If you've been craving a Chevy Volt, but it isn't available in your area, take heart: The plug-in sedan is coming to you by the end of the year. Because of strong customer demand, the rollout is being sped up by six months, making those rumors of huge increases in production far more plausible. Speaking at the DC Auto Show, GM's Ed Welburn said, "This accelerated plan, which had stretched into 2012, is the right thing to do for our customers. Demand was that strong."
35-mile plug-in hybrid has so piqued the car-buying public's interest that the company says it bringing people to showrooms who might not have previously considered a GM purchase. According to Chevy dealer Harry Criswell III:
The Volt is clearly bringing new customers to Chevrolet. We are seeing 10 to 15 customers a week who are seriously considering buying a Volt. Many of them own competitive brands and now have a Chevy on their shopping list because of the Volt.Looks like all that investment just might pay itself off sooner than later. To see when your state goes Volt, check out the color-coded map above. Official press release after the break.
DETROIT – Chevrolet is stepping up the national rollout of the Volt to match customer interest.
"We're accelerating our launch plan to have Volts in all participating Chevrolet dealerships in every single state in the union by the end of this year," said Rick Scheidt, U.S. vice president, Chevrolet Marketing. "This is the right thing to do for our customers and our dealers who are seeing increased traffic onto their showroom floors."
Chevrolet Volts have been delivered to customers in the Washington D.C. area, as well as California, New York, Connecticut, New Jersey and Texas. Customer deliveries in Michigan begin this spring.
Customers nationwide will be able to order Volts with participating dealers beginning in the second quarter. Deliveries will begin in Virginia, Maryland, Delaware, Pennsylvania, North Carolina, South Carolina, Georgia, Florida, Oregon, Washington and Hawaii in the third quarter.
During the fourth quarter, Chevrolet expects to deliver Volts in all 50 states.
The decision to accelerate the national rollout was influenced by Chevrolet dealers like Criswell Chevrolet in Gaithersburg, Md., which has seen a surge of consumers interested in the Volt.
"The Volt is clearly bringing new customers to Chevrolet," said Harry E. Criswell III, president and owner of Criswell Chevrolet "We are seeing 10 to 15 customers a week who are seriously considering buying a Volt. Many of them own competitive brands and now have a Chevy on their shopping list because of the Volt."
Some of that consumer interest has been fueled by prestigious industry awards and recognitions for the Volt, including:
* 2011 North American Car of the Year
* Motor Trend 2011 Car of the Year
* Green Car Journal 2011 Green Car of the Year
* Car and Driver 10 Best for 2011
* Ward's AutoWorld 10 Best Engines for 2011
* AUTOMOBILE Magazine 2011 Automobile of the Year
* 2010 Breakthrough Technology, by Popular Mechanics
"Such recognition provides customers with credible, expert endorsement of new models, which is important for vehicles like the Volt that feature significant new technologies," said Scheidt. "Based on the awards the Volt has received, and the number of consumers expressing interest in the technology, we believe the Volt is the right car at the right time."
The Volt is an electric vehicle that offers 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.
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Founded in Detroit in 1911, Chevrolet celebrates its centennial as a global automotive brand with annual sales of about 4.25 million vehicles in more than 120 countries. Chevrolet provides consumers with fuel-efficient, safe and reliable vehicles that deliver high quality, expressive design, spirited performance and value. 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 Spark, Cruze, Malibu, Equinox and Traverse. Chevrolet also offers "gas-friendly to gas-free" solutions including Cruze Eco and Volt. Cruze Eco offers 42 mpg highway while Volt offers 35 miles of electric, gasoline-free driving and an additional 344 miles of extended range. 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 can be found at www.chevrolet.com.