By on March 3, 2014

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With just 99 units sold , the Cadillac ELR is going to have a tough time hitting its 3000 unit target for 2014. At $76,000, it’s hard to imagine anyone lusting after one when a Tesla Model S is within its price-point. Hell, even the dealers don’t want it.

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203 Comments on “Cadillac ELR Sells Just 99 Units...”


  • avatar
    PonchoIndian

    More dealers “what” this more than dealers “want” the new Kia 900. Maybe that spin should be added to the Kia post too eh?

    • 0 avatar
      SCE to AUX

      Except the dealers would have different reasons for not taking these models. Low volumes mean every dealer might sell only 1 or 2 a year.

      Service-wise, the ELR is a much different animal than other Caddys, but the K900 isn’t.

      The ELR hurts Cadillac’s brand image; the K900 won’t hurt Kia’s.

      The mythical Alfa return to the US has the same issues with Fiat dealerships, with a higher price point and ultra-low volumes.

      • 0 avatar
        PonchoIndian

        How does the ELR hurt the brand image?

        I’m not sure I follow. More dealers want to sell the ELR than dealers who want to sell the K900….So what is your argument again?

        • 0 avatar
          wumpus

          Which dealer will sell more than one a year? (I’m guessing states that have banned Teslas, so those dealers might have an advantage). I can’t imagine a dealer wanting to have the thing waiting on a lot for one of 99 Americans wanting to buy the thing.

          It might work as an “order only” car (barely, and then only if can use Volt’s regulatory paperwork). Can’t see anyone wanting one of these on the lot. But sure, no problem taking the profit of one of those 99 if they don’t need to pay up front (que explanation why dealers would make more if they sold *anything* else and I am completely wrong. I really don’t care about dealer’s lives).

  • avatar
    28-Cars-Later

    All of these units were sold to Al Gore and given to polar bears in compensation for the destruction of the Arctic. Wait, ice fields grew?

    http://www.ecnmag.com/blogs/2013/09/has-global-cooling-begun-arctic-ice-caps-grow-60-year

    • 0 avatar
      Avatar77

      You do realize that a single year does not a trend make, don’t you? The trend is clear, year-to-year notwithstanding. Also, ice field size is not the relevant measure, it’s ice volume, which is way, way down.

      http://www.skepticalscience.com/neverending-daily-mail-nonsense.html

      • 0 avatar
        28-Cars-Later

        Yup that link was actually the seventh result down in my initial search, and I’m aware the Daily Mail isn’t a reliable news source. Just wanted to jab the warmist crowed with some obvious sarcasm. Call me when all politics and issues of carbon taxation are off the agenda.

      • 0 avatar
        wsn

        Re Avatar77 “You do realize that a single year does not a trend make, don’t you? The trend is clear, year-to-year notwithstanding. Also, ice field size is not the relevant measure, it’s ice volume, which is way, way down.”

        Interesting. While you claim that one year of data does not a trend make, I can use the same logic to claim the 30 years of data, in the link that you provided, does not a trend make. The typical period in earth temperature cycle is a couple hundred millions of years.

        • 0 avatar

          > Interesting. While you claim that one year of data does not a trend make, I can use the same logic to claim the 30 years of data, in the link that you provided, does not a trend make. The typical period in earth temperature cycle is a couple hundred millions of years.

          Generally speaking most inhabitants before us have had limited success at releasing as much carbon no matter the time allowance. There have been cataclysmic events before though which anyone who’ve ever bothered to look into this should know about.

          Every time this topic comes up leads to the same place: the kind of people who haven’t the slightest clue how science or history or numbers or anything works believe themselves as good at judging everything as their counterparts, aka Dunning-Kruger phenomenon.

      • 0 avatar
        mkirk

        Isn’t Mars warming as well? The world may indeed end tomorrow, but I wasn’t born yesterday.

        • 0 avatar

          > Isn’t Mars warming as well? The world may indeed end tomorrow, but I wasn’t born yesterday.

          Mars has little greenhouse and thus disproportionately affected by its orbit, which is why life of our sort is hard to sustain there in general.

          In any case most of these trite layman excuses are along the lines of “these dem sciematists can’t tell me we came from monkeys I dun read it aint so somewhere”.

        • 0 avatar
          KixStart

          http://www.agci.org/docs/lean.pdf

          • 0 avatar

            > http://www.agci.org/docs/lean.pdf

            I don’t think that has anything to do with “Mars warming”.

            It’s already hard enough to measure global temps with networks of probes and we *don’t even have any on mars*, so any claim of warming there as if it were akin to our situation is so dumb that people who believe it might as well quit at thinking because they’re so bad at it.

          • 0 avatar
            KixStart

            It is a nice discussion of solar input and its relationship to climate.

          • 0 avatar

            > It is a nice discussion of solar input and its relationship to climate.

            I would venture to guess that solar input has rather different effects on a place with atmosphere than one without. Frankly the whole thing is incredibly stupid because “climate” as it’s used here only has meaning in a goddamn atmosphere.

            For general temp outlook on mars just look up astrophysical orbit calcs, not that anyone else here give a shiit about science given they’re just look for ways to get *out of science*.

            This brings to the topic of why you even bother replying to these people with scientific material other than to mock them since they obviously never cared about technical details in the first place.

    • 0 avatar
      KixStart

      I saw that.

      The only problem I have with that article is that, the way these chaps report it, the Arctic ice cap also started its recovery about 6 times in the last 30 years and yet our ice area, extent and volume are still consistently below where they were even 3 or 4 years ago and, if one is foolish enough to look at the long-term trend, it’s likely to keep decreasing. Maybe we won’t have an ice-free Arctic in the next couple of years but it wouldn’t surprise me to see it in my lifetime.

      If you’d care to place a wager on Summer Arctic ice extent, area or volume exceeding current levels in any year between 2028 and 2032, I’d be happy to take that bet.

      By the way, if one looks at the trend in ice volume particularly, the trend is not only “down” but appears to be accelerating downward, too. That’s not at all good. Arctic ice loss caauses a positive feedback for additional heating… although I suppose it borders on insulting to point out such things to someone who gets his science from bloggers at ECN Mag. I expect they keep you very well informed.

      • 0 avatar
        28-Cars-Later

        I am much more concerned about Fukushima, devote the same intelligent energy toward it and we will find agreement on something environmental.

        • 0 avatar
          PonchoIndian

          and the Global Warming…oh wait, not it’s Climate Change, argument continues.

          The future climate models have about as much scientific predictions going for it as the stock market does.

          Don’t forget that all of these computer models are created by humans, who can just as easily program them to predict their view as a statistic can be tweaked to support a view…

        • 0 avatar
          KixStart

          Concerned about Fukushima how? The dangers of nuclear energy in general? The particular foolhardiness of building several possibeloy badly designed nukes close together near the coast where seismic sea waves or quakes would not be a surprise?

          • 0 avatar
            28-Cars-Later

            Yes to all of the above as well as the high levels of Cesium in the Pacific Ocean. Honestly if there is one issue where this old curmudgeon and environmentalists see eye to eye, its this one.

          • 0 avatar

            > Yes to all of the above as well as the high levels of Cesium in the Pacific Ocean.

            “High”, lol. It’s largely irrelevant to us for the same reason that “dirty bombs” don’t work well other than a good scare. The main danger of a nuke is the “nuclear” part (ie chernoybl blowing *hot* waste all about), the byproducts of rare spillages however unpleasant they may be are isn’t nearly as bad as living near a coal plant.

          • 0 avatar
            28-Cars-Later

            Spend the next few days and weeks sifting though the limited news, rumors, and analysis on the disaster and then see if you reach the same conclusions.

          • 0 avatar

            > Spend the next few days and weeks sifting though the limited news, rumors, and analysis on the disaster and then see if you reach the same conclusions.

            Science relies on how reality works, not news and rumors nor their “analysis”. For example, consider that the uranium used in bombs came from the ground which is hard to avoid unless you plan on checking out from planet earth (in which case the radiation in outer space will get you).

          • 0 avatar
            28-Cars-Later

            Plutonium did not come from the Earth and is found in the MOX fuel rods in the reactors which melted down and the spent fuel pools which must be cooled at all times. The half life of Plutonium is thousands of years depending on the isotope.

            HOW CAN PLUTONIUM AFFECT MY HEALTH?

            Plutonium may remain in the lungs or move to the bones, liver, or other body organs. It generally stays in the body for decades and continues to expose the surrounding tissues to radiation.

            Lung, liver, and bone cancer

            You may develop cancer depending on how much plutonium is in your body and for how long it remains in your body. The types of cancers you would most likely develop are cancers of the lung, bones, and liver. These types of cancers have occurred in workers who were exposed to plutonium in air at much higher levels than is in the air that most people breathe.

            Affect ability to fight infections

            In laboratory animals, plutonium affected the animal’s ability to resist disease (immune system).

            http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/MOX_fuel

            http://www.atsdr.cdc.gov/toxprofiles/tp143-c1.pdf

          • 0 avatar

            Try to focus on one irrational fear at a time; we’re talking about uranium. It’s right in the ground underneath your feet and you can ask those same Japanese but in Hiroshima of its potency. Better hope virgin galactic starts service soon!

          • 0 avatar
            28-Cars-Later

            Sure let’s skip jump rope with our good friend U-238 and simply forget about all of the other nasty Sr-90, Cesium-137, and Plutonium-239 released into the Pacific Ocean and air currents. Tell you what since you two as such pals why don’t you go hang out with all of the depleted Uranium shells laying around Iraq since radiation is good for you!

            Hey even the pinko UK Guardian has a story on depleted Uranium health defects. But if it comes from the Earth under my feet its ok right?

            http://www.theguardian.com/environment/earth-insight/2013/oct/13/world-health-organisation-iraq-war-depleted-uranium

          • 0 avatar

            > Tell you what since you two as such pals why don’t you go hang out with all of the depleted Uranium shells laying around Iraq since radiation is good for you!

            Ok, next time you find a Uranium or “Sr-90, Cesium-137, and Plutonium-239″ shell on the end of your fishing line let me know.

            Since there’s little hope that you’ll eventually guess the point let me be clear: the specific concentrations matter, which is why for example homeopathy can’t possibly work. Or is that something the scientists are hoodwinked about, too?

