California Single Occupant Carpool Lane Sticker Availabilities 2015

California Single Occupant Carpool Lane Sticker Availabilities 2015.

Green Clean Air Vehicle decals were originally available to the first 40,000 applicants that purchased or leased cars meeting California’s transitional zero emission vehicles (TZEV) requirement, also known as the enhanced advanced technology partial zero emission vehicle (AT PZEV)* requirement. Per SB 286, the expiration date for the green decals has been extended to January 1, 2019. Per budget trailer bill, SB 853 (Statutes 2014, chapter 27), the green decal limit was increased by 15,000 to 55,000 decals effective July 1, 2014. Now, per AB 2013, effective January 1, 2015, an additional 15,000 decals will be available for a new maximum of 70,000.

Stanza 1, including Chevrolet Volt and Cadillac ELR, highlightedCalifornia Air Resources Board, Eligible Vehicles List

Concurrence on the Difficulty of Marketing the Chevrolet Volt

<quote ref=”here“>

What about TV ads? I don’t see Volt TV ads these days.
Norwicki: Generally speaking, the category isn’t advertised on TV. You go where the target customer for your vehicle is. And oftentimes people that are drawn to specific categories of cars, alternative-fuel vehicles in particular — those people do not view TV. They are online. They’re in social media. But they are not typical TV watchers. So just because you don’t see us on TV doesn’t mean we’re not advertising online and in social media.
If you advertise on TV, you’ll increase awareness, but that doesn’t necessarily mean you’ll increase consideration. So, by targeting we can more efficiently use our marketing funds.

</quote>

GM’s statements totally align with my buying experience; I indicated such on the post-buy survey forms, and I’m sure many like me did as well.  TV didn’t help, wouldn’t have helped, couldn’t have helped.  The only appointment TV that I watch at this point is MLB and NFL, and typically that is 20 min or more out of phase to skip the commercials.  They [GM] advertise trucks on NFL.  I get that.  I already own a truck.  I’m not in market for a truck [yet]. My kids watch OTT-delivered video; e.g. Netflix or trawled shows in syndication on the TiVo.

What did help in the buy cycle?  Q&A from friends & colleagues in my trade.  These are tech-types who had already gone down the path, walked the walk & gone face-to-face with the “New GM” dealer network. I asked them about their experience: driving across the S.F. Bay, did they have to charge at work, did they charge at home, was it just “trading gas for electrons” or was there something more, etc.?  How did it run when out of juice?  As well, I learned that they had mitigated their ownership risk with a lease. Yet I wanted to buy for various reasons. The factory web outreach info was vastly helpful; the forums less so because of the UX, the unstructured conversations, attitude & chaos of the venues. Of course, the vehicle configurations one could construct in Build-A-Volt were not available at any dealer, but that bait-and-switch is true of any vehicle.  Build-a-Volt was great though because it familiarized me with the vehicle. Seeing the vehicle is important.

My real  persistent Single Nagging Question was: will the power plant “work” across time & distance at the same level of reliability that the Avalanche’s does: for 98% driving around town and freeway <= 40 miles to & from work. But-And-Also, I didn’t want to have to rent a “real” car to go to LA or on vacation, or to take my son to football league games in the north bay [Vallejo, Sacramento]; or worse have to rent a “real” car to go out to dinner with customers after work because my e-car didn’t have enough range.  Reliability over time is, of course, unknowable, but reputation precedes. Yet, the Volt chief engineer Andrew Farah’s testimonial that he drove Pike’s Peak in the car went a very long way towards my imagining that the car wasn’t another toy.  Oddly, so was Bob Lutz’s one-liner, something about Chicago and picking up a family member at O’Hare [cite].  But can I drive it to SF-LA — how will it handle Grapevine uphill after a 6 hr straight shot from Silicon Valley is my version of that.  I haven’t attempted that yet, but it does seem within the realm of convenient feasibility. Marketing is difficult, especially of “new” or “experimental” products; even with headwinds that drive prospective customers away

One way to address the marketing issue is to approach it on a cost basis, with incentives. The state & federal subsidy money was fun, but not a top-tier motivator. Deliberate minds know that recovering abstract incentives like those post-transaction are 1+ year out with substantial execution risk to capture it at tax time or filling out after market subsidy application forms, which might or might not fail on arcane bureaucratic grounds. I bought an L2, and had it installed by a contractor.  You need an L2 at home that you own and you control.  It’s a cost. Also, I’ve bought enough cars to know that what what you pay to drive off the lot is 150% the sticker price on the lot.  That’s how the system works.  As a consumer, you modulate this dealer markup by purchasing fewer vehicles and keeping them for longer.

