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GM will lay off 1.3K employees for 5 weeks at a Detroit plant as it temporarily halts production...

GM will lay off 1.3K employees for 5 weeks at a Detroit plant as it temporarily halts production of the Chevy Volt amidst sputtering sales. Polypore International (PPO -2.1%) - a supplier to the automaker's battery cell supplier - tumbles on the news.
Comments (72)
  • runlong
    , contributor
    Comments (93) | Send Message
     
    No one wants a damn electic car......
    2 Mar 2012, 04:19 PM Reply Like
  • multi
    , contributor
    Comment (1) | Send Message
     
    Talk for yourself - not the millions who want an electric car. But price must be competitive - that's all. Volt is just to dam expensive for what it is.
    4 Mar 2012, 06:06 AM Reply Like
  • Machiavelli999
    , contributor
    Comments (829) | Send Message
     
    Umm...that's how much it costs to produce. In fact, it costs even more. The car's price is subsidized.
    4 Mar 2012, 02:43 PM Reply Like
  • Surf Dog
    , contributor
    Comments (825) | Send Message
     
    The Chevrolet Volt is not an electric vehicle. It's a half assed electric vehicle. It still has all the encumbrances of an ICE.

     

    GM wasted a lot of money on the Volt by hobbling it with the ICE. I can't figure out why anyone would want one.

     

    I think the volt was originally developed as a fuel-cell vehicle. My guess is that the recession and collapse of the auto industry made further development of the fuel-cell cost prohibitive. GM opted to go with the hybrid to utilize the EV components that they already had developed and legacy ICE technology which didn't require much developmental overhead.

     

    A fuel-cell vehicle would have been breakout technology. The hybrid volt amounts to an ICE with a twist. Just not compelling enough.
    I will never buy another ICE powered vehicle of any kind.
    I am waiting to see what the Toyota RAV4 electric has to offer, as well as anything that gets announced between now and then. Then I'm going to sell Two of my ICE vehicles and put that money toward a nice new EV. I have a third ICE vehicle that would very much like to convert to electric. At some point.

     

    My preference would be for fuel cells, as opposed to batteries. There is work being done now, that hopefully will start showing up on the streets in the next few years.
    9 Mar 2012, 01:47 PM Reply Like
  • Matthew Davis
    , contributor
    Comments (4250) | Send Message
     
    hybrids are the only viable alternative not even lithium ion is strong enough to power a car, something completely new has to be discovered.
    9 Mar 2012, 02:22 PM Reply Like
  • DrHawc
    , contributor
    Comments (37) | Send Message
     
    Surprise! Surprise! The markets rule, not Government Motors! Just wait till GovMo tells us e have to buy electric!
    2 Mar 2012, 04:26 PM Reply Like
  • Machiavelli999
    , contributor
    Comments (829) | Send Message
     
    California has already mandated that 20% of cars have to be alternative fuel vehicles by 2025. What if 20% people don't want to buy alternative fuel vehicles?

     

    GovMo telling us we have to buy electric is no longer a joke or a hypothetical. It's real.
    4 Mar 2012, 02:44 PM Reply Like
  • DLB40
    , contributor
    Comments (231) | Send Message
     
    The folks with a brain will buy electric at some point, but it will be Ford, Toyota, Honda, Nissan, Mitsubishi that sell the cars. Not those designed by Obumbler and his Posse.
    4 Mar 2012, 10:29 PM Reply Like
  • XGOPTO
    , contributor
    Comments (11) | Send Message
     
    Let's hope GovMO has a new owner in November!
    2 Mar 2012, 06:05 PM Reply Like
  • DLB40
    , contributor
    Comments (231) | Send Message
     
    Yup, and one who'll get rid of it ASAP.
    4 Mar 2012, 10:31 PM Reply Like
  • kcr357
    , contributor
    Comments (565) | Send Message
     
    Won't see this on the news...
    2 Mar 2012, 06:46 PM Reply Like
  • Hubert Biagi
    , contributor
    Comments (706) | Send Message
     
    Here come the excuses...
    2 Mar 2012, 06:53 PM Reply Like
  • raykrv6a
    , contributor
    Comments (3025) | Send Message
     
