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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I figure that this would be the best forum to ask this question, so if not, please move it.

For the longest time, I've had an issue with people comparing the Bolt EV and the Model 3. They aren't competitors. However, when it comes to pure BEVs, GM clearly beat Tesla to the average-priced car segment. That's not really a question, but to me the real question is something that has been overlooked by most people. What would GM's Model 3 competitor actually look like. Well, personally, I think we've known since 2010. That's right. GM's EV sedan with a low-slung hatchback trunk has been available at an average new-car MSRP for seven years. Yes, I believe the entry-level Model 3's true competitor is the Chevy Volt.

That being said, if Tesla can ramp up to their full production as planned, we should see roughly four times as many Tesla Model 3s on the road as Chevy Volts by the end of 2018. So, assuming Tesla does meet their production plans, what's your prediction for when the Model 3 will overtake the Volt in total EV miles driven?
 

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Not sure it is a fair comparison as the Model 3 is a pure BEV and the Volt is a hybrid. If the Volt had equal range to the Model 3 on battery only, AND still had the range extending gas motor the Volt would probably continue to be a major seller. The Bolt and the Model 3 will be competitors and I welcome a "range battle" there as well as who can charge the fastest while on road trips!
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Not sure it is a fair comparison as the Model 3 is a pure BEV and the Volt is a hybrid. If the Volt had equal range to the Model 3 on battery only, AND still had the range extending gas motor the Volt would probably continue to be a major seller. The Bolt and the Model 3 will be competitors and I welcome a "range battle" there as well as who can charge the fastest while on road trips!
Well, two things. First, my Bolt EV replaced our C-Max, not our Volt. When I do look to replace our Volt, it will most likely be with a Model 3 or something similar. Why? What's the point of having two sedans when we can have a sedan and a CUV?

Second, if I was asking for total miles, I could see your point in viewing the Volt as a "hybrid." However, the Volt is an extended-range EV, and I'm not concerned with the Volt's total miles. I'm talking solely about the total number of EV miles driven by Volt owners.
 

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I figure that this would be the best forum to ask this question, so if not, please move it.

For the longest time, I've had an issue with people comparing the Bolt EV and the Model 3. They aren't competitors. However, when it comes to pure BEVs, GM clearly beat Tesla to the average-priced car segment. That's not really a question, but to me the real question is something that has been overlooked by most people. What would GM's Model 3 competitor actually look like. Well, personally, I think we've known since 2010. That's right. GM's EV sedan with a low-slung hatchback trunk has been available at an average new-car MSRP for seven years. Yes, I believe the entry-level Model 3's true competitor is the Chevy Volt.

That being said, if Tesla can ramp up to their full production as planned, we should see roughly four times as many Tesla Model 3s on the road as Chevy Volts by the end of 2018. So, assuming Tesla does meet their production plans, what's your prediction for when the Model 3 will overtake the Volt in total EV miles driven?
We can only hope that EVs will match or beat ICE range in a few years...which I think is very doable unless auto makers slow their progress down due to changing EPA rules and idiots in office who will force us in a different direction.

If GM is truly serious about electrifying...which I don't think they are...they'd come out with a Volt EV. I'd have much preferred an all electric Volt even if the range was less. A more aggressive design, lighter car, and all electric. As it stands the Bolt and M3 have nothing in common in terms of vehicle type other than both being electric. I'd never cross shop the two unless my one and ONLY goal was to buy an EV.
 

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Until GM makes the Cadillac ATS EV with 200+ miles of range, optional AWD, optional Supercruise and all at a price of $35K, there isn't a M3 competitor from GM...

Most people go from Volts to Teslas...Very rare for it to go the other way around...
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
No one seems to want to answer my question about predictions, so I'll add mine first:

I think it will be at least 2020 or 2021 before the EV miles driving by Model 3s surpass the number of EV miles driven by Volts.
 

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The question is so difficult to predict...First we don't even have solid Volt EV mile stats since not everyone registers on voltstats so I mean how can we accurately determine the answer?
Next we we don't know the range offerings...Tesla is moving all offering to new denser cells...Musk said they can't fit beyond 75kWh in the M3; the 75kWh MS75RWD gets 249 miles of range, perhaps they'll get 300 miles on their largest battery, but what if they somehow get 350? Same with the base, if they get 215 they'll get there slower than if they somehow manage 239 that again makes a difference...
Lastly we don't know if GM will continue to work on improving range on the Bolt EV either...
I predict a slower than planned ramp up...
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Ah. I just checked Chevy's website. I guess they took down the page that displayed the total number of EV miles driven by all Volt owners (as opposed to just those on VoltStats). Last I saw, it was well over 600 million EV miles driven, and that was a while ago.

