• Dec 17, 2010
When General Motors decided to auction off the first available production Chevrolet Volt to benefit the Detroit Public Schools Foundation, it probably envisioned someone with deep pockets and a strong connection to the Bowtie brand coming through with the winning bid. Well, when the dust settled and the auctioned Volt sold for $225,000 to bidder ChargeOn, it became clear that someone willing to dish out nearly a quarter of a million dollars had won Chevy's plug-in. But who is ChargeOn?

The man that bid under the screen name of ChargeOn is none other than Rick Hendrick, a longtime Chevrolet dealer and owner of Hendrick Motorsports, the American racing juggernaut established back in 1984. It turns out that Hendrick, an avid car collector, just had to have a Volt to add to his collection and felt compelled to aid the Detroit Public Schools. After winning the auctioned Volt, Hendrick stated:
This was an opportunity to own a piece of history while giving back to the community. I have been a Chevrolet dealer for more than 30 years, and the Volt is one of the most exciting and important new cars since we opened our first dealership in 1976.
Our congrats go out to Mr. Hendrick for winning the auction and, more importantly, for supporting a good cause. Click past the jump to learn more in the official press release. Thanks to all for the tips!

[Source: General Motors]

PRESS RELEASE

Rick Hendrick Buys First Volt Offered for Public Sale

$225,000 Bid in Auction Benefits Detroit Public Schools Foundation


DETROIT – Rick Hendrick, owner of Hendrick Motorsports and chairman of Hendrick Automotive Group, has purchased the first Chevrolet Volt offered for sale. Proceeds will benefit science, math, engineering, and technology education initiatives through the Detroit Public Schools Foundation.

The vehicle, bearing the vehicle identification number BU10002, was sold for $225,000 through an online auction that closed Tuesday, Dec. 14.

"This was an opportunity to own a piece of history while giving back to the community," said Hendrick, an avid car collector. "I have been a Chevrolet dealer for more than 30 years, and the Volt is one of the most exciting and important new cars since we opened our first dealership in 1976.

"Hendrick Motorsports has been racing Chevys since 1984, and any success we've had is due to the quality of our people," continued Hendrick, who has won a record 10 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series car owner championships. "The Detroit Public Schools will prepare the next generation of talented engineers and technicians who will help Chevrolet and Hendrick Motorsports compete at a high level on the racetrack every weekend."

Detroit Public Schools Foundation President and CEO, Chacona W. Johnson, believes the donation will make a meaningful difference for many Detroit students:

"With Mr. Hendrick's contribution, we have the opportunity to inspire thousands of children to learn about science, technology, engineering, and math," said Johnson. "That inspiration will help make Detroit Public Schools students more successful in higher education, and better prepared for careers in the 21st century workforce."

Here are a few examples of what the foundation could provide to Detroit students with $225,000:

Send 4,500 students to compete in a science fair

It costs $50 per student to compete in the annual Science and Engineering Fair of Metro Detroit, including entry fees and bussing expenses. The fair is open to students in Wayne, Oakland, and Macomb Counties, from grades six through 12. Each year up to eight students from the Detroit competition may be selected to participate in the International Science and Engineering Fair.

Provide 800 kits for robotics competitions

The $280 kit for the FIRST Lego League robotics competition includes everything a team needs to build an autonomous robot. The competition, for students in grades four through eight, is based on students' scientific research, as well as their robotic construction and programming.

Send 140 students to NASA space camp

It costs $16,000 to send 10 students and chaperones to NASA space camp in Huntsville, Ala., including tuition and travel expenses. During the five-day camp, students apply classroom math and science skills to shuttle training missions, such as moon walking practice and orbiter-egress training.

"Every aspect of the Volt – from its aerodynamic shape to its battery chemistry – is a testament to the importance of math and sciences," said General Motors North America President Mark Reuss. "Now, the first Volt will help cultivate the next generation of engineers who will build upon the Volt's innovative technologies."

The Chevrolet Volt is an electric vehicle that can operate under a range of weather climates and driving conditions with little concern of being stranded by a depleted battery. The Volt has a total driving range of up to 379 miles, based on EPA estimates. For the first 35 miles, the Volt can drive gas- and tailpipe-emissions-free using a full charge of electricity stored in its 16-kWh lithium-ion battery. When the Volt's battery runs low, a gas powered engine/generator seamlessly operates to extend the driving range another 344 miles on a full tank.

Chevrolet began shipping Volts from Detroit-Hamtramck Assembly this week. Hendrick will take delivery of his Volt later this month.

About Chevrolet

Founded in Detroit in 1911, Chevrolet celebrates its centennial as a global automotive brand with annual sales of more than 4 million vehicles in 130 countries. In the U.S., the Chevrolet portfolio includes: iconic performance cars, such as Corvette and Camaro; dependable, long lasting pickups and SUVs, such as Silverado and Suburban; and award-winning passenger cars and crossovers, such as Malibu, Equinox and Traverse. Chevrolet also offers "gas-friendly" solutions, such as Chevrolet Cruze Eco with an EPA-estimated 42 miles per gallon highway, and the Chevrolet Volt offering 35 miles of electric driving and an additional 344 miles of extended gasoline range, according to EPA estimates. Most new Chevrolet models offer OnStar safety, security, and convenience technologies including OnStar Hands-Free Calling, Automatic Crash Response, and Stolen Vehicle Slowdown. More information regarding Chevrolet models, fuel solutions, and OnStar availability can be found at www.chevrolet.com.

About the Detroit Public Schools Foundation The Detroit Public Schools Foundation is a tax-exempt 501(c)(3) organization dedicated to supporting Detroit students. Our mission is to raise, manage and steward funds and other resources to support value-added programs and activities for the benefit of the Detroit Public Schools and its students. For more information, visit www.detroitpsfoundation.org.


