PR? It suffers from bad design. Every car has an alternator in it. I don't know how they couldn't design a car that uses multiple alternators to charge the battery array while in use so that a car has perpetual power.

Actually, I know why. Because the oil industry would die. And all the rich people with ties to the oil industry, including automotive companies like GM, would lose business.

RE: I feel warm and cuddly
By gladiatorua on 1/27/2012 11:34:00 AM , Rating: 3
Volt has different engine that does not benefit from usual alternator that "every car" has. Sure, you can install it there but it would be either a waste or very impractical.
Alternator is an electrical motor in reverse. It converts mechanical energy electrical energy. Volt has one. It kicks in when battery runs out. The difference is that it doesn't charge the battery but powers the engine directly.
You can't make perpetual power engine using an alternator.

RE: I feel warm and cuddly
By Natch on 1/27/2012 2:20:43 PM , Rating: 2
Maybe if we mount a sail to it, it would help make up the difference?? ;)

RE: I feel warm and cuddly
By Solandri on 1/27/2012 4:48:04 PM , Rating: 2
Mount a windmill on top of the car to generate electricity to propel the car.

RE: I feel warm and cuddly
By TSS on 1/28/2012 9:50:08 AM , Rating: 2
you'll find that the extra drag caused by the fan causes you to lose more energy then it will generate, unless it's efficiency is more then 100% which is impossible.

It simply can't be done. And i've gone as far as sticking 5 fans ontop of a car, dynamo's on the inside of the wheels, a 5th and 6th wheel-dynamo's on the road surface, downward drag spoilters which converts into mechanical energy (the energy would be absorbed in the supports in some way), miniature engines driven by heat on the brakepads, as well as waste-heat from the engine being converted to energy.

And each addition made just loweres overall efficiency, because you're adding components less then 100% efficient.

The first chance we will have is when we've mastered the quantum dot effect and are getting 100%+ efficiency out of solar panels. But strickly speaking, that still wouldn't be perpetual motion. As the energy source would be the sun, and the sun isn't perpetual. Perpetual motion/energy refers to generating more energy then you lose with the same apperatus.

RE: I feel warm and cuddly
By V-Money on 1/27/2012 1:41:46 PM , Rating: 1
Every car has an alternator in it. I don't know how they couldn't design a car that uses multiple alternators to charge the battery array while in use so that a car has perpetual power.

You do realize that alternators are at best 50-60% efficient, so that comment makes no sense on any level. I agree they could have modified the engine to produce enough power to charge the battery, but that also kind of defeats the purpose of this car. It costs roughly 6 times less to charge the batteries at home than to use gas to charge them, and that's why its designed the way it is. I would make a perfect example, I don't have a volt, but I live within 20 miles of anywhere I normally drive too. Because of this if I were to buy one I could drive completely on battery power, and if I were to drive farther than the range, I would be getting better gas mileage than I would if it charged the battery.

RE: I feel warm and cuddly
By jonmcc33 on 1/27/2012 5:35:36 PM , Rating: 2
Then use multiple alternators or make a generator attached to the engine. Heck, there are 4 wheels on a car. Use those wheels to move a generator to recharge the battery.

Bottom line, there are people with a LOT more knowledge than I regarding this and yet they just can't create it? The only thing they can do is make a car that just discharges? Really?

RE: I feel warm and cuddly
By V-Money on 1/27/2012 8:57:14 PM , Rating: 2
...or make a generator attached to the engine...

I think you are missing the whole concept, THERE IS A GENERATOR ATTACHED TO THE ENGINE do you think the engine powers the electric motors. The reason it doesn't charge the batteries is because they specifically designed it not to. This was done for efficiency reasons.

RE: I feel warm and cuddly
By Mint on 1/28/2012 8:39:10 AM , Rating: 2
Yes, there are a lot of people who have more knowledge than you, including many people on this board. So please stop talking nonsense and listen to us:

The Volt has a very well designed drivetrain. It does recharge the battery when braking, and that's as good as it gets in this universe. Sorry to disappoint you about perpetual motion being a fairytale.

RE: I feel warm and cuddly
By rich876 on 1/28/2012 9:04:02 AM , Rating: 2
You can force the Volt to charge the battery if you put it in "Mountain Mode", but that's not the most efficient way.

Too many here think they are experts on how the Volt works. Some of you should apply for a job at GM and show them how it's done.

"And boy have we patented it!" -- Steve Jobs, Macworld 2007
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