          • 0 avatar
            KixStart

            28,

            Is nuclear power a problem? Sure. Is it our only problem? Not by a long shot.

      • 0 avatar
        CJinSD

        http://stevengoddard.wordpress.com/2013/12/29/scientists-trapped-in-record-sea-ice-announce-that-it-is-disappearing/

        What I like is when AGW believers really do wager on their blind faith and get frozen in ice as a result.

        • 0 avatar
          KixStart

          Until it’s actually entirely gone, sea ice will remain dangerous and ships can be trapped in it. That’s surprising to you?

          • 0 avatar
            CJinSD

            The only thing that surprises me is the blind faith of believers in the face of all empirical evidence. Climate change marketers have been issuing incorrect prognostications for as long as there has been money and attention to collect from selling panic. I wouldn’t care except stupidity has hit critical mass and appeals to act on imaginary crises that are repeatedly demonstrated to not be fully understood by the cretins pulling the strings are being taken seriously. When people are forfeiting freedom, self-determination, and standards of living for themselves and their children to the world’s worst weathermen, it is cause for concern.

          • 0 avatar
            KixStart

            “Climate change marketers have been issuing incorrect prognostications for as long as there has been money and attention to collect from selling panic.”

            Really? Because the first prognostication of “warmer” came by the turn of the 20th Century (Arrhenius) and the first good revised prognostication came in 1933 or so (Callender) and those prognostications, even lacking the knowledge we have today were substantially correct. And it certainly wasn’t in the minds of those two to sell “panic,” they were just scientists who were interested in how the world works and in learning more about it. This is what largely drives every good scientist today.

            The fact that Climate Science isn’t making “perfect” projections is only to be expected… nobody who is working on this stuff would tell you that it’s easy or that they know all the variables and they’re all willing to work quite hard to improve their understanding.

            But it has, as predicted, and it is very likely that it will continue to get warmer and this is due to properties of CO2 that have been established in the lab and are easily understood by anybody who studies the optical properties of gasses.

            Now, if you can explain what the atmospheric mechanism is that overwhelms and nullifies the radiative forcing of increased CO2 levels, please do tell us what it is. Show your work.

          • 0 avatar
            PonchoIndian

            Kix

            Climate has changed many times over the history of earth. It is a normal thing.

            What isn’t normal is thinking that the impact humans have made on the earth, positive and negative, can affect any change that is taking place with the climate.

          • 0 avatar
            KixStart

            The math says otherwise.

            It’s fallacious to say, “things have changed naturally, therefore we can make no artificial changes.” It isn’t even common sense to think that; you can see our impact on this planet from space. Every other living thing on the planet lives with its ecosystem as it finds it; we’re the only creatures digging hundreds of millions of years into the past and changing the Earth doing it.

            It’s also fallacious to say, “change happens, therefore there’s no need to worry about change.” We’ve currently optimized our lives around certain climates, crops, sea levels, etc. If we force a rapid change in the climate (and the change we’re forcing is more rapid than any past change we can measure), we may have trouble adapting our way of life to the changes we find.

            The US is happily self-sufficient in food. We can change that. We have a lot of real estate that we think is comfortably above sea level. We can change that, too. What is food self-sufficiency worth? What are all the buildings on the coasts worth? What would it cost to protect them?

          • 0 avatar
            PonchoIndian

            You’re really eating up “the sky is falling” predictions some of the scientific community has been peddling!

          • 0 avatar
            KixStart

            Well, that’s “the scientific community” for you. They just go where the data leads them and where it leads them is to some places that don’t look so good.

          • 0 avatar
            redav

            “Every other living thing on the planet lives with its ecosystem as it finds it”

            Haha, that’s funny.

          • 0 avatar

            > The only thing that surprises me is the blind faith of believers in the face of all *empirical evidence*.

            A lot of people who’ve never read a science paper in their life nevermind comprehend any often get the idea that they know what those types of words mean. That’s why they throw out phrases like “evolution/climate/heliocentrism’s only a theory”.

            When challenged on the physics, they just weasel off as if the actual science part of science doesn’t matter, and come back later with the same swagger as the guy banging his helmet on the short bus windows. However, it’s possible you’re not one of these people so perhaps you’d like to clarify which part of the science you disagree with.

          • 0 avatar
            PonchoIndian

            I’m sorry my masters degree in Environmental Science doesn’t qualify me to make some educated opinions on the whole climate change issue. I’m sorry that every professor I’ve had who has talked about the subject also shares my belief that there is too much bs being piped into the airways on it.

          • 0 avatar
            KixStart

            On the internet, everybody’s 6’4″, strikingly handsome and has a master’s degree. Even my dog.

          • 0 avatar
            PonchoIndian

            you manage to push around the bs with the best of them so you would know…

          • 0 avatar

            > you manage to push around the bs with the best of them so you would know…

            The contrast here is that educated people can tell the difference, or at least know there is one. These morons literal think 2+2=4 vs. 2+2=22 are matters of opinion and therefore their opinions matter just as much as anyone else’s.

        • 0 avatar
          TomHend

          @CJinSD I think it is a waste of time to try and reason with these people as Viktor Frankl said “they don’t have opinions, their opinions have them”

        • 0 avatar

          > http://stevengoddard.wordpress.com/2013/12/29/scientists-trapped-in-record-sea-ice-announce-that-it-is-disappearing/ What I like is when AGW believers really do wager on their blind faith and get frozen in ice as a result.

          Sometimes people belief my representation of these morons are hyperbole. No way humans can be *that* stupid, they think. Think again:

          http://answers.yahoo.com/question/index?qid=20110309123406AA1ne91

    • 0 avatar
      NMGOM

      Hi 28 Cars – - –

      Read the delightful (and reasonable) article you referenced. Despite the nay-sayers, global cooling deniers, greenie-weenies, eco-Nazi’s, and others of the EV ilk, it was level-headed, well-referenced, and enjoyable (^_^)…. It says:

      ————–

      The arctic will be “ice-free by 2013.” “An ice-free Arctic is] definitely coming, and coming sooner than we previously expected.” These were but some of the breathless pronouncements made by scientists, climatologists, and even NASA over the last decade or so. All the while, the summers were getting colder and the ice caps more voluminous — quite a bit more, apparently.

      According to a report in the Daily Mail, the Arctic ice cap grew by nearly a million square miles from 2012-2013, an increase of 60% year over year. This sharply contradicts earlier reports of doom-and-gloom and a climate change-induced apocalypse (not to mention, hyperbolic and slightly-ridiculous Hollywood blockbusters). Back in 2007, the BBC — in a report echoed by NASA’s Goddard Space Flight Center — touted the following headline: “Artic summers ice-free by 2013”.

      “Scientists in the US have presented one of the most dramatic forecasts yet for the disappearance of Arctic sea ice,” said the BBC’s science reporter, Jonathan Amos.

      “This is not a cycle; not just a fluctuation. In the end, it will all just melt away quite suddenly,” said Professor Peter Wadhams of Cambridge University.

      Across the pond, the Obama administration has made climate change — the new, politically-expedient term for anthropogenic “global warming” — a central tenet of his NASA policy, eschewing existing plans to return to the moon or anything more tangible anytime soon.

      And yet even the National Snow & Ice Data Center was recently forced to admit that “August 2013 ice extent was 2.38 million square kilometers (919,000 square miles) above the record low August extent in 2012.”

      Was this an expected regression to the mean or part of a greater trend?

      You may have noticed that we experienced an unusually cool summer — and, like me, you might have felt like we skipped summer (and all the outdoors fun I’m used to).

      “August 2013 was the coolest since 2004, while the summer as a whole was the coolest since 2009,” noted the Washington Post (certainly no climate change skeptic).

      Skeptics have long argued that global warming — or “climate change”, anthropogenic or not — is a natural phenomenon and part of a cyclical trend. The scant evidence to support a consistent warming pattern, in fact, led to activists adopting the more inclusive “climate change” terminology — the theory being that rising levels of CO2 and man-made pollutants cause wild weather patterns and gross temperature fluctuations.

      But this new data would indicate that we’ve actually entered a period of sustained cooling (a concept that’s been around at least as long as its warmer cousin).

      “We are already in a cooling trend, which I think will continue for the next 15 years at least,” said Anastasios Tsonis of the University of Wisconsin.

      The Daily Mail invited a comparison with the cooling period from 1965 to 1975, which led scientists to predict a new ice age.

      I don’t subscribe to either apocalyptic extreme — a global meltdown or new ice age — but I would caution against committing billions of dollars on plans to combat a scenario that’s far from certain (despite the loud protests of celebrity endorsees like Al Gore and even Harrison Ford).

      Governments around the world have dumped precious resources into fixing a phenomenon that has probably ceased of its own accord (whether humans contributed to its rise or decline or had no effect whatsoever). Meanwhile, investment firms (like Al Gore’s Generation Investment Management) make a fortune selling bogus “carbon credits,” and the entire racket rests on guilt — making prospective clients (i.e., everyone) feel guilty for their own “carbon footprint.”

      And this is all based on the theory (yes, the theory) of anthropogenic global warming, the most visible evidence being the supposed melting of the polar ice caps. I’m a bit skeptical, myself (in case you hadn’t figured it out), and I don’t think we can afford to waste money that we don’t have on such a shaky presumption.

      ——————

      Guess we’ll all just have to wait and see if the temp of dear ole’ Earth actually went down by 31 Dec 2014!

      ===============

      • 0 avatar

        > Read the delightful (and reasonable) article you referenced. Despite the nay-sayers, global cooling deniers, greenie-weenies, eco-Nazi’s, and others of the EV ilk, it was level-headed, well-referenced, and enjoyable
        > According to a report in the Daily Mail

        I mentioned earlier that people who pretend to know technical things often do their research from the pop press; the worst of whom from the bottom of that litter (box). I love being right.

        http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/2014/02/qotd-toyota-not-tesla-as-a-force-of-disruption/#comment-2893145

      • 0 avatar
        KixStart

        First off, when you want to know what the scientists actually said, you should not go to the WSJ (or whatever your crappy source is) to find out. You should go to authoritative sources. This is what the Fourth Assessment Report of the IPCC actually said:

        http://www.ipcc.ch/pdf/assessment-report/ar4/wg1/ar4-wg1-chapter10.pdf

        “As the climate warms, snow cover and sea ice extent decrease; glaciers and ice caps lose mass owing to a dominance of summer melting over winter precipitation increases. This contributes to sea level rise as documented for the previous generation of models in the TAR. There is a projected reduction of sea ice in the 21st century in both the Arctic and Antarctic with a rather large range of model responses. The projected reduction is accelerated in the Arctic, where some models project summer sea ice cover to disappear entirely in the high-emission A2 scenario in the latter part of the 21st century. Widespread increases in thaw depth over much of the permafrost regions are projected to occur in response to warming over the next century.”

