Chevrolet Volt 'pricing strategy is a bold one'

(July 27, 2010) General Motors has announced the pricing for the Chevy Volt, the extended-range electric vehicle which is expected to be released by year-end. It will be initially sold in California, Michigan, Washington, D.C. along with Austin, Texas, and New York City. The pricing of the vehicle was announced at $41,000, before a $7,500 tax credit.

"GM's pricing strategy is a bold one that will reward the company if it works because it means the Volt likely will be sold for something close to what it costs to build and won't be straining GM's red-ink supply," reported John O'Dell, Senior Editor at Edmunds'

"If consumers reject the idea of a $41,000 Chevrolet four-seater — even one with stellar fuel efficiency and next-generation powertrain technology — GM will have spent more than $750 million on a losing bet. The failure would damage its reputation and endanger its financial future by putting it years behind the competition in coming up with a marketable fuel-efficiency play."

Jason Kavanagh, Engineering Editor for Edmunds' had this to say after the 2011 Chevrolet Volt first drive. "Aside from the charging process, the Volt functions usefully as a normal car. It doesn't force you to live with the limitations of a pure electric car, while providing a large chunk of the benefit. The overall, overriding impression the 2011 Chevrolet Volt gives you is one of normalcy. There are no bad habits or overtly obvious telltales of what's going on behind the curtain — you just get in and drive."

In November 2009, submitted a proposal on changing the window sticker on new car vehicles to highlight usage costs versus miles per gallon numbers to help provide a better comparison of vehicles and technologies.'s proposal suggests that all-electric vehicles and other alternative fuel vehicles are expected to be given "MPG-equivalent" ratings generated by complex algorithms that attempt to translate other forms of energy into a comparable measurement. These measurements provide a useful analysis for electric and other forms of technology.

The chart below sets forth the projected monthly fuel costs for a variety of vehicles.

    EPA Rating Monthly Fuel Cost
2009 Mini E Electric 99 mpge $49.39
2010 Toyota Prius parallel hybrid 50 mpg $66.78
2009 Toyota Prius parallel hybrid 46 mpg $72.58
2009 Honda Civic GX CNG 28 mpge $77.23
2010 Ford Fusion Hybrid parallel hybrid 39 mpg $85.61
2010 Jetta TDI Diesel 34 mpg $103.38
2010 Ford Focus gasoline 28 mpg $119.24
2010 Honda Accord I-4 gasoline 25 mpg $133.55
2009 Chevy HHR Flex Fuel on gasoline 25 mpg $133.55
on E85 18 mpg $152.22
2010 Chevrolet Silverado 5.3 V8 Flex Fuel on gasoline 17 mpg $196.40
on E85 13 mpg $210.77
2011 Chevy Volt series plug-in hybrid 230 mpge $53.55