I have to say that the surrounding culture of electric cars is not actually an attraction or strength in selling the concept.  Not for me.  I wouldn’t buy a car to get into hissy fits at my work with other employees about who is parked where or whether my car needs to be moved because there are too few electrical outlets.  All that does is broadcast to me that the owner has poor planning & buying skills to allow themselves to become dependent upon the kindness of strangers like that.  I bought a Volt so I could have freedom; the same freedom I have had with every other car & truck I’ve owned.  I can come and go when I please.  I get to park in the back of the lot and nobody tells me to move my car.  I would not buy a car to broadcast sanctimony or to whine at others about their lifestyles or choices.  So the “ICED OUT” entitlement, on-high national policy commentariat or intellectual pseudoviolence at abusers of parking norms & signage by electric car owners speaks to me as juvenile & extreme, continuing to define the electric car genre as fully-fanatical and still pre-early adopter; filled with wild-eyed crunchy types. The red-state/blue-state color of the discourse as well.  Why would I want to be a part of that?  Bizzarrely, from a marketing perspective, there is a still a continued self-loathing hypothetical line of grousing about the componentry on the Volt itself (fascias, mirrors, dashboards, etc.), which is often framed “in contrast with other $50K cars.”  Fair, but not fun.  It’s still an experimental vehicle choice; definitely not yet mainstream.  Marketing it sees it as on the cusp of cool in some areas, but definitely not yet “Crossing the Chasm” except here in the Valley of Heart’s Delight, even if Volts, Teslas and Leafs are de rigeur here.

I am mid-funnel in market in late-2014 through 2016 for:

  • a Suburban or Avalanche scale vehicle with a Voltec-type power train.
  • a Cadillac ELR, or ELR-V (whatever that is … I’m imagining it’s the “midlife crisis” variant for folks just like me).

Original Sources

in archaeological order, cut & paste derivatives on top, original works lower down.

Is the Chevy Volt Destined To Remain GM’s ‘Niche’ Product? | Hybrid Cars

Jeff Cobb; Is the Chevy Volt Destined To Remain GM’s ‘Niche’ Product?; In Hybrid Cars; 2014-01-23.

Actualities

Provided for color, background & verisimilitude …

IMG_3434

IMG_3534

ELR

Chevy Volt costs about $1.76/day to fuel (uh, charge) via CPAU E-1, Tier 3

The Data

Date Delta 6-months Average Monthly Daily Rate
Ending kWh $ kWh $ kWh $
2013-06-19 322 $58.54 291 $52.83 9.69 $1.76
2013-05-21 290 $53.62
2013-04-22 334 $60.52
2013-03-20 218 $40.69
2013-02-20 181 $33.70
2013-01-23 399 $69.91

Provenance & Context

  • Data from 2012-06-21 through 2013-06-19.
  • Complete utility metering data is not shown
  • Monetary values include CPAU “Utility Users Tax” of ~4.20%
  • The “delta” is relative to the 6-month prior metric.
  • Operation of the vehicle commenced 2013-01-31.
  • For the frame ending 2013-01-23, this includes the school holiday break wherein the kids watched a wall-sized TV for between 8-14 hours/day from 2012-12-21 to 2013-01-02.
  • City of Palo Alto (CPA), Residential Rates, the E1 Rate Card

Perception becomes reality: Is the Volt an electric car?

One learns so very much about marketing complex technical products in the three month sales cycle of a Volt … What got answered in the research/sales process and what didn’t and what got met with silence. There’s a few Bob Lutz quotes rattling around the trade and enthusiast press which are super-duper instructive here, but they’ll only make sense once one has taken delivery.

I’ve had the following conversation like about five or six times so far in the journey:

Me
I got a Volt.
Them
Really, it’s electric, right?
[as in: but, um you always ever owned V-8 vehicks right?]
Me
Uh, yeah, it’s mostly electric.
[as in: keep it short, it's a social situation]
Them
What’s the range?
Me
About 35 miles.
Them
That’s pretty risky isn’t it? I mean, what do you do when you’re out of juice?
Me
There’s a gas engine, you just drive it. I did that last week.
Them
Really? I’ve never heard of this.
it varies a bit after that.
Them
Oh, so it’s not like a Leaf then?
Me
Yup. The gas engine takes over. In fact, I don’t bother to charge at work. Too pesky with all the pure battery folk in a panic to get home.
Them
Is that what they call a hybrid?
Me
blah blah blah series-parallel hybrid blah blah blah lead with the battery, follow with the engine to make up average power but not till ~70 mph blah blah blah
[the laugh here is that last bit is right out of the GM media campaign 2010, it's good patter]
Them
Interesting, what’s the 0-60?
it’s pretty much straight home after that.

