Sales of electric vehicles are set to take off soon, panelists say

Jun 18, 2011 Full story: AmericaJR 9

NOVI, Mich. -- While initial sales of the Chevrolet Volt and the Nissan LEAF were lower then expected, those figures are expected to rise at a very fast pace.

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John Christian

Portland, OR

#1 Jun 19, 2011
Stupid or Afraid?

Your opening statement challenges ones ability to comprehend your view of reality. Of the three electric cars (if you include the Volt) that you can order today all have waiting lists. How can sales be lower than expected and at the same time require months of waiting for delivery. You make is sound like theses EVs are languishing on the dealer's lot and that sales people are scheming to figure out how to move them. When in fact, the demand is so high for EVs that they can't build them fast enough.

Why not start this article with the truth that demand still outstrips supply and is growing faster all the time? How about an honest report about the size of the current waiting lists and what manufacturers are doing to catch up with this demand? I'll accept the honest claim that EVs are selling "lower than expected" only when I see them going unsold on the dealer's lot.

Whether you dislike EVs, or are afraid of the coming changes, please leave your agenda off the page.

Thank you,
John
Tony

Plymouth, MI

#2 Jun 19, 2011
In absolute numbers the electric vehicles are no where near what was predicted years ago. GM went with the lousy 40 mile range on the Volt because they wrongly assumed battery technology would double the range to 80 miles BEFORE introduction. It did not-yet. Going from 1,000 units to 2,000 units is a 100% increase, still not what I call "taking off."

Personally, I'd love to own an electric if I could afford it.
Daniel

Weatherford, TX

#3 Jun 22, 2011
I have seen several articles about the poor sales numbers for both the Leaf and the Volt. I can't speak for the Leaf, but I know that GM is populating their dealers with a demo Volt (special graphics on the doors). These units cannot be sold. So until that process is done, sales will be slower than the startup pace which is never fast enough for anyone.

Regarding the 40 mile battery range, GM chose that because 80% of the driving public drives 40 miles or less per day.

We own a Volt and we drive 50 miles per day. We spend now about $49.50 per month between the electricity (@ 0.10/KWH) and the gas (@ 3.90/gallon). Let's see, I could purchase about 12.7 gallons of gas with that money. If I could go 1500 miles on 12.7 gallons, that would be 118 mpg! Plus I don't have to worry about running out of electricity because I have a backup generator built into the car.

The cool thing is I am using only 7 gallons of fuel per month instead of 79 gallons for our previous car. My cost avoidance is $257.50/month. Who wouldn't want some of that?
Tony

Plymouth, MI

#4 Jun 22, 2011
Daniel wrote:
I have seen several articles about the poor sales numbers for both the Leaf and the Volt. I can't speak for the Leaf, but I know that GM is populating their dealers with a demo Volt (special graphics on the doors). These units cannot be sold. So until that process is done, sales will be slower than the startup pace which is never fast enough for anyone.
Regarding the 40 mile battery range, GM chose that because 80% of the driving public drives 40 miles or less per day.
We own a Volt and we drive 50 miles per day. We spend now about $49.50 per month between the electricity (@ 0.10/KWH) and the gas (@ 3.90/gallon). Let's see, I could purchase about 12.7 gallons of gas with that money. If I could go 1500 miles on 12.7 gallons, that would be 118 mpg! Plus I don't have to worry about running out of electricity because I have a backup generator built into the car.
The cool thing is I am using only 7 gallons of fuel per month instead of 79 gallons for our previous car. My cost avoidance is $257.50/month. Who wouldn't want some of that?
Well, you paid an extra $13-15,000 for this high privilege. That's at least 3,250 gallons of gas you paid for up front or 80,000 miles plus at 25MPG. Congrats!
Daniel

Weatherford, TX

#5 Jun 22, 2011
When the early adopters bought HD TV's they paid a premium for the privilige. I paid extra for being first, but any estimate that I paid 13-15K too much ignores the quality, performance, comfort and refined operation. Unfortunately for your math, I leased the car, so I pay $349 per month less 257.50 in gas cost avoidance. When the lease ends, I get another one. How much car can you get for that net price? Tony, I've watched your posts and you like to complain. Nothing different with your comments today.
Tony

Plymouth, MI

#6 Jun 22, 2011
Daniel wrote:
When the early adopters bought HD TV's they paid a premium for the privilige. I paid extra for being first, but any estimate that I paid 13-15K too much ignores the quality, performance, comfort and refined operation. Unfortunately for your math, I leased the car, so I pay $349 per month less 257.50 in gas cost avoidance. When the lease ends, I get another one. How much car can you get for that net price? Tony, I've watched your posts and you like to complain. Nothing different with your comments today.
Those lease numbers are impressive. However, you neglect the fact that you have to pay extra for those 3,000 miles over the 15K per year. There was a down payment of $2,500, destination charge of $695 and a cap reduction fee of $2,000. The $7500 rebate goes to the leasing company who purchased the vehicle and is added to the residual value. Essentially, you are buying the car. You won't know all the numbers until you finally get out of it. Good luck. Still, I appreciate the fun of driving something new and innovative like that.

PS. It's not really my goal to post things that make you happy.
Daniel

Weatherford, TX

#7 Jun 23, 2011
I didn't neglect that my math rounded up to 365 days per year gives me a 3250 mileage overage. We drive the car 50 miles per day 5 days a week, for a net of 13K per year. Our goal is to drive it 15K miles per year or as close as we can to that number. So no overage charges. When the lease expires I will have paid out $18,218.00 about the same as the depreciation on a car of that value. My gas avoidance cost (adding back in my electrical costs)during that time is $9270 (based on today's cost of fuel - 3.90/gal). My ownership costs for three years is $8948.00. I can't by a Kia and drive it for that.

I would say your statement that I am essentially buying the car is a pretty dismal arguement. You are right, until I've turned it in, the true costs are not known, but the with the favorable trajectory the costs are on now, I'll take my chances.

The bottom line is I could not own a car any cheaper than this one - period. I could not be happier with a cool car like this one - period. I could care less if your posts make anyone happy - what I do care about is the pessimistic position you take. Your comments can only come from taking the theoretical lower limits of ownership costs. Statistically, the lower limits apply to only 0.135 percent of possible outcomes. How is posting about that worthwhile?
Jason King

Makawao, HI

#8 Jul 17, 2011
I power my Volt with solar power. I've gone 4000 miles on 2.7 gallons of gas. The rest is all from the sun. Chew on that.
Tony

Plymouth, MI

#9 Jul 17, 2011
Jason King wrote:
I power my Volt with solar power. I've gone 4000 miles on 2.7 gallons of gas. The rest is all from the sun. Chew on that.
Solar power is about as expensive as it gets. But it's not about saving money. It's all about having fun.

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