• Mar 1st 2011 at 7:47PM
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Peruse Chevrolet's February sales release, and you'll notice one number that's blatantly missing: how many Chevy Volts were sold. The number – a very modest 281 – is available in the company's detailed data (PDF), but it apparently isn't something that GM wants to highlight. Keeping the number quiet is understandable, since it's lower than the 321 that Chevy sold in January.

Nissan doesn't have anything to brag about here, either (and it avoided any mention of the Leaf sales in its press release). Why? Well, back in January, the company sold 87 Leafs. In February? Just 67. Where does that leave us? Well, here's the big scorecard for all U.S. sales of these vehicles thus far:
  • Volt: 928
  • Leaf: 173
Ouch. The big questions, of course, revolve around one word: "Why?" Is ramping up production still a problem? Is demand weak? Are unscrupulous dealers to blame? When will sales start to climb? And what are these numbers doing to plug-in vehicle projects at other automakers? We don't know all the answers, but for more on February auto sales, click here.

*UPDATE: GM has sent us some clarifying information about Volt sale, which you can read here.

[Sources: General Motors, Nissan]

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    • 1 Second Ago
      • 8 Months Ago
      The avalanche of replies has prevented me from replying to individual comments.

      But a couple of observations can be made from the nearly 400 comments posted.

      Normally the anti-EV, anti-US made EV hybrid, are the naysayers from the loony left enviro-pests.

      But this is a new phenomenon, a barking mad, totally inaccurate, rant from the equally loony US right. (Oh 'cept for one US-based Aussie expat who claims that Australian petrol (gas in US parlance) at $4 per galleon, is very expensive by world standards!).

      The well reasoned and informative posts by 'Carney', are totally ignored, as anti-Obama anti- US, self loathing pours out.

      It's difficult to comprehend any rational thought behind the rabid and at times abusive outpourings.

      Like 'Carney' , I am a conservative, capitalist voter. Like 'Carney', I believe that if I criticise the administration of any public policy or product, I must actually understand and have some viable alternative policy to suggest, not just rant.

      Thomas Paine (hardly a socialist) said " It is the duty of every man in a free society, to speak his mind freely! It is also the duty of every man to make sure what is on his mind, is worth saying!"

      The era of the electric vehicle has arrived! Not every model or particular technology will be successful, or remain as the technology improves and electric storage devices become more sophisticated. Schemes like 'Better Place' and incompetent start-up type vehicles will quickly disappear or merge with major manufacturers.

      But the EV will emerge as the dominant personal transport vehicle of the post oil era.

      The opposition seems to belong to five main camps:

      Barking: It's all a commie plot, along with gun control and health care reform.

      Ostrich : It's all a fad because there will always be plenty of cheap oil available forever!

      Leftist : Ev's are harmful because the run on coal, are too expensive, and made by evil US corporations.

      Utopian (conspiracy); I've invented a car powered by perpetual motion!

      Since the vast majority of the population are neither fools nor rabid, they will eventually rally patriotically behind the US led western trade block, and participate in the rebirth of US industrial/ technical leadership.
        • 8 Months Ago
        I don't know where you are getting the idea that the political left or environmentalists don't support electric vehicles. Can you provide a link to one of your sources?
        • 8 Months Ago
        Sigh, of course you are correct. I should have specified that I was referring to a certain type of leftist, not all. Ditto environmentalist.

        However, I would have thought that given the context of my post, that was an inference that didn't need to be spelt out.

        I was referring to the sort of enviro-pest whose attitudes are determined not be reason or informed opinion, but from some deluded hatred of the 'capitalist system', evil corporations, conspiracy theories etc..

        Many sincere(and rationale) environmentalists,(myself included) along with many of the political left, welcome the advent of the EV .

