While we complaining about tax reductions for purchasing vehicles that don't rely on middle eastern oil, why not add in the taxes we pay to keep that oil flowing. I get it that you are trying to make a point, but two of my kids are fighting for your oil, and thankfully they both made it home with all their body parts intact (this time). I can't see any reason to continue to rely on a substance that costs American families so dearly. I'll run my car on Kentucky Coal and a little solar power thank you. No doubt we as a group are in the 51% of the population that pays taxes, and even with the tiny $7.5K tax break President Bush came up with, I still pay thousands and thousands in federal taxes. Oil is finite. We can run out faster or slower, we will run out, and that's a fact. I have children and grandchildren. I'm more concerned about their future than I am my own. I will be worm food long before we run out of oil, but that doesn't enter into the equation when calculating the future of the world. When did everyone become so self centered? Fifty years down the road when we don't have enough cheap fuel to plow fields and grow food, our grandchildren will wonder "What were those idiots thinking?" We fully understand the solution to the problem, but what the heck, it's cheaper to buy a clunker and waste oil. To hell with our children and their children. I could be wrong, what do you think? How will the world's farmers support 10 billion people 50 years from now? Isn't that question worthy of consideration?
The Volt has a fuel management system that includes pressurizing the fuel tank and it has a complete protocol for keeping track of fuel age and also keeping track of the need to keep fresh oil in the upper parts of the motor. It will ask premission to run the engine to meet these needs. You can delay it for a while but eventually it forces you by running the engine to ensure the fuel does not go bad and the engine stays fresh with good oil.
BTW, if you add the fact that a Volt will never need new brakes and it requires one oil change every two years (for most users), you reduce the cost of ownership even more.
The car even has an emergency limp mode if you run out of battery and run out of gas. It basically runs the battery lower than normal to get you home or gas station at a slow speed. No other car has that much thought into it.
I really need to get some work done today, but the amount of interesting preceptions has managed to interrupt me yet again...
The EV1 by GM was indeed canned, but not before the engineers had learned a lot of details about EV vehicles. There is more to the Volt from the EV1 program than you know. For instance, when testing the EV1 cars, engineers added a small generator in a trailer attached to the car. That way they could drive in electric mode for very long periods of time - something required for reliability testing, particularly in extreme environments. So when Bob Lutz wanted a electric car, the engineers insisted on having a backup generator.
I can see your point about people buying the car because they feel they have to, but I am still looking for someone who is not impressed with their purchase. Last month while on my way to work a lady pulls up in her late model Jag and is simply beside herself about how cool she thought my dark blue Volt looked. I have to say, that is the number one comment I get from people who stand there and stare at it - "Wow, this thing looks cool! Not at all like the rest of the EVs that are available."
So I have to imagine you have not driven a Volt nor looked at how many used corvettes are available for sale (on carmax in my area, there are 15) and how many used Volts are available for sale (in my area, only 1). Hmmm, I think you have an idea in your head, but certianly not enough information to back it up. I am in an area where both cars are plentiful.
As I mentioned, after leasing one (my recommended method of purchase currently), I went and leased another one. Who wouldn't like to drive a Vette? But practicaly speaking the high cost, low utility, college costs, and risk of getting into serious trouble with the law force me to think outside the box and I get to save a ton of money on fuel as well.
I am still pleasantly surprised how fun it is to mess with people. I had a guy in a Honda Accord want to race, dusted him, he wanted to do it again, dusted him again. Pretty much you get the jump on anything because of the max torque at zero RPM. Since I get the jump, I get to decide when to let off and let them think about how much more I had available. Fun... staying within the speed limit... no trouble from the police - what more can you ask for?
The word will get out, it just takes time. In 2014 the Volt will have a 220 HP turbocharged engine available - to make it a bit more sporty.
I am disappointed at how many people think they are the only thinkers. We are all on the same team and we have to start thinking that way or we will be toast as a nation - who wants a nation full of negative nellies. Not me!
I have been watching the commercials for the Volt with owners talking about not filling their cars for months. I know if left for too long gas does go bad. I wonder if this is going to start being a problem with these hybrid electric / gas cars? Any thoughts?
GM's website dedicated to the Volt has on online realtime counting mechanism. It counts miles driven by the Volt and the resultant gas gallons saved. Adding up the miles, then dividing by the gallons "saved" one can say that GM claims a gallon saved for each 48 miles driven. Interestingly though... if you write down their numbers, wait an hour, and do it again, it amounts to one gallon saved per 160 miles. I smell a rat, but I'll give them the benefit of the doubt for this analysis. In 100000 miles, that's a touch over 2000 gallons, or less than $8K lifetime gas savings. That's on a $46,000 car. Even if you take the $6000 of "free" money from Uncle Sam, I make this comparison: For about half the money I can buy a car that meets my needs. For about 1/3 the money, I can buy a used car with only 30K miles that meets my needs. For $3000, I bought a nice LOW MILES 4-door that gets 27mpg all the time. Bottom line is STILL that I am not in a position to buy cars on ideology. I didn't say the ideology was BAD, just that I cannot justify it on my family's budget, and we are by no means poor. Most self-sufficient Americans do the math similarly. Yes, fossil fuel is finite... but they've been saying that since 1974 or even before. Americans need a solid reason BIGGER than ideology to buy into something like the VOLT. It'd be even more credible if the FEDS weren't tossing in $6K to pump up their miserable sales figures.
If we ignore "mandatory government coersion" and look at successful products from Pet Rocks to Iphones there are two primary drivers to successful products -  folks want them and  folks can afford them. Technical excellence and need are down the list.
Part GM's problem is that they shot themselves in the foot when they spent considerableable money to repo and crush their EV1 rolling laboratories and data collection vehicles. GM has failed to create any real 'buzz' or 'lust' for the Volt and they have failed to price it effectively - presumably due to high manufacturing cost.
Off the wall...
A comparison of Corvette vs. Volt [yes, they are apple and orange] will show that they have similar low production volumes and a $50k vs. $40k price. A look at the buyers and potential buyers will show that the Vette has a lot more 'lusters saving up' and the Volt purchasers consist of a number of reluctant purchasers who have made their decision based on rising gasoline prices. What all of this means is that the Volt is in trouble for the long run. Their Marketing and Promotion Plan for the Volt stinks. If they continue down the current path, the Volt will likely fail...
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