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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
GM has hinted that they may lease the batteries. This is a brilliant sales strategy.

Surveys show that the typical car buyer only considers the first three years of energy cost savings when buying a vehicle. (You guys are enthusiasts and your natural instinct is to discount this point of view.) The typical buyer won’t pay for the batteries (Estimate ~ $8,000 GM’s selling price) until the cost of gas rises to $9/gal. (See post “Time Value of Money” @http://www.gm-volt.com/forum/showthread.php?t=373&page=2.) Let’s give the buyer the option of purchasing the battery over a four year period. Call it “leasing.”

But, if you sell the car and “lease” the batteries then the lease pays for itself in gas savings. (Monthly payments over 4 years @5% = $184/month. Gas savings drive 12,000 miles/year, $4.20/gal, US fleet average = 20 mpg, gives gas cost savings at $210/month. For 40 mile AER commuting: electricity @$0.10/kWHr, costs $24.375/month driving. Total of lease plus electricity is $208/month.) It’s like leasing the batteries for free. Instead of monthly payments to OPEC and polluting the environment, support your US battery technology.
 

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Tom,

I think the perception may be changing, but for the most part, we around here have been down on leasing the battery, not because we are simply ev enthusiasts, but because of GMs track record with the EV1. If you lease the battery, instead of buying it, then at any time, GM can void the lease and recall your battery and they are under no obligation to give you another.

However, I and probably others, do not disagree that leasing is overall a good idea in theory. I personally think it should simply be an option, just like leasing a car is an option today.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
"Lease" is inaccurate terminology. How about "An Alternative to Gas Payments" plan.

BigRedFed,


GM can void the lease and recall your battery and they are
under no obligation to give you another.
I agree "Lease" is a not a good description. The whole idea is rather than having to increase the sticker price by the cost of the batteries, is to promote the batteries as some other alternative to gas payments, i.e.
"stick it to OPEC",
save the environment,
reduce pollution, and so forth.

By 2011 when the volt is in full production the price of gas may be up to $6 this becomes increasingly attractive.
 

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http://www.iht.com/articles/2008/06...tLStAw&usg=AFQjCNF8kwfvNxPTkPUGGpZ63bHKX63IWQ

It looks like GM is strongly considering leasing the batteries and then reselling them to utility companies at the end of the lease. But how would that affect selling a used Volt? Who is responsible for the battery payments? How long is the lease? When the lease is up and GM wants to take back the batteries and sell them to the utilities, what happens to the car? It essentially becomes worthless. Can you later swap out newer batteries?
 

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When the lease is up and GM wants to take back the batteries and sell them to the utilities, what happens to the car? It essentially becomes worthless. Can you later swap out newer batteries?
GM has already told us that the battery pack is removable from under the car without major disassembly. This means that other batteries can go back in. The odds strongly favor that GM or other aftermarket companies (perhaps whoever doesn't get the Volt contract) will offer you a replacement. Also, the replacement is likely to be a much better battery.

I understand that many don't trust GM after the EV1 experience, but there are some pretty big differences between that time and now. Then people had to be talked into an electric car and now people are demanding them. Then there was almost no competition and now there are promising to be many. Then there were only about 1000 customers after three years and now they will sell that many in the first day. Most importantly, then gas was just a little over a dollar a gallon and when the Volt is released, it will no doubt be 5 to 6 per gallon. There is no turning back and GM knows this and embraces this. I have no fear in leasing the battery if I have to.
 

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bottom line we need to know is the final range and the price of the vehicle without the battery included, and how the leasing arrangement would work (how about changing the name from leasing to maintenance). If we're going to do an effective cost analysis this is what we need to know.
 

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GM has already told us that the battery pack is removable from under the car without major disassembly. This means that other batteries can go back in. The odds strongly favor that GM or other aftermarket companies (perhaps whoever doesn't get the Volt contract) will offer you a replacement. Also, the replacement is likely to be a much better battery.

I understand that many don't trust GM after the EV1 experience, but there are some pretty big differences between that time and now. Then people had to be talked into an electric car and now people are demanding them. Then there was almost no competition and now there are promising to be many. Then there were only about 1000 customers after three years and now they will sell that many in the first day. Most importantly, then gas was just a little over a dollar a gallon and when the Volt is released, it will no doubt be 5 to 6 per gallon. There is no turning back and GM knows this and embraces this. I have no fear in leasing the battery if I have to.
Are you saying it is removable, such that it could work with a Battery Swapping station, and could you please quote the source?

Update- I don't believe GM is installing battery-swappable capability. As most of the industry has already concluded battery swapping technology is not the key to successful future deployment.
 

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GM has designed removable vehicle body over a skateboard like chassis. I hope the batteries are not integrated unto the chassis. So that we can replace as we please.
 

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Are you saying it is removable, such that it could work with a Battery Swapping station, and could you please quote the source?
That's not what I'm saying at all. The Volt is not designed to have a battery that will be used at a "swapping station". It's battery will be removable from under the car and the proceedure will be much like how they remove and service transmissions now. The car goes up on a lift and the battery pack gets disconnected, unbolted and lowered down.
 

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GM has designed removable vehicle body over a skateboard like chassis. I hope the batteries are not integrated unto the chassis. So that we can replace as we please.
The skateboard chassis was the 2002 Hy-Wire concept. It is a fuel cell concept and has nothing to do with the Volt. The Volt will be built on a modified Cobalt chassis known as Delta. The batteries will not be integrated into the chassis and can be removed for service without major disassembly. Below are some pictures of Hy-Wire.
 

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That's good for us then. But with the battery lasting so many cycles, projected to be longer than the car, it is tempting to integrate it.
 

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Tom,

I think the perception may be changing, but for the most part, we around here have been down on leasing the battery, not because we are simply ev enthusiasts, but because of GMs track record with the EV1. If you lease the battery, instead of buying it, then at any time, GM can void the lease and recall your battery and they are under no obligation to give you another.

However, I and probably others, do not disagree that leasing is overall a good idea in theory. I personally think it should simply be an option, just like leasing a car is an option today.
How about selling different size batteries? If the Volt came in a 10-mile, 25-mile, and 40-mile option GM could charge proportionally as the 10-mile option would have a much smaller battery.
 

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I'll take the leased battery option over what Toyota wants to do - lease the whole car. EV1 anyone? No thanks. I don't want them taking away my Volt after I did all of the extra work on it. ;) However, they can take the old technology battery and replace it with newer technology. It reduces the risk on both sides. This option should be carefully considered.
 
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