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Chevrolet Volt
General Motors' all-electric Volt to reach consumers in late 2010

General Motors is quite confident these days. The company recently priced its highly-anticipated full-size hybrid SUVs and showed off a concept version of its full-size hybrid Chevrolet Silverado. GM CEO Rick Wagoner also noted that his company will release one hybrid per quarter for the next four years -- lofty goals indeed.

Likewise, the company's brand new Chevrolet Malibu mid-sized sedan has been generating an overabundance of praise and its new $32,000 second-generation Cadillac CTS just walked away with Motor Trend's Car of the Year award.

GM is hoping to use this momentum and high level of interest in its vehicles to push the electric motor-powered Chevrolet Volt to customers by the end of 2010.

GM vice chairman Bob Lutz has heard all of the critics who question GM's aggressive ramp for the Volt, but is still committed to moving forward.

"There is a lot of skepticism within the company about the timeline," said Lutz. "People are biting their nails, but those of us in a leadership position have said it has to be done."

GM is hoping to use the Volt as a halo car to further strengthen its brand and its commitment to fuel economy. Dodge used the Viper to enhance its image for performance and styling in the 1990s. Toyota used its Prius at the turn of the century to shroud the entire company with a green image despite the fact that gas guzzlers like the Tundra and Sequoia share the same showroom space.

"When they think of GM, the iconic brand is, unfortunately, the Hummer," continued Lutz. "That perception needs to change.

The GM Volt features a 1.0 liter, 3-cylinder gasoline engine which is solely used to recharge the onboard lithium-ion battery pack. The battery pack, which will be manufactured by Compact Power and Continental Automotive Systems, powers the Volt's electric motors for forward propulsion.

GM says that the Volt can travel for up to 40 miles on battery power alone. After the 40 mile threshold has been reached, the gasoline engine kicks back in again to recharge the battery pack.

The entire industry has its eyes on GM and its Volt. Toyota took a big risk with its Prius and it has paid off dearly for the company.

"We have since realized that letting Toyota gain that mantle of green respectability and technology leadership has really cost us dearly in the marketplace," Lutz added. "We have to reestablish GM's leadership and the Volt is, frankly, an effort to leapfrog anything that is done by any other competitor."



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RE: Lets see real world performance
By Screwballl on 11/21/2007 3:36:33 PM , Rating: 0
Thats what I said, I would like to see some testing in real world conditions and the results of those tests. I didn't say they wouldn't test them, otherwise they would probably release it tomorrow as a 2008 model.


RE: Lets see real world performance
By TomZ on 11/21/2007 3:55:04 PM , Rating: 2
You seem to make it sound like GM would have a choice as to whether or not to test their product before releasing it. Like they could somehow skip that step if they wanted. I guess I'm not sure what the point of your statement was.


RE: Lets see real world performance
By Xerio on 11/21/2007 4:12:48 PM , Rating: 2
I think he is saying that he would like to see the results of those test. I, for one, would like to see those results. Technology on paper is all well and good, but until that technology is tested in the real world, it means nothing.


RE: Lets see real world performance
By TomZ on 11/21/2007 5:10:02 PM , Rating: 2
I see what you're saying, but on the other hand, GM won't release it as a product until it "passes" all the tests. Therefore, seeing the test results is a moot point.

In any case, automotive product test results are closely-guarded trade secrets, so I don't think test results on this particular vehicle will ever see the light of day.


RE: Lets see real world performance
By Oregonian2 on 11/21/07, Rating: 0
RE: Lets see real world performance
By mcnabney on 11/21/2007 8:19:07 PM , Rating: 2
EV1 a loser? They literally had to pry them out of the lease-holder's hands!


By Oregonian2 on 11/21/2007 8:34:22 PM , Rating: 1
I don't think the lease holders were paying full costs for what they had. They weren't "real" customers, paying real prices, as such, they were guinea pigs. They were "beta testers". If you take the amount of money GM spent in the making and support of those cars, I suspect the money paid by lease holders didn't cover very much of it (which they would have to in a "real" product, PLUS some profit for GM too). It's been documented here before how the car was very bad for the price they'd have to sell them for. Didn't go very far w/o a charge and took forever to charge (and as I recall didn't have a charging gas engine, you'd have to be towed home if the charge ran out) -- and would have to be obscenely expensive. Volt will be substantially better.


"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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