Friday, January 18, 2013

GM President Says EVs Are Not Dead, Next Volt Will Cost “Thousands Less”

Despite predictions that plug-in hybrid and all-electric vehicles would increase rapidly due to climbing gasoline prices, in 2012, their sales were a mere 52,172 units according to the Automotive News Data Center.

That’s a drop in the ocean when viewed in the light of total new vehicle sales in the U.S. market, which surpassed 14.5 million last year. On the other hand, that figure accounts for a three-fold increase compared to 2011.

During the Automotive News World Congress in Detroit, GM North America President Mark Reuss said, “The electric vehicle is not dead. We at GM believe that the public will accept and embrace electric vehicles. Some people already have.”

Reuss admitted that, right now, there are too many obstacles preventing plug-in hybrids and EVs from broadening their client base. He explained that the change in the public’s buying habits won’t happen overnight: “We’re talking about a transformation here. And transformation takes time”.

He added that GM is totally committed to the Chevrolet Volt, which despite what Reuss termed “an unprecedented political beat-down” during the presidential election season last year, managed to triple its sales to 23,461 units.

GM’s U.S. top exec was buoyant about Chevy’s extended-range plug-in hybrid claiming, “it’s going to sell even more”. Moreover, he revealed that “the next-generation will be even better and cheaper" as the company can reduce costs by “thousands of dollars” through a better design of the battery pack and electric motors.

By Andrew Tsaousis
Story References: Autonews
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