    I wouldn't mind a Volt, but 40k? I can get a new Prius for about half that.
    2 Mar 2012, 07:15 PM Reply Like
  • Matthew Davis
    , contributor
    Comments (4250) | Send Message
     
    And a Prius still won't save you enough gas money to justify its cost! This is just laughable, this is as stupid as the guy touting dentists are getting more business because the unemployment rate is dropping, what a bunch of idiots.
    2 Mar 2012, 08:14 PM Reply Like
  • riffdex
    , contributor
    Comments (185) | Send Message
     
    So at current gas prices a Prius isn't worth the cost. What about when gas goes up fivefold? It is ignorant to base the value of a fuel-efficient car on the incorrect assumption that gas will stay at the same price, when history has shown that it will keep rising.
    2 Mar 2012, 09:32 PM Reply Like
  • Matthew Davis
    , contributor
    Comments (4250) | Send Message
     
    It won't go up five fold dumbass, buy a prius if it gives you a warm and fuzzy feeling.
    2 Mar 2012, 09:45 PM Reply Like
  • alrado
    , contributor
    Comments (116) | Send Message
     
    riffdex, if gas goes from $4/gal to $8/gal the annual fuel cost change for my 35mpg civic vs. a 50mpg prius is a whopping $400. not exactly compelling but if it makes you feel good.....
    3 Mar 2012, 08:35 AM Reply Like
  • bengusty
    , contributor
    Comment (1) | Send Message
     
    OK, fivefold is probably a bit of a stretch in our lifetimes, but if you've been paying attention you'd see that the price gas has trended upwards from about $1.50 ten years ago to over $3.50 today. Where do you think the price of gas is going to be ten years from now?

     

    Why do Prius owners always have to "justify" their cost? Maybe they're willing to pay a price premium to drive a car with interesting technology and that burns less fuel. Funny how drivers of gas guzzlers don't have to "justify" the extra cost of operating their vehicles, both financial and environmental.

     

    Buy an SUV if it gives you a warm and fuzzy feeling.
    3 Mar 2012, 10:22 AM Reply Like
  • Rich in Quebec
    , contributor
    Comments (4831) | Send Message
     
    Madav - You may be correct in assuming that gas will not go up 500%. Then again, you may be proven wrong. Petroleum went from $3 a barrel 40 years ago to its present price. Before resorting to puerile personal attacks, you might consider giving the victim of your invective some of your reasoning to justify your beliefs. That would still not justify the personal attack, but would at least add something positive to the discussion.
    3 Mar 2012, 12:05 PM Reply Like
  • Matthew Davis
    , contributor
    Comments (4250) | Send Message
     
    I don't drive a gas guzzler, but I have a car that has as good mileage as a Prius and costs me $8,000 less...so whats the point other than in your own mind you are saving the environment?
    3 Mar 2012, 12:09 PM Reply Like
  • Matthew Davis
    , contributor
    Comments (4250) | Send Message
     
    Ok, I have been posting a lot about this in the $5 gas article.

     

    I will rehash my point of view over here too. Most people will eat up the excuses of populations growth and a dwindling supply of oil as the causes. Mere factors. You have to include, oil speculators, and government policy as well as basic market supply and demand. Throw in geo-politcal events and there you have $5 gas.

     

    That is a basic hashing of what is going on, but to spoon feed the public phoney arguments about decreased supply and increased demand in China is a diversion.

     

    Before we go further you must define, what or who is a speculator? When someone mentions a speculator you think of an individual with a boat load of cash manipulating the markets. That's not necessarily the case. Oil companies speculate in order to hedge, they can buy into the oil futures contracts in order to hedge costs or lock in costs. Huge institutions are into oil speculation as well, billions of dollars flow in and out of it. How do you think the price of oil inflates and deflates in the blink of an eye?

     

    If inflation and population were the true cause of oil appreciation, you would see a slow and gradual rise on a chart from left to right. But when you look at these charts, in 2008, the bottom fell out of oil over night, how so? Because someone dumped their position when they realized that the economy would fall into recession if the price stayed up there, as it is now.

     

    Now that oil is $110 levels again, the GDP has been revised downward to 1.8% growth from 2.2%, and that my friends is margin of error in favor of recession. You will see oil drop out again because the oil speculators will dump positions because they stand more to lose in a recession than to keep their oil contracts.