There’s this rule of thumb in marketing somehow that one must recite simple messages over and over and over. Everyone knows this but then you learn it again and again in the trade. And then once again because you get so steeped in the process that you can’t begin to see the concerns of the prospects who aren’t really listening to you anyway.

Short Messages:

  • The Volt is just a car, drive it like one.
  • It’s not a toy. Use it as you would a family car.
  • You buy this car and you buy freedom. Enjoy that.

I got endorsed by the focus group: “Dad, this car is way cool. I want it.” age 14.5

[I now have a problem when that focus group element hits 15.5. Kids these days love their computers and this machine is way full 'o computers. Maybe the ELR will get built and I can trade up.]

The “range anxiety” concept is accurate, precise and honest. But it’s a fancy enough term that it reminds me that it’s a problem I didn’t have before, so entering into a situation that buys that problem, owns it and solves that problem is a wash. And bathing is … um, um, cough, a good idea. But it must offer some other benefit. Faster, cheaper, bigger, rougher are a thing, and in that, you can’t beat coolness.

The charging cord is not really a demonstrable symbol of freedom.  The leash aspect has to be argued away somehow.  As in “if you don’t want it, don’t use it.”  They have some of this simplicity in the brand campaigns, but it’s totally overdriven by blaring angry self-righteous EV culture.

The success recipe here has to be:

  • hide the sanctimony
  • hide the save-the-planet stuff
  • hide the entitlement
  • hide the tech policy stuff
  • hide the job subsidy stuff
  • hide the accounting cost basis stuff
  • hide the acronyms unless they’re in the frat, know the secret handshake and are a serious serious policy wonk.

To wit: AC AEV AEV-100 AEV-300 ANL BEV BSC CAFCP CAISO CARB CDFA CEC CHAdeMO CMAQ CPUC CVRP DC DGS DMV DOE DRIVE EERE EPIC EREV ETP EV EVSE FCEV GEELA GOBIZ HCD HEV HOV HVIP ICE I-HIB L1 L2 L3 LCFS LG LMC LMP MAP-21 NAIS NEMA NEV NGO NREL NRG OPR PACE PEV PEVC PHEV PV SAE SAE-J1772 SAE-J2929 SGC SOC TCO V2G VA VMVSS WGB WOT ZEV. I read all this stuff just to figure out if I could own this vehicle, they’re all real places, orgs, standards, programs or concepts. Most of ‘em are irrelevant. A few matter. The ones that matter aren’t colocated & separated from the irrelevant ones. Everyone is a policy wonk and an expert in their own affairs so all this stuff gets interwoven in arbitrary ways. Such is the magic of social proof.

I still have worries & questions. But most aren’t directly related to owning & operating the voltec technology in a “daily driver” vehicle, not really.  The car “just works”  It’s the stuff around it that’s pesky: the smartphone apps don’t work, for-pay nav is expensive & confusing, for-pay radio is expensive, confusing and wow is it expensive on any cost basis you choose to measure, and getting into the fine world of residential L2 charging is a longer process than one might imagine, etc.

Volt Across America | Jason Cullinane

Jason Cullinane; Volt Across America; On YouTube; 2012-10-15.  9:23.

Summary

  • Consumer success patterns – “it’s a family car, use it as such.”
  • No technical information.
  • Not a lot of images of the vehicle.
  • Seems like there is a series here.

Mentions

  • Starts in Mountain View, CA.
  • They have electricity at some campground near Yosemite.
  • Shows the usual traffic jam in and around national parks; 0.5 mph.
  • Still at Yosemite at 3:30.
  • At Mono Lake by 5:30.

Volt Stats voltstats.net Security Concerns (or not)

Veronica Victoria is in there.

See ,

Privacy Guidances

Implementation

  • The site is built out of IIS, C# and .Net (ASP.NET MVC 3)
    • Something about how mod_mono didn’t work out
  • Passwords are salted and hashed according to bcrypt
  • The site is closed source per agreement with OnStar.

