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Old 02-02-2024, 03:05 AM
 
Location: Newburyport, MA
11,867 posts, read 8,961,279 times
Reputation: 15159

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GM made one plug-in hybrid named the Chevy Volt from model years 2010-2019, so they stopped offering plug-in hybrids a few years ago. In its last incarnation, the Volt was a fairly sleek 4-door hatchback with 53 miles of electric range from an 18.4 kWh battery, per the EPA rating, which may have been a little optimistic. Volts sold pretty well, peaking at about 24k units annually in 2016 before sales began to fall off.

On a recent earnings call, GM's CEO Mary Barra indicated that GM is entertaining introducing some plug-in hybrid models soon. Barra emphasized that they are still working out the details, so as far as how many models, when, and what those models might look like, she said they'd have more details later this year. From her remarks though, it did sound like GM planned to adapt existing models and existing plug-in hybrid powertrains from other markets, and therefore get this done on a shorter timeline and at lower cost than a ground-up design effort.

Barra was fairly circumspect in a follow-on interview with Bloomberg. I understand that, as both EV proponents and some investors will seek to criticize them for the move, so she was deliberately not trying to speak too clearly. But I think it's fair to say that the EV adoption process, while rapid, hasn't been *as* rapid as GM anticipated. Many buyers are getting on board, but others are clearly still reluctant. Secondly, the Wall Street Journal recently reported that many GM dealers were telling GM corporate that many customers were telling sales staff that they were reluctant to go full EV, but would be interested in hybrids (behind paywall).
https://www.wsj.com/business/autos/d...brids-5387d2bf

You put those two things together with the fact that tightening CAFE standards - mentioned by Barra, are going to begin to put the squeeze on automakers soon, and you can understand what is driving this step by GM. It's basically a pitch for those buyers who are reluctant to go full EV - whether it's because of their circumstances would make owning an EV unattractive or simply their perceptions. Benefits for GM will be trying to optimize the sales mix and avoiding CAFE penalties. This is seen as a limited, pragmatic interim move, not an abandoning of the EV transition strategy, but an adjustment if you will.

Even if many customers may be asking about hybrids, that won't make hybrid success a slam dunk. They've still got to offer it in models people want, with performance parameters and a price they will find appealing. And they want to do all that without spending too much time or money. As Barra said, stay tuned for more later in the year.


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HJL-VYbpY34

Last edited by OutdoorLover; 02-02-2024 at 03:20 AM..
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Old 02-02-2024, 06:59 AM
 
16,979 posts, read 21,613,699 times
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GM/Ford are in trouble when it comes to EV/hybrids.
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Old 02-02-2024, 08:42 AM
 
9,963 posts, read 6,572,101 times
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The Volt sold okay when the government paid you buy them, and same with the Bolt then they were discontinued.

Legacy automakers should go back to just making gas powered cars. Tesla is popular because they are as much as super innovative tech company as an auto manufacturer, of which GM is not and will never be.

The hype of Tesla and electric cars is certainly dying down. If I ran GM, i'd surely be pushing for more oil.
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Old 02-02-2024, 08:48 AM
 
Location: In the heights
36,881 posts, read 38,781,820 times
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I wish they had never stopped development of the Voltec powertrain as it was really well designed. It's main problem on the consumer level was that it was deployed in a compact car when the market had been rapidly shifting away from that. I think GM learned the wrong lesson there where they thought the powertrain was the issue rather than the market segment they deployed it in.
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Old 02-02-2024, 08:49 AM
 
Location: In the heights
36,881 posts, read 38,781,820 times
Reputation: 20894
Quote:
Originally Posted by DannyHobkins View Post
The Volt sold okay when the government paid you buy them, and same with the Bolt then they were discontinued.

Legacy automakers should go back to just making gas powered cars. Tesla is popular because they are as much as super innovative tech company as an auto manufacturer, of which GM is not and will never be.