     

    Then, it will fall to the levels accepted as inflationary or supply/demand. Why did oil spike during the Arab spring, why did it spike when Iran threatened to close the straight of Hormus, you going to tell me that is just inflation?

     

    It amazes me how people are willing to shrug their shoulders and take it up the back side.

     

    CME just last month LOWERED margin requirements on oil futures contracts. So you can leverage your portfolio with oil futures on margin for cheaper than you can with equity stocks. So why wouldn't you buy into such an OBVIOUS trade when Iran starts sabre rattling?

     

    Increased oil prices IS inflation, not caused by inflation.

     

    I hope that explains my position better than my above post which I apologize for.
    3 Mar 2012, 12:20 PM Reply Like
  • Rich in Quebec
    , contributor
    Comments (4831) | Send Message
     
    Madav - Oil demand is highly inelastic, as should be supply. The short term variations in supply and high variations in price are due to factors as you describe above. But the tendency over time is to see a great increase in cost of the resource. The Canadian Tar sands were long viewed as uneconomic. New mining techniques lowered costs and persistent pricing above those costs have convinced Albertans to increase production.

     

    Future electricity production costs are likely to increase more slowly as wind and solar reach parity and then drop under conventional electricity production costs.

     

    Today's trains are generally diesel electric (thus similar to the Volt concept) or pure electric. It may not be cost competitive for now, but the future of the automobile will likely go in the same direction.
    3 Mar 2012, 12:48 PM Reply Like
  • sunnytomatoesinFL
    , contributor
    Comments (73) | Send Message
     
    Recent history - 40 years, the price of gas swings like a pendulum. When the price gets high - suddenly a flood of production overcompensates and prices go extremely low - relatively speaking. What happens if the price of gas goes below $2 a gallon?

     

    With North Dakota and Canada production coming on-line - this is a global warming-alternative energy guys worst fears.

     

    How are you going to stop people from buying cheap gas?
    How are we going to create Federal laws to promote alternative energy or fuel efficient cars?

     

    The rats don't care if it's killing them - they will keep eating the cheese.
    3 Mar 2012, 09:49 PM Reply Like
  • Matthew Davis
    , contributor
    Comments (4250) | Send Message
     
    So we're all rats eating cheese, not a good analogy.
    3 Mar 2012, 10:01 PM Reply Like
  • Surf Dog
    , contributor
    Comments (825) | Send Message
     
    The point for me, is not giving any more of my money to the oil companies, and all the environmental considerations, and I just like the technology better.

     

    I used to repair my own vehicles. I still could if I had the time, but honestly they cram so much stuff in there now that you have to keep a full shop of specialty tools just to be able to change the thermostat.

     

    EV's eliminate so much clutter and junk, you got a love it!

     

    Check the price of replacing an ICE engine, alternator, serpentine belt, exhaust system, emission system, transmission, cooling system, oil changes, or even tune-up.

     

    I'm going to kiss all those expenses. Goodbye!
    9 Mar 2012, 02:01 PM Reply Like
  • Surf Dog
    , contributor
    Comments (825) | Send Message
     
    Hey, I agree with you 100%, as to the speculators ability to manipulate the market.

     

    But I'm still going get rid of all my ICE vehicles, and by EV's.
    I also expect to be able to pay for them out of the profits I make investing in the EV space.
    9 Mar 2012, 02:08 PM Reply Like
  • golden1234
    , contributor
    Comments (32) | Send Message
     
    Federalized GM with another failed green jobs plan. I just love our dear leader. How about it comrades three cheers for dear leader Obama! Solyndra hey... what's that money laundered from Solyndra to democrats. No, those peace loving, tolerant, honest, fair, social justice, politicians would never...
    2 Mar 2012, 10:46 PM Reply Like
  • Power Wizard
    , contributor
    Comments (5) | Send Message
     
    I really, really, really, really, really, really want an electric car. I just don't want a Volt or a Prius or anything else that's out there. I had a Geo Metro back in my struggling days that got better mileage than a Prius AND it was really cheap to buy. I drove it for over a year but sold it when my wireless stocks soared so I never thought about gas prices after that.

