Skip to comments.NY Times Chevy Volt Criticism Confounds Proponents
Posted on 04/09/2012 11:40:13 AM PDT by jazusamo
The report by the NY Times that it would take up to 27 years for Chevy Volt buyers to save enough money in gas costs to make up for the high price of the car must be very confusing for apologists of the vehicle. The normal defense for any criticism is to accuse sources of having a right wing hate of the car. But the NY Times? The very vocal Volt defenders, who are quick to attack anyone who doesn't agree that the car is a technological marvel worthy of billions of dollars of taxpayer largess, will have to attribute the left-leaning Times' criticism to something other than a political agenda.
Many stories are circulated falsely proclaiming that a "crapload" of money can be saved by buying a Volt. The Times explains the misconception stating, "So why do some buyers pay more for advanced technology that might not save them money? Many never do the math, analysts say, or they tend to overestimate how much the added miles per gallon translate into actual monetary savings."
Of course, given the political nature of the Volt, it is more likely that outright lies rather than poor math skills are leading to the flood of pro-Volt stories. I have written in the past about the simple math of gas savings for the Volt that equate to about $2 a day in fuel savings . When you have a President of the USA campaigning on the perceived success of the Volt and General Motors, it is not surprising that false reports are circulated regarding the benefits of the vehicle. The Times report is a tough one for Government Motors to counter since the old "Rush Limbaugh/Fox News/right wing lies" defense will not work.
Obama-appointed GM CEO Dan Akerson's politicically based defense of the Volt is as disengenuous as the false gas savings hype. Akerson claims that Republicans are unfairly attacking the Volt, but not the plug-in Nissan Leaf. He goes on to blame low sales of the Volt on the criticisms. GM then trumpets how many more Volts are selling than the even more dismally selling Leaf. Wouldn't it stand to reason that if criticism is determining sales that the Leaf would be outselling the Volt? C'mon Mr. Akerson, put a little more thought into your spin.
The Times story is not the only cause of inner conflict for the gullible green crowd and extreme-left supporters of the Volt. The defense of GM because they are a patriotic company producing the American-made Volt must be just as paradoxical to the side that brought us the Occupy Wall Street movement. Shouldn't they be condemning evil American companies that do not pay their fair share instead of defending them? I guess the perceived good done by attacking Mitt Romney and Republicans for the slightest of Volt criticisms outweighs the eagerness to bash American corporatism. In addition, there are all those subsidies that go to wealthy purchasers of Volts. It seems that the desire to have the rich and corporations pay their fair share only applies to the conservative wealthy populace and politically unpopular oil companies; rich supporters of President Obama's failing energy policies who buy Volts and crony company GM get a bye.
The bottom line is that the Chevy Volt is a politically motivated car that is now being used as a campaign tool for Democrats. Millions of dollars will be spent on ads (which seems to be influencing news coverage) and lease incentives to see that the car is perceived as a success, regardless of the fact that the spending causes GM to lose money for shareholders, many of whom are the US taxpayers. Another approximately $20 million in tax subsidies contributed to the vehicle selling over 2,000 units in March, a still dismally low number that is being touted as a great success. Crony corporation, GE, will play its part as they purchase an undisclosed number of the vehicles each month leading up to November elections. And Government Motors will continue to whine about right wing conspiracies to hurt the Volt, even though the facts about the over-hyped vehicle not being all it was cracked up to be is coming from those in the media with a modicum of journalistic integrity (even if that integrity is short-lived, as might be the case with the NY Times) rather than a political agenda.
Mark Modica is an NLPC Associate Fellow.
I am going to take a wild guess and figure that it would take a few years to account for the cost of the vehicle in gas savings.
Then there’s the question of how much profit is made for each Volt sold. I am confident that electric/hybrid vehicles are going to continue getting better, but when you consider the financial status of GM, and a lot of details about the Volt, I have a hard time buying into how great it is.
Just to clear up some nnonsense that goes around here at FR, the Volt was championed two years before Obama was elected and championed by Bob Lutz a true “car guy” and well known opponent of the “global warming” libs. Not everything GM soes is evil guys.
Do you own one?
“... The defense of GM because they are a patriotic company producing the American-made Volt ...”