The hype of Tesla and electric cars is certainly dying down. If I ran GM, i'd surely be pushing for more oil.
Dying down as in going through exponential growth both within the US and on the global level? The problem is more that established US automakers for the most part didn't prep themselves for this shift while Chinese, South Korean, and to a lesser extent, German automakers did which is why they've been rapidly expanding. Tesla at least got an earlier scare into them than they would have had they waited for international automakers to start stepping in, so there's still a good chance that established US automakers can weather this change alright though it's going to be grueling for at least the next several years and there are no guarantees.
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Old 02-02-2024, 08:57 AM
 
18,754 posts, read 27,181,960 times
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I can smell thick odour of "forget them EVs" coming from GM and Ford. Crowd caught on this. Making failed EV trucks really was the proverbial last bullet.
My colleague fell on his head and bought EV F150. It lasted in his ownership ONE day. ONE. He brought it back and now rides hybrid F150 and even that, simply because they had nothing else to offer and substitute for returned car.
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Old 02-02-2024, 11:58 AM
 
Location: Newburyport, MA
11,867 posts, read 8,961,279 times
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It's simply false that Ford and GM are abandoning EVs. The company leaders aren't saying that, nor is any reputable source of information. It's also false that EV sales have collapsed overall. Looking at the big picture of US EV sales, they were up by 46% in 2023 over 2022 sales.
https://www.autoweek.com/news/a46463...h-cox-gm-ford/
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Old 02-02-2024, 12:07 PM
 
Location: Newburyport, MA
11,867 posts, read 8,961,279 times
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Being as how this is primarily meant to be an interesting hybrid story, I thought I'd post in the general automotive forum. But if a bunch of angry EV-haters are just going to pile on and spew nonsense about EVs, then I am fine if the moderators want to move this to the EV forum, or just close the thread. I hate to say this, but you can see where this is going, and it's not anywhere productive or informative.
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Old 02-02-2024, 12:09 PM
 
247 posts, read 57,836 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DannyHobkins View Post
The Volt sold okay when the government paid you buy them, and same with the Bolt then they were discontinued.
Akshually....

The Bolt sold great without government incentives. I didn't get any incentives on either of mine (base price was $25k). In fact even though they were slated to be discontinued back in September of '23, to make way for the new Equinox EV, sales were so strong that they extended production first through October, then through December and then announced that the Bolt would be coming back on new, cheaper Ultium based LFP batteries later this year.

Quote:
The hype of Tesla and electric cars is certainly dying down. If I ran GM, i'd surely be pushing for more oil.
As was mentioned to you in this and other threads, you really don't know what you're talking about. In the US alone, EV adoption is increasing by 50%+ per year. Yes, that growth is not as high as some manufacturers originally planned for, but it's not decreasing or dwindling.

Here's an example: you are going to claim that Ford sees demand falling off for its Lightning and so the headlines are they are cutting production in half. If you actually, you know, READ the articles, it says they are cutting PLANNED production in half. From 3600 per week to 1600 per week. But if you do the math, you see that that production is still 4 TIMES higher than last year's production (80k vs 20k). Ford (like GM) though they could jump right in at Tesla levels of production and sales, thinking "hey, if they can do it, anyone can." while they can definitely build a vehicle better than Tesla can, they are not vertically integrated enough to make all the various new systems work together AND they don't have first mover benefits (and that decade head start that Tesla has)
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Old 02-02-2024, 12:20 PM
 
Location: Newburyport, MA
11,867 posts, read 8,961,279 times
Reputation: 15159
Quote:
Originally Posted by OyCrumbler View Post
I wish they had never stopped development of the Voltec powertrain as it was really well designed. It's main problem on the consumer level was that it was deployed in a compact car when the market had been rapidly shifting away from that. I think GM learned the wrong lesson there where they thought the powertrain was the issue rather than the market segment they deployed it in.
Yes, to be honest, I didn't really understand the proposition of plug-in hybrids until the last few years, but the Volt was an intriguing vehicle. I do think there are many Americans who are open to a good hybrid - some for mild hybrids and some for plug-in hybrids, so I do think there's an opportunity there for meeting the needs of people who e.g. live in a place where they can't receive Level 2 charging at home or office, or are a 1-car household and often travel in more rural areas without good DC-fast charging support... basically the people that we often speak of that have difficult use cases for EVs in their current state.
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