Volt Birth Watch 117: GM-Volt.com Swings For The Fences

volt birth watch 117 gm volt com swings for the fences

This is what I get for taking a moment to check in at GM-Volt.com. The angry young Volt-lovers are freaking out about the possibility of GM not surviving until the Volt’s launch date, and the prospect of losing their beloved fetish object has folks in a “pay any price, bear any burden, meet any hardship” kind of mood. The emotional fervor that these people feel towards this nonexistant vehicle is such that their suggestions make handing a blank check to Detroit look like a good idea. The “ GM-Volt.com Viability Plan Suggestion,” was put forward by semi-retired NASA engineer Phil Toney, and man is it a doozy. The plan boils down to congress legislating that the entire government fleet (600k+ vehicles) be replaced with, you guessed it, Chevy Volts. But that’s not all…

According to GM-Volt.com founder Lyle Dennis, these “Chevy Volts should be sold to the government at premium and without a battery warranty. Each vehicle should be sold at a profit. And in so doing, and assuming sufficient battery pack quantities can be produced, they could be released earlier than the November 2010 deadline” (emphasis in original). This suggestion has been forwarded to “the highest-ranking GM executives” Dennis has access to, because as he puts it, “since the government is already spending billions on bad assets, how about a few billion on good assets!”

Except for the issues with GM rushing to even make the “late 2010” launch date, and the fact that they’ll only be able to build 10k per year. And then there’s the tiny problem of the $30b (600k vehicles x $50k) taxpayer price tag for an unproven product. But by all means, follow Dennis’s advice and forward the plan to your elected representatives. They could probably use a good laugh right about now.

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  • Geotpf Geotpf on Nov 30, 2008
    KixStart : November 28th, 2008 at 11:54 pm GM’s plans are to product 10K Volts in its first full year (2011) and perhaps 200K, total, by 2015. A vehicle built in these piddly quantities means nothing to our National Security. This is a car which GM can neither build economically nor sell at a profit. It can’t save GM but it can help take GM down. Absolutely true. The Volt exists because GM has negative "green" PR, due to the crushing of all the EV1s and things like the HUMMER. It's a PR exercise that will cost the company billions of dollars at a time when they are about to go out of business and can't afford to blow a couple billion dollars at looking green. GM has almost no idea how long the battery will last in practice and what form their warranty will take. Well, it's basically a hybrid, right? Then to qualify for tax credits and the like, the warranty on the battery and all hybrid-related components should be eight years, one hundred thousand miles or longer (the same as the warranty on the Prius's battery and hybrid parts). Of course, Congress could change the law to reduce this requirement if GM says the Volt's battery is too crappy to meet such a requirement.

  • Bertel Schmitt Bertel Schmitt on Nov 30, 2008

    @Greg Locock: Bravo. This argument should be made again, and again, and again.

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  • Conundrum All that verbiage for a brake fluid reservoir cap that sorta kinda fails over time? That's all it is, right? The vent hole gets plugged up or something. Quelle horreur, it's the end of civilization as we know it. What happens when Micky D's doesn't put enough extra ketchup in your order at the take-out window? You must have an existential histrionic fit!Cue the cheapskate commenter: "Jeez. I drove my 1987 Corolla 734,562 miles, the last 83K with the emergency spare on the left rear, and it didn't even use up all the tread! Plus, I never had brake failure and it never used a drop of oil even though I used Walmart $1.88 stuff in a plastic gallon jug. I guess Toyota could teach those Ferrari guys sump'n about how to build cars!"
  • Skippity Noticeable as an Paseo. Maybe I'll see it differently live.
  • Tagbert I had this JX, though mine was a 5-speed in dark green. Got it when I lived in the mountains in Colorado. That was a fun little beast. Not super fast, but it could go just about anywhere. Put it into the low speed on the transfer case and that thing would just creep forward. The interior was not fancy but it held up well to lots of outdoor activities. I could hold lots of gear. Later when I moved away, it still proved useful. I was an unofficial “roadie” for my boyfriend and his band. Could get all their gear into it. The in-town gas mileage was around 25 mph which is pretty good. On the downside, the highway mileage was maybe 26 mph 😊.
  • Skippity I had a 308 in the 80's. Said Matchbox on the bottom.