Folklore around the tailgate of the Volt getting dirtier than expected

On folklore around the tailgate of the Volt getting dirtier than expected.  The comparison vehicles are an Avalanche and belief and expectations.

[News Update!  It rained.  Problem solved,  Whew!]

  • In two weeks of ownership.  At the level of “wow there’s a lot of wet dust back here” relative to the rest of the car.
  • adric22; Mentions it in passing; In GM Volt Forum; 2013-02-15.
    The thread is on driving habits (something else entirely)

Context

  • Wait, your main complaint is that your car is too dirty?
  • It’s not a complaint, just an observation.

Similar observation:

If one leaves baby-vomit-laden wet towels in the cargo bed of an Avalanche, and also leaves the midgate window open and also moves to freeway speeds, then those towels will get sucked across the cargo area, into the midgate window, into the passenger cabin, fly up to the front seat area, smear over the front windshield and wrap themselves around the face of the individual sitting in the passenger seat.

Remediation:

  • Wash the truck.
  • Don’t do that.
  • Fix the baby.

Chevrolet Volt | Engineering & Operating Facts, Factoids & Mythology

Factoids

  • The Volt has 18 separate computers on board. cite
  • Four 32-bit microcontrollers (MCUs) from Freescale Semiconductor cite
    • One operates the traction motor.
    • One operates the generator-motor.
    • One operates a motor for the auxiliary transmission oil pump, which in turn provides hydraulic pressure to hold the vehicle’s clutches.
    • Supervisory & optimizer.
  • There are 10,000,000 lines of code in the Volt. cite
  • No field update for 2011 or 2012 or 2013 Volt per Chevrolet Customer Svc. cite
  • GM uses IBM’s Rational “architecture” cite
    probably intended to reference IBM Rational Rose Software Architect [Jimi Wales' Wiki]
  • The 2012 Volt will not allow disabling ICE during preconditioning; therefore the Volt cannot be preconditioned in a garage. cite
    • Unclear if this is true for 2013.
    • A response cite; explain away: there is a workaround, is operator error, the condition is too rare to consider (paraphrasing the response)
      • rare condition => the ICE won’t go on unless it’s 25F in your garage; t would have to be like -10F outside for that to happen?
      • operator error => The pre-condition is via 120V so the engine comes on or with 240V but in comfort mode instead of ECO mode.
    • From a VA response: the definition of Very Cold is around 14F cite.
  • On the consumer experience of Hold mode versus Mountainmode
    • In Mountain mode the state of charge to keep as a buffer is not fixed at a level.
    • In Hold mode, the SOC is fixed at the level when Hold mode was entered.
  • Series-Hybrid Powertrain cite also Parallel-Hybrid Power of Extended Range High-Speed.
  • 435 lb lithium-ion battery pack cite
  • 111 kW ac traction motor cite 370 Nm cite
  • 54 kW generator-motor cite
  • Max RPM 4800 rpm
  • Sequential MPFI with ETC
  • Output: kW/hp = 62/83 @ 4800
  • Engine runs near WOT as much as possible.
    • Premium fuel required
  • Theory cite

    • Lead with the battery
    • Follow with the ICE to make up average power
    • ICE runs up to 4800 rpm
  • Four Driving four modes cite
    • Electric Low-Speed: Battery to 111 kW traction motor turns, it transmits power to a sun gear in a planetary gear set, which turns the drive axle.  No ICE.
    • Electric High-Speed: Enter this mode at about 70 mph. The supervisory controller splits the power between the 111 kW traction motor (NAME?) and the 54 kW generator-motor (NAME?).  Still on battery, no ICE. The planetary gear set blends the power from the two motors and sends it to the drive axle.
    • Extended Range Low-Speed: Enter this mode with unacceptable SOC, the 1.4 liter I-4 engine. At low speeds, the engine spins the generator-motor, which replenishes the battery.
    • Extended Range High-Speed: Complicated and “controversial” (see sidebar, where?). Enter this mode with depleted SOC and 70+ mph, the controller affects a power split.  Parallel Hybrid Power.  Power is delivered through the big traction motor and through the smaller generator-motor. The 54 kW generator motor (NAME?) transmits power directly into a ring gear in the vehicle’s planetary gear set.  See Claim around Parallel Hybrid Power below.
  • Battery Lifetime cite see circa 8:45 to 9:00
  • warranty program => 8 year 100,000 mile
  • design goal => 10 year, 150,000 miles
  • Noise and drivability; from three years ago, prerelease in 2010, cite<paraphrases>
    • On entering into mountain mode, driver-selected via the console, the engine races loudly.
    • The Volt offers three driver-selected modes: normal, sport, and mountain.
    • Mountain mode increases minimum battery SOC to around 45%.
    • The expectation is that mountain mode to be required only under unusual power demand conditions.
    • GM engineers said that in the customer models, they are implementing a software fix to reduce the mountain mode noise somewhat. That said, GM wants the use of mountain mode to be exceptional—i.e., it doesn’t want customers running on mountain mode to recharge the pack. Power should come from the plug.</paraphrases>
  • Not clear where these numbers originate cite

