Chevrolet Offers Bolt Owners Money If They Waive the Right to Sue

chevrolet offers bolt owners money if they waive the right to sue


With the Chevrolet Bolt gradually losing its competitive edge as more all-electric vehicles take the field, and the car on the hook for a high-profile recall relating to battery fires, General Motors opted to reduce its price by six grand this year in a bid to make the 2023 model year more appetizing to consumers. Prior to the Biden administration pushing to renew EV tax credits as part of the "Inflation Reduction Act of 2022" (basically a tweaked version of Build Back Better), GM had little hope of its vehicles benefiting from continued government incentives that it had already exceeded its sales quota for and needed a remedy. However the sudden price cut didn't sit well with customers who had just purchased a Bolt EV (or EUV) at the earlier price point, so the automaker attempted to cut them a semi-Faustian bargain.


Introduced in July, the assumption was that GM would offer simple cash rebates to last year's customers as a way to say it was sorry. But Bolt owners have started leaking to the press that the deal also includes a contract where beneficiaries would have to waive their right to sue General Motors (or any other involved company) in the event that the Bolt catches fire.


According to Jalopnik, those attempting to take advantage of the offer found themselves confronting a step in the process where they had to submit their Vehicle Identification Number (VIN) and were then required to agree to "forever waive and release all claims, damages, or causes of action" before continuing. So, if the car experiences a bout of thermal runaway and burns down your garage or some other catastrophic issue takes place, GM is legally protected.


"By nonetheless agreeing to this Release, I — both on my own behalf and on behalf of my heirs, agents, servants, beneficiaries, legal representatives, assigns, wards, executors, successors, and administrators — forever waive and release all claims, damages, or causes of action, either known or unknown, regardless of the legal or equitable theory, that I may have now or in the future arising out of or in any way relating to my Bolt vehicle(s), the battery defect, or the battery recalls, and including any claims or rights that I may have in connection with the class action, including any right to participate as a class member," explains the texts. "This release is in favor of and includes General Motors Company, General Motors LLC, General Motors Holdings LLC, LG Chem, Ltd., LG Energy Solution, Ltd., LG Energy Solution Michigan Inc., LG Electronics, Inc., and LG Electronics USA, Inc. as well as all of their respective officers, directors, agents, employees, servants, subsidiaries, affiliated companies, subsidiaries, parent companies, insurers, authorized dealers, suppliers, divisions, predecessors, successors, heirs, and assigns."


Jalopnik has a transcript of the entire agreement if you're interested, but the above basically tells you everything you need to know. Buy taking GM's money now, you're effectively making it and the battery supplier exempt from any legal action you might take later. That'd be a little more palatable if the automaker hadn't framed this in a way to appease owners that felt a little hoodwinked after Bolt prices came down by $6,000.


GM has extended the "deal" to vehicles from the 2020-2022 model years that were purchased last year. Leased models are not eligible and there appear to be some restrictions regarding trim levels, based on leaked dealer memos.


[Image: Tricky_Shark/Shutterstock]


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  • Cprescott Cprescott on Aug 04, 2022

    We saved a company that cannot save itself!

  • DAC17 DAC17 on Aug 04, 2022

    16 out of 140,000 referred to the specific incidence of Bolt fires. Thanks for simplifying the math for people who aren't as smart as you think you are. And if you don't own one why do you care?

  • DenverMike When was it ever a mystery? The Fairmont maybe, but only the 4-door "Futura" trim, that was distinctively upscale. The Citation and Volare didn't have competing trims, nor was there a base stripper Maxima at the time, if ever, crank windows, vinyl seats, 2-doors, etc. So it wasn't a "massacre", not even in spirit, just different market segments. It could be that the Maxima was intended to compete with those, but everything coming from Japan at the time had to take it up a notch, if not two.Thanks to the Japanese "voluntary" trade restriction, everything had extra options, if not hard loaded. The restriction limited how many vehicles were shipped, not what they retailed at. So Japanese automakers naturally raised the "price" (or stakes) without raising MSRP. What the dealers charged (gouged) was a different story.Realistically, the Maxima was going up against entry luxury sedans (except Cimarron lol), especially Euro/German, same as the Cressida. It definitely worked in Japanese automaker's favor, not to mention inspiring Lexus, Acura and Infiniti.
  • Ronnie Schreiber Hydrocarbon based fuels have become unreliable? More expensive at the moment but I haven't seen any lines gathering around gas stations lately, have you? I'm old enough to remember actual gasoline shortages in 1973 and 1979 (of course, since then there have been many recoverable oil deposits discovered around the world plus the introduction of fracking). Consumers Power is still supplying me with natural gas. I recently went camping and had no problem buying propane.Texas had grid problems last winter because they replaced fossil fueled power plants with wind and solar, which didn't work in the cold weather. That's the definition of unreliable.I'm an "all of the above" guy when it comes to energy: fossil fuels, hydro, wind (where it makes sense), nuclear (including funding for fusion research), and possibly solar.Environmental activists, it seems to me, have no interest in energy diversity. Based on what's happened in Sri Lanka and the push against agriculture in Europe and Canada, I think it's safe to say that some folks want most of us to live like medieval peasants to save the planet for their own private jets.
  • Car65688392 thankyou for the information
  • Car65688392 Thankyou for your valuable information
  • MaintenanceCosts There's no mystery anymore about how the Japanese took over the prestige spot in the US mass market (especially on the west coast) when you realize that this thing was up against the likes of the Fairmont, Citation, and Volaré. A massacre.
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