Chevy Bolt EV Forum banner

1 - 20 of 74 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,331 Posts
Discussion Starter #1

·
Registered
Joined
·
55 Posts
Yes, they sold so many ELR's that I can see why they'd want to do that! :rolleyes:

That said, in the past much development for new features was for high-end vehicles that later trickled down into their mainstream cars. Perhaps that is how mass electrification will play out.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,271 Posts
I feel like this was one of those worst-kept secrets. Other than the Bolt EV Incomplete (which GM might or might not have been counting as a "new" EV -- it looks like they weren't), GM announced a while ago that their next EV would be a small luxury SUV.

The only question was whether it would be a Buick or Cadillac. I was leaning toward Buick because of the Enspire, but GM seems to treat the Buick brand in China differently than it treats the Buick brand here. I'm really interested to see what this new Caddy looks like.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,271 Posts
Yes, they sold so many ELR's that I can see why they'd want to do that! :rolleyes:

That said, in the past much development for new features was for high-end vehicles that later trickled down into their mainstream cars. Perhaps that is how mass electrification will play out.
The reason the ELR didn't sell was because it was a PHEV for $75,000. If it had been an all electric with 200+ miles of range at that time, even for $75,000, GM would likely have been selling about 1,000 to 2,000 of them a month.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
167 Posts
Say goodbye to "reasonably priced" EV's from GM...
Not necessarily.

Given this part of the article:

This week, GM said Cadillac sales in China rose 17.2 percent in 2018, surpassing 200,000 units for the first time. GM Chief Executive Mary Barra has said that GM aims to sell 1 million electric vehicles a year by 2026, many of them in China, which has set strict production quotas on such vehicles.
... I have a feeling that's the aim rather than the US. China not only buys more cars than anyone in the world, but they are pretty much mandating the whole country convert to EVs in the near future unlike the US.

I can see a premium brand like a Caddy EV selling and definitely rivaling Tesla over there, just as Chinese preferred Buicks which are also probably going to be sold in EV form over there as well.

With good profit margins vs costs on luxury EVs, GM will do well importing there. The Chinese will then be allowed due to trade agreements (bye Trump!) to sell much cheaper EVs here to the masses... introducing younger, less wealthier people to EVs for the first time. GM will see the demand and then begin to produce those cheaper EVs nationally.

I think the Bolt didn't catch on simply because there's no reason for people to change here and no real incentive, unlike China which will probably have some kind of laws shortly.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,640 Posts
On the one hand, this isn't new news. On the other, Cadillac has a pretty bad brand image for me. I had been seeing it as the brand providing cars for old people and pimps, and then they ran those commercials where super-villain Damien Darhk (Neal McDonough) explained why it was the brand for rich entitled douchebags.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,316 Posts
On the other, Cadillac has a pretty bad brand image for me.
So name a GM brand which has a very good image for you?

We here know the Bolt is a vehicle nonpareil, but I've had several friends and acquaintances tell me they'd never consider owning a Chevrolet; "not the right image."

JMHO, but while "brand image" may be important for some, for me, it's the absolute last metric I'd consider for making a vehicle purchase. The mass market majority and their opinions are always wrong for me and my use - a Camry will never sit in my garage.

OTOH, my brother buys Toyotas because they have a reputation for reliability. My rebuttal, "Buying a boring car because it's supposedly reliable is akin to marrying an ugly woman just because she's less likely to run around on you."

jack vines
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,271 Posts
Not without a charging network.
I think you're overstating where Tesla's network was at the time.

Don't get me wrong. ChargePoint and EVgo were just starting to build out 50 kW chargers at that time, but they provided decent coverage for regional travel by the time an ELR EV would have been selling in mass.

And sure, there was still a lot of GM brand smashing at the time, but an all-electric Cadillac would have done a lot to quell that stigma.
 

Attachments

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,603 Posts
That said, in the past much development for new features was for high-end vehicles that later trickled down into their mainstream cars. Perhaps that is how mass electrification will play out.
Don't know why this was a mystery to everyone but Elon. New tech is almost always the playthings of wealthy folks before it becomes mainstream. You don't build the cheapest car you can (Spark), then the next cheapest (Volt/Bolt) and then make an expensive car. If you're only going to be making a few things, it had better be luxury.

The reason the ELR didn't sell was because it was a PHEV for $75,000. If it had been an all electric with 200+ miles of range at that time, even for $75,000, GM would likely have been selling about 1,000 to 2,000 of them a month.
How does it matter that it was a PHEV? The Volt MSRP is $33,500, and the Bolt MSRP is $36,500. The Volt outsold the Bolt, in the US anyhow.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
222 Posts
So name a GM brand which has a very good image for you?
We here know the Bolt is a vehicle nonpareil, but I've had several friends and acquaintances tell me they'd never consider owning a Chevrolet; "not the right image."
jack vines
I couldn't agree more. I was a through-and-through Honda guy. But frankly was disappointed with my Civic Hybrid.
I would have never set foot in a Chevy dealership except to take this new EV out for a tester. I didn't want to wait for my Tesla M3.
I could not be happier with my choice.
I do hope that the EV market doesn't just wind up as an upper and upper-middle class market.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,271 Posts
How does it matter that it was a PHEV? The Volt MSRP is $33,500, and the Bolt MSRP is $36,500. The Volt outsold the Bolt, in the US anyhow.
Perceptions and stigma, especially at the time. If it was going to run on gas, why bother with a plug in? Just get a hybrid or pure ICE anyway. It seemed like most people at that point in history were completely confused by the Volt (and consequently) the ELR.

