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As I look at an advertisement for the new Chrysler Pacifica Hybrid Mini Van, I see the problem with Volt marketing. The hybrid mini van claims 33 miles on the battery before needing the engine. If the Volt had been marketed as a hybrid, all the confusion surrounding it's power train would not have existed. I know - technically it is not a hybrid according to some definitions. In reality, it is close enough for advertising purposes. I've asked people how an ordinary hybrid works - most don't understand the details of it. So the fact that a Volt is a little different doesn't matter.

I've owned a '13, '15, and '17. Very few people I've met understand them. Just call it a hybrid! Put a little plaque on the back or side that says hybrid, and call it good.
 

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As I look at an advertisement for the new Chrysler Pacifica Hybrid Mini Van, I see the problem with Volt marketing. The hybrid mini van claims 33 miles on the battery before needing the engine. If the Volt had been marketed as a hybrid, all the confusion surrounding it's power train would not have existed. I know - technically it is not a hybrid according to some definitions. In reality, it is close enough for advertising purposes. I've asked people how an ordinary hybrid works - most don't understand the details of it. So the fact that a Volt is a little different doesn't matter.

I've owned a '13, '15, and '17. Very few people I've met understand them. Just call it a hybrid! Put a little plaque on the back or side that says hybrid, and call it good.
MAJOR marketing error with the Volt
I think not
if it wasn't for the volt there wouldn't be a Chrysler Pacifica Hybrid Mini Van
 

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It's not a mistake at all. The Volt and the Bolt are about positioning GM for the future not about current sales. They lose money on Bolts if you don't count the CARB credits and it's doubtful that they make much money on a Volt so there is no reason to sell them in large number. What they want is for the world to know that they are in the EV business in a credible way so that 5 years from now, when batteries have gotten better and cheaper, and EVs start to be mainstream they will be able to say they've been building EVs for 10 years whereas their competition are new comers to the business.

When you hear the word hybrid what you think about is a Prius which gets great fuel economy but is so slow it can't get out of it's own way. When you hear EV you think Tesla which can blow the doors off of any muscle car on the road. With current gas prices no one cares about fuel economy so the word hybrid isn't a selling point. Positioning the Volt as an EV makes more sense in the long run even if it costs sales today.
 

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The Volt can operate parallel or series, which is what makes it so great. Pacifica Hybrid is the same.

The issue I see with Volt marketing is that they implied it was series only hybrid, but in all honesty sales are lower because it is a $35-40k compact with mediocre performance (dynamics). To me, the Pacifica is a much better buy given it is comparable from the drivetrains, but much more practical and better equipped.

I think a new Voltec CUV could sell much better, especially if price stays the same.
 

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All 'hybrids' I've driven fire up the ICE engine to accelerate fully or past a certain MPH.

The Volt doesn't run like hybrids.
 

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All 'hybrids' I've driven fire up the ICE engine to accelerate fully or past a certain MPH.

The Volt doesn't run like hybrids.

when you deplete the battery it does so run like a hybrid
my 2009 hybrid Tahoe is the same as the volt without the bigger battery and all wheel drive, I miss that, all wheel drive
 

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Very few people I've met understand them. Just call it a hybrid! Put a little plaque on the back or side that says hybrid, and call it good.
The funny part is I'm truly shocked how no matter how I simplify it, folks cannot comprehend how it works...All electric car for 53 miles than the gas range extender kicks in...I can't comprehend how people cannot comprehend that...
 

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I guess I'm indifferent. I could care less whether GM sells a few or millions of volts. I'm happy in my little world with my little car, just wish they'd make a bigger one... oh wait they did, except the CT6 PHEV isn't available in IL yet. My daughter just moved this week to Atlanta. There are dealerships there who are selling it, I guess I need to schedule a visit with the daughter, sneak over to the nearest CT6 PHEV and see if I can't drive home with one...when I have enough cash to do so.
 

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The funny part is I'm truly shocked how no matter how I simplify it, folks cannot comprehend how it works...All electric car for 53 miles than the gas range extender kicks in...I can't comprehend how people cannot comprehend that...
I suspect there are more than a few people at GM who think the same.
 

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I teach in public education, so I have coined the phrase, "We get em all"

The short of the long story is how people so easily discount those first 40-60 ALL ELECTRIC miles. To them, it simply isn't a very important metric because they don't think it through.

Only 50 miles of range?
Only 45 miles of all electric?
You have to burn gas?
What happens when that battery fails?
Can you ever get your money back?
Can you save money driving this over X?
I know a guy that gets 55 mpg in his X...
 

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MAJOR marketing error with the Volt
I think not
if it wasn't for the volt there wouldn't be a Chrysler Pacifica Hybrid Mini Van
I think what he is saying is that had the Volt been marketed the way the Pacifica is being marketed, then GM would have sold more.

Not sure I agree with that since I have yet to see a lot of sales data on the Pacifica.
 

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I think another point missing is that the Pacifica will appeal to a much broader audience than the Volt does. As many complain about the lack of hauling and storage ability that the Volt lacks, the Pacifica answers that.

As for marketing strategy, I think GM should have gone further and started off with asking "How would you like to wake up every morning and be able to drive 35/38/53 miles without using any gas?" Then proceed to explain that the Volt can do that and more if opportunity charging is available, and when it's not or if you like paying $3+ per gallon, you can do that too since it drives like a regular hybrid.
 

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ROFL... on the statement that GM does EV marketing
 

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I've thought this since the beginning. My most eye-opening moment was when a family member who had ridden in my Volt in both gas and electric modes got REALLY excited to tell me at Thanksgiving that she discovered the Fusion Energi and that it could drive electric and then switch back to gas when the battery died because it was a plug-in hybrid! According to her it wasn't limiting like my Volt was. My eyes almost popped out of my head.

"Chevy Volt, the plug-in hybrid with double the EV range."

"Chevy Volt, the plug-in hybrid with the most EV power."

"Chevy Volt, the only plug-in hybrid that won't turn on its engine for maximum acceleration."

It goes on and on. GM still can't market itself out of a paper bag.
 

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I've worked in advertising as a copywriter and I still haven't figured out how I'd sell the Volt in a TV ad! :) It's something that seems to require a discussion, and TV ads just aren't good for that.
 

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I've worked in advertising as a copywriter and I still haven't figured out how I'd sell the Volt in a TV ad! :) It's something that seems to require a discussion, and TV ads just aren't good for that.
Simple, just ask real volt owner's what their lifetime MPG is, then flash to a shot after shot of their dashboards. End with Ari_c and his record breaking 5 digit miles without a drop of gas. The end the commercial with a fast talking announcer that 40K miles per gallon is not typical.
 

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I've thought this since the beginning. My most eye-opening moment was when a family member who had ridden in my Volt in both gas and electric modes got REALLY excited to tell me at Thanksgiving that she discovered the Fusion Energi and that it could drive electric and then switch back to gas when the battery died because it was a plug-in hybrid! According to her it wasn't limiting like my Volt was. My eyes almost popped out of my head.

"Chevy Volt, the plug-in hybrid with double the EV range."

"Chevy Volt, the plug-in hybrid with the most EV power."

"Chevy Volt, the only plug-in hybrid that won't turn on its engine for maximum acceleration."

It goes on and on. GM still can't market itself out of a paper bag.
Just enjoy the ride and forget about the rest of the world's inability to grasp this.
 

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