     

    We have only a few problems remaining to solve to make EVs successful. They must travel 300 miles between charges and they must recharge in less than 5 minutes and the cost must be justified by the savings. I study all emerging battery technologies and I do know that this solution is working in the lab. Soon enough EVs will out-perform the gas vehicle in every category.
    2 Mar 2012, 11:44 PM Reply Like
  • kcr357
    , contributor
    Comments (565) | Send Message
     
    No way in hell you are doing a recharge in 5 mins, esp. with a larger battery needed for that mileage. It's not the battery, but the huge amount of current needed to charge it. The tesla gets 244 miles(probably a lot less in the real world) from a 53 kw/hr battery, figure 70 kw/hr is needed for 300 miles. If you hook it up to a 220v service, you'll need 318 amp/hrs for an hour charge. Most houses max out at 50 amps per circuit, with a max load of 100 amps through the box. Outside of splicing right into the power grid, it's not gonna happen.
    3 Mar 2012, 12:28 AM Reply Like
  • Surf Dog
    , contributor
    Comments (825) | Send Message
     
    Keep your eye out for quick change battery options that can be done in 2 min. or less. Kandi Technolgies, Corp. (KNDI) Stock - Seeking Alpha
    They are producing vehicles in China with some pretty interesting targets for this year. I'm thinking the idea might just catch on elsewhere.

     

    For the short term I think it's probably a better option than recharging, but I'm still looking forward to fuel cells.
    9 Mar 2012, 02:20 PM Reply Like
  • Power Wizard
    , contributor
    Comments (5) | Send Message
     
    Actually it is the battery. While you would still be limited at your house to an overnight charge, you would be able to charge at a charging station quickly. There's no trouble getting any power you need installed at a filling station.

     

    Also, my house has 200 amp service at 208V, which probably aligns with "most" houses, at least those with air conditioning. At 80% load I should be able to charge at nearly 45kWhr while we are sleeping so a 300 mile charge is not unreasonable.

     

    I've seen the battery working in the lab, and yes it'll take the charge and it's 1/10th the size of existing technology. Indeed it is a breakthrough. Sorry, not yet ready for IPO.
    12 Mar 2012, 01:18 AM Reply Like
  • kcr357
    , contributor
    Comments (565) | Send Message
     
    Where are you getting this info? Charging stations max out at 50kw, that'll get a tesla charged at half an hour for the smallest battery, not five minutes. And what does the physical size of the battery have to do with the recharge times? You could have a battery the size of a nine volt, but it still will have teh same charge time as a tesla sized battery if the power capacity is the same.
    12 Mar 2012, 12:10 PM Reply Like
  • 1980XLS-2.0
    , contributor
    Comments (525) | Send Message
     
    There is no battery that can be charged in minutes and maintain any longevity whatsoever.

     

    Size of available charger is irrelavant
    12 Mar 2012, 04:21 PM Reply Like
  • Surf Dog
    , contributor
    Comments (825) | Send Message
     
    A battery swap in about 2 minutes would do the trick for me.

     

    Current gas stations could be set up to include swap stations.

     

    Swapped batteries could be charged overnight at the stations, when demand and cost is lower.

     

    Tesla batteries can be removed in less than 2 min. with the right equipment.

     

    That solves the how,when and where.
    13 Mar 2012, 11:32 AM Reply Like
  • 1980XLS-2.0
    , contributor
    Comments (525) | Send Message
     
    Battery swaps could be feasable, but not until standardization of battery formats.
    13 Mar 2012, 06:07 PM Reply Like
  • Power Wizard
    , contributor
    Comments (5) | Send Message
     
    As a power system engineer I do substantial research on new products, including batteries and charging systems. I did not get this information by point-n-click a link from a google search, you will not find it there. I visit battery manufacturers to review their newest products and to help steer the basic unit into a viable product. I'm under nda so I cannot discuss details but I can say that I have seen a battery technology that will solve the electrical energy storage problem for EV working in the lab. This invention solves for size, weight, recharge time and cost. Any invention is a long way out from a marketable product and acceptance by the DOT but the technology does exist. And they have funding to take it to a product. They are not targeting EV but instead utility, where time to market is much faster since the DOT is not in the way and opportunity is ripe.

