GM Offering Up to $5,000 in Incentives to Move Slow-Selling Volt
June 11, 2013 10:59 AM
comment(s) - last by
It's also offering financing and leasing incentives
Chevrolet Volt sales have been a little slower than expected
over the past few months
, so General Motors (GM) is offering incentives to pick up the pace.
GM announced that it would take $5,000 off the 2012 Volt and $4,000 off the 2013 Volt. This is in addition to the $7,500 federal tax credit. The Volt can also be purchased with zero percent financing for 48 months, and the driver receives $3,000 in cash off the price.
For those leasing a Volt, GM is offering it for $269 a month for 36 months, with $2,399 due at signing.
All of these new incentives run until July 1, 2013.
Just last week, it was reported that Chevrolet Volt sales were down three months in a row compared to the same three months last year. Volt sales dropped 4.3 percent to 1,607 in May; fell 10.7 percent to 1,306 in April, and tumbled 35 percent in March.
However, Volt sales are up 1.4 percent (or about 100 vehicles) in the first five months of the year to 7,157 compared to the first five months of 2012. GM said Volt sales on a retail basis have been up month-over-month.
GM is likely trying to keep up with rivals, which are also offering incentives for their own vehicles at this time. For instance, Nissan
slashed the entry-level price
of the Leaf 18 percent to $28,800 back in January.
Leaf sales passed those of the Volt with a total of 7,614 for the first five months of this year. Nissan sold 2,138 Leafs alone in May -- a 300 percent increase over its sales in May 2012.
Other electric vehicle makers are cutting prices as well, such as Honda (Fit EV lease dropped from $389 to $259 per month) and Ford (Focus EV lease dropped from $350 to $285 per month and base price was cut $2,000 to $37,995).
Last month, GM announced that it
expected the next-generation Volt to be profitable
and cost $10,000 less to build.
GM is expected to announce features and pricing for the 2014 Volt this month, which is likely another reason for the incentives for older generations of Volts. GM needs to clear its inventory, which is at a 140-day supply right now, according to Chevrolet spokeswoman Michelle Malcho.
The Detroit News
said this is more than double what is considered "healthy."
The Detroit News
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Great Car, a bit expensive admittedly
6/11/2013 1:17:33 PM
I own a 2013 volt and so far it's been a great experience. For a hybrid, you can drive with a lead foot and beat most cars off the lights because most folks won't want to waste their fuel over it. It is faster than the Prius. On the highway, the Volt is most effective for passing people on hills due to the massive electrical boost to the gas engine. In my area power is 7 cents a KWH which means a charge on a completely empty battery is about $1 a day. I got my car in December of 2012 and despite the brutal winters in Canada (we often see -10 F or worse weather), I ended up seeing 80 mpg. I then went on a 3000 mile cross-country trip and saw the mpg drop to 50 mpg due to heavy gas use. Now that I'm back home however I haven't fueled my car since the trip since the +40 battery only miles I'm getting in the summer here is enough for all my daily trips. I'm gradually seeing the mpg creep back up and am back to 56 mpg and rising. The only maintenance I'm worried about is rotating the tires and oil is at 62% life after 6200 miles on the lifetime odometer. So a very impressive car so far.
The car cost about $42,000 in Northern Ontario after rebates / taxes / shipping so I admit it wasn't cheap but it was definitely worth it to me. I had always wanted an EV, but being my only car we don't have the charging network or the weather to work with an EV. A regular EV can't cross-country here and with our winters the battery would likely freeze over without a gas engine.
The Volt is simply the closest you can get to a full EV car without any limitations. It goes without saying that being able to do all that will cause it to cost more. So yes, the Volt is expensive but I wouldn't fault GM for building it. Unfortunately cheap sells and technology not so maybe this isn't a surprise. So GM has had to offer a rebate to match it's competitors. Not because the Volt doesn't work but because ironically on a technology site, folks are complaining that technology costs too much. Go figure.
RE: Great Car, a bit expensive admittedly
6/11/2013 6:49:10 PM
Almost anything is faster than a Prius.
I'd rather drive my Camry hybrid, faster, more room, more reliable, cheaper and longer range on a full tank than your Volt.
RE: Great Car, a bit expensive admittedly
6/12/2013 9:58:39 AM
I owned an 05 Corolla before I got my Volt so I am not entirely unfamiliar with Toyota's products before. The Camry seems somewhat bland in styling compared to the Volt. There is definitely more room although if you wanted a lot of room I think the Prius V is roomier.
Reliability is debatable because there's no history on the Volt yet. My Corolla was very reliable except at some point in it's history the water pump sprung a leak. So I wouldn't call them indestructible. So far tracking the volt ownership forums most breakdowns that users have experienced are due to collisions which would wreck any car.
Short range fuel mileage for the Volt is definitely better than Camry which is mostly what folks will be doing with their cars. My round-trips in the summer are under 40 miles which means I'm fully on electric. And at a cost of 7 cents / kwh ~ 13 kwh for a charge you're looking at less than $1 a day to run it. Running the numbers for actual gas usage at 40mpg for the volt and I'm guessing about 50mpg for the Camry (being generous). Your daily travel would need to consistently exceed 80 miles to beat the volt at fuel milage. So yes while you fuel up less on long distance trips, in city use, I definitely visit the gas station less. (If at all at times. (I've gone for months without needing gas.)
While the Camry is slightly faster at drag racing, I doubt it corners quite like the Volt does. Low center of gravity and a slightly stiffer suspension system means that the Volt drives a bit more sporty compared to most cars. And driving on pure electricity or in any EV is just smooth in ways that's hard to explain. Plus as I've discovered, when I don't drive the full 40 miles in town in a day, I can floor the car all I like and not suffer much in the pocketbook. A normal hybrid will burn a lot more gas if you abuse it. Electricity is cheap after all.
"What would I do? I'd shut it down and give the money back to the shareholders." -- Michael Dell, after being asked what to do with Apple Computer in 1997
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