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    • 1 Second Ago
  • 34 Comments
      • 4 Years Ago
      The money or part of it should be used to pay back the goverment, (Tax Payers)
      • 4 Years Ago
      So, the car that is going to save the planet, save GM, provide amazing transportation, revolutionize the way we drive, put America back to work, etc, etc, etc - - - - is going to sit in a garage somewhere and collect dust. Way to go.
        • 4 Years Ago
        Cause this is the only one that's going to be sold... Great point.

        >_>
        • 4 Years Ago
        You've got to be an extremely negitive, pessimistic person to say anything at all bad about this article. There is nothing but good being reported here.
        • 4 Years Ago
        Considering Rick Hendrick and his family are high profile people within the American motorsports community, this car will be driven. Just like a celebrity owning a Prius.
      • 4 Years Ago
      God are you all stupid!!!!!! This car is amazing and even if it was not..... $225,000.00 for charity and you all have idiot comments? Get a clue! Go back to school!!!!!!!!! You all need it!!
        • 4 Years Ago
        @FT

        Instead of being a trend follower and just saying what every other troll says about the Volt, why don't you explain to RTS why he's stupid?
      • 4 Years Ago
      With events like that begins creation of overstated and extraordinary product image. Reminds me Barett-Jackson dream car auction, just there isn't the car which value have risen naturally through the years. Instead, we witness artificial inflating the Volt's price/image even before it's launch. I am absolutely agree to support charities, but I don't tink this is the way to make from Volt a environment friendly vehicle for the ordinary folk. Environment problems can be resolved only when most of the population is involved, Otherwise there gona be just fanfares!
      • 4 Years Ago
      GREAT NEWS! Now the Detroit Public School System will be FIXED! Hooray!
      • 4 Years Ago
      what a great idea! love that a local Detroit school was the real winner.
      • 4 Years Ago
      Reminds me of the Scott's Tots episode of The Office...
        • 4 Years Ago
        The picture above would've been awesome if it wasn't for the fat girl to the very left...

        Just saying.
        • 4 Years Ago
        I think it's nice that she gets to be a cheerleader. That's a positive, instead of banishing her because she's chubbier. So I think the picture overall is great, and it's message is even better.

        But what do I know, I'm just a sentimental sap.
        • 4 Years Ago
        Wow JephMercury, you're a REAL tough guy for insulting a teenage girl. You might as well punch a 10 year old.
        • 4 Years Ago
        I wasn't insulting the girl, I was imply stating the fact that the picture would look better. Presentation is important =P...
      • 4 Years Ago
      On one hand I don't believe its worth a 1/4 million for this car because I really don't think its going to be that historic.

      However since the money is going to the schools I am happy with the amount. I'm just glad the money isn't going to developing country when the money is much needed here on our own soil.
        • 4 Years Ago
        I'm glad it's going to a school in Detroit it's the least they can do after the auto industry crash...
        • 4 Years Ago
        It will be remembered in years to come but I don't see people in 60 years time looking back and saying this car was a turning point in the auto industry. It might turn into a classic vehicle, it does have nice styling, but I don't know about historic.
        • 4 Years Ago
        I don't really see anyone remember this vehicle in a few years.
      • 4 Years Ago
      Nice gesture.
      • 4 Years Ago
      I find it funny how people that are bashing this car are the ones that hate life..they hate that they were beat up in elementary school, they hate how everyone talks about them behind their backs..they hate how their wives treat them and how their coworkers look at them. This car is an achievement that GM and EVERYONE that pays for gas should be proud of. I am not saying that this is the answer but it is a starting point in the right direction. To bash a man for bidding on a car that is basically donating $200,000 to a school system that is in dire need for funding. I just wish for one day that someone would see that GM is making steps in the right direction instead of criticizing their every move. Cudos to GM for making a car that is the start of a revolution of an oil free future.
        • 4 Years Ago
        WELL F'N SAID! You just said what every intelligent/non-trend follower/non-troll wanted to say, but couldn't get out.
        • 4 Years Ago
        LMAO!:)

        This post gives more credence to the people that see the Volt for what it is, an over-priced turd:)
      • 4 Years Ago
      While I'm not really a fan of the Volt, Rick is a pretty stand up guy when it comes to giving back. He's battled leukemia and does quite a bit of charitable work in and around the Charlotte area. I ran into Rick while on vacation earlier this year at Hendrick Motorsports, just going around and visiting the race shops. ( I missed Max Papis by a few minutes when I went to Martin Truex Jr's shop)

      As I was just driving out in my Magnum, I spotted something red and awesome pulling in. My eyes lit up and I started going bonkers. Rick was out driving with a friend of his whom recently purchased a Ferrari 458 Italia, I drove over and had asked if I could snap a few pics of the car, soon after we just started talking cars for quite a bit.

      Doing automotive photography I see Ferrari's quite a bit, but to see my first 458 in the middle of NASCAR country being driven by Rick it was just awesome.

      --RS
        • 4 Years Ago
        I bet 'ole Rick was grinning ear to ear. At his age, driving a car that fast is something you rarely ever see.
      • 4 Years Ago
      The guy stepped up and the kids get some much needed money. Kudos to him. I hope the car helps keep GM in business so jobs stay in the US. If people weren't so afraid to step up and be willing to trade in having all sorts of expectations and luxury for next to nothing from their transportation maybe the market for electric vehicles would develop quicker. But as long as oil is number one in generating taxes and everyone thinks they need to be able to travel hundreds of miles, just in case, pure EV's will be difficult for manufacturers to justify developing and it'll be the developing nations who take the market.
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