GM Volt Forum banner

1 - 20 of 39 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,130 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
I have a local dealer. This dealer is 10 miles away (my closest) and does not sell or service any new Volts. They have never had one on the lot. My next closest dealer is 30 miles away. They have always treated me well and with respect. I consider them to be an "outstanding" dealership, especially in the service department. I am friends with most of the guys in that service department. I was in there yesterday having my wife's Saturn Outlook serviced as we had left it over night and had arrived to pick it up. I told the service manager (my friend) that I was toying with the idea of purchasing a new Volt and wanted to make sure I could get it serviced there. They have sold a few 2011-2015 Volts and have always serviced mine, but I had yet to see a new one (2017) on the lot yet. As I asked this to him, the general manager was walking by and actually heard my question. Before the service guy could answer, the GM said, "We are still looking into it, and as of right now, have decided to stay away from the new Volts as they require new equipment and training. The last Volt we had sat on the lot for a couple years."

It did sit on the lot for many years because they simply wanted too much for it. It was a 2013 that they finally sold last year. Anyway, I commented that this was the best car on the planet and the service manager backed me up, but yet, here we are. This dealership, at least at the moment, has decided to not support the 2016-2017 Volts in any way. They told me to call before I purchased one to see if they had changed their minds. I found this to very disappointing. GM, are you listening to this??
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,204 Posts
The dealer has to upfront 40 large in equipment costs to sell Volts, plus keep a service man Volt certified. Not hard to see why many would opt out if they expect to sell a handful of year.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
449 Posts
Not surprised. GM barely markets Volts. Few sell as a result. As a result, dealers have to invest more money to support Volts than they will make selling and servicing Volts.

That dealer trend will continue until GM markets the Volt better, or GM electric, hybrid, and EREV sales reach a critical mass at the dealers.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
89 Posts
It's the cost of being a dealership, and some more dealerships will fold over the next couple of years.

3 Chevrolet dealers folded in my area, all close to home.

Dealers who want to sell Hybrid/EREV's/EV's need techs trained to deal with high voltage DC. Even the Malibu Hybrid requires this.

It is time for GM to change branding on their electromotive cars. I like Opel because the name is old and trusted, and has a Euro flavor to it. Better for conquest sales for traditional Euro car buyers.

I did however give the closest fleet manager a detailed overview of today's electromotive technologies and options on the market. She did not understand how significant the Bolt and Cadillac PHEV products are in the market today. It's a multibrand mega store.

I explained why the ELR failed where the Tesla succeeded. And why the CT6 EREV is not an ELR.
I explained why the Bolt is so much more money than Spark EV, and why it's a quantum leap in EVs.
I explained what the Model 3 Tesla means in relation to the EV market, and why it's a problem for today's EV sales even though the product is still at the vaporware stage.

But it should not be somebody who bought 2 Volts from her explaining it. It should have Corporate.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,130 Posts
Discussion Starter #8 (Edited)
So what is stunning about the announcement? No sales?
Well, for me, it is a dealership that has sold and supported Volts since 2010 that will no longer support New Volts!! For me, this is stunning. I do not blame this dealership personally. I blame GM. This is why I ended with...Are you listening GM?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
5,431 Posts
I see more problems for those who think of buying a TM Model 3, because there are fewer TM serice shops than GM dealerships and service shops, and many independent shops also service GM vehicles, too.

But EVs have lesser breakdowns and wear than normal ICEVs. So those dealers are looking into the ROI (return on investment) when deciding to sell and service the Volt and Bolt EV later. Their salvation falls on the ICEVS who need more servicing and thus help pay for the Volt equipment.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
89 Posts
I am *amazed* that it's that high. I would have guessed closer to 1/4.
There are multiple types of special classes required for certain models. I know we had to take our ZR-1 into a special dealer who was authorized to work on it. And when the Duramax Diesel was released, you had to hunt for diesel authorized dealers. Most are diesel certified now, and I imagine most are Hybrid/EV certified now. It probably really sucked in 2011.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,081 Posts
Given your location, it's not surprising that a small dealer would tailor it's offerings and support to the vehicles that it sold. Of course GM could adopt Tesla's model, forcing owners to go to service centers hundreds of miles away and have to wait weeks for service.

Let's face facts, there are different tiers of franchised car dealers. You can't expect the small dealers to sell and service every GM model given the extra costs for training and the reality that there may be only a handful of that model in the geographic locale. As EVs become popular in a locale, the business case will be made for the dealer. Until then, the small dealers will stick with where demand takes them.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,452 Posts
this is very speculative on my part: I think that eventually GM will set up small region service shops for specialty low volume cars with uncommon components, like the volt and Bolt and more to come. these may look like "shared dealership collaboratives", but I think they will be essential as the tooling required to service some parts of some cars becomes more expensive and to have fewer uses. I expect that some high performance conventional powertrains and suspensions will need these as well. they might be invisible to the consumer (as drycleaning and tailoring and shoe repair are now), but they will be there.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
464 Posts
Given your location, it's not surprising that a small dealer would tailor it's offerings and support to the vehicles that it sold. Of course GM could adopt Tesla's model, forcing owners to go to service centers hundreds of miles away and have to wait weeks for service.

Let's face facts, there are different tiers of franchised car dealers. You can't expect the small dealers to sell and service every GM model given the extra costs for training and the reality that there may be only a handful of that model in the geographic locale. As EVs become popular in a locale, the business case will be made for the dealer. Until then, the small dealers will stick with where demand takes them.
+1 on Taser's comments and also agree with Paulacton... The location was important to get a sense of the size of the market. As it usually does, it comes down to cost/benefit analysis and given the costs of equipment, training, inventory stock, etc. if there's not enough scale to cover all of that, a business won't (and shouldn't) pursue it.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,130 Posts
Discussion Starter #17
+1 on Taser's comments and also agree with Paulacton... The location was important to get a sense of the size of the market. As it usually does, it comes down to cost/benefit analysis and given the costs of equipment, training, inventory stock, etc. if there's not enough scale to cover all of that, a business won't (and shouldn't) pursue it.
I don't disagree at all. I even told my wife the same thing as we discussed this as we left. I totally blame GM though. This could be solved in other ways. This dealership is outstanding and does lots of sales, just not sales of Volts. We have all complained about how the Volt is the "red headed" step child. Outside of Carb states, GM seems to not care at all about marketing the Volts, and now this is the result. I just wonder how many more dealers will "opt out" of servicing the Volts.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,788 Posts
Those dealers who don't embrace electric plug-ins are doomed to failure, because ALL manufacturers will be selling about 90% plug-ins in another ten years. Those who aren't will die.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
777 Posts
Whatever came of the promise of telepresence systems? Doctors of the future would be able to treat patients on the other side of the world. And even perform surgery. Couldn't GM do the same with Volt technicians? Thus bringing Volts to every corner of the globe!
 
1 - 20 of 39 Posts
Top