Chevy Volt Priced Starting At $41k, Leases Start At $350/Month

Edward Niedermeyer
by Edward Niedermeyer
chevy volt priced starting at 41k leases start at 350 month

This, ladies and gentlemen, is a moment we’ve been waiting for for some time… which might explain why the news isn’t particularly earth-shattering [ press release here]. Yes, believe it or not, the Volt will cost $41,000 base including destination charge, just as every bit of speculation has indicated since the Volt was first announced. Perhaps more surprising is GM’s announcement of lease deals starting at $350/month for 36 months with $2,500 down. But just as GM has found with its CTS, moving high-cost American-branded metal in any kind of volume tends to require heavy dependence on leases. Plus, the fact that the big question mark surrounding EVs in general continues to be long-term battery life makes leasing the obvious option for those who are tempted by the Volt, but don’t want own a lot of expensive, unproven technology. On the other hand, the Feds don’t subsidize EV leases, and with a Federal tax credit, the Volt’s price drops to a mere $33,500… which is less than a thousand dollars more than the Nissan Leaf’s base price (without tax credit, $25,280 with). Obviously the Volt has certain advantages due to its EREV design, but with the economy still shaky, the Volt’s hefty price premium will work against it, especially as volume builds. Seeing how these two very different EVs do relative to one another will make for some interesting lessons about the future of the electric car.

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  • Autojunkie Autojunkie on Jul 28, 2010

    I drive 14 miles, non-freeway, round-trip each day to/from work. If I ONLY drove that car to work, with a 1/4 tank of gas, I would (concievably) never use that 1/4 tank of gas (if I plug in every night at home). Now, consider I could still get 40 to 50 mpg if I decide to go on vacation, or drive across the country, then I'm getting what I would with any highly fuel efficient small ICE car. What's the benefit? I only have to own one car. Not two, which cold bring my total vehicle cost to well over $41k. I have two words about the Leaf. "Range Anxiety". Let's not forget that Fisker is planning on using, essentially, the same type of technology and is counting on a similar price of around $40k for its sedan.

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    • KixStart KixStart on Jul 28, 2010

      Don't get marrried to that 50mpg number, Steven02. Especially from that Fox News articl you referenced; that same article referred to the ridiculous 230mpg number, too. Further, we now find that the Volt requires premium. Why is this? Well, it turns out that they need to do this to get maximum efficiency in combustion, it gains them 5 to 10%. I'd say they must have been having a lot of trouble making any reasonable MPG if they were desperate enough to require premium.

  • Overshoe Overshoe on Jul 28, 2010

    This will be the most recalled vehicle in Gm's (old and New) history.

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    • Nonce Nonce on Jul 29, 2010

      Even if they recall all of them, it still won't be GM's largest recall.

  • Lokki Lokki on Jul 28, 2010

    I'm still a doubter, at least for use in my situation. Before I could decide anything, I'd like to see some performance figures - and real world performance figures at that. I know that electric motors give great torque, and that the motors in the Volt give the equivalent of 140 HP. Those points conceptually sound great. However, I live in Dallas. I drive 38 miles a day when commuting. Dallas has the distinction of either being damn hot or damn cold. Thus you have to factor in the range diminishment and power losses caused by using the A/C when it's 100 degrees F or the heat when it's 34 degrees F. Additionally, with freeway use, you're going to lose more range. Speeds here are normally between 65 - 75 mph. My current car has an average speed calculator, and over the course of a week, with city and freeway driving combined, I average 37 - 39 mph. When you figure in the amount of miles that are spent on surface streets going slowly, that average includes some "skippin' along" on the freeway. I understand that the Volt will supplement its range with its ICE but what kind of performance do you get from that 71 HP generator with the A/C on?. I don't know much about physics, but I'm having trouble with conceptually grasping getting 140 electrical HP out of a 71 HP input. Note: I'm getting these figures from Wikipedia, so they may well be wrong. If so please don't hesitate to correct me. Additionally if it IS possible to get 140 HP output from a 71 HP input, please don't hesitate to correct me there as well.

    • Steven02 Steven02 on Jul 28, 2010

      You are correct, except for one thing. You aren't using 140hp all of the time. That is the maximum output. The Volt has some charge left in the batteries and will kick in more power if it is needed. You don't need that much hp if you cruising along the highway. Accelerating will require more hp. But, you will only get max output when you are flooring it.

  • KixStart KixStart on Jul 28, 2010

    Lokki: "Dallas has the distinction of either being damn hot or damn cold." You should have warned us to put down the coffee... At least, warned those of us in Minnesota. A temp of 34F is nothing. A temp of -34F, now that's something. Lokki: "I understand that the Volt will supplement its range with its ICE but what kind of performance do you get from that 71 HP generator with the A/C on?. I don’t know much about physics, but I’m having trouble with conceptually grasping getting 140 electrical HP out of a 71 HP input." The thing is predicated on the notion that you don't need 150hp at the wheels all the time, 20-30hp is more like it. The Volt runs the 74hp generator as necessary to recharge the battery.

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    • KixStart KixStart on Jul 28, 2010

      We're both wrong - and right. It partially recharges the battery but it never fully recharges the battery (they don't fill the battery with expensive gas instead of cheap electricity). It just recharges the battery enough, as necessary, to keep the car going along. At least, according to GM, that's what happens. It wouldn't surprise me if they surprised me with a different strategy in the production vehicle. Among other things, they admitted they run the engine at different RPMs that follow the general workload. This suggests that the generator output is being used directly. Perhaps the battery is an energy reserve at that point for maximum power. The battery could be recharged opportunistically. That strategy would work reasonably well.