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Chevrolet Volt MSRP Starts at $41,000, $33,500 Net of Full Federal Credit; 3-year Lease Program with Option to Buy

GM will introduce the Chevrolet Volt extended range electric vehicle with a starting MSRP of $41,000; after applying the Federal income tax credit of $7,500, the price drops to $33,500. Chevrolet will also offer a lease program on the Volt with a monthly payment as low as $350 for 36 months at MSRP, with $2,500 due at lease signing, and with an option to buy at the end of the lease.

More than 600 Chevrolet dealers in the seven launch markets—California, New York, Michigan, Connecticut, Texas, New Jersey and Washington DC— will begin taking orders. Customer deliveries are scheduled to begin in launch markets late this year, with initial production of 10,000 units for the first year.

To find a participating Chevrolet Volt dealer, customers are directed to The dealer will begin the order process, to be followed up by contact from a dedicated Volt advisor.

The Volt has a total driving range of about 340 miles (547 km) and is powered by electricity at all times. For up to the first 40 miles, the Volt drives using only electricity stored in the 16 kWh lithium-ion pack. (There may be a few operational exceptions to that. For example, if the engine has not been run for a long time (i.e., weeks), the Volt may briefly fire up the engine during driving to lubricate the engine parts and burn off some of the fuel, said Tony Posawatz, vehicle line director, global electric vehicles and Chevrolet Volt.)

When the battery runs low, a gasoline-powered range extender extends the driving range for 300 miles on a full tank of fuel.

Depending upon their tax situation, Volt owners can qualify for up to $7,500 in Federal income tax credit, as well as other potential state and local tax credits, depending upon location.

One credit for which the Volt will not be qualifying is California’ Clean Vehicle Rebate Project (CVRP) rebates of up to $5,000 per light-duty vehicle for individuals and business owners who purchase or lease new eligible zero-emission or plug-in hybrid electric vehicles. Certain zero-emission commercial vehicles are eligible for CVRP rebates up to $20,000.

To qualify for the CVRP, plug-in hybrid electric vehicles must meet the Enhanced AT-PZEV definition as defined in the California ZEV Regulation section 1962.1(i), Title 13, CCR, including the SULEV, evaporative emissions, onboard diagnostics, extended warranty, and zero-emission Vehicle Miles Traveled (VMT) and advanced componentry PZEV allowance standards as defined in section 1962.1(c).

With an 8-year, 100,000-mile warranty on its battery pack, the Volt doesn’t meet at least one of the Enhanced AT-PZEV requirements to qualify.

The Volt team plans to address that with an additional vehicle package, Posawatz said, that will address battery and emissions issues. A third package for the Volt—an E85 package—is also under development.

For the launch, GM decided to go with the lowest cost, national package: the core Volt being rolled out later this year. Launching with the higher-priced Enhanced AT-PZEV package nationwide might have proven difficult, as there is some sensitivity to pricing, Posawatz suggested. And tasking the engineering team with introducing two or three packages of an entirely new technology set and platform at the same time wasn’t an option, especially given the time constraints under which the entire Volt development was placed.

GM is working to highlight the value packaged with the Volt, in terms of features such as five years of OnStar Directions and Connections services bundled into the base price (along with the smartphone mobile apps) and a charge cord. Safety features include eight air bags and StabiliTrak electronic stability control with Traction Control. The Volt is constructed of 80% high-strength steel for additional safety and protection.

In addition to the 8-year, 100,000-mile battery warranty, Chevrolet will provide:

  • 3-year/ 36,000-mile bumper-to-bumper coverage
  • 5-year/ 100,000-mile roadside assistance and courtesy transportation
  • 5-year/ 100,000-mile limited gasoline engine coverage
  • 6-year/ 100,000-mile corrosion protection coverage



STARTS at $41,000, STARTS at $33,500 Net of Full Federal Credit; waaay too expensive for common folk...Leonardo Di Caprio and other lear jet liberals & limousine liberals will undoubtedly snap them up. Hopefully these early adopters and technological advances will bring the price down quickly, though there will still be a premium (as there is with all US made GM vehicles) for legacy costs (ie. UAW retiree benefits).


It sounds high, but I think they've done their homework. In states with additional credits (e.g., California) the price should come down to under $30K. GM figures there will be enough cache value to the VOLT for the first few years that they can command ~$30K for what is essentially a Camry hybrid in utility. Will GM make a profit getting their whole saler share of the $41K...dunno. Not for several years on 10,000 units per year. I expect they will 1) try to use it as a halo car to sell other GM cars, 2)"discover" miraculous cost savings on materials by the 2013 model year, as they ramp production and face more BEV/PHEV/EREV competitors.


HB has a good analysis. They do not want to sell many the first few years because they can not make many the first few years, but it does position them well going forward.


At $350pm for a lease, that is around twice as attractive as buying.
GM want you to lease.

Chris Jensen

$33,500 (After tax credits) Not outrageous for what you are getting. This is an entirely new package of technology and GM is not going to make money for the first couple of years. I agree that 34k is not affordable for everybody but they could justify charging a lot more. And lets face it, first adopters are willing to pay a premium.


Since oil spill devastation isn't enough to change driving habits, maybe:

a RPG round in a big refinery or oil tanker loading facility

or closing of the Straits of Hormoth after someone tries to end Iran's nuclear weapons program

or the inevitable doubling of oil prices etc - and any vehicle that can get one to work without gasoline will start looking like a bargain - maybe even a raise.

