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Discussion Starter #1
Here is some news about Nissan introducing some sort electric vehicle for the North American market for 2010. I can only assume that they will be trying to compete with the Volt and news like this should hopefully help push GM to work harder and faster. I'm sure that the industry has all sorts of insiders and that everyone kinda knows what everyone else is doing and it's nice that us general public get to hear about things sooner or later.

I wonder what Nissan will bring to market, hopefully something pretty cool especially considering the relationship with Renault. I'm a big fan of some of the Renault models in Europe.

http://online.wsj.com/article/SB120966606763059713.html?mod=sphere_ts&mod=sphere_wd
 

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The might be doing the smart thing by holding their cards close and not revealing too much information (unlike GM.)

Based on some of the concept cars that Nissan has released lately I think it could be something pretty cool. They will probably put out more information once the next big auto shows come around in 8 months or so.
 

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calgaryvolt,

I understand the Sun Tsusian strategy of hiding your intent until you can deliver a coup de grace that your adversary isn't expecting, but I believe those companies avoiding the limelight are failing to build a following for their products.

Another counter intuitive aspect of GM's current approach, is that it caused Toyota to knee jerk badmouth the series hybrid. For whatever reason, companies can't stand to be seen immitating someone else's ideas, so it pre-empts a competitor from following another's lead. Certainly, Tesla and Aptera recognize the marketability of a range extender, but no automotive giants seem to be willing to give GM the recognition that they deserve.

I am stunned that Ford is not making more noise about their efforts. They may well be working hard, but they appear to be severely lagging GM and Toyota.
 

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I think the WSJ article tells us what we need to know about the price of the Nissan Electric:

"High oil prices and the willingness of governments to give tax incentives for so-called zero-emission vehicles can change the economics of owning an electric car and make it "cheaper than gasoline," Mr. Ghosn said."

In other words, begging for tax credits because it's going to be expensive. I could be wrong, maybe they're just looking for the help on pricing to make sure they get market acceptance for a 50-60mile vehicle.

As for Ford, perhaps they are making a more conservative play... This is pure speculation on my part... The market for BEVs/RE-EVs and whatever else is likely to expand fairly slowly. If Ford puts the resources into building a better conventional vehicle at lower cost than GM and Chrysler, they might restore themselves to good profitability sooner by building a Fusion that's cheaper to make and better than the Malibu, a Focus that's cheaper to make and better than a Cobalt or Aveo, etc..

It will be a while before people abandon conventional gassers, Ford might just plan to make money in such vehicles for a while and bide their time on entering the EV market. Looked at another way, let somebody else take the lumps and, perhaps, imitate or license whatever looks good.

Or, maybe they're just keeping quiet about what they're doing.

I disagree about "building a following" for a product. You can't build a real following for a product that doesn't exist. I figure I'll get a BEV/RE-EV sometime, the sooner the better. Whoever's first out of the gate has the best shot at getting my money. I'm not going to wait for a Volt if the Prius PHEV or Nissan BEV/RE-EV does what I need and gets here first.
 

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dagwood55

GM is likely taking this open development approach to show the country they are serious about the Volt. Unfortunately, GM does have some baggage in this area, and historically with quality issues. I think they are really trying to turn the page and create a new interest and atmosphere around their products. The E-Flex platform is a life or death risk for GM right now. If they do it right, they will be out in front. They also, I think, were smart to open the development to show the world what direction they are going. In a way, it makes them look revolutionary and out in front, whether others are doing the same or not. By keeping your cards too close to the vest, others may appear in the end to be the "followers" and the "copiers", not the innovators. It is risky but it shows GM has huge confidence in their E-Flex team.

Likewise, GM can't take a life or death risk without building a following for the Volt. The public education requirements alone for the Volt are huge. GM needs help. Take this site here; as we all talk about the Volt and its advantages to our friends; it makes the eduaction of the consumer go much faster than springing the car on them at the last minute. Imagine how many people have detailed knowledge about the Volt just because of the existence of GM-Volt.com. And we still have 30 months to go.
 

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I alone have probably discussed in detail the Volt with a few dozen people. I've noticed it takes a detailed discussion for them to "get it".

If they go on and do the same, the numbers will add up pretty quick.

I am sure all of us here are doing this, if your truely interested in the Volt to survive. I take these discussions seriously; we are the beginning of the education of the public. Don't count on mass madia to do it because they never have the facts straight.

We might seem insignificant now, but 20 months from now, with gas at $6/gallon, we will have created quite a movement, I would guess.

Bottom line is that I think the development of a dedicated following is almost as important as the development of the car, particularily this type of game changing vehicle.
 

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I alone have probably discussed in detail the Volt with a few dozen people. I've noticed it takes a detailed discussion for them to "get it".

If they go on and do the same, the numbers will add up pretty quick.

I am sure all of us here are doing this, if your truely interested in the Volt to survive. I take these discussions seriously; we are the beginning of the education of the public. Don't count on mass madia to do it because they never have the facts straight.

We might seem insignificant now, but 20 months from now, with gas at $6/gallon, we will have created quite a movement, I would guess.

Bottom line is that I think the development of a dedicated following is almost as important as the development of the car, particularily this type of game changing vehicle.
MetrologyFirst, Well said.
 
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