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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Concorde:
- Fastest commercial plane ever made
- Massive development costs
- Sold in low numbers
- Struggled to find landing spot on Launch
- Everyone liked
- Few people could afford to fly it
- Commercial failure

Volt
- One of the most technically brilliant cars ever
- Massive development costs
- Sales to be restricted to low numbers
- Struggle to find recharging spots
- Lots of people like the idea
- Few people will pay the asking price
- Commercial failure.

The result of the British Aerospace industries attempt to take on Boeing with Concorde damn near killed off some of the major UK Aerospace companies (luckly Airbus saved it)

The result of Volt could be the effect it has on GM's cash pile and liquitity.

Final thought. GM gave the world Saturn which was a "big attempt" to rethink US car making to take on the Japanese. Commercially was not a smart move and never really worked as planned. The fall out for GM was costly. The Volt seems similar. The CEO in charge of GM at the time got the bullet. If that was a bad idea. Then this is a strinker, however much car enthusiasts and Greens may love it. So in my view the current CEO should be primed and ready to sit in the GM ejector seat. In fact he should have be ejected long ago....
 

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No, because all companies are working on a Plug-in solution.

Unlike Airbus, which was the only company that developed a true commercially viable SST. Boeing never completed development. And the Tu-144 never sold outside Russia.... and died 3 years after it went into service.
 

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SSTs went directly against industry trends at the time. They were "faster" when the industry really wanted to expand their market with "cheaper" (i.e. the 747).

Volt is very in line with automotive and economic trends. GM should be ahead of the game for total cost of ownership within a few years of production.

A better comparison might be Concorde => Ford GT or some similar expensive sports car.
 

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No, because all companies are working on a Plug-in solution.

Unlike Airbus, which was the only company that developed a true commercially viable SST. Boeing never completed development. And the Tu-144 never sold outside Russia.... and died 3 years after it went into service.
An excellent point, mgescuro. No Toyota or Nissan-bashing threads predicting their plug-in demise before their plug-ins are even introduced...

Once again, another "GM sucks" thread. Will the import trolls ever end their GM-bashing? Well?
Ever?
"Ever" includes the 21st Century. Well?
When will they stop their bashing?
 

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Finding places to charge isn't exactly difficult either. Its not limited on purpose, they just can't build enough batteries. How can you dictate people will pay sticker when no one knows the price? Ill informed at best, yet again.
 

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I should have tried bidding on that TU-144 that was on ebay
 

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The other major hurdle the Concorde had was that it was only allowed to land in certain airports and wasn't allowed to go supersonic in a lot of areas, especially over the continental US -- no sonic booms allowed.

The Volt, on the other hand, is the future. It can be driven anywhere and has the range extender.

If you want a more accurate car-Concorde comparison, use the EV1. Limited range, cheap gas, high price meant it was doomed.
 

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Unlike Airbus, which was the only company that developed a true commercially viable SST

BaE devloped Concorde, Airbus came later and..

Commercially viable is a loose term, they(Air France/BA) would have not been able to fly the airplane if it would not have been for the subsidies.


The other major hurdle the Concorde had was that it was only allowed to land in certain airports and wasn't allowed to go supersonic in a lot of areas, especially over the continental US -- no sonic booms allowed.

That was one of the killers, Pan Am, TWA, United an others had orders for Concorde SST's, even after the American SST program was canned in 1971 or so.

Not to mention that it did not have "legs", it could do London to NY, but not London to Chicago, not to mention crossing the Pacific, along with the limited seats, 110 only per plane all first class, and the fact that it used something like 4 times the fuel a 747-100 would use to cross the Atlantic.

It also took them forever to actually enter revenue service, the plane debut at the 1969 Paris Air Show, but it did not actually start carrying paying passengers until 1976. The Boeing 747 made it's debut in 1969 and made it's first revenue flight April 1970, Pan American JFK to London.

The Boeing 2707(because it could cruise at Mach 2.7) was going to a 300 ft long monster with at least 200 seats, with both first and tourist class sections.
 

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The Volt could be great, but the hype around it is confusing the public, most of who don't even know about the cutting edge Two Mode system. I wish GM would promote the Two Mode system a lot more (and get it into the Malibu ASAP) and when the Volt arrives, that will be more icing on the cake. But please . . . less Volt hype and more Two Mode Hybrid vehicles.
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
Please don't look at this as an anti-GM thread. I have a lot of time for the people working on the tricky job of bringing the Volt to market. I just question the commercial wisdom of the project from a management perspective. I mean just how much is GM spending on this loss making project?

GM have already said they will make a LOSS (there's that word again) on every car they make. Consequently production numbers will be low. So this is not a car to beat the Prius which sells in volume and makes money.

The Volt will struggle to gain acceptance in cities where there are no recharge points (hence my analagy to Concorde landing spots). Imagine if it was used in London or New York. If you parked it in a street would you have to run a cable over a pavement and into an office to get an electric point and then wait an age for it to recharge? Whilst people trip over the leads and phone their Lawyers?

Then there is the price. It's not going to be Astra money or even BMW 1 Series money. We are talking more, so will people want to buy it? Maybe but again it won't cut it as a volume product, which is what GM as a company is about.

