Electric Cars Crash


#1

Neither the Volt nor the Leaf have been able to sell 3000 cars since their introduction last spring…Even more disappointing, neither one was able to sell 150 cars in July, sales have been less and less each month…

While television is saturated with car ads, you never see any promotions for these cars…Americans it seems are just not interested in these cars…


#2

Both these cars are “premium” priced at their introduction. Perhaps they are overpriced in the marketplace. It is easier to reduce prices for a new car than raise them. If the cars sit in inventory too long prices will come down, or incentives will come into play.


#3

This is a problem with gee-whiz, but expensive, technology. We’d save a lot more gas selling 10 economical cheaper Leaf-sized gas cars. Folks don’t want to spend the premium, as much as it might be the ‘green’ thing to do


#4

"While television is saturated with car ads, you never see any promotions for these cars

"Americans it seems are just not interested in these cars…

=

Hmmmmmm

Pick on me for it if you want and tell me that advertising is just some kind of “public service” announcement providing information about a company’s products, but the entire professional marketing world knows that people want what they tell them to want. And of course that is oversimplified - but far from irrelevant.


#5

I’d love to have one of them! But…they can only run on electricity for 35 miles?

Great! Then I ask my employer to let me plug it in so I can drive the 35 miles home?

AND They cost more to buy than my first home!!!

The electricity comes from coal fired electric plants…how green is that?

Nope! I’ll drive the wheels off my Nissan Versa that gets 40MPG & only cost me 1/4 of a house.


#6

Outside of the range, maintenance/repair costs, and initial cost, think about the power grid. The grid is at max now with new plants not coming on line anytime soon. The additional power to recharge these cars enmass is just not there even if they did catch on.


#7

This is the first useless foray into the electric car and a successful ploy to make people think car companies are really going to make maintenance free cars; which are profit busters for the companies. One of the reasons car companies are in trouble is the lack of turnover due to federal mandates which over the years have produced reliable longer lasting cars which need less maintenance. EVs would be deadly for car companies.
Did you really think they would make a car everyone could afford that never needs a tune up or an oil change ?

The power on the grid is easily available for most during the off peak hours and solar chargers in the sun belt could cover many. Free energy, let’s keep that a secret too.


#8

Solar is anything but “free energy”. The state of Texas found out the hard way, they put in some solar and are paying several times more for electricity than what it costs from the grid. Solar power’s great when somebody else (us taxpayers) subsidize it, of course…


#9

The state of Texas found out the hard way, they put in some solar and are paying several times more for electricity than what it costs from the grid.

That makes no sense…unless you have extremely low electric rates. The upfront cost of Solar can be expensive…but the actual cost of producing electricity from solar is $0. Solar hasn’t taken off because the up-front cost is so much and it’ll take you 10+ years to pay off the return. And the most efficient use of Solar is for individual homes/businesses…NOT a huge grid that’s servicing thousands of people.


#10

It’s entirely the upfront cost of solar I’m referring to, of course. That’s what I’m referring to. The state didn’t get tax breaks, they just paid for the panels and put them up. Not a wise use of taxpayer $$.


#11

Actually the cars are selling as fast as they’re being built. They’re almost all pre-sold before they get to the dealership. The numbers are so low because that’s as fast as they can build them.

(I’m neither pro nor con electric cars, I wouldn’t mind a natural gas powered car though)


#12

About 20 years ago, I almost bought a used Citicar. This was a battery powered car that camer out about 1975 when we had a contrived oil shortage. The car needed a battery pack. My purpose was to buy the Citicar and meter the kilowatt hours it would take to use the car for my 2 mile each direction commute to work and running around town errands. I wanted to see exactly what the savings would be over a gasoline powered car. I finally decided I could buy a lot of gasoline for the cost of renewing the battery pack. The Citicar had a propane heater which bothered me about comfort in cold weather if I did more than drive to work.
I think people may be a little gunshy about the Volt and Leaf because of the price and the cost of ownership has not yet been established.


#13

How many leases? Chevy said they preferred to lease the Volt instead of selling it.


#14

I know a guy who built his own electric car using normal car batteries. I wish my commute was as short as his.


#15

Most of the people who would use one of these cars are using ZipCars and such instead.

http://www.zipcar.com


#16

That makes no sense…unless you have extremely low electric rates. The upfront cost of Solar can be expensive…but the actual cost of producing electricity from solar is $0.

Well, any competent economist can tell you that “isn’t really zero.” Suppose you sink $10K into “free energy” solar panels. Had you NOT paid for the panels, you could have put that $10K to work, earning money for you. The “cost” of the solar electricity is the money you didn’t make because it was tied up in panels, vs. the electrical power you do get…which seems to actually be more expensive, at today’s rates, than “pay as you go” electricity.


#17

There were tons of ads for the Nissan Leaf on Versus TV during the Tour de France (which may have had only limited viewership).


#18

One form of advertising they should employ is the TV and movie ‘‘product placement’’.
And be as blatantly obvious as the Toyotas on Bones, with the actors mentioning them by name at times.
– Recently , my wife saw a car in another show and asked me what it is, and this is rare for her at all.
I told her it was the Tesla all electric sports car. To which she responded “I guess their product placement is working then, cuz it made me look.”

As the general public gets used to seeing them as an everyday vehicle choice then maybe they’ll look at them equally when car shopping.

But then again it’s kinda like putting salad in the happy meals. Kids won’t choose that because that’s not why they’re there.
I know I don’t want anything with merely a hundred mile range. It’s as stupid as buying a gasoline car with a 5 gallon tank.


#19

“KG”. I think the potential is there to make even a 100 mile range EV viable. If we accept the notion that there exist a potential “filling station” on every telephone pole and fast chage potential with higher voltage to 80% in just minutes, the EV can be exceptional commuter car.
Other than the battery, I really struggle to see what makes a Leaf or any all EV worth the price they are asking. The drive train in a common ICE car is much more sophisticated and requires many more man hours to fabricate. Electronics and computer tech is really cheap.

But, just like they give away the hardware for cable or satellite to get you into a monthly contact price, they practically give away ICE cars for relatively low sales profit to get you into their service income. There is none for an EV. Therefore, you pay the upfront profit that covers the long term maintenance potential cost of a regular car. EV cars are potentially cheap to buy and own and are well worth the inconvenience of 100 mile range. That is if the price of a Leaf were where it should be…$15k.


#20

Goldwing made an interesting observation…It’s not like these cars were piling up on the dealers lots…It’s quite possible the low sales numbers are the result of low production numbers…Since “sales” do not include leases, the actual delivery numbers could be quite higher…