        That was the consensus view. In fact, the ice loss of was 2007 (you can look it up in the archives of the National Snow and Ice Data Center) was considered shocking and that’s what led some scientists to predict an ice free Summer by 2013.

        However, Summer ice, as was gleefully reported in Denialist circles “recovered” in 2008, with a minimum volume about 10-12% higher than in 2007.

        But here’s the thing… since that 2008 “recovery,” the trend is, again, down. The Summer minimum this year was about 75% of the ice in 2008. The current “recovery” is 20% less ice than the shocking minimum of 2007. In other words… what “recovery?”

        Summer ice volume minima are now about 25% of what was considered typical for the ’80′s. That’s a lot of ice loss and, to me, it still looks like it’s accelerating.

        I’m perfectly willing to take your action if you’d like to wager that any year between 2028 and 2032 will have a larger ice minimum than the “recovery” year of 2013.

  • avatar
    Aquineas

    Ouch. I wonder what the daily production run is?

  • avatar
    dal20402

    For the intended audience, there’s nothing wrong with the ELR that a price cut to $55,000 wouldn’t fix.

    But in the 70s it’s just up against much nicer machinery, plug-in hybrid or not. Bad pricing decision by GM, pure and simple.

    • 0 avatar
      APaGttH

      This – the price premium over a Volt is just insane. I posted below that I’ve read, including from the jaundice B&B that the ELRs interior will stand up to any global luxury brand – best Caddy interior ever (from a material fit and finish style – I haven’t seen it – I’m only repeating what’s been written here). But is that worth almost $40K?!?!

      Stupidity

  • avatar
    Avatar77

    Oh GM, what have you done? You could have sold a bunch of these at $56K, but at $76K?

  • avatar
    Crabspirits

    Has there been any justification of it’s pricing from GM?
    I am curious about whether they want-to vs have-to charge that much.

    I just saw one on display at a mall in South Florida, and all the well-to-do silvers were drawn to this thing like moths to a flame.

  • avatar
    sunridge place

    Derek- if you’re going to rip the ELR sales, at least get them correct while you’re ripping them.

    Dec 2013 Sales=6
    Jan 2014 Sales=41
    Feb 2014 Sales=58

  • avatar
    rpol35

    “With just 6 units sold in January and 99 units sold in February”

    Really, that many?

  • avatar
    KixStart

    Volt sales down YOY by 25% to 1210. However, Prius sales fell off, too, by about the same percentage. I suppose people are thinking gas in the $3-3.50 range is not so bad.

    • 0 avatar
      SCE to AUX

      January and February were bad for sales due to the weather.

      Cheaper gas normally hurts EV sales, but the Leaf is up YOY for reasons I can’t explain. Model S sales are likely independent of gas prices, and we know how they’re going.

      But ELR sales need to triple pretty soon if they ever expect to produce a 2016 model.

      • 0 avatar
        APaGttH

        Leaf is probably up because the poverty spec version has a reasonable price point. They gutted the price last year and that perked up sales.

        I would think start of year sales will go down on these cars anyway because of the big fat tax credits (plug-ins, full electrics and series hybrids eligible for ‘guberment handouts). The buyers who needed a tax break jumped in before December 31.

        Purely speculation on my part.

      • 0 avatar
        ClutchCarGo

        Russian adventurism is Crimea should help with gas prices.

        • 0 avatar
          28-Cars-Later

          You heard it here first, and although I didn’t see Ukraine in the cards the end result is still the same:

          “The Saudis will take advantage of all of this by stoking the fire and artificially keep oil up because they must take in at least $98/bbl oil in order to keep their gov’t going. “Saudi Arabia famously threw $130bn at public services in 2011 to forestall unrest, and this year has a fiscal break-even of $98 per barrel, compared to just $74 three years ago.” and don’t forget the Russians who were the *largest* largest oil exporter in 2013 “Russia, whose fiscal break-even this year is $125?”. I see $120 (brent) at minimum from the start of the next Syrian incident onward perhaps to $150 or higher if other fires flare up in Iraq, Lebanon, South Sudan (likely) or Egypt (unlikely, IMO).”

          http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/2014/01/qotd-your-automotive-predictions-for-2014/#comment-2592834

          The Ukraine adventure actually makes total sense because of the Black Seas Fleet. In 2010 a deal was struck with Yanukovych to extend the lease of the naval base at Sevastopol to the 2040s from the previous 2017. If Ukraine gets a puppet leader controlled by the West, this deal may be revoked. I believe the Soviets were considering using the naval base at Tartus as an alternate port, but this is also probably off the table. Annexing the Crimea solves the Black Seas Fleet issue entirely, gives the people of Russia a morale boost, furthers Putin’s popularity and power, while demonstrating to the world how spineless the West has really become. Cold War II is fast approaching folks.

          http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Russian_naval_facility_in_Tartus

          http://www.theguardian.com/world/2010/apr/21/ukraine-black-sea-fleet-russia

          http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Black_Sea_Fleet

          • 0 avatar
            KixStart

            “Annexing the Crimea solves the Black Seas Fleet issue entirely, gives the people of Russia a morale boost, furthers Putin’s popularity and power, while demonstrating to the world how spineless the West has really become.”

            How about that? Starting a war is good for maintaining your power base. Who knew?

          • 0 avatar
            28-Cars-Later

            War between whom, the Ukrainians and the Russians? Highly doubtful. War between Russians and the West? Even more in doubt. The only war which might come of this would be an internal conflict in what’s left of Ukraine and I doubt this will be allowed to last long because of the major natural gas pipelines going through Ukraine to supply Germany and Western Europe.

            If I had to bet, I’d say Putin will use his 2008 playbook and initially the Crimea will separate and become another breakaway republic like South Ossetia and stay occupied by Russian troops. Although I am leery of RT, they are claiming Ukrainian troops arriving in Crimea have already defected and sworn allegiance to the “Crimean autonomous region”. In the country, the largest concentration of ethnic Russians is in the Crimea. This protection of the ethnic Russians was the same argument used in leaving troops in South Ossetia.

            http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Ethnicukrainian2001.PNG

            http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Demographics_of_Ukraine

            http://rt.com/news/ukraine-military-russia-resign-437/

            Ha look now what the Atlantic published:

            “So what should we call the worrying developments in Ukraine? And what is Putin thinking? Back in 2008, Thomas de Waal, an expert on the South Caucasus, argued that Putin’s greatest legacy is something de Waal called “soft annexation,” which, at the time, was underway in Georgia’s breakaway provinces of Abkhazia and South Ossetia. The idea, expressed in various forms over the years, is that Russia is pulling political, economic, and military levers—all of which fall short of traditional invasion—to exploit ethnic conflicts in countries that used to be in its orbit. And the goal is to leverage these tensions, which are often relics of the Soviet Union’s messy consolidation and collapse, to gain influence in former Soviet states, while preventing these countries from moving closer to the West.”

            Bingo

            “Moscow could take actions that weaken the coherence of the Ukrainian state, e.g., by appealing to ethnic Russians in Crimea, or even by provoking a violent clash in Sevastopol, leading to the ****deployment of Russian naval infantry troops from the Black Sea Fleet to “protect” ethnic Russians.****”

            http://www.theatlantic.com/international/archive/2014/03/putins-playbook-the-strategy-behind-russias-takeover-of-crimea/284154/

          • 0 avatar

            Hey 28! From his playbook? This kind of ploy has been going on forever. Sort of like how Texas entered the American union, no? ;)

          • 0 avatar
            28-Cars-Later

            True Marcelo, nothing new under the sun.

    • 0 avatar
      KixStart

      C-Max is down, too, by 40%.

    • 0 avatar
      Prado

      Stale product might have something to do with declining sales. The current Prius has been around just about 5 years now.

      • 0 avatar
        KixStart

        I was thinking about that, too, but the decline in C-Max sales suggests some other factor at work as well.

        • 0 avatar
          84Cressida

          People are stupid. When gas goes down 5 cents, all of a sudden that big SUV looks so appealing. When it goes up 10 cents, it’s off to the Toyota dealer for a Prius.

          But I think mostly the Prius’ decline is due to age. There will be a new Prius by the end of this year.

  • avatar

    I’m no analyst, but the price strategy seems to parallel Volt.

  • avatar
    brettc

    I saw multiple ads for this thing last night during the Oscars. I told my wife the first time it aired that it was basically a Cadillac Volt for a lot more money than an actual Chevy Volt. I can see Oscar winners/celebrities wanting to be seen in something like this, but not the people that are actually watching an awards show. Needless to say we aren’t target buyers for the ELR or the Volt because we like cars that are a bit more affordable and don’t run on batteries. I can see the point of the Volt (kinda) but it seems like there’s no reason for the ELR to exist aside from gaming upcoming CAFE rules.

  • avatar
    Jimal

    The General screwed up royal when they introduced the Voltec platform as a Chevrolet. I still believe they would have been better served branding the Volt as its own car and offering it for sale at all GM dealers. Starting Chevy then going upmarket to Cadillac – no matter how much of a veneer of luxury they put on it – was a mistake.

    • 0 avatar
      Russycle

      This. Chevy is your volume brand, why use it to introduce a low volume, high priced, revolutionary vehicle? I could maybe see the Volt as a Buick, but Chevy never made sense.

      • 0 avatar
        TMA1

        What they should do, is take the Euro Opel version of the Volt and slap a Buick badge on it. Then it would match all the other cars at the Buick dealership.