If the data isn't still available, then yes, I guess there's no way to predict.
 

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In the end, does it really matter how many cumulative miles the volt and model 3 reach? The real positive is that both the volt and Tesla model 3 probably replaced a pure ice vehicle, so it's a win for the environment, reducing our dependency of foreign oil, and one less thing contributing to tipping the scales of no return on global warming.
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
In the end, does it really matter how many cumulative miles the volt and model 3 reach? The real positive is that both the volt and Tesla model 3 probably replaced a pure ice vehicle, so it's a win for the environment, reducing our dependency of foreign oil, and one less thing contributing to tipping the scales of no return on global warming.
I would say that in some ways it does. People are quick to dismiss the Volt as an EV (look at the first response to this thread), and people are highly critical of GM's decision to start with an average priced EREV. Looking at the total number of miles driven on electricity is a very valid metric for assessing the effectiveness of the strategy. If the goal is to replace ICE miles with EV miles, it can be argued that GM beat Tesla to the average-priced, long-range EV not last December but rather seven years ago.
 

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No one seems to want to answer my question about predictions, so I'll add mine first:

I think it will be at least 2020 or 2021 before the EV miles driving by Model 3s surpass the number of EV miles driven by Volts.
You mean the EV miles driven by Volts up to now? Maybe. But the Volts will continue to accumulate miles from now until 2020, and by that year the Gen 3 250+ mile Volt will be out. The TM Model 3 will be too behind to catch up. I am willing to bet $50,000 by 2030 that the Model 3 will be a failure! But you will never get to cash my bet if I lose.
 

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The Volt and Model 3 aren't direct competitors. They aren't the same type of vehicle. The Volt is a EREV or plug-in hybrid and the Model 3 is a BEV.

It's also difficult for the Model 3 to compete when it's not available for sale.
 

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The Volt and Model 3 aren't direct competitors. They aren't the same type of vehicle. The Volt is a EREV or plug-in hybrid and the Model 3 is a BEV.

It's also difficult for the Model 3 to compete when it's not available for sale.
I think the Model 3 will increase Volt sales even more, just as the Bolt increased Volt sales. This is natural due to cross shopping. Also, I expect the Model 3 will increase Bolt sales too. As per the Op's question, I think there will be more Volt's than Model 3's on the road for awhile. Even when Model 3 sales reach a crossover, the average Volt out there will still be putting on 8k-10k a year EV miles, not too far off from the Model 3 miles. Maybe the gen2 Volt gets 75%-85% of an average Model 3's yearly EV mileage? The biggest difference is the Model 3 can take road trips in EV mode; but the daily EV mileage should be close. We already saw the gen1 Volt with more annual EV miles than the Leaf.
 

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You mean the EV miles driven by Volts up to now? Maybe. But the Volts will continue to accumulate miles from now until 2020, and by that year the Gen 3 250+ mile Volt will be out. The TM Model 3 will be too behind to catch up. I am willing to bet $50,000 by 2030 that the Model 3 will be a failure! But you will never get to cash my bet if I lose.
I think we'll be lucky if a gen 3 comes and it had 75 miles of range. At 250 miles you almost don't need a range extender. My prediction is that there may not be a volt gen3, but the Voltec will be available in an Equinox, Cruze, Malibu, and Impala so the volt and Cruze would merge to be the same car with your choice of BEV, PHEV, or ICE drivetrain.
 

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If the data isn't still available, then yes, I guess there's no way to predict.
I think you can ballpark it.

There are a lot of variables, including the production predictions, which aren't likely to be achieved and which have moved around a lot. However, let's start by figuring out how many more EV miles a year a M3 will get than a Volt will. I don't think a full BEV like the Model 3 or Bolt EV will drive a lot more EV miles than a Volt, especially the second generation Volt. We've seen this in the stats when comparing the Volt and the Leaf. If people drive 40 or less miles a day for 300 days a year, the difference in miles driven will have to come from the other 65 days. Some of those days a Model 3 owner won't drive at all because of range limitations. The Volt will pick up at least 40 or 50 miles on those days. That leaves the few days beyond 50 miles that people are willing to take a BEV. Given the people I know who have a Model S won't take it to Palm Springs, I doubt there are that many of these days. But there will be some, so let's assume the average Model 3 will put on 10% more EV miles a year.

