Company: General Motors
GM (GM) was originally so excited about the Volt that the company had announced in January it was speeding up its roll-out by six months. But by November the excitement had fizzled out. Larry Nitz, GM’s executive director for vehicle electrification told Reuters, “It’s naive to think that the world is going to switch tomorrow to EVs [electric vehicles].” Indeed, sales for the vehicle have been consistently low. Only 125 models were sold in July 2011. This was after GM spokeswoman Michelle Bunker was quoted as saying that the Volt was “virtually sold out” due to its popularity — a statement later shown to be misguided. Adding insult to injury, Chevy Volts are under investigation for fires involving the cars’ lithium-ion batteries. For concerned Volt owners, GM has offered free loaner cars.
How are the mighty fallen.
Remember the rosy predictions back when the Obama administration was pouring millions of taxpayer dollars into developing the Volt? It was going to be the car that would change the world
In August 2009, the Huffington Post gleefully reported:
General Motors Co. is touting the 230 mpg figure following early tests that used draft guidelines from the Environmental Protection Agency for calculating the mileage of extended-range electric vehicles.
The EPA guidelines, developed with help from automakers, figure that cars such as the Volt will travel more on straight electricity in the city than on the highway. If drivers operate the Volt for less than 40 miles, in theory they could do so without using a drop of gasoline.
Well THAT didn’t happen. So, to summarize, not only did the Chevy volt fall far below fuel economy predictions and sales projections, the car also catches on fire.
Here’s an idea: let’s keep the government – and above all this administration – out of the business of picking winners and losers in the private sector.