    • 0 avatar
      rudiger

      True, but if GM was going to go the Chevrolet route with their premium EV platform, they should have stuck with it. Supposedly, there wasn’t enough development money to build both a production Voltec SUV ‘and’ the ELR. In typical GM fashion, they went for the gold by choosing the latter and are now paying for it.

  • avatar
    Big Al from Oz

    Well judging by the figures there isn’t a viable market for EVs.

    Irrespective of all the BS and hype regarding EVs they are a burden to the tax payer.

    I suppose the US is in a good enough shape economically to have ‘make facade industries’.

    Golf carts, pavement sweepers, postal delivery and inner city work is all EVs are viable for at the moment.

    People should pay the real prices for these vehicles. Then you see the ass fall out of the EV market very quickly.

    • 0 avatar
      brandloyalty

      If all the ways that standard ICE-engined personal vehicles were subsidized were ended, EV’s would look much more competitive. It’s well past time people paid the real price for using them. They are a burden on our surroundings and thus a burden on taxpayers.

      Unless humanity finds a new clean energy source, mileage requirements will rise, and EV’s and hybrids will increase their market share.

      Why do you think virtually all car manufacturers offer hybrids now, and more and more are offering EV’s? Do you see yourself as smarter than thousands of automobile company executives?

      • 0 avatar
        Hummer

        Seeing as how federal laws make it very hard to operate without hybrids in their portfolio, I have to question your sanity for believing that this is some “sign” of the ways.

        Come back when EVs account for 51%…. In never.

        ICE engines aren’t going anywhere, whether diesel, gas, or NG, ICE engines are here to stay. EVs haven’t proven to be anything more than a government propped niche.

        Haven’t you seen the fiat 500 EV, Ole CEO himself said it was a pointless waste of money that was required for them to continue selling in states such as California.

    • 0 avatar
      Scoutdude

      Sure you can certainly draw the conclusion that because the over priced Plug in Hybrid isn’t selling well that there isn’t a viable market for EVs. The reality is that for the majority of people an EV such as the Leaf or Focus will work just fine as one of the cars in a two car family, if not an only car with car sharing or a rental car for the times when you need greater range.

  • avatar
    VenomV12

    Shocking, put out a massively overpriced car then run an awful, offensive douchebag ad, catering to douchebags that is highly alienating and then wonder why you can’t sell this stupid car. On top of that I bet a large percentage of those buyers were GM execs or friends that got a good deal so the real number is probably 50, maybe even less. I have literally never seen such an offensive ad in my entire life. You would think that a company that needed taxpayers to save their your know what would be smarter with their advertising. I will never buy a GM product ever again if that is their mindset and I was considering the new Escalade, no more.

    • 0 avatar
      PonchoIndian

      Did you see the Honda Civic ad with the Detroit protestors in it?

      How about the stupid Subaru commercials that focus “Love” instead of the damn car?

      Its a commercial, you never intended to purchase an Escalade in the first place, nice try.

      • 0 avatar
        VenomV12

        I have actually owned 2 Escalades in my life, the standard Tahoe one and and EXT, I also shamefully at one time in my life owned a Hummer H2, but yes, you know me and what I am going to buy.

        The purpose of a commercial is to gain buyers not turn them off. Considering the immigrants are the ones with money in this country, I don’t see the value or strategy in p!ssing them off and turning them away from your brand.

        • 0 avatar
          PonchoIndian

          I assumed you were mature and intelligent enough to not let a commercial get your panties in a bunch…

          To not buy something because you don’t like the commercial is just looking for an excuse to not buy it. Unless of course you’re going to let public opinion manipulate your purchase.

          • 0 avatar
            WaftableTorque

            I may not see eye to eye with VenomV12, but he pretty much nails how I feel about that douchebag commercial of the ELR and “stuff”. Any goodwill and underdog sympathy I had for the brand evaporated as soon as I saw it.

          • 0 avatar
            wsn

            @PonchoIndian: “I assumed you were mature and intelligent enough to not let a commercial get your panties in a bunch…”

            If a commercial can’t influence a person’s purchase choice, why would companies dump so much money into it?

            If the commercial can influence a person in a way that’s beneficial to the company, it could also have the potential to turn him off.

    • 0 avatar
      Astigmatism

      +1 on the ad, which was about the douchiest 60 seconds of marketing I’ve seen since I was getting Fashion Meets Finance promos. So bad it soured me not just on the car, but also on Neal McDonough (whom I formerly liked from Band of Brothers) along the way.

    • 0 avatar
      APaGttH

      Ya, because running ads in November and December showing luxury and premium cars wrapped with big red bows, or with Santa Claus, with various tag lines like “Christmas Event” and “December to Remember” was so classy and had no douchebag appeal in the winter of 2008 (do a search on the TTAC pages – even the previous management criticized the campaigns)

      Is it a bad ad? Ya – it is – and doesn’t say squat about the car. Is it offensive?!?

      Wow – you set the bar low.

      • 0 avatar
        dal20402

        “Offensive” is an overused and pretty meaningless term, but the ad is super annoying. It distills all of my least favorite things about my country into 60 seconds, with essentially no redeeming value, and an incorrectly worn suit jacket to boot!

  • avatar

    legend has it that there is an ass for every seat. better stop building these real quick or that theory is toast.

  • avatar
    Z71_Silvy

    This is a far better choice than the POS Tesla.

    But then, so is a 12k Chevy Spark and just about every other vehicle on the road.

    • 0 avatar

      not what I am hearing.

      • 0 avatar
        Z71_Silvy

        Then you’re not listening.

        But do enlighten us how $85k for a car that can’t make it from Minneapolis to Madison is somehow a good thing.

        • 0 avatar
          KixStart

          Actually, it can get from Minneapolis to Madison and, in addition, there’s two Superchargers along the way.

          • 0 avatar
            Z71_Silvy

            Nope. You couldn’t be more wrong. The farthest the Tesla POS can go is 265 miles. Madison is 269 miles away. So the Tesla POS will leave you stranded 4 miles away.

            So….a Chevy Spark is more capable than this $85k boondoggle.

          • 0 avatar
            KixStart

            My bad. We’re closer over here St. Paul side, 253 miles.

            Ten minutes at a Supercharger in Eau Claire or Mauston, however, will let you complete the trip.

    • 0 avatar
      Splorg McGillicuddy

      It’s a good think I don’t get my car buying advice from Helen Keller here.

    • 0 avatar
      Carlson Fan

      I’ll tell you one thing. The battery pack in this will last a LOT longer than what’s in any Tesla. I’ll bet you’ll see 10-15 year old Volts and ELR’s runninng around with original battery packs that perfrom just like new. Pretty skeptical we’ll see the same thing from Tesla cars, albeit maybe a few outliers.

      Like the Volt, it’s got the best engineered battery pack you’ll find in any EV or hybrid. Nothing else even comes close.

  • avatar
    Rod Panhard

    Let’s not confuse issues here. The ELR is the only 2-door electric luxury coupe on the market. It’s “competitors” in the 2-door electric coupe market include the smart and the Fiat. Real 2-door coupes never sell in anywhere near the same volume as their four-door counterparts. It really begs the question, “How many of these ELRs did GM forecast they would sell?” As it is, they’re selling it for $40k more than the Volt. There could be a LOT of margin in the 2-door version of a four-door car….

    • 0 avatar
      KixStart

      Unless they get some serious quantity, the per-unit of the development cost could be $40K. It probably costs more than the Volt to build. And we have reason to believe the Volt sells at a loss as it is. I’m having a hard time finding “profit” in any of thise.

      Now, I don’t know what the ELR-specific development costs were but El Lutzbo said that the cost to redevelop the Opel Astra for the US market as the Saturn Astra was $100 million and, so far as I can tell, all they did was change the badges. It’s hard to imagine it cost less than a $few hundred million to get the ELR done.

      Let’s say it cost a mere $200 million. If sales double, we’re looking at 1200 per year. The end date would be when the Volt 2 comes out (unless GM would like to sell a Cadillac with first-generation Chevrolet technology when second-generation Chevrolet tech becomes the norm – I suppose I shouldn’t discount the possibility of that). Maybe 3 years from now… 2016? That allows for maybe 3600 ELR sales. $200 million / 3600 = somewhere in the neighborhood of $50K per car.

      I’m not seeing a bright future for this car.

      • 0 avatar

        Most of that development cost for the Opel Astra was for certification to the US market, tooling new fascias and grilles, development changes to ride and handling to meet American tastes. ELR had none of these. The Volt is quiet, drives very well and has “untapped” performance and proved to be a very capable starting point.

        If Tesla can make money with a larger size vehicle that has a way more expensive battery and was developed from the ground up, it should not surprise anyone that GM can make even more money on a vehicle that only needed new sheet metal and an interior.

        • 0 avatar
          TMA1

          $100 million to cater to American tastes, and they couldn’t fit an armrest into the Saturn Astra?

          • 0 avatar
            KixStart

            TMA1,

            Nor did they even bother to switch to an American-style clock.

            TCBRacing: “Most of that development cost for the Opel Astra was for certification to the US market, tooling new fascias and grilles, development changes to ride and handling to meet American tastes. ELR had none of these.”

            The ELR has all-new sheet-metal, a different interior, only two doors… this is way beyond the grille fascia changes for the Astra. There’s some powertrain changes, not major perhaps, but the ELR does put more power to the ground. I would presume it would still need certification.

            I’d be surprised if GM swung it for $200 million.

            The ELR also ends up with less range, worse fuel economy and an even more negligible trunk.

          • 0 avatar
            TMA1

            I didn’t even mention any of those weird Euro HVAC or stereo controls. The Astra was probably the most pure Euro vehicle GM has brought to the US in the past decade (that wasn’t named Saab).

  • avatar
    galaxygreymx5

    According to cars.com there are nearly 700 ELRs on lots or in transit. VIN numbers, which are sequential on this car, are up to the 1300 range.

    Also, as mentioned elsewhere, the 99 ELRs sold is cumulative since December. Even if they manage to double the sales rate they’re sitting on nearly a year of inventory. If they don’t, they’re sitting on nearly two years’ worth.

    Keep up the good work, Mr. Reuss.

    • 0 avatar
      mcs

      >> According to cars.com there are nearly 700 ELRs on lots or in transit

      When the Corvette museum fixes their floor, I know a great way to test it’s strength..