     

    I will agree that charging stations, for home use, are limited to 50kW due to the typical 200A service size I showed in my first post. In my house that system would be limited to 45kW because my service is 208V instead of 240V. However, there is no limit to the size of the recharging station at a commercial address. The time it takes to charge your car at your house is not important, so long as it's less than overnight. For a passenger vehicle to be exclusively electric and equivalent to gasoline vehicles, I think it needs to be quickly rechargeable for longer trips. If this were available, electric cars would be just as convenient and useful as small gasoline powered cars, thus marketable.

     

    The size and weight of the battery are important because that affects the range of the vehicle. A small, lighter, cheaper battery means you can put more battery on-board. The most important goal is to improve the range. GM elected to improve the Volt's range by adding an on-board generator; the market apparently rejected that idea. I was personally disappointed when I learned this was the way they decided to go. It is still a leap ahead since the vehicle does not have a mechanical coupling from the ICE to the drive. It is a far better solution than a Prius type hybrid so the people who wanted a Prius should want it, they just don't. I know that I don't, just because the range on the battery is too short, but I never wanted a Prius either. If the Volt had 100 mile range on battery with a range extender ICE, I would likely be a buyer.
    14 Mar 2012, 12:31 PM Reply Like
  • kcr357
    , contributor
    Comments (565) | Send Message
     
    The volt does in fact have a coupler from the ice to the wheels, under certain speeds, accel., and low bat. conditions the ice drives the wheels. Lotsa info online about that.
    14 Mar 2012, 01:59 PM Reply Like
  • Power Wizard
    , contributor
    Comments (5) | Send Message
     
    You are correct. I had not read much about the Volt before since they lost me at 25-50 miles on the battery (I'm guessing closer to 25). Now that I know it has mechanical coupling, it looses more points. The system is too complex. It seems GM is not focused on saving the consumer money at all.
    14 Mar 2012, 03:30 PM Reply Like
  • Matthew Davis
    , contributor
    Comments (4250) | Send Message
     
    Let me ask you this, when I lived in Florida, the small boats anchored in the bay used small windmills to power the boat while the occupants were on it. Could these small generators if you used a few of them work to power a house if used in conjunction with the power grid and capacitors to store the energy? Possibly could cut down on the amount of solar panels needed to install on a roof perhaps?

     

    Thank you.
    14 Mar 2012, 05:25 PM Reply Like
  • Matthew Davis
    , contributor
    Comments (4250) | Send Message
     
    When I bought a G6, and had to take it to the dealer to get proprietary windshield wipers for $40 each. The connectors were not compatible with off the shelf brands. Could only go to a dealer to get wipers.

     

    GM doesn't give a hoot.
    14 Mar 2012, 05:27 PM Reply Like
  • Surf Dog
    , contributor
    Comments (825) | Send Message
     
    Agreed..
    14 Mar 2012, 06:52 PM Reply Like
  • Matthew Davis
    , contributor
    Comments (4250) | Send Message
     
    Soon is when, 10 years? If they can't produce a concept model that does this, then they are no where near ready for production, not even soon. They couldn't do it without heavy subsidies either. Its not practical, cool but not worth it.
    2 Mar 2012, 11:53 PM Reply Like
  • Surf Dog
    , contributor
    Comments (825) | Send Message
     
    Where do you get 10 yrs?

     

    They are on the road now. The goal, in one target city alone, for 2012 is 25,000 vehicles.

     

    Yes, they are subsididizing. We subsidize oil companies that polute, make huge profits, cost way too much, and push products that promote global political instability. Sorry, I'd rather subsidize EVs.

     

    I can provide the link, but I can't read it for you.
    12 Mar 2012, 04:13 PM Reply Like
  • Matthew Davis
    , contributor
    Comments (4250) | Send Message
     
    Battery powered cars is a pipe dream! They don't perform, and the testla cars are way too expensive!
    12 Mar 2012, 09:45 PM Reply Like
  • Billwzw
    , contributor
    Comments (4) | Send Message
     
    Please remember that the Volt has 2 power sources - one electric and one gas - so it's a "flexible" car; not an "electric" one.

     

    While our government is heavily invested in GM they have not been active managers and in any case the Volt was designed prior to GM's bankruptcy. So it is in no way President Obama's fault if the Volt fails.

     

    A lot of blame IS due to the government's cowardly policy of trying to command in the market (with CAFE) the outcome they want rather than using the economy friendly approach of Pigouvian taxes. But that policy dates back to the Carter days.

