Monday, March 29, 2010

Testing The Volt

Fast Company test-drives the Chevy Volt:

Having cost GM billions in R&D, it's a technical marvel well ahead of it's time. And it won't be making money anytime soon: When the Volt finally hits market after a whirlwind, moonshot development process, it'll be limited to just 10,000 units in California, Washington, D.C., and Michigan. (A profitable product run would likely be 40 times that.) With a price tag somewhere in the low $30,000 range (after a $7,500 government tax credit) each one will be sold at a loss. For GM, this is the quintessential halo product, meant to catapult it to the forefront of consumer consciousness.


John said...

Both GM and Ford are in the race. This is more than a beauty contest. Electric cars (along with the recent drilling/energy flap) is but one part of a very large energy reform package.

Bernard Avishai's vision is breathtaking.

Michael Wade said...


I hope the Volt winds up with a reasonable price. It is a bold move.


John said...

Like all new technologies it is sure to be expensive at the outset. Only later will price come into the picture. A lot of infrastructure issues need ironing out first (or simultaneously). For starters, we have many more cars than garages, so some means of charging must be widely available for people who park outside or in lots. And "charging stations" will need to be at least as ubiquitous (but not necessarily numerous) as gas stations, so local electric utilities will be part of the big picture.

Today's gas/electric hybrids are an intermediate step with on-board gas-powered generators producing electricity to run the vehicle. These vehicles will have a long practical production life since a "smart grid" is not gonna pop into being overnight.

Meantime, I just did a brief search and came up with some local links that look exciting to me.