Dave R

@HealthyBreeze - No CA tax credit as GM will not be getting the Volt AT-PZEV certified for the first generation.

Leasing appears to be the way to go for the Volt.


Enterprise car rental will offer the Leaf, maybe others will offer the Focus EV. People will try them and tell others, others will try them and so on. This is how markets are built, some would say it is just substitution and maybe it is but it is good for all of us.

Account Deleted

The NYTimes writhe the Volt lease is not available until 2012. “People who live outside the areas where it will initially go on sale can buy the vehicle if they travel to a participating dealer, but they would not be allowed to lease it until sales are expanded nationwide by 2012, G.M. said.”

So the Leaf is the least expensive car when compared to the Volt as it sells for 32000 USD or can be leased for 350 USD per month when deliveries start in December 2010.

I think leasing of EVs or range extended EVs like the Volt is going to be more popular than leasing for cars with ICE because the lease can take immediate advantage of the various tax benefits and subsidies for EVs. Moreover, if those batteries are as durable as the warranties indicate (8 years and 100000 miles for both the Volt and the Leaf are much better than most other components in cars with ICE) then these EVs should also be longer lasting than cars with ICE. The point is that if the EV is much more durable than a car with ICE the depreciation of the car’s value is less for EVs than it is for cars with ICE and therefore the EV lease can be lower than for a similar priced car with ICE.


The somewhat ambiguous statement seems to me to mean that the Volt will be available for lease immediately, but only if you live near the sales points.
If you live elsewhere you can travel to them and buy, but not lease.
The statement is unclear however.


Interesting move by GM: Price the Volt high to drive sales to the current ICE cars; when ICE numbers drop off, drop the price on the Volt and then transition the car to a BEV by removing the genset and increasing the capacity of the batteries.

Sanity Chk

"if the engine has not been run for a long time (i.e., weeks), the Volt may briefly fire up the engine during driving to lubricate the engine parts and burn off some of the fuel"

Can someone please explain why the volt needs to burn off some of the fuel if the batteries do not need to be charged? If there is a need to circulate the oil then the engine could be electrically cranked without actually starting it.


Lease is the best option? Not sure until you read the lease fine print. $2500 due up front. What limitations are on it for which you pay extra money if you exceed them?

10,000 cars. 600 dealers. 16 cars per dealership if distributed equally. They should sell out quickly. I will not line up for one.

Prius at $22,000 and a 600 mile range @55 mpg, although the drive train is complex, still leaves the the Leaf and Volt in the dust.


Fully loaded the Volt costs another $3k, whereas the top spec Leaf is only $600 more than base.
So the difference is $8-11k, or $13-16k if you live in California.


Sanity Chk:
The petrol goes bad if left too long, aside from any other considerations.
Enterprise will use other EV cars as well as the Leaf as they become available.


TM wrote: "Prius at $22,000 and a 600 mile range @55 mpg, although the drive train is complex, still leaves the the Leaf and Volt in the dust."

But if the vast majority of your driving is commuting 40 miles or less everyday then the Volt is essentially all electric right? There will be some that want the 40-mile electric capability with backup generator instead of sweating bullets with the Leaf when the battery gets low. The Prius has no all-electric capability either. The Volt will easily sell to people that feel the need to be on the cutting edge of technology.



Maybe, we will see. All we KNOW is they are using the Leaf now.

It sounds like companies can get some good breaks leasing the Volt. They can get the Federal break and write off the expense in general.


Take your Prius to Hymotion and pay $10,000 for their Li-ion battery pack. Now you have a $32,000 car which can go 30-40 miles all electric. Not that I think it is a good idea, but you could if you wanted to.

Anybody know what the mpg will be for the volt after the battery has run out of usable charge?
That is more of an apples to apples comparison.


Check the link to Enterprise I gave. It is not something I invented, Enterprise say that they are going to sue other EVs as well as the Leaf as and when they become available.


John Kerry could afford a Volt, and he probably would buy one if they were made in New Zealand & he could dodge taxes on it buy keeping it in Rhode Island like he tried to do with his yacht. But hey, at least he's important and can pass laws to force us to do what he says - not what he does.


Well, if they are going to sue other EVs, then there you have it :)


At $350/month - the payment are well within reach of a large majority of working Americans. This keeps the cars in the tighter grasp of GM who want to monitor the performance and quickly replace any vehicles that have problems.

Good news for everyone.

Can someone please explain why the volt needs to burn off some of the fuel if the batteries do not need to be charged?
Temperature and pressure changes will push fuel-tank vapors into the charcoal canister under the hood. These vapors have to be burned off every so often or the canister gets full and vapors spill into the air.

OK - there is a big controversy over what is a fair way to measure mpg, so stay tuned.

It does sound like the fuel tank is ~8 gals and gets an extra 300 miles extra range from that fuel, so that is 37.5 mpg after the battery runs out.

Consider that the minimum mpg the car will get. They do not specify the size of the tank, but are worried about the gas going bad.

Smart that GM is only going to sell 10,000 of these over the next 17 months as they are going to lose money on each car.

The video content felt more like a sales pitch rather than a detailed description of the car - they said there was too much to talk about, so they talked more about cup holders than fuel tank size.

I'm getting the feeling the Volt could be to GM what Iridium was to Motorola.


The top spec Leaf is $940 more, not $600 as I erroneously said.
It might be fair to add the cost of a 240 volt charger to that, or at any rate half of it, as there is a rebate from the Government.
Nissan will roll that into your payments.
The charger costs $2200

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