Wash. Post Shocker: ‘GM’s vaunted Volt is on the road to nowhere fast’ — ‘The basic theory— if you build them, customers will come — was a myth. And an expensive one, at that’
WaPo Editorial Board: 'No matter how you slice it, the American taxpayer has gotten precious little for the administration's investment in battery-powered vehicles, in terms of permanent jobs or lower CO2 emissions. There is no market, or not much of one, for vehicles that are less convenient and cost thousands of dollars more than similar-sized gas-powered alternatives — but do not save enough fuel to compensate'
The basic theory of the Obama push for electric vehicles — if you build them, customers will come — was a myth. And an expensive one, at that’
The Energy Department study assumed that General Motors would produce 120,000 plug-in hybrid Volts in 2012. GM never came close to that and recently suspended Volt production at its Hamtramck, Mich., plant, scene of a presidential photo-op. So far, GM has sold a little more than 21,000 Volts, even with the help of a $7,500 tax credit, recent dealer discounting and U.S. government purchases. When you factor in the $1.2 billion cost of developing the Volt, GM loses tens of thousands of dollars on each model.
The Energy Department predicted that Nissan, recipient of a $1.5 billion government-guaranteed loan, would build 25,000 of its all-electric Leaf this year; that car has sold only 14,000 units in the United States.