Plug In America Disagrees with Obama Auto Task Force on GM Volt

Photo: GM
Suggests Cutting Warranty from 10 to 5 Years
Yesterday, we covered a report by the presidential Auto Task Force that mentioned, among other things, that the GM Volt might not be commercially viable in the short-term. This sparked an interesting discussion in the comments, and now Plug In America is saying that it disagrees with the Auto Task Force's conclusion and knows how to make the Volt more viable...
Click on image above to see our Volt slideshow. Photo: GM

From Plug In America:

California law requires that the Volt and other plug-in hybrids come with a 10-year warranty. To ensure this longer life, automakers are as much as doubling the size of the battery pack, increasing cost to manufacturer and consumer. But not a single production plug-in electric vehicle sold to date, from GM's early EV1 to today's Tesla, has had a warranty of more than five years, noted Plug In America advisory board member Chelsea Sexton.

"To support early deployment, California should relax the warranty requirement for cars like the Volt to five years, phasing to 10 years over time," said Sexton, a former GM employee. "This alone could cut the number of batteries required by as much as half and reduce the cost of each vehicle by thousands of dollars." [...]

"The minimum Volt warranty we're asking for has historically been the maximum ever given for any plug-in car," Sexton said.

They also point out that it would still be possible to get extended warranties, and that the federal government in the US has already said it would back warranties from GM if it went bankrupt.

10 Years Sounds Good Until You Think More About It...
This makes a lot of sense to me. The 10 year warranty sounds nice in theory from the point of view of a consumer, but there's no such thing as a free lunch. Volt buyers are paying for that warranty indirectly, and all of us (including other automakers that would like to sell plug-ins in California) will have to wait longer and/or pay more. It's hard to find an upside...

What do you think?

Via Plug In America

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Tags: California | Electric Cars | Electric Vehicles | Transportation


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