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http://jalopnik.com/chevy-still-doesnt-know-how-to-make-an-electric-car-ame-1785003431
Recalls the same sad argument from years ago: "Why by a Volt when the Cruze is so much cheaper", When will these auto writers get it.
I read this article and pretty much dismissed it.

(a) The drag issue is irrelevant. What counts is how far the car will go on a charge, and we already know that will be 200+ miles, which is far better than anything else in its price range (until the Model 3 can actually be bought by the average Joe in a couple of years).

(b) The style issue is completely subjective. Small hatchbacks are far more utilitarian and there's a real market for that.

(c) The price issue is simply where the state of the art is today. You might as well ask "Why pay $30,000 for a Tesla when I can get a Cruze for so much less"?

What most people don't really clue in to is that the driving characteristics of electric vehicles make them a premium product. That's why Tesla is beating the pants off the other luxury car makers - they're selling a far superior car for a similar price. As battery costs come down and people discover how much better the electric experience is, a wider and wider swath of the ICE market is going to disappear.

People don't bat an eye when someone buys an upscale Audi or BMW, but for some strange reason they go a bit apoplectic over the idea of paying a $10,000 premium for an electric car. It's a clear sign that they're clueless about why people buy EVs. It's not about saving money - at least not at this point in the adoption curve.
 

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That article is just sad, anyone with online spyware socal mevia accounts want to post a few posts rebuffing the Dbag?

Why would one buy a Bolt or a vaporware Tesla 3 at some undisclosed future date for $10-30 grand more than a bolt when they could just buy a Chevy Cruze ?

Afterall TSLA has no superchargers north of Madison in Wisconsin, so what good are they?

Its a lot cheaper than either right?
 

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The Bolt has way roomier cargo space than a Tesla. The Bolt has more practical day to day uses than the Model 3 which is basically just a show-off commuting car.
 

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I don't think you guys are giving the article a fair read.
He is basically saying that he doesn't think the Bolt will be an attractive choice for very many people and gives a number of reasons including that its a mashup of trying to satisfy different hypotheticals about what the buyers should want without such essentials as fast charging or charging networks and at a much higher price that very fuel efficient comparable ICE cars like the FIT.

I personally think that he is exactly right. While the Bolt may appeal to a limited number of people, the TM3 clearly appeals to a very large number of people. Tesla did that by looking at a class of car that sells a lot and that people want and pricing at least competitively. The result has been a lot of reservations. Make what the market wants if you want to sell lots of cars. I would predict amazing sales if Chevy were to make a Malibu sized BEV or better a CUV with high speed charging and a supercharger network.

The lead designer sounds totally clueless, but its GM so I suppose he was told what sort of car to design and did the best he could.

Perhaps you might understand better if you realized that GM's target car was apparently the Honda FIT while Tesla's was the BMW 3 and Audi A4. Different animals.

You guys also failed to note that one of his early comments lauded the Volt over the Bolt.
"Justin T. Westbrook
Arch Duke Maxyenko, **** Talk Extraordinaire
8/08/16 10:57pm
Yea. Anyone who asks me if they should buy a Bolt, I’m going to tell them to check out the Volt while they’re at the dealership. It’s likely they’ll be going home with the one that starts with V."

The Bolt will be at best a modest success because thats all that GM was aiming for.
 

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Idk. It's obviously a bit harsh, but there are some truths to it.

When comparing to Model 3, most people would rate the Bolt's styling as worse. And aero is also worse... hence range vs battery size/cost/weight will be worse. The trade-off for both styling and aero was interior space and practicality. The author is arguing that wasn't a good trade-off to make.

Whether or not you agree is subjective. But objectively there is more general interest and excitement around the Model 3 than the Bolt, which gives the author's argument some legitimacy. (Or, rather, as much legitimacy as can be had at a time when both vehicles still have zero sales.)

But I'll admit that the crude comparisons to a Cruze or Fit are just that: crude. And yet, in order for EV's to become mainstream, they will have to start winning those dollars-and-cents comparisons to the Fits and Cruzes of the world as well.

Afterall TSLA has no superchargers north of Madison in Wisconsin, so what good are they?
To be fair, there's Mauston, Sheboygan, La Crosse, and Eau Claire. And by the time the first Model 3's hit the road, there'll be Coloma, Wausau, and Green Bay. And I would guess some more to come later further up north in WI or in the UP.
 

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Lol over 500 comments. And none of them get the reason for Bolt. Bolt is built on future-proofing GM as it is Lyft and car-sharing centric. It is meant to be a taxi not a Porsche. Or any kind of sedan.

Comparing Bolt to Fit is just nutz. Comparing Bolt to Model 3 is equally bad since they are for two different markets.

The only similarity between Bolt and Model 3 is they both are EVs that have a range of >200mi. That's pretty much it.

The kicker is implying Fit is a long-distance highway vehicle. Puleeez.
 

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Idk. It's obviously a bit harsh, but there are some truths to it.

When comparing to Model 3, most people would rate the Bolt's styling as worse. And aero is also worse... hence range vs battery size/cost/weight will be worse.

The trade-off for both styling and aero was interior space and practicality. The author is arguing that wasn't a good trade-off to make. Whether or not you agree is subjective. But objectively there is more general interest and excitement around the Model 3 than the Bolt, which gives the author's argument some legitimacy. (Or, rather, as much legitimacy as can be had at a time when both vehicles still have zero sales.)

