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https://techxplore.com/news/2018-05-dealerships-trash-electric-cars.html

Something tells me this happens a lot in N. America as well:

Car dealerships in Nordic countries actively discourage consumers from buying electric vehicles, researchers who conducted an undercover investigation said Monday.

Their findings, published in the peer-reviewed Nature Energy, reveal an overlooked barrier to the sale of electric vehicles, which are expected to play a key role in lowering CO2 emissions and curbing global warming.

Posing as prospective buyers, the researchers made 126 enquiries at 82 dealerships in Denmark, Norway, Sweden, Iceland and Finland.

They report that to an astonishing degree the dealers denigrated electric vehicles (EVs), misinformed customers on specifications such as range or charging requirements, and omitted EVs from their sales pitches.

"In two-thirds of all shopping experiences, sales personnel strongly or solely oriented the customer to select a petrol or diesel vehicle, and actively dismissed EVs," the study concluded.

In more than three-quarters of the exchanges, vendors did not even indicate that they had electric cars on offer.

In one dealership, the researchers were told: "Do not buy this electric car, it will ruin you financially."

In another, the salesman said the model in question "only goes 80 kilometres per hour"—less than half its true top speed.

These discouragements are at odds with actual levels of customer satisfaction, according to a Consumer Reports survey in the US, where electric vehicles were rated as more reliable that internal combustion automobiles.

Electric vehicles are less complex than gas or hybrid cars, and have no need for cooling systems, filters, spark plugs and other parts that can break down or require periodic replacement.

Lower profit margins, lack of knowledge, and the extra time needed to seal a deal were among the reasons sales personnel were reluctant to promote EVs, according to industry insiders cited in the study.

Dealership indifference or hostility to EVs varied across countries, depending in part on government policies.
 

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I keep hearing that, but I've never experienced it. My biggest complaint so far is with Tesla, who keeps pushing back my delivery date, and trying to talk me into a version I already decided I don't like.

Cadillac actually tried to get me to buy the PHEV version of the CT6 instead of the ICE. But the PHEV just wasn't that good. I had zero problems testing Bolts or buying Volts, and get constant reminders to Buy a Bolt Today!
 

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I have never experienced any BEV or EREV trash talking. Clueless sales people who want to send me to the "Volt expert"? Yes, that happens all the time. And then the clueless one frequently stands about 10 feet away and listens in. Dealerships are people and you can find what you look for.
I went to Koons Tysons and they wouldn't bargain off their original price but they were cool otherwise and have been a great dealership for servicing my Volt. They even clued up and started charging my Volt when they finished rotating the tires! Thanks, Jimmy! ;-)
I got my Volt at Criswell Gaithersburg, MD and they were super cool, wish they were closer to my home. But they have a Volt expert, Mike Furman, who is their go to Volt guy. He is their top (?) Corvette specialist too, but his daily driver is a Volt. Very nice guy and his manager was super friendly and not pushy. I am in sales so I tend to identify sales techniques when they are used on me, and there were almost none used.
I also visited Jim McKay Chevy and they had two sales people that just wanted to talk to me about the Bolt when I visited, it was kind of odd, usually one defers to the other. One may have been a newby but it was very positive, mild sales techniques only.
But it comes down to who you talk to, and every dealer has its share of idiots.
 

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This doesn't really surprise me, and in fact I think most who own an EV (or at least frequent this site) aren't surprised by it either.
Thankfully I have yet to experience anything like what was mentioned in the article, in fact I just had to deal with the opposite - I went to Don Hewlett Chevy in Georgetown, TX to test drive the only Gen1 volt I could find within like 50 miles of me so I could see what it was like, and the guy I took a test drive with admitted he didn't know much about the Volt. This was also confirmed by the fact I knew the regen paddles were a Gen 2 item and he tried to have me try them (but they weren't there) and upon realizing they weren't there he just apologized for possibly mixing up the different Gens - not something I'd consider malicious in any form.
Heck, I think I went to the dealership expecting to run into issues just because I live in Texas, hah.
 

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Something tells me this happens a lot in N. America as well:
Something tells me you might be wrong. Dealers will sell you what you want, when you know what you want and they have it to sell you. When my dealer couldn't get early Bolts from GM, they bought a few from a California dealer so they would have something to show customers. Does that sound like pushing folks away from EVs?

This crap about them not wanting to sell you a car that needs less servicing is just that - crap. You know what they get a lot of service work on? Pontiacs, Saturns and Oldsmobiles.

I keep hearing that, but I've never experienced it.
Nor have I. In fact, the salesmen/women at my dealer have definitely upped their game on EV knowledge. It's been a while since I caught one saying something wrong. Prior to a test drive of a Bolt a couple of weeks ago I left the salesman alone to explain the car to my wife. He did a good job showing her the features in detail. I was very impressed.
 

