Chevrolet is rolling out its redesigned 2016 Volt, but initially it will be available only in limited numbers.
The second-generation Chevy Volt will be sold in certain regions this year, but it won't be available nationwide until next year.
The 2016 Volt will have a shortened model year, GM says, and will be sold only in California and other markets friendly to plug-in cars.
A 2017 Volt will begin selling nationwide "early this spring," a General Motors spokesperson told Automotive News (subscription required).
But this doesn't constitute a delay of the Volt launch, Kevin M. Kelly of GM communications told Green Car Reports, adding: “Chevrolet has a shortened model year for the 2016 Chevy Volt that will have a limited distribution network."
"The 2016 Volt will be sold in our strongest extended-range electric vehicle markets," he continued. "The 2017 Chevrolet Volt will begin production early this spring and will be available throughout the country.”
A dealer order guide leaked earlier this year indicated that Connecticut, Massachusetts, Maryland, Maine, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, Oregon, Rhode Island, and Vermont would be the additional states to get the 2016 Volt.
The company began taking orders for the updated 2016 Volt in California in June.
Chevy is reportedly pushing up the launch of the 2017 Volt because it plans to add more content to the car.
The 2016 Volt is launching in just two trim levels--the base LT and and the more upscale LTZ--so it's possible Chevy will add a third trim. Or it could offer more individual equipment options.
In its first, abbreviated model year, the 2016 Volt could at least help prop up the model's sales in the regions where it is available, until production ramps up.
The first-generation model has been on a long sell-down, and consumer interest has likely taken a hit due to the long anticipation of an all-new second-generation Volt.
While the carmaker is now planning a slow rollout of the new Volt, it shut down production of the old model several months ago to prepare for the transition.
Chevy sold 8,315 Volts in the U.S. between January and August, a decrease of 37 percent compared to the same period last year.