In a few weeks, GM will suspend production of the Chevy Volt.
Word from management is that the company simply needs to match production levels with demand. And despite some great sales numbers last month, it still wasn’t enough to keep the company from the temporary production halt.
So why is GM having such a tough time with the Volt now?
Some say the car is just too expensive. Although I’ve yet to discover any new disruptive technology that comes out of the gate with an “affordable” price tag. Remember the cell phones of the early 90s?
Some say GM simply set its goals too high. I might be in agreement with that. Clearly there is demand. But perhaps GM should have been a bit more conservative in its goal.
Some say this is a result of a constant avalanche of negative press. I’m not sure how much this affected sales, although there is absolutely no doubt that the Volt has been targeted by irresponsible media bullies that have zero interest in objective journalism. I can’t imagine this has helped GM show folks just how much of a technological breakthrough this vehicle really is. As GM CEO Dan Akerson said, “Although we loaded the Volt with state-of-the-art safety features, we did not engineer the Volt to be a political punching bag. And that, sadly, is what the Volt has become.”
And finally, I did hear a rumor that some Chevy dealerships have been luring car buyers in with the Volt, then quickly dragging them over to the Cruze Eco. I don’t know if there’s any truth to this rumor, but I wouldn’t be surprised as I have met some salesmen at dealerships who clearly have no interest in selling Volts.
Truth is, it’s hard to pinpoint what happened here. But one thing is certain, electric vehicle development is happening. And it’s going to happen with or without US automakers.
Although it should be noted that while GM temporarily shuts down Volt production for 5 weeks, Ford is hard at work getting the car-buying public ready for the Ford Focus Electric.
It’s a Good Day for Volt-Bashers! originally appeared in Green Chip Stocks. Green Chip Review is a free 2x-per-week newsletter, is the first advisory to focus exclusively on investments in alternative and renewable energies.