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GM should offer a base model at less than $30,000. As enthusiastic as I am to own this car, I would never pay $40,000. I would probably opt for one of the smaller electric cars now in production.
 

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I'm guessing that people who are willing and able to spend more during late 2010 and 2011 will get higher priced Volts. Then, by 2012, when production has ramped up, and the car is receiving rave reviews and demonstrating very low cost of ownership, the price will come down to a level where more people can afford them.

I think that, frankly, early adopters will make or break GM. I'm sure hoping to be one of the early adopters. #87 on the list, and willing to pay $7000 down and $42000 for the volt! I want GM to succeed, and I'm willing to put cash down as a gamble on them.
 

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I am also willing to wait for a scaled down economy model. One with only 2 air bags, 14" rims, hopefully a 2 seater, 2 dr model. I don't want daytime driving lights, automatic headlights, power seats, etc either.
 

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Total Cost to Own Should Be the Benchmark

Most discussions of the Volt's costs focus on the sticker price. The more meaningful cost that people should consider is the "total cost to own", including the original purchase price, financing, operating cost (fuel and maintenance), and insurance. A higher original purchase price for an EV can be justified, to some extent, by potential significant reductions in operating cost (electricity vs. gasoline). The higher sticker price of an EV vs. a conventional vehicle, largely due to the cost of the battery, amounts to paying a significant portion of the operating cost of the vehicle "up front". What this may mean is that financing arrangements for an EV may need to be re-invented to go along with the new technology. Example: Home mortgages were originally financed for 10 years, now typically 30. Car loans for an EV may need to be extended from 4-5 years to 8-10 years to make them affordable on a mass market basis. In effect, buyers will have shifted operating costs for purchasing gasoline to their car payments to finance the extra costs of the EV. Considering the beneficial impacts of reduced oil consumption and lower overall emissions (depending on the source of electricity, of course) this would be worth it for me personally. I very much doubt in the end that an EV such as the Volt will really save me money, but if that were my prime concern, I'd ride a bicycle to work.
 

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Most discussions of the Volt's costs focus on the sticker price. The more meaningful cost that people should consider is the "total cost to own", including the original purchase price, financing, operating cost (fuel and maintenance), and insurance. A higher original purchase price for an EV can be justified, to some extent, by potential significant reductions in operating cost (electricity vs. gasoline). The higher sticker price of an EV vs. a conventional vehicle, largely due to the cost of the battery, amounts to paying a significant portion of the operating cost of the vehicle "up front". What this may mean is that financing arrangements for an EV may need to be re-invented to go along with the new technology. Example: Home mortgages were originally financed for 10 years, now typically 30. Car loans for an EV may need to be extended from 4-5 years to 8-10 years to make them affordable on a mass market basis. In effect, buyers will have shifted operating costs for purchasing gasoline to their car payments to finance the extra costs of the EV. Considering the beneficial impacts of reduced oil consumption and lower overall emissions (depending on the source of electricity, of course) this would be worth it for me personally. I very much doubt in the end that an EV such as the Volt will really save me money, but if that were my prime concern, I'd ride a bicycle to work.
The cost of ownership on this car will be higher in every category except fuel costs and maybe maintenance. You're right, I seriously doubt that the Volt will save you any money over the life of the car. On the financing side, the domestic brands are already doing 72 month loans now to try to move product. So they could at least do that much for the Volt. However, if they do only intend to build about 10,000 in the first year, I don't think they will need to. With greater demand than supply, they should be able to sell all of them without any special financing. If they ever desire to get serious, use the Volt as a game changer and mass market it, they will need to be more creative. They won't do this until there are real world results to be evaluated.
 

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I am worried that GM will be unable to stay solvent until the Volt can have a chance to save the company.
 
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