[ad#post_ad]We are well aware GM is developing and launching the Chevy Volt.
They also possess non-plugin hybrid technology. The mild hybrid version of the Malibu didn't fare too well as it added little fuel efficiency, and was discontinued. A next -generation version of this technology using lithium-ion batteries is set to appear next year likely in the new Buick Regal.
The automaker also has 2-mode hybrid technology which is used in the large trucks such as the Chevy Tahoe, GMC Yukon, and Cadillac Escalade. These are selling at low volume.
Back in July, I had asked then Chevrolet Chief Ed Peper if GM was also developing its own non-plugin strong hybrid sedan, and he confirmed it.
“What we are trying to work towards is ‘Yes,’ we will have other hybrid vehicles (besides the Volt) but we are trying to work towards a dedicated hybrid,” said Peper at the time. “We think that’s probably a better way for us to go longer term.”
According to a new report in Business week, GM has just shut down this program:
General Motors, for one, is reviewing its entire hybrid strategy. In late November, GM shelved plans for a 53-mpg Prius fighter for its bread-and-butter Chevrolet brand. GM product planners are starting to think they would be better off focusing on next-generation plug-in hybrids and electric cars such as the Chevrolet Volt, which is due next year. Even if those vehicles can't beat Toyota's Prius in the short term, they earn GM green-tech bragging rights. Given Honda's experience, GM may have the right idea.
This article's emphasis was on Honda's trouble with its 41 MPG Insight launched to fight the Prius, but which has wound up being outsold by the Toyota 6 to 1.
Honda tried to price the Insight below the 50 MPG Prius as a value proposition, calling it "the hybrid for everyone," but US sales in 2009 have only been about 20,000, far less than the 100,000 units initially projected. Honda has found out that hybrid buyers are actually more affluent and are looking for a roomier, sportier, comfortable and more powerful car, which the Prius is, and at a base price that is a mere $700 more than a fully loaded Insight.
Maybe as Businessweek notes "Given Honda's experience, GM may have the right idea."
Do you agree?
Source ( Business Week )