        I hope that clarifies my usage of the term leftist, for you?
        • 8 Months Ago
        Thanks for the hat tips, marcopolo.
      • 8 Months Ago
      These cars are way too expensive to make any sense at all. You can buy one hell of a lot of gasoline at $4 a litre before you will ever come close to recovering your costs, especially given the fact the used electric car (with dead battery) will be worthless. The market for electric cars at this point is limited to rich "elites" who want to feel they are doing something meaningful (even if they aren't), and will pay any price to advertise to the world how enlightened they are. Conventional car with great mileage makes way more sense if money is your issue, and if neither matters, then you buy style, performance or (like me) a vehicle that best suits your personal all-round transportation needs. Some day electric might make sense, but I think that is years/decades off for real people.
      • 8 Months Ago
      From the comments I am reading, it appears that if they haven't sold in the first few months, then we can't expect them to sell well ever, even if gas prices continue to rise sharply due to Peak Oil. And it wouldn't matter anyway, because we only burn coal to make electricity and burning coal for electricity is the same as burning oil for combustion.
      • 8 Months Ago
      The 40 mile range is in warm weather. You can cut it in half on a cold winter day. Road mileage is about 34 MPG (www.cars.com). Compare to Toyota Yaris with 40 MPG and $13,000 price. Hello!
      • 8 Months Ago
      Your elders told you so. Drill baby drill, drill SOON!
      • 8 Months Ago
      And remember Motor Trend rag named this PO# "Car of the Year"! If I was a subscriber I ask for my $ back and then some as they are now become POLITICAL HACKS for this mis-administration!
        • 8 Months Ago
        Let's remember to check our Foxnews scorecards

        Bush bailout of AIG, Bear Stearns, etc. who gave loans to people who couldn't afford them while giving themselves billions in annual bonuses, even after getting bailed out:

        Obama bailout of car companies who provide a decent wage to non-college people who were forced to break their union contracts and take a pay cut:
      • 8 Months Ago
      Government Motors Chevrolet Volt will go down in the automotive record books alongside the Ford Edsel. Another embarassment for the Nobama administration.
        • 8 Months Ago
        Tonytdomingues said "If this is an embarrassment, what term can we use for the Bush administration lying about Iraq having WMDs"......Well Tony, we can call him the hero that he is for freeing a country of a bloody dictator, allowing a democracy to be established and re building their city's bringing them closer to modern society. Yes freedom has it's price however our brave men and women who paid that price wtll be remembered fondly for their sacrifice.
        • 8 Months Ago
        If this is an embarrassment, what term can we use for the Bush administration lying about Iraq having WMDs and then killing so many people and destroying a country based on a pack of lies?
      • 8 Months Ago
      Bogus, green political pipe dream vehicles, over priced by at least twice and with significant service limitations. What's not to like? They should be selling like hot cakes!
      • 8 Months Ago
      Many years ago a prof gave me the following:
      "Whenever you desire a new product or service, begin with the customer because that is where you will need to end up. Unfortunately many organizations begin with a concept and end up with a catastrophe."
      You can decide which is correct for the Volt or Leaf. Take in to account that since the Government paid for the plant refurbishing, tooling the vehicles, and rebates on selling the product, any decisions maybe unrelated to standard business decisions.
      • 8 Months Ago
      Price, performance, stupidity, who wants it???!!!!!!!!!
      • 8 Months Ago
      I could have been one of the February sales. I took one for a test drive that my local dealer had ordered (mostly) to my spec. I REALLY enjoyed the experience of silent propulsion. But I decided not to buy a Volt because:

      1. The Volt is really small, and would be replacing a Chevy Equinox. The day before the dealer offered the Volt to me, we had to pick up some furniture, and there is no way I could do this with a Volt. And my wife's Ford Fusion isn't much better.

      2. During the spring/summer/fall, I have a small motorcycle that I can commute my daily 24-mile round-trip. The economics of this vs. a Volt, even if gas is $10/gallon greatly favor not buying the Volt.

      That all being said, I am really kicking myself for not buying the Volt. If I had to do it over again, I would definitely have leased it. And I may still do so when another one comes into the dealer. When I need to utility of a van/SUV, I can just rent, and that only happens once a month or so.
      • 8 Months Ago
      The Volt and Leaf are not selling for the simple reason that they cost ridiculously more than cars of similar size. The savings due to using less fuel (or in the Volt's case no fuel) do not make up for the difference in the selling price. In a related comment, I was recently shopping for a new car, and I could not believe that the Volt had only 4 seats. That means that when my family (of 5) wants to go out to dinner nearby (a perfect ride for a Volt or Leaf), we have to take the SUV instead. Both these cars will be out of production in less than 3 years unless they significantly reduce the prices. Otherwise, I'll get another hybrid on the market.
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