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Old 02-17-2012, 02:18 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Chevy Volt's for sale in all 50 states?

I showed up at the local electric auto association meeting last night to find out that one of the members had bought a Chevy Volt about 6 hours earlier! but what surprised everyone is that he was able to go to the Chevy dealership and bought it off the lot, no special ordering it from out of state, no waiting list, just picked one out of the handful that they had.
The reason that this was a bit of a surprise is that there wasn't any advertising saying that you could buy them now in Minnesota, apparently the dealership didn't even have a banner or signage saying that they had these cars, they were instead tucked around back, out of the way where you might find them if you searched around the lot and knew what you were looking for.
So in a room full of EV nuts, everyone was shocked that there was no press release, that it just happened...

My only thought as to why they would do it like this is that the people who really want to own a Chevy Volt are going to seek them out and that the more press that it gets the louder the nay-sayers are going to be, but if the people who really want them buy them they are going to create their own buzz and word of mouth advertising really is the best and that having people who are thrilled with their Volt out there talking it up really is the best way to counter act the bad press that has been put out there so far.

Also, it's a slick car, much nicer inside and more responsive then my boss's Saab 93 Turbo and about the same cost only with better mileage.

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Old 02-17-2012, 03:44 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Heck, I see them in several MN stealerships... they're in Grand Forks ND too.
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Old 02-17-2012, 05:29 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Frank Lee View Post
Heck, I see them in several MN stealerships... they're in Grand Forks ND too.
Right, but I have yet to see anything on any of the automotive web sites about the volt being available in all states or on any of the EV sites or forums, so while the dealerships have them that seems to be about where it ends, from what I can tell, unless my life is much more sheltered then I thought it was, but driving past a number of Chevy dealerships I saw all kinds of other banners out about other vehicles they are selling but nothing about the volt.

Last edited by Ryland; 02-17-2012 at 05:36 PM..
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Old 02-17-2012, 05:49 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ryland View Post
Right, but I have yet to see anything on any of the automotive web sites about the volt being available in all states or on any of the EV sites or forums, so while the dealerships have them that seems to be about where it ends, from what I can tell, unless my life is much more sheltered then I thought it was, but driving past a number of Chevy dealerships I saw all kinds of other banners out about other vehicles they are selling but nothing about the volt.
Hello Ryland,
I think this is SOP for new or limited availability cars. The manufacturer could be accused of favoring one dealer over another if they had a regional campaign to sell some vehicle that hadn't been distributed to all the dealers. Perhaps when as all the dealers have a Volt then the ads will go up.

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Old 02-17-2012, 06:05 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Ryland -

I'm trying to google a relevant article but this is the best I can come up with :

http://www.autonews.com/apps/pbcs.dl...IL07/301239977 - January 23, 2012
Quote:
Some Chevrolet dealers are turning down Volts that General Motors wants to ship to them, a potential stumbling block as GM looks to accelerate sales of the plug-in hybrid.

For example, consider the New York City market. Last month, GM allocated 104 Volts to 14 dealerships in the area, according to a person familiar with the matter.

Dealers took just 31 of them, the lowest take rate for any Chevy model in that market last month. That group of dealers ordered more than 90 percent of the other vehicles they were eligible to take, the source said.
I am guessing that the best place to go is a Volt forum :

GM-Volt: Chevy Volt Forum

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Old 02-17-2012, 06:46 PM   #6 (permalink)
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...has GM's "diamond" lost it's marketing 'glamour' already?
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Old 02-17-2012, 07:01 PM   #7 (permalink)
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...has GM's "diamond" lost it's marketing 'glamour' already?
Well, people are seeking them out and buying them and the people who own them are thrilled, so I'm not sure, I for one was thrilled to get to go for a ride in one, as was everyone else who got in, but if a company doesn't talk up it's product it's hard for anyone to say anything bad about it and from what I hear and see, the people who want Volt's are seeking them out and buying them, so really, why should they spend money on marketing?
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Old 02-17-2012, 09:33 PM   #8 (permalink)
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$40k for a "hybrid" that gets 60 MPG? Not only that, taxpayers paid $2.4 BILLION dollars to develop this car. Thats a cost of $260,000 per Volt that has been sold. So what we really have here is a $300,000 car that will catch on fire if you wreck it. And for what, to save a few thousand dollars on gas per year?

They need the marketing to hide how big of a failure this car really is...
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Old 02-17-2012, 10:15 PM   #9 (permalink)
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Can't be as bad of a failure as the 2012 Civic.

That being said, anything that starts moving U.S. automakers in the direction of economy cars is worth it. If anything, the problem is that they moved too slow with the Volt. Had it been competing against the 1st gen Prius, the market would have been huge. Unfortunately, they are now competing against car companies who have a decade more experience making hybrids. And if gas prices hit $5-6/gal this year (very likely), these cars are going to start getting a lot more attention.
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Old 02-18-2012, 12:28 AM   #10 (permalink)
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Just because I drive a Civic doesn't mean I was comparing the Volt to a Honda or any other car for that matter, so I really don't see what that has to do with this topic but I will respond.

I don't see the 2012 Civic as a failure and no one should. For $16k you get a car capable of 39 MPG. Its not a hyrbid. You don't have to plug it in. Its got 140 HP. If you buy the $40k Volt over a well-equipped $20k Civic you would need to wait 24 years before you come out ahead with gas savings. And a Volt would never last 24 years. The 2012 Civic does not live up to the Civic reputation, and I agree with you there, but that still hasn't stopped it from being the best selling compact sedan in the month of November 2011. Selling cars is the measure of success, the Volt clearly loses.

The reason I say the Volt is a failure is because what does it prove? What is its purpose? What new technologies or innovations does it bring to the table? Its a hybrid. If you need to drive more than 35 miles or go highway speeds you will need the gasoline engine. GM is trying to market this car as something incredible, like its the comeback of the American auto industry. It is not. Its wasted money trying to develop something that already exists. It failed to create something special. The Nissan Leaf gets better range, better MPG (gasoline equivalent), and is cheaper. It sold over double of what the Volt did in 2011.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Ladogaboy View Post
And if gas prices hit $5-6/gal this year (very likely), these cars are going to start getting a lot more attention.
Why? If gas hits that price everyone will try to drive less and save money. No one would buy a $40k car to save about half on gas compared to a car like a Civic. I will point you to my previous example. It would take you 24 years to come out ahead on savings if you buy a Volt over a Civic assuming you drive 26000 miles a year (Like I do) and gas costs $3.50 a gallon. You don't save money overall by buying a car with higher MPG if it costs you more money up front.

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Last edited by cbaber; 02-18-2012 at 12:37 AM..
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