This means that every M3 accounts for 110% of the EV miles that every Volt does. Taking your assumption that there are 4X more M3 than Volts on the road in 2019, the M3 will account for 4.4X more EV miles in that year. Hence, at the end of 2019, the M3 would have 3.4X more EV miles than the Volt (4.4X -X = 3.4X).

However, we we have to account for Volt EV miles before 2019. Assuming Volt sales were evenly distributed throughout the eight years before 2019 (2011-2018), then the Volt would have accounted for roughly 36/8 or 4.5X of the EV miles the Volt got in 2019 during this earlier 8 year period. (You can either sum the years -- 8/8 + 7/8 + 6/8 etc or just take 4.5 average years). Since 4.5X is a bigger number than 3.4X, the M3 wouldn't pass the Volt in EV miles in 2019. But obviously it would in 2020 since 4.4X is a larger number than 1.1X (what's left of the EV miles accrued by the Volt prior to 2019).

Of course this assumes the M3 hasn't accrued EV miles in 2018, which is obviously unrealistic. Also it assumes the Volt sales have been even over the years, which is likely close but perhaps not spot on. But under your assumptions likely in 2020. You may also want to check the math.

FWIW I don't think this is likely at all. Tesla is struggling to sell 100K cars a year worldwide. Assuming they're going to sell 400K+ M3 is a year just seems highly unrealistic.
 

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just as the Bolt increased Volt sales.
This is really impossible to validate, we can't just use years monthly sales as it doesn't tell the whole story...In fact, if there was no Bolt EV we could argue GM could have sold even more Volts...Furthermore if your statement is true its somewhat a blackeye for the Bolt because you have a buyer who's exciting to go off "big oil" test drives the Bolt EV and for whatever reason buys a PHEV...I'm not saying it hasn't happened, but we're not seeing any stories reported of this actually happening to add credit to this angle...
 

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Two things need to happen for M3 to exceed Volt cumulative miles.

1. People need to drive their M3 more than 50 miles per day. Unlikely.
2. M3 needs to have more cars on the road than Volts. Unlikely. Unless M3 international sales are off-the-chain.

IF (big if) Tesla actually ships employee cars in two months, the whole math problem could change dramatically. I don't see them building 4K cars per month in 2017 or shipping customer cars before June 2018 given past performance.
 

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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
Something else that I wasn't thinking about, but the electrek article reminded me of. Most of the current Tesla fleet still has unlimited, free Supercharger access. It is easy to be frivolous with your driving when all (or most) of your fuel is free. However, moving forward (and for all Model 3s), only a small amount of Supercharger access each year (400 kWh, or about 1,500 miles) will be free. When paying for your own fuel, no matter how cheap, you tend to drive differently.

Of course, autonomous cars could add yet another variable.
 

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Something else that I wasn't thinking about, but the electrek article reminded me of. Most of the current Tesla fleet still has unlimited, free Supercharger access. It is easy to be frivolous with your driving when all (or most) of your fuel is free. However, moving forward (and for all Model 3s), only a small amount of Supercharger access each year (400 kWh, or about 1,500 miles) will be free. When paying for your own fuel, no matter how cheap, you tend to drive differently.

Of course, autonomous cars could add yet another variable.
It's also for all Tesla's currently being sold, you can no longer purchase a new Tesla with a free forever SC option...Another wild card is if and when fully autonomous comes on board...Think about it like this, we live in/near Los Angeles, while there's a ton to do, there's also something always going on San Diego, but it's brutal traffic if you don't time it right on a weekend trip...Yet if it's self driving, I can either watch movies, play games, get frisky or do some work so traffic doesn't matter...It sounds highly unlikely there will be any autonomous Gen1 Bolts available to the public based on all the autonomous versions we have seen have had huge roof arrays of expensive equipment yet that is another wildcard to your question...

Remember that Tesla wants to launch their own ride sharing service so when you're not using your vehicle it could in theory drive itself as a taxi...Lastly there was also some talks of "shared ownership", vehicle brings you to work then drives itself back home to pickup and dropoff your significant other...Again just so many wildcards...
 
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