Are the Chevy Volt or Nissan Leaf flops as some naysayers claim? - Torque News

Discussion in 'Chevy Volt Forum' started by GMTC_Admin, Dec 28, 2011.

  1. GMTC_Admin

    GMTC_Admin Epic Member 5+ Years 1000 Posts

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    [SIZE=-2]Torque News[/SIZE]
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    Are the Chevy Volt or Nissan Leaf flops as some naysayers claim?
    [SIZE=-1]Torque News[/SIZE]
    [SIZE=-1]By David Herron on Wed, 12/28/2011 - 20:25 A report by 24/7 Wall Street spins the truth about the Chevy Volt into a negative view on its sales and popularity record. An article from 24/7 Wall Street published yesterday on Yahoo Finance lists their ...[/SIZE]
    [SIZE=-1]Time to End $7500 Electric Car Tax Credit[SIZE=-1]National Legal and Policy Center[/SIZE][/SIZE]
    [SIZE=-1]GM Volt Subsidy Study Causes a Jolt, But Let's Look at the Underlying Business[SIZE=-1]YCharts[/SIZE][/SIZE]
    [SIZE=-1]Down the drain[SIZE=-1][/SIZE][/SIZE]
    [SIZE=-1]News & Observer[/SIZE]
    [SIZE=-1]all 5 news articles »[/SIZE]

  2. SurrealOne

    SurrealOne Former Member ROTM Winner 1000 Posts

    I just did some math with a fellow GMTC member who bought a Leaf SL. He drives 60 miles round trip to work 5 out of 7 days per week and took the 7.5k tax credit. With the tax credit that drops the vehicle to 30k. We computed using a static 3 bucks/gallon (for simplicity) and 3 bucks a day in electrical charging costs that it'd take 12.4 years for the Leaf to pay for itself assuming thecost of gas never went up and without considering maint costs -- just considering his commute. Obviously it pays for itself slightly more quickly if gas costs rise, but it's still a decade or more for it to pay for itself.

    By comparison, at 3 bucks per gallon I could buy 10,000 gallons of gas and at 15mpg in my 1/2 ton, lifted truck I could drive 150,000 miles (again without considering maintenance). Since I'm someone who puts 20 miles round trip per day on my vehicle for work, that means I could do my commute for 28.8 years on 30k in fuel -- again assuming fuel prices don't rise.

    Obviously this is simplistic, but it paints a pretty grim pricture for the Leaf. You have to put a LOT of miles on it, per day, for it to pay for itself quickly (even with the tax credit) ... and the car simply lacks the range to put more than 70 miles a day on it (assuming you need to run heat, AC, and other things that drag its mileage down). Sure it pays for itself more rapidly as fuel costs rise ... but it's still a LONG time to recoup that cash. My lifted half ton truck, which gets terrible mileage by today's standards ... is still a better bet for a short commute guy like me to just pour gas into. It becomes less of a good bet as fuel costs rise but even still, I'm better served getting a used 28mpg car than I am a new electric car if my commute distance increases.

    I dare say that a used 28mpg car is a better bet than an electric even for someone who commutes 60 miles per day, as the cost of entry for the used vehicle is so much less ... and there are no range limitations.

    So in my mind, the Leaf is absolutely a flop. The cost of entry for the vehicle is simply too high to justify owning one while gas hovers around 3 bucks per gallon. It becomes much more compelling with gas at 10-12 bucks a gallon, but you KNOW the US will try to keep that from happening since gas at that price would mean milk was 12ish per gallon and bottled water would be 3 bucks per liter on grocery store shelves.
    Last edited: Dec 29, 2011

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