  • avatar
    84Cressida

    It might not be selling because it looks like the CTS coupe, one of the most grotesque things on the road since the Aztek.

  • avatar
    sckid213

    The ELR reminds me of the whole Chrysler TC by Maserati fiasco. It was supposed to be a styling statement at a premium price, and that styling would trickle down to less expensive models. But the program got delayed, and the Lebaron came out first at a fraction of the price. Once the TC came out, the styling was familiar and the price was outrageous.

    In the case of the ELR, the styling is beautiful but as many have pointed out, is similar to the much cheaper CTS Coupe (like it or not – I happen to like it). It doesn’t advance styling the way something like the Elmiraj or Ciel would. And the technology is cool, but has already been seen on the Volt.

    I think the brand is executing very nicely lately, but I do think the pricing on the ELR is a big mis-step.

  • avatar
    redav

    Derek screwed up the real story here: February sales were up 41% compared to January. Assuming they maintain that growth rate, they’ll hit their target by Oct. Clearly, this thing is an unparalleled success–bonuses all around!

  • avatar
    APaGttH

    Priced at the entry point of its much higher cachet competitor that is also far more pragmatic? Check

    Lacks the cachet of a full electric and the “range anxiety” argument (e.g. Leaf vs. Volt) doesn’t hold water? Check

    Powertrain is really not evolutionarily tweaked from the nearly 1/2 the cost Volt offering not much power in power and/or range? Check

    They got the wrapper right – it’s a very good looking car. I have not sat in one but I have not heard one negative thing on interior materials and interior fit and finish. Everything I’ve read, including from the B&B is that from the interior – this is everything a Cadillac should be – and really is world class.

    But holy ass crackers – $76K to START? Over $80K with a few options (for that matter – there are options on a niche car?!?!?!)

    Does GM even want to sell the Volt powertrain – because this pricing strategy says, “we don’t give a…”

    • 0 avatar
      28-Cars-Later

      You’d think for something they obviously don’t want to sell they would have at least brought in the people who style the concept cars and let them have at it, at least the model could be a rolling work of art. The ELR as it stands seems like the result of a contest to see how awful the car could look and be priced and still sell to someone.

      • 0 avatar
        mcs

        Here’s one for 85,565. That’s $78,065 after government check. Better hurry before it’s gone.

        http://www.olsencadillac.com/VehicleDetails/new-2014-Cadillac-ELR-2dr_Cpe-Woburn-MA/2192793793

    • 0 avatar

      $68,500 after government rebate and what I have seen around here $650/month lease.

  • avatar
    seanx37

    I wonder how many were leased at steep discounts to GM employees? I would imagine that takes up most of the 99 sold last month.
    Of course, I live in Warren. And drive past the GM Tech Center twice a day. I see 5 or 6 of them a day. Not including the 10-15 parked in front of that GM building on 12 mile.

    • 0 avatar

      GM employees can’t even buy them yet, they don’t show up on our website for pricing information.

      Let me help to educate you on automotive manufacturing. The vehicles you see are part of the initial validation fleet. Driven by GM employees for evaluation purposes. You must have also seen several of the new Yukon’s, Tahoe’s, and Suburban’s this winter as they have been going through the same evaluation since the launches were very close in timing.

      • 0 avatar
        seanx37

        Actually I was parked next to a new Yukon at Meijer(the one across the street from the Tech Center). Not bad looking.
        THe thing is, none of the Elr’s I saw today had manufactuer plates. Regular Michigan license plates.

        • 0 avatar

          M Plates are only required on pre-production vehicles not intended for sale. The evaluation vehicles are Saleable level so they get regular plates. Bet every one of them had a September Tag and no dealer frame.

  • avatar
    sparc

    this car is one giant mistake. Should have used second generation Volt as the base and I bet it would have sold a lot better. Better tech and cheaper.

    • 0 avatar
      Carlson Fan

      I think most expected the ELR to arrive with the 2nd gen Voltec. The body and interior is fine, the misstep is it’s basically a Chevy Volt underneath the hood.

  • avatar
    Bob

    This is how I feel when people start talking about climate change: http://youtu.be/1srzsTJOW2c

  • avatar
    noxioux

    Warm, cold, or indifferent, the ELR is possibly the stupidest car ever.

  • avatar
    james2k

    I was planing on buying one of these until I saw the price. I knew it had the same drivetrain as the Volt so I figured it might be 10 to 15k more for the badge and leather. Who’s going to pay $35k more than a Volt for this? 99 people apparently. Even if they lowered the price, I couldn’t deal with the shame of driving now that everyone has seen that ludicrous tv ad.

    Overall, I’m really impressed with Cadillac lately. This is the exception. If they want some of that Tesla shine, they’re going to need to a LOT better than this.

  • avatar

    I love it, and think it will easily sell 3000 units by the end of the year.

  • avatar
    Phil Ressler

    Would it be possible to have a thread on the Volt or ELR informed by people who actually own or have otherwise driven them? The fiction bandied about regarding Voltec conveyances is often staggeringly distorted for, well, no discernible reason.

    In December 2012, on the heels of that year’s LA Auto Show, I emerged feeling like the hot-motor luxury market was played out and bereft of ideas, and concluded I had to add something more progressive to my garage. I headed to the Chevy stand and spent an hour just sitting in all four seats of a Volt, to understand how I would fit (6’3″, 185 lbs.) and how the car might feel to others. I also explored all the surfaces and spaces to try to understand the chorus of criticisms of the car that saturate discourse on the web, and which are impossible to reconcile with the intensely high satisfaction of Volt owners. This was right before the $5000 price drop.

    Then I went to a dealer to drive one and I bought a loaded, leather-upholstered 2013 Volt on the spot. One of the reasons: knowing the ELR was a year or so away, I wanted to drive a Volt through four seasons to decide whether I like the platform well enough to spend double the price of a Volt to drive an ELR.

    I didn’t buy the Volt to save money or go faster , slower nor any other usual reason for an automotive decision. I bought it to have the most technically-advanced automobile on the planet. Yup. It’s relatively easy for a car company to put an internal combustion engine in a car as the motive technology. We’ve been doing that for over a century. It’s also relatively easy to put a big battery and an electric motor in a car and call it quits on the motive front. We used to do that a century ago and we’re doing it better again. It’s also prosaic to put an internal combustion engine in a car and supplement it with electric motor(s) and a small battery to assist in getting the beast moving.

    But the elegance and seamlessness of operation of the EREV architecture of the Volt is applied engineering on a higher plane, mechanically, electrically and in software, for a safe, mass-marketable automobile.

    I also was happy to participate less in the oil economy, including the zone pricing and price fixing by refiners and distributors, and the trader-dominated economics that market is now hostage to.

    I got something else though: a serenely quiet, linearly-dynamic, vault-solid vehicle that is a stable highway cruiser, competent canyon carver (for a fwd car), and tough urban warrior. People who haven’t driven a Volt don’t understand how rigid the platform is and how much central strength is created by the battery cage. They don’t grasp the positive consequences of the low center of gravity in a car that nevertheless lets you sit upright. And for the mix of driving I do around Los Angeles, my Volt requires only about 7 gallons of gasoline every 6 – 8 weeks. Who cares what it cost? The Volt is the least expensive car I’ve owned in 20 years and whatever you think about its design, the quality in its execution is beyond reproach. “Average Volt owners go 900 miles between fill-ups” isn’t just a story. It is reality. All the charging barely registers on my LADWP bill. I like the finances of owning a Volt. I love it for its qualitative merits, however.

    So, the ELR. I had originally figured it would launch at $65K – $75K, entry to loaded. Instead it’s $75K to $82,500. For the most part, if you can pay $65K for a car, you can pay $82,500 if you want to. The ELR gives you reasons to want to. For everyone who won’t or can’t pay north of $30K, $50K or $60K for a car…well, don’t. Even Cadillac has alternatives for you, but no one else has anything like the ELR.

    Cadillac design has been polarizing since 2004. Art & Science has matured and has been applied to a wider variety of vehicles. It’s an evolved design language now. I can’t account for who loves it or hates it, but the ELR looks fantastic to me, and to everyone whom I’ve witnessed react to it. So case closed on the sheet metal. Does it look like a Volt? Nope. I know. I’ve parked my Volt right next to an ELR. Most people don’t know it’s even related.

    The interior is Maserati-level. It’s beyond the price-peer Germans in execution and the touch points are invariably top drawer. Is it less practical than a Volt or any other four door? It’s a coupe! Like all beautiful coupes, the ELR is a car you wear. Maybe it’s more Hugo Boss or Paul Smith than Canali or Zegna, so I have no argument with anyone who feels it’s not a car they can wear. But caterwauling by people who buy various kinds of four doors but would never consider a coupe is just meaningless noise. You either get coupes or you don’t. ELR is not a CFO’s car. It’s also not a car for followers, people who need to fit in nor anyone who needs a car they never have to explain.

    The Voltec platform here has been evolved but not revolutionized. GM has 400 million real-world test miles and counting, now that connected cars generate a wealth of streaming data. So they’ve confirmed just how conservative they were with the Volt’s battery utilization and found they could dig a little deeper for ELR, sacrificing 1 mile of rated BEV range. The Hi-Pref suspension and the bigger rubber are serious upgrades over Volt for grip, neutral handling and poor surface dynamics. Steering is more communicative and the ELR has acceleration behavior that is notably livelier than the Volt’s (already excellent) in the city-practical 0-40mph range. Yet at 80 mph on the open freeway, it is no trouble mustering passing power. I have an older 4 seconds Cadillac which will run right up most cars’ buts on a freeway onramp. Guess what, so does the 8 seconds ELR or the 9 seconds Volt, in the reality of this city. If the Volt is serene, especially in BEV transit, the ELR is meditation-worthy. The critics who report that the 1.4L gas generator is louder in the ELR than the Volt haven’t driven one of them. It’s nonsense. And it takes about the first 3 hours of ownership of a Voltec car to accustom yourself to the lack of correlation between the speed of the car and the rpms of the gas generator. It’s an irrelevance quickly.