In my opinion GM should have waited till the technology was there and gone down the hybrid route instead. Let someone else take the gamble. To be blunt what will appeal to most Americans more. A family car like the Volt which costs a bomb to buy in the first place and where your always on the hunt for a power supply. Or an SUV like Land Rover is building which will do 60 mpg on a combined cycle? The Volt is an amazing car but GM should focus on a 60 MPG truck rather than a plug in electric car. GM should just do this by the numbers. The Volt does not add up commercially and if it ever does then Toyota or someone else will figure out how to do their own Volt cheaper, better, bigger, faster by learning from the "Prototype" made by GM.

Finally consider this. If GM had spent all the Volt cash on hybrid cars since they started the Volt product they may have a range of cars that made a profit right now! I'm rapidly hating the Volt for what it's doing to GM.
 

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Drive an electric car before? You would be surprised with all the low end torque, the thing flies! To a point they need to add a acceleration limiter...
Lol, Ted Danson actually owned one of those EV1's, and he was bragging on Letterman one evening about how he would drag-race some of the sports cars the other well-heeled people on Hollywood drove.
If my memory serves me correcly, the EV1 went from 0-60 in 8 seconds--impressive for 1993 cars, and still kinda quick by today's standards...
 

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Please don't look at this as an anti-GM thread. I have a lot of time for the people working on the tricky job of bringing the Volt to market. I just question the commercial wisdom of the project from a management perspective. I mean just how much is GM spending on this loss making project?

GM have already said they will make a LOSS (there's that word again) on every car they make. Consequently production numbers will be low. So this is not a car to beat the Prius which sells in volume and makes money.

The Volt will struggle to gain acceptance in cities where there are no recharge points (hence my analagy to Concorde landing spots). Imagine if it was used in London or New York. If you parked it in a street would you have to run a cable over a pavement and into an office to get an electric point and then wait an age for it to recharge? Whilst people trip over the leads and phone their Lawyers?

Then there is the price. It's not going to be Astra money or even BMW 1 Series money. We are talking more, so will people want to buy it? Maybe but again it won't cut it as a volume product, which is what GM as a company is about.

In my opinion GM should have waited till the technology was there and gone down the hybrid route instead. Let someone else take the gamble. To be blunt what will appeal to most Americans more. A family car like the Volt which costs a bomb to buy in the first place and where your always on the hunt for a power supply. Or an SUV like Land Rover is building which will do 60 mpg on a combined cycle? The Volt is an amazing car but GM should focus on a 60 MPG truck rather than a plug in electric car. GM should just do this by the numbers. The Volt does not add up commercially and if it ever does then Toyota or someone else will figure out how to do their own Volt cheaper, better, bigger, faster by learning from the "Prototype" made by GM.

Finally consider this. If GM had spent all the Volt cash on hybrid cars since they started the Volt product they may have a range of cars that made a profit right now! I'm rapidly hating the Volt for what it's doing to GM.
The Volt will be for GM in 2010 what the Prius was for Toyota in 1996.
Like the Prius, the Volt will be made in low numbers initially, and may cost some.
By 2010 rolls around, the Prius will have been largely superceded by many of GM's 2-mode, series hybrid powered cars (we're already seeing the Vue hybrid launch in 2009; more to follow), nor will the Volt be Prius's competitor; the Prius competitors will be anything powered by GM's excellent 2-mode hybrid powertrain (aforementioned Vue, for example).

Again, don't see the Volt as a Prius competitor. Instead, see it as a car for GM in much the same wat the Prius was for Toyota back in 1996.
 

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Lol, Ted Danson actually owned one of those EV1's, and he was bragging on Letterman one evening about how he would drag-race some of the sports cars the other well-heeled people on Hollywood drove.
If my memory serves me correcly, the EV1 went from 0-60 in 8 seconds--impressive for 1993 cars, and still kinda quick by today's standards...
But EV-1 hit the road in '97 ;)

Yeah electric motor has 100 % torque at zero revs, they zooom right quick. But they are very top-end limited. GM's website at the time had a video of an EV-1 dragging a Mazda MX-5 and beating it soundly :drive:



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Again, don't see the Volt as a Prius competitor. Instead, see it as a car for GM in much the same wat the Prius was for Toyota back in 1996.
I don't really get why they compare it to a Prius. Prius uses a gas powertrain and Volt is fully electric. I think it would be hard to get customers to understand the difference at first...
 

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But EV-1 hit the road in '97 ;)

Yeah electric motor has 100 % torque at zero revs, they zooom right quick. But they are very top-end limited. GM's website at the time had a video of an EV-1 dragging a Mazda MX-5 and beating it soundly :drive:
It was a Miata vs. EV1 vs 300Z race:


I'm pumped about the Volt but next year we'll see Li-Ion 2-mode Vues. That interests me a lot, too. What will the Li-Ion and plug-in capability provide the Vues? And is that why GM delayed the 2-mode Vue? Do the Li-Ion batteries offer that much of an advantage it was worth delaying the 2-mode Vues?
 
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