- Mar 13, 2012
Opinion: Bob Lutz Returns Fire On Fox News And Other Right-Wing Chevy Volt Haters
Former GM executive blasts criticsm of electric vehicle
In a blog post on Forbes.com, Lutz tried to quell the rumors, innuendo and outright lies of the "rabid, sadly misinformed right" who began piling on this Chevy soon after General Motors Co. announced it would suspend production for five weeks.
Unlike any other car before, the Volt has drawn the ire of many anti-Obama forces. In their minds, the Volt is a symbol GM's post-bailout success. That, of course, means it must be dismantled and proclaimed an absolute failure.
Last November, the right-wingers thought they had their final piece of evidence when the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration disclosed that after crash-testing a Volt, its battery pack caught fire. Let the diatribes begin. From Glen Beck to Fox Business News's Stuart Varney to radio jock Rush Limbaugh, anyone with an axe to grind and a talk show began proclaiming the Volt an abject failure. Even after the Volt was cleared by NHTSA of any problems in January, talk show haters continued to say the Volt would burst into flames faster than a drummer in Spinal Tap.
Facebookers sympathetic to the modern-day conservative bash of the auto bailout were posting Volt is a "fireball" regardless of the truth or investigative findings.
Lutz, a self-described conservative and doubter of global warming, had enough of Fox and friends overlooking facts and misrepresenting truth, while continuing to take money from GM for commercials running on their shows.
And Lutz is right. The Volt is perfectly safe. Not one Volt has ever caught fire on an American road, none, zero, nada.
Furthermore, Lutz points out that President Obama had nothing to do with the car's development. Lutz, who came up with the idea of an extended range hybrid, began overseeing the car's development in 2006, when Senator Obama was still unpacking in Washington D.C..
An example of how wrong detractors have been is even if the exact same circumstances unfolded in the first NHTSA test on a real road in America and the people inside the Volt stayed buckled up until the fire started, they would die of starvation long before any the first whiff of smoke. The first fire took three weeks to start, and that was only because NHTSA did not drain the energy in the batteries after the accident.
Sadly, the Volt has become a political football punted around by so many right wingers that the truth about this car has gone unnoticed.
It's an engineering marvel, providing emission-free transportation for 40 miles and then unlimited transportation after that. It can do the one thing no other electric car on the road today can do: Keep going after the battery pack is empty.
Give credit where credit is due: Not the president, not any political party, but rather the engineers, designers and GM executives like Lutz for coming up with something no one ever put on the road.
And for the record, every Volt is born in Hamtramck, Michigan, making it a U.S. citizen at birth. Birth certificates, of course, can be denied.