    The question of value — is an ELR priced from madness at 2X a Volt — is not going to be made on a spreadsheet. It is purely emotional, as any luxury coupe decision is. It’s cheap if you love the experience of being in it, because, let’s face it — no other car on the planet duplicates the experience. A Tesla is bigger and less intimate, and it’s not very luxurious inside. Plus there’s the constant range problem. For instance, I can’t drive from northern LA where I live to a few meetings around southern Orange County (let alone San Diego) and back in the same day driving even the big-battery Model S. In the ELR I can.

    I drove a BMW i3. Its innovation is in its full carbon fiber passenger cell. It’s an interesting and effective implementation. My Volt is more neutral and communicative in driving, and feels stronger. The BEV version of the i3 will cost more than a Volt, and guess what their upgrade is — that’s right, a Volt-like gasoline generator range extender, but in that case it’s a 650cc motorcycle engine for just 165 miles of range, total. The ELR is priced above that and it’s massively more luxurious and competent, but it’s also $50,000 or so less than the coming BMW i8.

    ELR is singular at this point. It is a car to make a point, for Cadillac, and hence its sales goals are low. I’ve seen seven different ones on the road in LA in the past three weeks, not counting dealers giving test drives. It’s a car that works very well here. It’s beautiful, efficient, ensconcing, serene, sporting and yet tough enough for our deteriorating city infrastructure, and if you want you can drive it straight to New York and back without a care. Also, I don’t know what the brouhaha over CUE is about; it works just fine for me.

    For reference, and keeping in mind I live in a city with a mountain range running through it (so there’s climbing) my lifetime average for the past 15 months is 108 mpg. When I have to run on gasoline, I average 40 – 46 mpg. I’ve not been able to drive the gasoline-only mpg below 36 driving aggressively. I so far haven’t bothered to get a 240v L2 charge station installed. 120v charging @ 12 amps has been fine.

    I may buy an ELR or I may not. Or I may buy one plus keep my Volt, since it’s cheap to keep and is so practical. Live with a Voltec for a year, at whichever price level you can afford, and there’s a good chance you will find it difficult to go back to a strictly mechanical ICE-driven car. I’ve seen no commercial reviews of the ELR that represent the actual experience of the car accurately. I can say that the ELR feels worth its price to me, and the lease deals are further mitigating.

    Phil

    • 0 avatar

      > But the elegance and seamlessness of operation of the EREV architecture of the Volt is applied engineering on a higher plane, mechanically, electrically and in software, for a safe, mass-marketable automobile.

      I guess gas motors are passe, and electric motors are too easy, but cram the two together in the simplest way possible and it’s frickin magic.

      These aren’t bad cars, and the Volt’s a decent value in electrics for people who need the generator, but the ELR is obviously overprice for the cost of two Volts.

      I also doubt anyone who calls these “most technically-advanced automobile on the planet” has ever sat in a Tesla, which actually feels like it’s made by a tech company that happens to make cars.

      • 0 avatar
        Phil Ressler

        I work in tech and live in coastal California. I drove the original Tesla Roadster and have driven the big and middle-battery versions of the Model S. The Tesla has the veneer of advanced tech, but it’s a relatively simple machine (good) burdened with impractically-limited range, at least for me. It’s also not very luxurious for its price. The interior is only passably executed but it’s OK. It’s not hard to make an electric motor hitched to a big battery operationally seamless, as long as the battery has energy available.

        I am however glad the Tesla S exists and is helping to move the market forward.

        Phil

        • 0 avatar

          > The Tesla has the veneer of advanced tech

          The Tesla has mediocre tech by tech world standards but it might as well be magic in the auto industry.

          If electric cars are ever going to be economical & functional as a system they need to ditch large generators and use a charge/swap infrastructure. This means using tech to interface with “the grid” to make sure you don’t run out of juice, etc. I really don’t see anyone in the auto space (given how incompetent existing car computers have been) other than Tesla or a new upstart a la Google making this happen.

          • 0 avatar
            Phil Ressler

            I mostly agree with you. But we’re not there yet and won’t be for quite awhile. The EREV is a bridge, and an advanced engineering project for this time when we need one. It hasn’t been widely embraced yet but it’s a campaign, not a weekend event to get people to understand EREVs.

            Tesla can bring the simplified big-battery electric car with battery swaps and superchargers but the infrastructure for widespread adoption in a continental country is going to take more time and money than Tesla has patience or reserves for.

            Phil

          • 0 avatar

            > The EREV is a bridge, and an advanced engineering project for this time when we need one.

            Except in an electric car with an add-on that turns gas into electricity, the interesting part is the electric car.

            > but the infrastructure for widespread adoption in a continental country is going to take more time and money than Tesla has patience or reserves for.

            We can always hope some other more forward looking country can take a shot at bootstrapping the infrastructure. Tesla’s best shot at “success” is probably through acquisition a la tech biz.

          • 0 avatar
            Phil Ressler

            One of the benefits about the Voltec platform that people tend to miss is that there is nothing about it that mandates a gasoline generator range extender. The main battery is, essentially, in the spine and pelvis of the car. The range extender occupying space under the hood could be more battery, a propane engine, a fuel cell, whatever. In many ways it is a conceptual way station toward the skateboard-like monochassis EV platform concept GM showed in the early 2000s. It’s a relatively easy platform to incrementally advance, on the twin rails of improving battery chemistry and alternate-fuel range extension, especially as battery energy storage density improves, allowing the range extension to be less robust than it is in the Voltec cars.

            Phil

          • 0 avatar
            KixStart

            “Voltec” is a Prius with a much bigger battery, fewer seats than people expect, a much less sophisticated engine, a questionable reliability track record and a price tag that causes people to gasp.

          • 0 avatar
            PonchoIndian

            “Voltec” is a Prius with a much bigger battery, fewer seats than people expect, a much less sophisticated engine, a questionable reliability track record and a price tag that causes people to gasp.

            Wow, that is just about the most ignorant way I’ve ever heard it described. For someone who claims to be a master at reading scientific articles et al… you sure don’t have a clue about Voltec.

          • 0 avatar
            SayMyName

            If only kixstart wasn’t essentially correct about the basics, poncho. The Volt is less practical, less roomy, fitted with an incredibly heavy, low tech iron block “range extender,” and is much more expensive than a Prius. (kixstart does appear to be wrong about reliability, though – the Volt seems to enjoy relatively high quality scores, especially for a GM product. Hard to tell how much of that info is truly accurate, though, versus confirmation bias on the part of Volt owners.)

            Yes, Voltec operates differently than the Prius hybrid system, true. For some, the GM product has the potential to be much more efficient than the ‘Yota within a very small range circle, and that’s enough. Most Americans drive longer distances, though – and the longer the distance between power plugs, the less efficient the Volt gets.

            The tradeoff works for some, but for most people the Prius offers more real-world benefits. Then again, minivans make more sense for most CUV-driving soccer moms, too. Like them, Volt owners don’t drive cars; they drive an image that is only tangentially associated with reality.

          • 0 avatar
            PonchoIndian

            fitted with an incredibly heavy iron-block

            -They would have saved 18 pounds by going with an aluminum block. The iron block isn’t incredibly heavy.

            Volt owners don’t drive cars; they drive a cause and an image.

            -In reality any hybrid driver is driving a cause and image. A Prius makes no sense when a Corolla would actually be cheaper to own and run since you’ll never get the price difference back in gas mileage.

            The Volt is less practical, less roomy

            -Lets be honest, practical and roomy is very subjective when it comes to one’s needs.

          • 0 avatar
            KixStart

            SayMyName,

            TrueDelta does have Volt stats. This link should show a Prius/Volt comparison:

            http://www.truedelta.com/Chevrolet-Volt/reliability-1048/vs-Prius-272

            I *thought* that the 2011 Volt was represented there and I had thought it had a repair frequency similar to the same-year Prius but I’m not seeing it now… perhaps I misremember (or the respondent count was too low to show stats if you’re not logged in). In any event, if you look you will see the 2012 Volt has a markedly higher repair frequency than the Prius and the 2013 Volt has a much higher repair frequency than the 2012 Volt.

      • 0 avatar
        Phil Ressler

        “TrueDelta does have Volt stats. This link should show a Prius/Volt comparison”

        Yes. Click through to the nature of repairs and the first thing you see is this: Don’t infer 2013 Chevrolet Volt problem frequency from what you see on this page. Many lucky owners have had no repairs, and their cars are not shown.

        In other words, it’s not an incidence report. I think I even see my Dec 2012 report in there for infant failure of the transmission control solenoid.

        My Volt has been trouble-free since that 2nd day of ownership repair. An employee on my staff bought one on my recommendation. Not long after, he was nailed in an offset frontal collision. The EMTs: “This car probably saved your life.” It’s back on duty now. The Volt has a very strong passenger cell and crumple zones that work. Another 25 year old who bought after experience with my car developed a problem with the defroster and let that ride for several months because it wasn’t annoying enough to bother. I haven’t seen anything particularly inconvenient, disabling or frequent otherwise, among the several Volt owners I know. I like TrueDelta and participate, but Michael’s statistical representation is still formative. The more important thing is that I have yet to meet a Volt owner who isn’t intent on buying another EREV when they replace their car.

        Phil

        • 0 avatar
          KixStart

          “Yes. Click through to the nature of repairs and the first thing you see is this: Don’t infer 2013 Chevrolet Volt problem frequency from what you see on this page.”

          Right. You get the *frequency* of repair information from the previous page, where the complete group of owners has been considered.

          “My Volt has been trouble-free since that 2nd day of ownership repair.”

          My Prius has been trouble-free since the first time I pushed the start button.

          • 0 avatar
            Phil Ressler

            Yeah, I accept your trouble-free experience. I really didn’t mind the 2nd day problem since pretty much every maker is susceptible to infant failure of electronic and electro-mechanical components and sub-assemblies in today’s supply-chain cars. So for one on a car with 3 miles on the odo at the time, anyone gets a pass from me, including GM.

            Phil

    • 0 avatar
      KixStart

      “It is a car to make a point, for Cadillac, and hence it’ sales goals are low.”

      What point is it making? That people who were thinking about a Cadillac might just as well buy the tech from Chevy and keep the remaining $40K?

