Volt Production to Be Doubled or Tripled, GM Says

The new Chevrolet Volt appears to be the change of luck GM was waiting for, with about 240,000 potential buyers expressing interest in the vehicle. In spite of the Volt's great success with customers, GM will only deliver 10,000 units in 2011, with plans to expand production in the years to come.

In a speech given at the official Volt launch at the Detroit-Hamtramck assembly plant, GM North America President Mark Reuss said that Volt production is only held back by vendor production of battery cells needed for the battery packs assembled by GM in suburban Detroit. He also mentioned GM's plans to export the Volt to Europe and other international markets by late 2011. The European version would be the Opel Ampera.

A flexi-fuel powered version of the Volt is also considered, according to GM global product chief Tom Stephens, and will probably be available as of 2012 if the carmaker keeps to its plans. The Volt would use E85 fuel, which is a mix of 15 percent petroleum and 85 percent ethanol, and fuel consumption would be negligible, compared to that of an internal combustion vehicle, due to its ability to run in electric-only mode.

Beginning this month, the Volt will be available in seven states for the following 12 months, with limited supplies available for sale and demonstration at Chevrolet dealers. The Volt will be available nationally after that time. GM will make almost no initial profit on the Volt, the vehicle being priced at US $41,000 (about EUR 31,500), including shipping, before a $7,500 (EUR 5,755) federal tax credit.
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