A patriotic company does not produce ill-engineered opsolete cr*p for years as did GM.
A patriotic company does not continue to screw their customers for years with engineers and management dorks who demenstrated equal to Obama stupidity as did GM.
Shove it up your smelly Obama, GM.
Then take it out and shove it up again.
You’re correct and if people who can afford to buy the Volt buy it, more power to them but the subsidies and tax credits come out of the pockets of taxpayers. The majority of taxpayers who help support sales of this vehicle cannot in fact afford to buy one themselves.
If GM wants to compete on their own with other companies that’s fine but Obama has chosen the “green energy” thing and has specifically chosen to promote the Volt.
BO was the one that bailed GM out.
BO was the one that stole property from thousands of business owners (aka dealers).
BO is the ONLY President of the United States which has pushed this vehicle.
Government Motors, not my kind of car.
That is good information. I'll take you for your word and give you the benefit of the doubt. Since you apparently know more about the Volt history, why did it go into production?
There are always (or should be) new innovations and products being engineered and developed at manufacturing companies of all kinds. It's part of R&D. Most don't make it to market for various reasons (mostly solid business reasons).
At some point, somebody realized that the vehicle made no economic sense for the regular consumer. Before you answer, I would offer that a Corvette does not make any economic sense for the regular consumer and yet is a profitable product.
Where did they go wrong and why hasn't the production been scrapped all together? What is motivating the financial acceleration of the death spiral?
Is management so flawed at GM that they would take on this risky venture (if not certain failure)? Or is there some other mitigating factor that influenced a business decision at GM?
All that was before Zero, Government Motors and taxpayer subsidies. The Volt that was promised was revolutionary; the one that was delivered is a gubmint boondoggle that robs the taxpayer everytime a unit is sold. It needs to die.
So if a Volt and a Cruze catch on fire, which would cause more global warming?
Bob Lutz, aka car guy is also a GM flunkee...
Let’s force those proponents to drive those cars for at least three months or more. Then they’ll understand!
Rename it the “Strength through Joy Car”. KdF-Wagen, for short.
“Just to clear up some nnonsense that goes around here at FR, the Volt was championed two years before Obama was elected and championed by Bob Lutz a true car guy and well known opponent of the global warming libs. Not everything GM soes is evil guys.”
Lutz a true car guy?
For what? His recent accomplishments that is.
The fact is while Toyota was adding Lexus and Scion, while BMW was adding Mini, GM was killing brands. Oldsmobile, Pontiac, Saab, Saturn, Hummer.
GM saw Ford doing well with their new Mustang, so they went on a crash program to resurect the Camaro they killed so recently, and that is all I have seen from GM. Period.
No snazzy retro-nomad mis-sized wagon with a turbo-six, etc.
I don’t have a long commute between home and work (@21 miles/day round trip) and only use about 10 gallons of gas per week. I was considering a $40k Mercury Mariner hybrid in 2009 - when gas was at $4.00/gallon (yep, it’s deja vu all over again) But a quick spreadsheet showed it would take a couple of decades to payoff the car on gas savings alone. Pretty weak argument when asking a buyer to take on $450-500/month payment for 6 years. Then the cost of gas went down and the pay off period got even longer. I kept my van and just decided to pay the additional cost when it came.
I think you can make reasonable environmental (air pollution reduction) and national security (eliminate dependence on hostile/unreliable foreign oil sources)arguments for shifting to the all electric and gas-electric hybrid. But you can’t make an economic argument for adoption - even when you run the theoretical fuel economy up to 100 mpg.
the Volt was championed two years before Obama was elected and championed by Bob Lutz
Lutz believed we’d have better batteries by now ... A car that can only go 30 miles on battery IF YOU DON’T USE THE A/C ,, or can only go 20 miles on battery IF YOU USE THE HEAT ... isn’t what we need ... the car is so inferior to the Cruze it isn’t funny ... I’ll take a Cruze ECO above this anytime.
Disclaimer: Opinions posted on Free Republic are those of the individual posters and do not necessarily represent the opinion of Free Republic or its management. All materials posted herein are protected by copyright law and the exemption for fair use of copyrighted works.