Though GM doesn't have the brand cachet to push for plug-in hybrids, Toyota and Honda do. I've now been told by MANY people that they think the Volt is the best looking hybrid, but they are only now aware of its distinction because of vehicles like the Clarity and PriusPrime.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
4,804 Posts
GM has had no luck attracting people to an amazing five door hatch EV. I maintain the Bolt is the best, most sensibly sized EV we will ever see in the US. I am not counting ZEV state compliance cars.

GM's problem, in the US, is that most folks who like to consider themselves savvy don't buy GM products...most techies don't buy GM products. Is that fair or logical...probably not, but that is the case.

Their market is Trump voters, but Trump voters now call them Government Motors. I hear "liberal bailout..electric is communist" from Trump supporters constantly.
 

·
Super Moderator
Joined
·
2,561 Posts
With good profit margins vs costs on luxury EVs, GM will do well importing there.
I don't think GM has any intentions of exporting Cadillacs to China. I believe Cadillac will follow Buick and become primarily a Chinese brand that will be imported here. They will build the new generation of Cadillacs in China, for China and import them here if there is enough interest. It makes sense from a business perspective if you're selling more than double the Cadillacs in China than you are in North America.

The Chinese will then be allowed due to trade agreements (bye Trump!) to sell much cheaper EVs here to the masses... introducing younger, less wealthier people to EVs for the first time. GM will see the demand and then begin to produce those cheaper EVs nationally.
I think one would have to be really naive and nuts to buy any consumer product like a car from a Chinese manufacturer. Warranty claims and quality aside, all Chinese companies are still partnered with the Chinese government/military. Besides helping to fund their plans for world domination, you are also opening yourself up to have you personal data and information stolen. There are good reasons that Chinese companies are being barred from some places.

https://www.nytimes.com/2019/01/11/world/europe/poland-china-huawei-spy.html?fbclid=IwAR2NVxr6goDC47t-6NhFkGzrBxCXBNAdsnj5FWN1Qo6jGHr3k9HKZqkeTR4

I think the Bolt didn't catch on simply because there's no reason for people to change here and no real incentive, unlike China which will probably have some kind of laws shortly.
Agreed. There is little reason to buy a Bolt other than you have an interest in BEVs and want the technology at a reasonable cost. Financially it doesn't pencil out and the Bolt will not impress your friends like a Tesla will. In China people are buying BEVs because they really aren't given any other good options if they want to own a new car.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
253 Posts
... In China people are buying BEVs because they really aren't given any other good options if they want to own a new car.
More to the point - if they want to drive their new car more than a couple days out of the week. Air quality is so bad in their metropolitan areas that the only vehicles that can be driven every day are EVs. All other vehicles have days rationed to them.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,331 Posts
Discussion Starter #17
GM has had no luck attracting people to an amazing five door hatch EV. I maintain the Bolt is the best, most sensibly sized EV we will ever see in the US. I am not counting ZEV state compliance cars.

GM's problem, in the US, is that most folks who like to consider themselves savvy don't buy GM products...most techies don't buy GM products. Is that fair or logical...probably not, but that is the case.

Their market is Trump voters, but Trump voters now call them Government Motors. I hear "liberal bailout..electric is communist" from Trump supporters constantly.
Your first sentence while true, probably didn't have to be that way if things were different. If GM had no conflicts businesswise and could have gone all in on EV's as Tesla was able to do, I'm fairly certain that they could have doubled sales, easily. It was from lack of trying. Lack of advertising and begrudging acceptance of the COTY is the first clue that GM sold as many Bolts as they wanted/needed to.
GM's reputation, if as tarnished as you say, may be isolated to the ho-hum sedans which they wisely have accepted and discontinued. There is still a very healthy fan base for their halo (Corvette) and truck market which I think should be their next market for EV's. Unfortunately, is that existing market the demographic they want to attract? How many 20 somethings north of the MD line have Chevy posters on their walls?
I don't envy what Mary Barra and Mark Reuss are up against. It's kind of like being Don King managing 2 heavyweight fighters. The current champ and an up and coming prodigy. What happens when the new guy challenges the champ? Who does Don root for? His gravy train with a proven track record or the new kid with a potentially bright future as long as the champ doesn't beat the snot out of him never to recover?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
4,804 Posts
Your first sentence while true, probably didn't have to be that way if things were different.
Every car company has done at least one retro-fifties car. They get a lot of buzz when they come out. Imagine if they had put the Bolt drivetrain into a RWD, 60 kWh, 250 mile EPA range two seater that just happened to resemble this.

https://ccmarketplace.azureedge.net/cc-temp/listing/117/5728/14930047-1953-chevrolet-corvette-std.jpg

Does anybody think they would have sold fewer than 20K a year for a few years?

Mazda Miata US sales

2018 8.971
2017 11.294
2016 9.465
2015 8.591
2014 4.745
2013 5.780
2012 6.305
2011 5.674
2010 6.370
2009 7.917
2008 10.977
2007 15.075
2006 16.897
2005 9.801
2004 9.356
2003 10.920
2002 14.392
2001 16.486
2000 18.299
1999 17.738
1998 19.845
1997 17.218
1996 18.408
1995 20.174
1994 21.400
1993 21.588
1992 24.964
1991 31.240
1990 35.944
1989 23.052
 
1 - 20 of 74 Posts
Top