     

    The current President does deserves rebuke - for doubling down on the failed CAFE approach rather than fixing it - but none is due for the Volt.
    3 Mar 2012, 04:02 AM Reply Like
  • Matthew Davis
    , contributor
    Comments (4250) | Send Message
     
    Not active manager? LOL, then why is GM pushing the Volt so hard when no one wants them? Because the government is forcing them to.
    3 Mar 2012, 12:24 PM Reply Like
  • 1980XLS-2.0
    , contributor
    Comments (525) | Send Message
     
    Billwzw,

     

    Refreshing to see that somebody actually understands the big picture on this subject.

     

    Obviously Madav decided to not listen to a singe comment.

     

    It's more about CAFE regs, calculations & Credits than anything else.
    3 Mar 2012, 04:49 PM Reply Like
  • Matthew Davis
    , contributor
    Comments (4250) | Send Message
     
    Its more about forcing an agenda down our throats.
    3 Mar 2012, 06:42 PM Reply Like
  • peter.smith
    , contributor
    Comments (14) | Send Message
     
    I am a Prius owner for 4 years. Not only does it save on fuel, service costs are lower (I had an Audi diesel before), in Germany taxes are lower (based on emissions). The best thing is it doesn't sit at stop lights spewing pollution into the city streets.
    But these are all logical arguments - many of the contributors are only reacting emotionally (= politically) to this topic.
    3 Mar 2012, 04:37 AM Reply Like
  • Zach Tripp
    , contributor
    Comments (461) | Send Message
     
    I had access to a Volt for three days. I drove 186 miles with it. I used 1.7 gallons of gasoline, which results in 109 mpg. I had to do three full charges, which I found on the web to be 12 kW (each). 36 kW will my electric rates was $5.42. Gas at the time was $3.50/gallon. Total operating cost was $0.06. My other car is a Honda Civic, which I get approx. 37 mpg with. At $3.50/gallon, the cost to operate is $0.09/mile.

     

    The car was comfortable and sportier than I would have thought. I actually liked it a lot. I would not pay $40k+ for it. When it gets sub $30k, I would consider it.
    3 Mar 2012, 08:11 AM Reply Like
  • Matthew Davis
    , contributor
    Comments (4250) | Send Message
     
    The Volt is a cool idea, but the costs does not offset what you save in gas. If the volt was a normally prices car, say, $25,000 then you could see demand, but even with a tax payer subsidy its too expensive. And not enough places are equipped to do service on it cheaper than the dealer, and a dealer will rape you for the specialty of the item.

     

    What does it costs for its regular interval services?
    3 Mar 2012, 12:27 PM Reply Like
  • kcr357
    , contributor
    Comments (565) | Send Message
     
    Prob. not much at all if you can keep it charged and on elec. only; at that point it's just an oil change every so often imo. The real hit is when the battery needs replaced after however many years if you decide to keep it as a long term driver. It will be at least 5k for a new one. I imagine if this takes off, most will just lease for a few years and get a new one when it's up. Instead of eventually owning a car and paying it off, most will now have a perpetual rented/leased vehicle for most of their lives; I can't fathom keeping a vehicle for 10 years that will most certainly need a 5-10k battery. It's actually a brilliant move by the car companies, planned obsolescence masquerading as saving the environment while at the same time being applauded by the consumers.
    3 Mar 2012, 09:18 PM Reply Like
  • rjroberts
    , contributor
    Comments (209) | Send Message
     
    I am glad electric cars are probably going the way of Moore's Law and are going to be a real option for transportation in 10 years.
    3 Mar 2012, 08:56 AM Reply Like
  • D. McHattie
    , contributor
    Comments (1844) | Send Message
     
    rjroberts, Moore's Law absolutely and positively does NOT apply to batteries and electric cars.
    4 Mar 2012, 05:00 PM Reply Like
  • The Geoffster
    , contributor
    Comments (4066) | Send Message
     
    Let's take the central planning to a higher level. Obama is moving too slowly because an obstructionist Congress won't let him have his way. You need dictatorial power to fundamentally change society and O means well (there goes that chill down my leg).
    Here's the plan that I think will be good for all of you. Remember, I am very smart and know what's best. Your freedom only gets in the way of what I 'm trying to accomplish for the good of the State, er, society. You're not going to bring up that dusty old Constitution are you? Did you say Second Amendment? Damn, O.K. before I tell you my plan, you'll have to give up your guns.
    3 Mar 2012, 09:43 AM Reply Like
  • Michael Haltman
    , contributor
    Comments (9) | Send Message
     
    President Obama tells UAW workers that he will be buying a Chevy Volt when he leaves office in five years and just days later GM suspends production due to slow sales.

