Chevy Volt Price Announced

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2011 Chevrolet Volt

2011 Chevrolet Volt

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The 2011 Chevrolet Volt has been in gestation so long, we've wondered if it ever would become a reality. Now the reality is here.

GM announced the price for the 2011 Volt at Plug-In 2010, a conference being held this week in San Jose.

The Volt's MSRP will be $41,000, which includes a $720 destination fee.  Early estimates had pegged the price at roughly $40,000, perhaps slightly less.

Lower lease price

GM also tossed a curve ball into the mix: The three-year lease price for the Volt will be $350 a month, with a $2,500 down payment. That's only a dollar higher than the lease for the 2011 Nissan Leaf electric car, despite the Volt's much higher purchase price.

In both cases, a $7,500 Federal electric-vehicle tax credit is factored into the lease calculation, going not to the Volt buyer but to the lessor.

How can GM offer such low leases? Joel Ewanick, GM's vice president of U.S. marketing, says the Volt's expected residual value will be very high, for two reasons.

First, demand will exceed production for at least two years, and the car's 8-year, 100,000-mile warranty on all electric components will reassure buyers nervous about how the new technology will last after a few years.

Nissan Leaf still cheaper

Still, the other electric car going on sale this year, the 2011 Nissan Leaf, is considerably cheaper than the Volt. Its starting MSRP is $32,780 for buyers who purchase the car.

Yesterday, before the 2011 Volt pricing was announced, Nissan's director of product planning Mark Perry told our Marty Padgett, "We're going to be $10K cheaper than anyone else out there." He was closer to the mark than many had hoped.

Though both cars plug in and are powered by electric motors, they're not entirely comparable. The Leaf offers up to 100 miles of range solely from its battery, whereas the Volt gives up to 40 miles of electric range plus a further 300 miles from a gasoline engine that powers its onboard generator.

GM is heavily stressing the Volt's lack of range anxiety, with Ewanick and other executives hitting the theme at least nine separate times by our count during a half-hour phone call.

Government incentives

Both the 2011 Volt and the 2011 Leaf qualify for the maximum $7,500 federal tax credit for buyers of electric cars with battery packs of 16 kilowatt-hours or more. For purchasers, that brings the effective cost of the Volt down to $33,500, and the Leaf to $25,280.

Depending on where you live, there may also be state and local incentives on top of the Federal credit. California offers a further $5,000 tax rebate for the Leaf, but it will not apply to the Volt. Tax credits are offered in Georgia ($5,000) and Oregon ($1,500) as well.

Other plug-in perks include single-driver access to California's high-occupancy vehicle lanes, but current legislation won't extend that to the Volt either.

Only four options

Chevrolet stresses that the 2011 Volt comes fully equipped, including eight airbags, standard Bluetooth, five years of Onstar "directions and connections" service, and other niceties that cost extra in most models.

Only four options are offered. One is a premium trim package that adds leather to the steering wheel and the seats, which are heated, along with different interior door graphics.

There's also a backup camera and park-assist package, plus premium polished wheels, and three extra-cost paint colors. A 2011 Chevy Volt with every option stickers at $44,600.

Want one? See your dealer

The first Volts will arrive at Chevrolet dealers in November, first in California, followed by the New York-New Jersey-Connecticut area, then Washington, D.C., followed by Michigan, and finally Texas.

Interested buyers can now register at, where they will be directed to call, e-mail, or visit their nearest Volt-certified Chevrolet dealer to place an order with a Volt Specialist.

Chevy plans to keep customers who have placed orders apprised of their car's place in the production queue, since only 10,000 will be built during 2011, with a further 30,000 in 2012.

[General Motors]

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Comments (12)
  1. I am getting one! This is finally the price point we needed. Not to mention the government credits that may lower the cost even further. I wonder if they'll have enough supply or if they'll run out for a year like the early days of the Prius...

  2. You've left another Volt option out. Only the first 4,400 get a free charging station, which in effect is a house transformer to take your 120v outlet to 240v, to shorten the charge time. A price has not been released for this unit yet....but it would end up being a standard item, if people can't wait 10+ hours for their Volt to recharge on a standard house current setup.

  3. I wonder why, whenever the Volt & Leaf are mentioned the only thing they concentrate on is the price differential. When is someone (especially onthis website) going to give a realistic view of the differences between the 2 cars, and not just the fact that the Volt can be your one & only car because of its range extending engine. How about the fact that its a decent sized car for those with kids, or that it does not give away any amenities that people expect in new cars. How about not having to fear running out of battery charge while sitting in unexpected traffic, stifling on a 110 deg day because you can't have the ac turned on. How about being able to take the whole family and their stuff to the shopping mall, or the beach for the day? There is a reason for the price differential.. the Volt is a realistic automobile that do everything any other car can do... the Leaf is a specialized auto.. and you probably may have to adjust your driving habits around it. Why don't news stories point out all those differences, rather than focus on price.

  4. How about: If you're buying a Leaf, those factors are not important to YOU. These two are only being compared because they are the newest thing in electric powertrains on sale, and their prices are relevant because cost is a strong factor in adopting these new powertrains, regardless of their relative functionality. Otherwise, they are aimed at different segments. That is why the Prius is not also lumped with these two in many articles--it's not the NEWEST iteration of electric powertrains on sale.

  5. I wonder if these type of vehicles are worth it and how green they really are. All the extra manufacturing must have a co2 cost and what if you charge them with non renewable energy. I wonder if anyone has looked at the entire lifespan cost or if these vehicle are just another attempt to take your hard earned money in the name of "green".

  6. The car should cost $41K-$7,500. GM has raised the price to take the government rebate from the buyer and put it into GM's profits. I am hoping people boycott GM for such a blatant ripoff of government money.

  7. @ Jeff,
    you are sadly misinformed.

  8. @Jeff, you have to understand the price of the battery pack is high, I actaully think GM will not make very much profit off of the Volt.. until battery cost go down or they lighten the vehicle so they can have a smaller, cheaper battery pack, their profits are minimal.

  9. I agree, the price of battery packs need to be going down soon!

  10. Why is the government (me) subsidizing with a HANDOUT those who have enough money to buy this stupid excuse for a car? A handout of $7,500 is how our deficit got out of control. This car is NOT the answer to decreasing our dependency on foreign (or other) petroleum. This vehicle will NOT save carbon, how do we get rid of the BATTERIES? Uh, electricity is produced by petroleum or coal, so, the pollution is just in some other place. These are just more "smugmobiles" for self righteous wanna be "greenies". If you want to save the planet, get on a bicycle, off your car and stop lugging the kids all over creation and go play in the park and keep yur hands out of my POCKET! If this is a great product, why does it need help to be successful?

  11. What kind of heater do they havee and what is the range with heater running? I live in Alaska

  12. I hope they'll work on getting some of these prices down! 19,000 to 21,000 is highest price reality for many....

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