Some Free Thinking on $750 Million for the Volt ~ Hybrid Car Review
Hybrid Car Review: Some Free Thinking on $750 Million for the Volt

Sunday, December 14, 2008

Some Free Thinking on $750 Million for the Volt

GM, as part of their case put forth to the US government to save them, noted they are spending $750 million on the development of the Chevy Volt E-REV.  $750 million is certainly a number worth noting.

But I was curious as to how that stood up against the numbers that have come before in hybrid development.

Take for instance, the development of the dual mode hybrid system by GM, Chrysler and BMW.  They put one billion into their research.  That technology can already be found in the GM SUVs Escalade, Tahoe and Yukon hybrids as well as the already retired Durango and Aspen Hybrids.  GM is also putting together a dual mode Saturn Vue, but the launch date for the full hybrid Vue has already been pushed back.  Also, GM is considering (again, referencing the plan from GM to the government) cancelling Saturn, nevermind the Vue.

According to some sources, Toyota spent $2 billion developing the hybrid synergy drive they use in their hybrids (as well as selling it to Nissan for the Altima Hybrid).  Toyota has reportedly been able to start making a profit off their investment, but it took a long time to do it.

Ford is supposed to start making off of their hybrid development this coming year with the new Fusion and Milan Hybrids.  I haven't seen any reports from Honda, but given they've had their hybrid technology as long as Toyota has, plus they've released said they've cut the price of their hybrid IMA in half, leads me to believe they are making money off their hybrid cars.

Will GM ever make money off their research investment?

Maybe they should have looked for a partner to help pay for the research on the Volt?

It's certainly looking like their investment in the dual mode hybrid engine is not going to pay for itself.  Or will the dual mode hybrid engine hang around until GM feels they can expand on it, just as Ford has done with the Escape Hybrid?

Will the Volt's price tag (close to $40,000) mean a turning point of 2016 for the E-REV engine mean it will never come about?  Will they sell enough Volts to make it viable?  Or will it go into retirement like the Durango Hybrid after just 3 months?

Will a GM bankruptcy kill the Volt, or will it still be something the board feels is needed no matter the cost?

Get Four Free Price Quotes From Yahoo! Autos Hybrid Research and Pricing at

No comments:

Post a Comment

Comments posted on Hybrid Car Review will be moderated. Please avoid dropping links just for the sake of links. The comment will be deleted shortly after. Keep comments on topic and non-abusive. Thanks!

Automotive Parts

E-Bay Motors


  © Link to Privacy Policy

Back to TOP