     

    At the same time this same "Green" President is otherwise willing to keep Air Force One in the air to watch a basketball game between the NY Knicks and Miami Heat.

     

    Now that seems like a waste of gas to me but then again I am not the King!

     

    Read the article at The Political Commentator here: http://bit.ly/AgLa1L
    3 Mar 2012, 10:22 AM Reply Like
  • Rich in Quebec
    , contributor
    Comments (4831) | Send Message
     
    halthouse1 - All Presidential trips since Eisenhower cost a bundle. That's even truer since the Kennedy assasination. Should Presidents be confined to the White House or limited to Camp David as an allowed retreat. Should there be a scale established as to the value of basketball games, bushwacking, horseback riding or sailing? Or is it simply that some Americans can't accept a too "uppity" Obama?
    3 Mar 2012, 12:17 PM Reply Like
  • Lakeaffect
    , contributor
    Comments (1138) | Send Message
     
    "Or is it simply that some Americans can't accept a too "uppity" Obama? "

     

    That's a stupid remark if I ever saw one. Stay up there in Canada and MYOB.
    3 Mar 2012, 01:48 PM Reply Like
  • juststarted
    , contributor
    Comments (42) | Send Message
     
    Nat gas may make this argument moot....
    3 Mar 2012, 12:37 PM Reply Like
  • smokeandmirrors
    , contributor
    Comment (1) | Send Message
     
    The sad thing about all of this is that the Volt is really a great idea. The problem is not that people don't want them. If the price was say, 20K, GM could not make enough of them to keep up with demand. They would be as ubiquitous as Volkswagens were in the 1960s. Unfortunately, the people that care about the cost of fuel the most are also the ones most unable to afford this type of vehicle.
    3 Mar 2012, 03:28 PM Reply Like
  • coldcut
    , contributor
    Comments (37) | Send Message
     
    Noticed the vulgarity and name callings - some Rush Limbaugh fans are in town. Fortunately, Canadian and German keep part of the discussion rational. Appreciate that!
    3 Mar 2012, 03:46 PM Reply Like
  • golden1234
    , contributor
    Comments (32) | Send Message
     
    Laughing at the pro volt comments. The cost benefits of this car are all superficial. What about the true cost of ownership for 5 years? How much to repair, insure, replace batteries? How about the hassle of plugging the thing in? How many hotels can you plug the thing into? Want to take a family trip? Forget using the electric component. Major boondoggle, as is the customary course of government trying to do anything...Amtrack, post office, TSA... hello is anybony out there?
    3 Mar 2012, 04:09 PM Reply Like
  • Matthew Davis
    , contributor
    Comments (4250) | Send Message
     
    Amen.
    3 Mar 2012, 06:43 PM Reply Like
  • Matthew Davis
    , contributor
    Comments (4250) | Send Message
     
    A hybrid is a great concept of a car, but why are they only catering to tree huggers? Why hasn't Porsche released its hybrid? There is nothing stopping a car company from fusing existing technology such as a turbocharged 4 cylinder with an electric motor that would get just as good performance as a regular version. Maybe the cost of the battery side of the engine is what is so prohibitive. I would love to drie a sports hybrid, as long it doesn't have a little tree that grows in the info center graphics.
    3 Mar 2012, 10:04 PM Reply Like
  • 1980XLS-2.0
    , contributor
    Comments (525) | Send Message
     
    Porsche already has Hybrids.