      • 0 avatar
        Phil Ressler

        A Volt + $40K doesn’t give you the ELR experience. Two Volts won’t give you the ELR experience. The point Cadillac is making is that luxury cars can be both reasonably green and exceptionally involving, along with luxurious. And that the changing face of luxury isn’t lashed to sheer power, accelerative sensation nor top speed. It’s a direction we’re headed whether we like it or not.

        Phil

    • 0 avatar
      sunridge place

      @Phil

      ‘Would it be possible to have a thread on the Volt or ELR informed by people who actually own or have otherwise driven them? The fiction bandied about regarding Voltec conveyances is often staggeringly distorted for, well, no discernible reason’

      Probably not possible here in the comments section.

      Nor would most people posting here understand how selling 2k units a year at $70k yields far more $$ than 6k units a year at $50k.

      Nice post…but the Prius guy will tell you how stupid you are…the guy who works at Enterprise will tell you that you are a moron…etc.

      Then, others will tell you how wildly successful the ELR would be at $50k without having a clue.

      • 0 avatar

        > Nor would most people posting here understand how selling 2k units a year at $70k yields far more $$ than 6k units a year at $50k.

        There are significant fixed costs to introducing any new model, even if it’s an upscale rebadge. Consider learning how the arithmetic of that works when you’re only selling a few.

        • 0 avatar
          sunridge place

          So, is your point that they never should have made the ELR OR that they priced it wrong?

          • 0 avatar

            > So, is your point that they never should have made the ELR OR that they priced it wrong?

            They need to do the math in business planning to determine that X units need to be moved at Y price to be profitable (it’s technically a curve you want to be on the right side of, but the specifics of the implementation generally preclude too much deviation from the given goal). I’m not privy to their plan, but if the volume is off by that much in the wrong direction it’s probably safe to say their view of reality is so inaccurate it probably shouldn’t have been approved.

          • 0 avatar
            sunridge place

            Post 1: There are significant fixed costs to introducing any new model, even if it’s an upscale rebadge. Consider learning how the arithmetic of that works when you’re only selling a few.

            Post 2: I’m not privy to their plan

            You have no clue…you are just randomly posting on here…that was my point.

            You have no clue what the ‘all in’ cost of an ELR unit (over a few model years) is.

            Lets say its 50k per unit over a 3 year cycle.

            Ok…

            I price it high at $75k and expect to transact at $65k when its all done. I make $30 million moving 2k units a year.

            Under the same scenario, if I transact at $50k per unit and move 6k units a year I make nothing.

            My point was to:

            A. tell the poster that his thoughts on how great the Voltec system will not be accepted by typical posters here and they will tell him how stupid he is…that has already happened.

            B. People like you who have no clue will tell him how stupid this project is financially even though they admit that they are not ‘privy to their plan’

            Thanks for proving my point.

          • 0 avatar

            > You have no clue…you are just randomly posting on here…that was my point.

            Your point is apparently that lack of access to their plans precludes any logical reasoning about its general success. This is so hilariously stupid it’s not even worth mocking.

            > Lets say its 50k per unit over a 3 year cycle.

            I see you continue to fail at recognizing what fixed costs means. People who have no idea how the basic arithmetic works really shouldn’t be telling others who do what can be done with math.

          • 0 avatar
            sunridge place

            Perhaps, I should have written 50k per unit at 2000 units over 3 years transacting at $65k?

            Even though I thought that was obvious.

            Is that good enough?

            Please, tell us all how car companies build cars that sell in low volumes at high prices and still make money.

            We’re dying to know. Are low volume high priced cars doomed!?!?!?

          • 0 avatar

            > Please, tell us all how car companies build cars that sell in low volumes at high prices and still make money.

            The asymptotic nature of a (constant/units) function as it approach zero implies a low volume car underselling its already low target by order of magnitude things will be in a world of hurt.

          • 0 avatar
            sunridge place

            ‘low volume car underselling its already low target’

            Wow! You know Cadillac’s financial targets for the ELR based on how they priced it and what they expected to sell?!?!?!?

            Please share those…that was my original point. You don’t and you said as much earlier.

          • 0 avatar

            > Wow! You know Cadillac’s financial targets for the ELR based on how they priced it and what they expected to sell?!?!?!?

            Yes, because crazy biz plans are even less likely to be signed off than stupid ones.

          • 0 avatar
            sunridge place

            thanks for proving my original point agenthex dude….people will attack the poster for liking the Voltec system (having never experienced it) and people will attack the financial part (without having a clue)

          • 0 avatar

            > thanks for proving my original point agenthex dude

            sunridge place reasoning: these guys are obviously too incompetent to set a biz plan target anywhere near reality, therefore we can’t know anything about how it’s turning out.

          • 0 avatar
            sunridge place

            ‘ these guys are obviously too incompetent to set a biz plan target anywhere near reality, therefore we can’t know anything about how it’s turning out.’

            Who are ‘these guys’ and what was their ‘biz plan’ target?

            Tell us please….we want to know?!?!?!?

          • 0 avatar
            Pch101

            This may be one of those few instances when the old GM approach of making up losses with more volume can kinda-sorta make sense.

            First begin with the assumption that the ELR doesn’t actually have to make money in order to justify its existence. It’s a low-volume exercise that is intended to test the waters for luxury hybrids, not a full blown commitment that will sink the company if it doesn’t fly off of the shelves.

            Now note that it’s being built in an existing facility with excess capacity. Building more of these things helps to make the Volt more profitable (or less of a loss generator) because the production costs of each unit decline as more units are built.

            Presumably, the R&D costs aren’t so high, since the platform and drivetrain are borrowed.

            All told, the car may prove to be a breakeven exercise. I don’t know how many years that they plan on keeping this around, but if it cost a few hundred million to develop and they can sell 10-15k of them, then it may help to monetize the costs of the existing platform just enough to support a business case.

          • 0 avatar

            > Who are ‘these guys’ and what was their ‘biz plan’ target?

            Now I’m curious if your problem is basic reading comprehension or multiplication: “With just 99 units sold (in 2 months), the Cadillac ELR is going to have a tough time hitting its 3000 unit target for 2014.”

          • 0 avatar

            > but if it cost a few hundred million to develop and they can sell 10-15k of them, then it may help to monetize the costs of the existing platform just enough to support a business case.

            That’s assuming they can hit the plan targets (the low volume forces the high price). I thought the premise of the article is they can’t.

          • 0 avatar
            Pch101

            The 3,000 units is a guess based upon an article in Automotive News. IHS forecast 2014 sales of 2,200 units, and a GM spokesman said that the company’s forecast was something above that.

          • 0 avatar
            KixStart

            At the moment, it’s selling 600 units/year. Could that double? Even so, how many will they sell before Volt 2 comes out, which won’t help sell the old tech ELR? I’m thinking 3-5K is about all they can expect to sell under almost any scenario

          • 0 avatar
            whynot

            Sales could easily double that; remember it is new and the past couple months have hardly been “lets go shopping for an electric coupe” (or coupe in general) weather but I think anything more than ~1500-2000 is getting optimistic.

      • 0 avatar
        Phil Ressler

        Yeah; no doubt. -Phil

    • 0 avatar

      Phil’s comment is why I think the ELR commercial with Neal McDonough is spot on for their target market. It doesn’t matter if people who can’t afford an ELR don’t like the ad.

      • 0 avatar
        Hummer

        This is exactly what I was thinking after reading his post.

      • 0 avatar

        > Phil’s comment is why I think the ELR commercial with Neal McDonough is spot on for their target market. It doesn’t matter if people who can’t afford an ELR don’t like the ad.

        Hopefully they didn’t run the ad just for the ELR given how well it’ll sell. It’s more likely the ELR is intended as a tech halo for the brand image not unlike eg i8/918, done on the cheap w/ the volt as base.

        It appeals to jingoism which is more opiate for the masses than the person depicted in the commercial who should be smart enough to see through it.

        • 0 avatar
          doctor olds

          @agenthex- You don’t personally know anyone with money, do you?

          • 0 avatar

            > @agenthex- You don’t personally know anyone with money, do you?

            There are generally two kinds of people with money: those who recognize the fluke of their success, and those with the just world mindset. Warren Buffet for example despite a posterchild for capitalism is the former, all those you imply to know are probably the latter.

            Those I know with money are quite aware it’s was a combination of natural born smarts but mostly lucking into the right company at the right time; had they ironically been more capable and gone on to do the actual hard work in their field the chance wouldn’t have come to hit the lottery jackpot.

          • 0 avatar

            “There are generally two kinds of people with money”

            My experience tells me that there are all kinds of people at every socioeconomic level. If I can make a generalization about the wealthy people that I do know and have known, it’s that they give away huge amounts of money and much of their time to charitable causes.

          • 0 avatar

            > My experience tells me that there are all kinds of people at every socioeconomic level.

            Sure, the general nature of luck ensures some arbitrary mixing, but that doesn’t preclude pointed distinctions within any group.

            In any case, even assuming arbitrary background, those smart enough to avoid squandering their fortune should be aware that they live above the little people these msgs cater to.

            > If I can make a generalization about the wealthy people that I do know and have known, it’s that they give away huge amounts of money and much of their time to charitable causes.

            Ponder a bit what a just world mentality implies on this matter.

    • 0 avatar

      Phil,

      thank you so very much for your insight and for sharing your thoughts and feelings about the Volt and the ELR. your comments are well written and display a knowledge of the product that one would be hard pressed to find elsewhere. your points are well made and my opinion of these two cars has dramatically improved as a result of your taking the time to detail so many characteristics of these automobiles. input like this makes TTAC what it is, a great source of information to both experts and novices. I appreciate the effort you took to tell us your viewpoints. thanks again sir.

      jd

    • 0 avatar
      Phil Ressler

      The Volt-is-just-like-Prius-but-not-as-good fiction surfaces again, courtesy of Kixstart.

      The Prius and similar now-conventional parallel hybrids are internal combustion drivetrains, with full mechanical coupling between the engine and the wheels. Electric drive is an assist most of the time, and primary drive only a small percentage of rolling time. Even the plug-in Prius only modestly changes this ratio. In other words, in Prius, the ICE drive is essential; the electric drive is opportunistic.