But I'll admit that the crude comparisons to a Cruze or Fit are just that: crude. And yet, in order for EV's to become mainstream, they will have to start winning those dollars-and-cents comparisons to the Fits and Cruzes of the world as well.
The author has not experienced to be a member of a big family, how to raise a family, or member of sports team or volunteer driver, or have gone camping outdoors...
 

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I think the article is a good insight into how the mass market will perceive these vehicles. You say he doesn't "get it"? Neither does the mass market. And most won't even try to get it while the price of a Cruise or Fit is lower. And even then they will be skeptical of having to plug in every day and run up their electricity bill (the number one question I get). Most people basically love gas, especially at current prices, and are not looking for an alternative.
 

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I think people miss why Tesla sells. They make them faster than competitive cars, add tech features like autopilot, bioweapon defense mode (bad air quality in some cities), huge touch screen, supercharger, long range. They run the hype machine fully. They are actually not great for interior, and other amenities compared to luxury competitors, but people overlook that as they get the other high tech features.

Why does the Bolt EV get compared to other small hatches? The question should be what does it offer that they don't? I think some autopilot functionality and some other unique features would go a long way. They did seem to get the performance right this time, but they should offer some upgrades like bigger battery and AWD, something to make it stand apart from other small hatchbacks. Otherwise it will get compared to them.
 

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We need a practical, fun to drive, spacious, efficient family vehicle for around town driving. Once I have my Volt which will satisfy any long distance driving needs, the Bolt will be the PERFECT second car for our garage.

But what do I know...according to this article, Americans apparently don't need, nor do they want a practical, fun to drive, spacious, efficient family vehicle for around town driving.
 

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Afterall TSLA has no superchargers north of Madison in Wisconsin, so what good are they?
Sheboygan, Mauston, Lacrosse (well, Onalaska, technically), Eau Claire. You're just SOL if you want to go into Iowa, and bring your mobile cord if you're going to Green Bay because you only *might* make it down to Sheboygan from there... Can a Model S make it to Mall of America from Madison, though? Yup. Not even hard.
 

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Utility vehicles (CUV, SUV) are selling almost on par or exceeding sedan sales. What have people here been clamoring for since almost day 1? A CUV! GM deliver it and suddenly everyone wants to compare it to a sedan on styling and CD? Sure, go ahead. But I already have a sedan (2011 Volt). To replace our other car, I want something that can haul stuff, has a 200+ mile electric range, has a spacious interior, priced in the $35k range and will be available for next May. Also I want it from a company with a proven EV track record.

My need is for Chicago metro travel, mostly commuting. No need for Chicago to LA trips. Anyone know where I could get such a car?:)

I have two family members with Fits, they are nice cars, but they are not a Bolt. No TPMS system, no rear camera mirror, no battery, no regen, no deal.
 

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Always nice to read a piece by a marketing expert who can straighten out GM and point out the error of its ways. lol.. This guy will eat his silly words. BTW, where's that Model 3 pre-production car for him to test. What? Can't hear you......
 

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Realistically there is no one better at hype in the auto business (or mabye all businesses) than Elon Musk. The great excitement about the Model 3 was that people bought into the idea that it would be a Model S for a fraction of the price. How it's perceived when it finally comes out may be different.

I think GM made the right call with the design of the Bolt EV. Young single people working in cubicles might go for the Model 3 but families needing to cart stuff around will gravitate more towards the Bolt EV. Price will also play a role. Given Tesla may run out of tax credits before the Model 3 is released, the comparison may be between a $45K Model 3 and a $30K Bolt EV. Personally I think Tesla made a mistake with the design of the Model 3. Should have gone more of a CUV design than with a sedan. I like sedans but that's not what people are buying. This wasn't an issue with the Model S. It's a large vehicle with lots of cargo space. The Model 3 on the other hand is going to be cramped with no cargo space. Time will tell.

Agree that equating the performance of the Honda Fit and the Bolt EV is a bit nuts. The Bolt EV 0-60 times are closer to the 0-60 times of a Model S than the 0-60 times of a Honda Fit. Not that it matters a whole lot, but thinking you'll get the same ride from a Bolt EV as you would from a Honda Fit is truly dumb. FWIW the seeming lack of appreciation of what you get in an electric drive from members of "the media" continues to astound me. These guys will wax eloquent about the "low end torque" you can get from a diesel but ignore the same thing in an EV. Not to mention the superior ride quality and NVH delivered by an EV.
 

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I still cannot understand how can one compare a car who's on the roads already (Bolt) and a car who's not even seen properly at any show (M3). It's like giving the bird in your hand for the craw in the tree. Or maybe I see it wrong ?
 

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GM needs a genuinely sexy electric car. Especially now that the ELR is no more. The Bolt is OK, but IMO GM could do so much better. If and when, those are the questions, and it seems nobody at GM is really talking. Maybe because there's not much to talk about?
 

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GM needs a genuinely sexy electric car.
Yes, that is what Tesla is promising.

GM has had several shots at this but keep missing making a car that is really in demand.
The ELR doesn't count given that it was so expensive and so compromised in passenger and cargo space.
Time will tell but I think the Jalopnik article is correct in that the Bolt will not be a big seller.

And the comparison with the FIT was about form factor and styling, not the pleasures of an EV.
Like it or not, form factor and style are important factors in selling a car. The propulsion is not that important in the
econobox category, in my opinion.
 
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