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The sales staff at Ed Bozarth Chevrolet in Lone Tree (Park Meadows Mall) on C-470 had no problems when I asked to look at Volts. In fact they let me test drive a Premier and an LT before I purchased.
 

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I don't think my favorite Chevy dealership is hurting for service work. I had something go pop yesterday in my passenger window while it was closing, and it's closed but loose because something broke in the track. The first service appointment (since it is closed and able to be driven, and not emergency) was 4 days away. I, like others, drive past 2-3 Chevy dealerships to go to the one that I have great experiences with. They did make a point to say that they would give me free loaner car for the day, but that they didn't have Volts in the fleet to loan. This actually surprised me, because 4-5 years ago, my first experience with the Volt was one of their free loaner cars while I had the timing belt replaced and other maintenance items done in my Saturn Astra.
 
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Something tells me this happens a lot in N. America as well
You KNOW it does. There's a much smaller profit margin selling EV's vs ICE's and not nearly as much money to be made in the service department either, and service dollars are what keep many dealerships afloat

It's so prevalent that many dealerships just refuse to deal with EV's at all. Where I live, EV's are rare . . . . really rare. I've never seen another Volt nor have I ever seen a Bolt or a Leaf. I have the only 2 Mitsubishi EV's I've ever seen and I've had them for 6 years. The closest 4 Chevy dealerships (all of them fairly large) do not sell or service Volts or Bolts and the closest Mitsubishi dealership that services EV's is in Pensacola, 110 miles away. My 'local' Chevy dealer, the closest one who can work on my Volt is in a small town 50 miles north of here and he's about 1/4 the size of the closer dealers who are all in much larger towns

Read the online reviews of EV's - Any EV. Most reviewers who don't have more than an hour or two of seat time usually trash the cars, like they weren't 'real' cars mostly because you can't hop in one and drive it 500 miles

Since EV's are so rare here, we get comments from interested people almost daily. "I didn't know Mitsubishi made an electric car! - How far can you go?" "A Volt? Who makes those?"

Most people do not think a true EV will work for them, so anything new is not to be trusted . . . . or spoken very well of, no matter how good it is

Don
 
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You KNOW it does. There's a much smaller profit margin selling EV's vs ICE's and not nearly as much money to be made in the service department either, and service dollars are what keep many dealerships afloat

It's so prevalent that many dealerships just refuse to deal with EV's at all.

Don
It must be a Gulf South thing, Don, because it's the same way here. My nearby dealer, All Star Chevrolet, has zero Volts or Bolts on their lot and haven't had any in the past 6 months. They don't even have a charging station on site. Meanwhile, their sister dealership, All Star Nissan, sells plenty of Leafs and has charging stations on the premises. I imagine a customer visiting All Star Chevrolet asking about a Volt will be told, "Uh, well we don't have any at the moment, but let me show you a Cruze, it's really the same car but much cheaper..."
 
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I haven't experienced any dealer trash talking them but I have experienced a lack of enthusiasm in trying to sell me one.

I went to the same dealer as obermd to look at a Bolt. The salesman was happy to answer my questions and take me out on a test drive. At the time they only had the base model (which is what I test drove) so I informed the salesman I wanted to come back when they had more inventory. He said new inventory was a week or two out and he would call me when they arrived. I never received a call. I then decided to call their sister store (off of Havana) and almost closed a deal over the phone. Long story short it came down to a $600 difference in price so I "walked". Surprisingly I never received a follow up call.

I also called a couple of other dealers and was informed they did not have any inventory either (this was almost mid-January). They took my name and said they would call back. No one did.

This is in stark contrast to almost every other vehicle I've purchased (or almost purchased) where the salesmen worked hard (sometimes to my annoyance) to get me to buy the vehicle. I got the impression that dealers just aren't that interested in selling EVs. They'll sell me one, but they won't work to sell me one.
 

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The Obvious Solution failed radically. Make very expensive EVs so they have a high margin.

EV1 - fail
ELR - fail
CT6-PHEV - fail.

All of those are over $70k in 2018 dollars, so more money than selling a $50,000 pickup or SUV.

What happened?

Cadillac pushed the CT6-PHEV because they were getting MSRP for them. They discounted the CT6 Platinum >20% so you know they weren't making anything on it.

The problem was that only a very small percentage of buyers will consider a Hybrid, PHEV, EREV, or EV.
 

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The Obvious Solution failed radically. Make very expensive EVs so they have a high margin.

EV1 - fail
ELR - fail
CT6-PHEV - fail.

All of those are over $70k in 2018 dollars.......
I think you may have hit on something there. Back to "the dealer will sell you what you'll buy", I think economically "less capable" (for lack of a better term) areas aren't feeling the love. I don't think I live in a wealthy area, but I've honestly never been to Mississippi or Louisiana. Maybe I do, by comparison.
 
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