Well done, GM.

Discussion in 'The Bike Cafe' started by limerickman, Apr 15, 2009.

  1. limerickman

    limerickman Moderator

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    The BBC ran a fascinating piece on their series "Ethical Man" - this is about a guy trying to minimise his carbon footprint.
    Having explored advances to minimise his carbon footprint in the UK, he travelled to the US (by plane!) to see how joe public in the USA is looking at ways to reduce their carbon footprint.

    He travelled by Greyhound Bus (from Michigan) to Detroit - to visit GM and to see GM's new carbon friendly car, The Volt.

    The Volt has been designed to run on electricity and unlike the hybrid, which has capacity to run on electricity and petrol, the Volt is puely an electrically power vehicle/engine.
    GM ought to be congratulated for taking this bold step to embrace the era of reduced carbon emmissions, I think.

    The presenter drove the car and said that it was like driving an ordinary fossil fuelled car - except that the acceleration was much better in the Volt.

    Hopefully this car will sell well.
     
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  2. Bro Deal

    Bro Deal New Member

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    The Volt is a scam. It was originally a shell of a concept car that was shown at auto shows. They literally pulled the promised performance numbers out of their butts. When it got a lot more press than intended, GM was dumb enough to announce they were making the car, even though the required battery technology did not exist and GM was not in a financial position to spend money on a moonshot project. Later as GM's cash reserves headed rapidly toward and below its required working capital, the Volt was used as an argument for obtaining billions of dollars of loans for the development of green technoloogy from the Department of Energy. Unfortunately for GM one of the requirements for those loans is that the recipients have to be financially viable.

    Currently the expected price of the Volt is $40K but figures of $48K are also being hinted at. With the Honda Insight and Toyota Prius notching in at less than half that price, the Volt is doomed. Without enough time to test battery longevity, battery problems are probably a sure bet.

    For a laugh check out looks of the original concept car that got people excited and then check out what the car currently looks like.

    GM will likely start some sort of bankruptcy or bankruptcy equivalent at the end of next month. If the economy were not in it current state, the government would stand back and let GM fail like it deserves.
     
  3. limerickman

    limerickman Moderator

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    Thanks for that update : the TV peice did quote a selllng price $40k for the new car.
    It also said that GM had invested approx $1billion in the development of the car.
    They interviewed the head of GM Design and he said that the longevity of the battery would be 10 years - to use his phrase "the battery would last the lifetime of the car".

    I saw the car itself on the programme last night - I thought that it loosed petty good myself.
    Body looked sleek and the interior looked fine.
     
  4. dgregory57

    dgregory57 New Member

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    I think GM is spending a lot of money to catch up with Toyota and the others.

    I like the thought of a hybrid with plug-in technology, and more so if they include some capability to use solar cells to charge it while sitting in the lot at work.

    I would be more likely to buy the announced Prius with the plug-in option because I think the company is more comfortable with the technology, and not rushing to market. Plus, the cost is closer to what I want to pay. [​IMG]

    By the way, my commute to work is approximately the range of what is claimed for the distance available for the Prius before needing to engage the gas engine.

    Now the real questions are:

    Would it cost me more than the $1 or so that it currently costs me in fuel to charge the car each night?

    And does the natural gas power plant generating the electricity use a smaller carbon footprint to create that amount of power?
     
  5. limerickman

    limerickman Moderator

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    Good question.

    If the carbon footprint of the power plant producing the electricity - which eventually fuels the car - is huge, it begs the valid question.
     
  6. slovakguy

    slovakguy Active Member

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    it most likely wouldn't have a smaller "footprint". the benefit of the power plant model has a basis in the greater ease of concentrating your exhaust scrubbers on one large pipe (economy of scale).
     
  7. Flyer

    Flyer Banned

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    zaass
     
  8. waldowales

    waldowales New Member

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    I wonder how long GM can last. There are rumors that they are trying to unload GMAC, and they, or their Chinese banking partners, are actively trying to get rid of their GM card customers, through outrageous interest rates and phony "security checks" designed to weed out those customers who pay off their balances every month. Ask me how I know this!:mad:
     
  9. limerickman

    limerickman Moderator

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    I'll bite - how do you know this?
     
  10. swampy1970

    swampy1970 Well-Known Member

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    While it sounds great, what's the range on that car? Will it be compatible with the massive electric infrastructure that many American cities have put in place? I wouldn't be too surprised if a Volt owner parked in one of the many places that offer free electric charging only to find that they're faced with a "round hole, square plug scenario".

    But for $40k, it's only $9k short of this - and Telsa motors have a proven history of reliability with electric cars. Plus it looks more Maserati than Mazda...

    [​IMG]

    ... or you could pay a little more, OK another 50K, for their Lotus chassised 'fun' car that'll do 0 to 60mph in ~3.8 seconds.

    [​IMG]
     
  11. JTE83

    JTE83 Member

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    GM is full of shit. The Volt will be a major FAIL and the Prius and Insight totally outclass it and are way cheaper.
     
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