Friday, August 5, 2011

Volt Selling Like Hotcakes. NOT!

Just thought you might like to know that the Chevy Volt sold 125 units last month. Yep, this is the next big thing.

And now the ranting begins

Do you suppose people out there know what a waste of time it would be to purchase this vehicle? Do you think folks are smarter enough to realize that it would take more than 15 years to recoup the cost the Chevy Volt ($45K+) vs. the cost of a comparable car ($25K) that gets 35 mpg? Not exactly a bargain. This doesn’t even include the dealer markup of about $7K that many dealers are charging.

Do you suppose folks have figured out the range of a Volt is less than 50 miles between charges? And this range is decreased when you use pesky options like headlights, radios, windshield wipers, and heaters. If the weather is cold (never mind using the heater), the range is cut to less than 25 miles.

Do you suppose folks understand this vehicle would be worthless for a trip to Grandma’s house? First off, when you add more people and some luggage (good luck with that), the range of the charge is decreased (depends on weight). Next, good luck finding charging stations. This issue is being worked on though in certain parts of the country. Out here in the PACNW, there is a joint initiative (private and government) to develop what is called the West Coast Green Highway. I don’t bring this up to pat them on the back. I bring this up because it is a waste of our tax dollars. There will charging stations all along the I-5 corridor from San Diego to Vancouver BC. There is a problem though. They aren’t installing enough of them, and the time it takes to charge them is still 100 times long than it takes to fill ‘er up at the old gas station (potty break included). That six hour trip to Grandma’s house will now take 3 days.

Of course the Volt does have a gas engine backup, which essentially makes this a hybrid. So you can bypass all of those West Coast Green Highway and (insert state name here) Department of Transportation and taxpayer paid for charging stations. Why don’t we all drive an electric car that has no range, uses gas to bypass that lack of range, and will just be another gas burning vehicle.

Do you suppose people have figured out that no one know how much it is going to cost to replace the batteries in the Volt? And that no has quite figured out how to dispose of them safely? The lion’s share of the cost of the Volt is tied to the battery. There have been some estimates that it will cost $18K to replace. This cost isn’t even figured into to recoupment costs mentioned above. Throw this cost into the mix, and I don’t think you’ll ever get you money back. But hey, you’ll be green.

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