     

    Put Brain in Gear.
    3 Mar 2012, 10:15 PM Reply Like
  • Matthew Davis
    , contributor
    Comments (4250) | Send Message
     
    Sorry I don't subscribe to Porsche fancy.
    4 Mar 2012, 01:12 AM Reply Like
  • raykrv6a
    , contributor
    Comments (3025) | Send Message
     
    Coming from a GMC 2500HD with Duramax diesel that gets about 20 mpg overall(19 in winter, 21-22 in summer) at 4.10 a gallon for fuel, any flexible hybrid would be great. Late 2011, we got rid of the 13 mpg Explorer on a Kia Sorento that gets 27mpg overall. The Sorento already has 13k on it in 6 months. A Prius at 51 mpg would be awesome. I really like the Volt, but the Prius starts at 22.9k on sale.
    4 Mar 2012, 04:41 PM Reply Like
  • 1980XLS-2.0
    , contributor
    Comments (525) | Send Message
     
    Now that BMW is copying the Volt and selling it for $100K everybody will love it, i'm sure.

     

    http://bit.ly/xVDME9

     

    The reality is the Volt is a marvel of engineering.

     

    Also a reality, the price needs to be about $10K less for it to be a viable alternative ( at least economically) to many other economical cars.

     

    Even with the $7500 subsidy, it would take about 300K miles to recover the cost difference vs a similarly sized Chevy Cruze. (the highest mileage non hybrid gasoline car one can buy )

     

    And that's assuming 90 % of the mileage of the volt were achieved in full electric mode.

     

    In the meantime the car will help with their CAFE and credits, to help insure there are some cars remaining for sale that we actually want to buy.

     

    http://bit.ly/ArwFuc
    12 Mar 2012, 08:28 AM Reply Like
  • DLB40
    , contributor
    Comments (231) | Send Message
     
    Please don't compare Chevy to BMW. I owned a 7 series for 10 years and Chevy in their wildest dreams couldn't build a BMW comparable vehicle. End of report!
    18 Mar 2012, 10:42 AM Reply Like
  • 1980XLS-2.0
    , contributor
    Comments (525) | Send Message
     
    DLB,

     

    Your comment totally validates both my comments and links regarding such.

     

    When Chevy (or any GM namplate for that matter)raises the price of a car to the $80K range of a BMW 7 series, you can say something.

     

    Until then any such comparisons are simply ridiculous.

     

    Oh, nevermind, it has already happened.

     

    From the article;

     

    "Rock on, Cadillac. You won this round fair and square; not by a landslide, but by a powerslide."

     

    http://bit.ly/FPnxIN

     

    http://bit.ly/zljK4H
    18 Mar 2012, 10:47 PM Reply Like
  • Matthew Davis
    , contributor
    Comments (4250) | Send Message
     
    Hyundai makes a nicer car than any American car maker.
    19 Mar 2012, 02:05 AM Reply Like
  • DLB40
    , contributor
    Comments (231) | Send Message
     
    It's a Dead Zone Folks:
    The dead zone lying between today’s limited selection and availability of EV’s and the prospect of mainstay market entrenchment centers on replacing the gas pumps of right now with the re-charge outlets of a futuristic tomorrow. It’s going to require scale, and that kind of scale doesn’t happen fast. Putting the old-fashioned gas station out to pasture won’t come about easily. Emerging economies could theoretically skip the high costs of a transition from gasoline to electric, much like China has seen with an explosion of first-generation cell phone users --- China never had much in the way of land-line infrastructure to render obsolete in the face of new technology. When it comes to highly-developed economies, instantaneous transition technologies can create logistical nightmares. Or, in the case of electric cars, pain at the pump.
    There are other problems. Even if adequate charging stations were available, the time it takes to reload the battery and get back on the road is impractical. As it is, most folks grow impatient standing at a gas pump for a meager three or four minutes waiting for the tank to fill. Imagine waiting overnight for a full charge! Running out of electric “fuel” on the way to an important meeting is the stuff of consumer nightmares. Beyond consumer concerns, other likely transitional barriers will include government regulatory requirements and corporate transportation industry revisions of the extreme kind. All of this takes time and costs money.
    Meanwhile, the best way to go in reducing the need for more and more oil to fuel cars is the current, and successful, hybrid expression. Gas-electric hybrid technology will soon reach fuel efficiency ratings that exceed 100 miles per gallon. At that range, a car that now gets an average of 25 mpg at a cost of $4.00 would, in effect, cost only $1.00 per gallon. With enough of these vehicles on the world’s highways, global oil supply would be far less critical. Prices at the pump would quickly drop.
    18 Mar 2012, 11:02 AM Reply Like
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