      The Volt is an electric car. Nearly all the time under all conditions, the drive wheels are powered by an electric motor, whether the current is supplied solely by battery-stored utility electricity, or by the gasoline-fueled generator that is supplying to the battery enough energy to power the car and keep the battery buffer at its prescribed charge. The conditions under which the planetary gear mechanically couples the ICE generator to the drive wheels are so seldom encountered that such coupling occurs in a frequency ranging from infinitesimal to merely incidental. In other words, in Voltec, the electric drive is essential; the planetary coupling of the ICE to the drive wheels is opportunistic.

      This makes the two platforms vastly different to drive. The Volt’s handling, ride quality and overall impression of quality are simply in a different, better league, than Prius. The serenity of electric drive, even when the gasoline generator is running, is smoother, with creamier delivery of torque in most driving conditions. And the entire structure along with the motion dynamics feel stronger and more stable in Volt. The Volt costs more than the Prius, and it feels like it should.

      I don’t see any practical difference in the utility of the two cars. Both are hatchbacks. The Volt’s rear seats are more comfortable than the bench in the Prius. Obviously, Volt owners don’t need nor care about the lack of a 5th seating position. The fit, finish and overall quality of execution of the Volt is higher than in the Prius, and that’s as it should be.

      I don’t know where the allegation of questionable reliability for the Volt comes from. I see no evidence to support that. And in my case, I experienced infant failure of one internal component 48 hours after taking delivery. That was fixed and almost 15 months later not a single issue has arisen since.

      Rip the electric assist out of the Prius and you have a gas-driven econobox without off-the-line shove. Disable the planetary gear’s coupling of the ICE to the drive wheels in the Volt and you have an EV that performs the same under nearly all circumstances. Most drivers would never miss it.

      The strength, rigidity and low center of gravity of the Volt, along with the unique power delivery of electric drive, transform the driving experience relative to the prosaic humdrum of a similar-size Prius. That alone makes it worth paying more for. Most people haven’t bothered to experience this. When they do, Volt becomes vastly more comprehensible.

      Phil

      • 0 avatar
        KixStart

        The differences between the Prius and the Volt are:

        - The relative sizes of the batteries.
        - The relative strengths of the various motors.
        - The bias towards electric operation programmed into the Volt.
        - The Volt has an extra clutch and rearranges the drive unit components.
        - The Volt sells poorly with a $7500 tax credit while the Prius PHV sells poorly with a $2500 tax credit.
        - The strength of the Volt Fan Club that thinks the Volt is radically different when, in fact, it’s a parallel PHEV with less utility, a very high price tag and bad long-range fuel economy.

        “Rip the electric assist out of the Prius and you have a gas-driven econobox without off-the-line shove. Disable the planetary gear’s coupling of the ICE to the drive wheels in the Volt and you have an EV that performs the same under nearly all circumstances. Most drivers would never miss it.”

        Until they hit the 38 mile limit. Disable the ICE in the Prius and you have a low power, short range version of the Volt.

        I’ve driven a Volt. I seemed nice. $40K of nice? No. $35K of nice? probably not. $27.5K of nice? Mmmmmaybe… but I’d already bought a Prius by then and the way I use my car, a Volt’s mediocre CS mode fuel economy would cause me to use more gas (and premium gas at that).

        Fully warmed, conditioned and parked indoors the Volt ICE lit off as soon as it hit the 25F outside air. I’ve driven further on electricity in my basic 2012 Prius any number of times.

        As to the reliability, TrueDelta shows the 2011 Volt was quite good and later years are not nearly as good. The forums on GM-Volt dot com often include posts from people describing Volt problems, with subsequent commenters often accusing them of lying.

        • 0 avatar
          PonchoIndian

          You own a Prius.

          Now everything you say makes more sense.

        • 0 avatar
          Phil Ressler

          >when, in fact, it’s a parallel PHEV with less utility, a very high price tag and bad long-range fuel economy.< >bias towards electric operation programmed into the Volt< >Until they hit the 38 mile limit. Disable the ICE in the Prius and you have a low power, short range version of the Volt.< >Fully warmed, conditioned and parked indoors the Volt ICE lit off as soon as it hit the 25F outside air. I’ve driven further on electricity in my basic 2012 Prius any number of times.< >The forums on GM-Volt dot com often include posts from people describing Volt problems, with subsequent commenters often accusing them of lying.< >$40K of nice? No. $35K of nice? probably not. $27.5K of nice? Mmmmmaybe…<<

          It depends what you want. Volts don’t cost over $40K anymore, even loaded. But mine did (before the tax credits). There were and remain no $40K cars that offer “the nice” that a Volt does, if you simply have a different perspective on what’s important.

          Volt is a battery electric vehicle with a fueled generator to extend range in a way that’s practical for the infrastructure we have. Prius is a gasoline engine, mechanically-coupled car with a battery-supplemented electric motor to take some grunt tasks off the ICE, to improve the drivetrain’s fuel economy. They aren’t the same at all.

          Phil

        • 0 avatar

          Phil Ressler is a fanboi and Kixstart is being a total ass here.

          > The Volt is an electric car. Nearly all the time under all conditions, the drive wheels are powered by an electric motor

          > Until they hit the 38 mile limit. Disable the ICE in the Prius and you have a low power, short range version of the Volt.

          The Prius and Volt are actually closer in mechanics than can be inferred from their parallel/series marketing dichotomy:

          http://www.motortrend.com/features/editorial/1010_unbolting_the_chevy_volt_to_see_how_it_ticks

          OTOH the marginal benefits of a longer electric range shouldn’t be understated. It naturally costs more as an electric car with backup gen but is functionally a step closer to the “real thing”.

          • 0 avatar

            your points would have more cred if you hadn’t included the first statement. both contributors you single out are entitled to their respective opinions without personal ridicule. plus it’s kinda tacky dude.

          • 0 avatar

            > your points would have more cred if you hadn’t included the first statement. both contributors you single out are entitled to their respective opinions

            Perhaps, but I am also entitled to an opinion of what’s going on. Incidentally that one statement explains the conversation better than any other.

          • 0 avatar
            KixStart

            “Kixstart is being a total ass here.”

            Total? I’d probably agree to “somewhat of an ass” but I don’t think I’ve yet achieved “total ass.”

          • 0 avatar

            > Total? I’d probably agree to “somewhat of an ass” but I don’t think I’ve yet achieved “total ass.”

            You totally do if your thesaurus goes to 11 like mine.

          • 0 avatar

            FWIW, I guess we’re all half-ass anyway. carry on gentlemen… :)

          • 0 avatar
            Phil Ressler

            I just appreciate the Voltec for what it is and the driving experience distinctive of it. I don’t know what a “fanboi” is if you think this makes me one. I’ve actually owned more Fords in my car buying life, so none of this is reflexive of brand attachment to Chevrolet.

            The Motor Trend dissection supports my point about how distinctly different Volt and Prius are from each other. The existence of a planetary gear may be a point of design intersection, but the roles of the ICE , motor and the battery are much different in Volt. It’s not a dial of mere EV to ICE “bias.” You cannot drive the Volt on piston power through the planetary gear alone. At no point does the car configure itself to do so. As you pointed out yourself, it is electric drive practically all the time.

            Phil

          • 0 avatar

            > The existence of a planetary gear may be a point of design intersection, but the roles of the ICE , motor and the battery are much different in Volt. It’s not a dial of mere EV to ICE “bias.”

            This is more a design choice than fundamental limitation. They put much more electric than gas in the Volt, so might as well use how that works best.

  • avatar
    Kenmore

    I watch no American TV except football so I had to seek out that McDonough ad on You Tube to know what was being referenced here.

    It is one of the purest distillations I’ve ever seen presented of everything Obama and his handlers despise and are warring against as they feverishly work to kill American exceptionalism.

    I thought it rocked but admit that it also is the kind of happy fiction and conceit that gets Republicans votes from 5-figure families.

    • 0 avatar
      Big Al from Oz

      @Kenmore
      Kill American Exceptionalism?

      Wouldn’t that be good for America? America might be able to move forward, when it realises there are dozens of countries that are not much different.

      American Exceptionalism worked when America was exceptional, this is no longer the case. It’s no different to the French arrogance that some allude too or British ‘exceptionalism’ when Britannia rules the waves.

      Attaining the ‘American’ dream is easier in five nations other than the US now. In Australia they call it the ‘Australian Dream’, a quarter acre block with a house garage and white picket fence in the suburbs.

      Not much different to America, neither is NZ or Canada or the UK, even France.

      America is the greatest nation, but not necessarily the best. There is a difference.

      I think the dream is to leave our kids something better than we had. The US along with many other countries have lost this.

      • 0 avatar
        Hummer

        It’s called American exceptionalism because the dream is to do more than survive day to day, but rather enjoy life.
        Your description of the Australian dream sounds like the exact opposite of what Americans seek to assertain. How about 40 acres at $7,500 per, that’s a much more reasonable amount.

        By your Australian dream, I can tell American exceptionalism is just as true today as ever.

        • 0 avatar

          > It’s called American exceptionalism because the dream is to do more than survive day to day, but rather enjoy life.

          It’s called American exceptionalism because “exception” sounds better than a “culture” which everyone else also has. The very basis of the name is insular and ignorant and proud of it, ie better not on account of any merit but simply via faith in some ideal. Since it’s not connected to skill which is hard to acquire, it can be populist despite the implied exclusivity.

          In short, if you can’t make something of yourself, at least you’re still American. That’s what the ad sells: as long as you believe, you *are* that guy, not because you worked to achieve equivalent competence but because you’re both American.

      • 0 avatar
        KixStart

        Blather about “American Exceptionalism” is exceptionally funny in a thread about a car that only exists because the Feds stepped in and bailed GM out.

        • 0 avatar

          The true irony is that patriotism is exactly the kind of collectivism these sorts love to rally against. The strength of that mentality is demonstrated when the behavior continues unabated even after shown this. Too exceptional to follow even their own rules I guess.

          The funniest bit is *military* guys who swear cognitive dissonance against collective action or totalitarian authority.

  • avatar
    doctor olds

    @Hummer- Don’t knock the Aussies! They have pretty good lives, and are great people. Their politicians have been working to change that.

  • avatar
    LALoser

    *Looks at this Caddy for +-76K…looks at the Alfa 4C for +-65K*….


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