Controversy

  • There seems to be semantic controversy about the precise wordsmithing used to describe the “four modes” or if there are more than “four modes” or if power is moved “directly” or “indirectly” across the powertrain.  Unhelpful.

Claims

i.e. I haven’t experienced these myself.

  • Claim: Volt buyers are or were given personal representatives by the manufacturer for dealing with their dealer. cite
  • Claim: hitting Climate or NAV turns on the radio. cite
  • Claim: “It’s smooth and fast; you can drive 100 mph off the traction motor,” Pamela Fletcher of GM cite
  • Claim: the Parallel Hybrid Power scheme is good because electric motor efficiency typically decreases at higher speeds. “You’re bringing down the speed of the main traction motor and supplementing it with the generator-motor, as a result, you’re improving the efficiency,” a GM spoketron says cite

Terms

  • BEV => Battery-Electric Vehicle
  • Ecotec => brand name of the ICE unit in the Volt
  • EREV => Electric Range Extended Vehicle (i.e. a Volt)
  • ICE => Internal Combustion Engine
  • IGBT => Insulated Gate Bipolar Transistors (in the Freescale MCUs)
  • MCU => Microcontroller Units
  • MY2013 => Model Year 2013
  • SOC => State of Charge (of a battery)
  • VA => Volt Advisor, personal(?) Volt Advisor
  • Voltec => brand name of the electric drivetrain
  • WOT => Wide Open Throttle

References

Boosterism & popularization

  • Charles J. Murray; Electronics Boost Chevy Volt’s Efficiency; In Design News; 2010-11-16.
    Mentions

    • Quoted
      • Pamela Fletcher, chief engineer for the Chevy Volt’s powertrain.
      • Steve Nelson, vice president of marketing for Freescale.
    • Testimonial about travel “mountains, across deserts and over frozen tundra.”
    • Hint that at super high altitudes, 11,100 ft at Eisenhower Pass, electric works better
    • Review of the four modes of the Voltec drive
      • Electric Low Speed
      • Electric High-Speed
      • Extended Range Low-Speed
      • Extended Range High-Speed
  • Mike Millikin and Jack Rosebro; Chevy Volt Delivers Novel Two-Motor, Four-Mode Extended Range Electric Drive System; Seamless Driver Experience Plus Efficiency; In Green Car Congress; 2010-10-20.
    Summary: a reprise of the national media launch talking points, voices and scenes
  • Chevy Volt Powertain Deep Dive; from Plugincars.com; On YouTube; 2010-10-20; from the Volt national media launch 2010-10-18.
    • (Speaker) Pamela Fletcher, Chief Engineer, Chevrolet Power Train, GM
    • Part 1; 9:01.
    • Part 2; 7:58.
    • Part 3; 6:21; CGI animation
  • Chevy Volt Battery Deep Dive; from Plugincars.com; On YouTube; 2010-10-20; 9:36; from the Volt national media launch 2010-10-18.
    • (Speaker) Bob Wallace, Director of Global Battery Systems Engineering, GM

Marketing the Chevrolet Volt

There is only one real marketing idea for these vehicles at this stage:

  • I can have one and you can’t.
  • I can experience things that you can’t.
  • I can go places that you can’t.
  • I have freedom and you are tied down.

Irrelevancies

The usual “benies” fall under a “you’re selling sanctimony” conceptualization of the product:

  • Green => overall environment, progressive politics, act locally think globally.
  • Cost => low cost, budget-constrained.
  • Savings => tco opex savings, fuel savings, energy savings.
  • Efficiency => doing more for less, using less, needing less.
  • Reliability => nobody expects cars to fail, but three, five or seven “nines” of reliability?

You can’t talk about any of this stuff at a cocktail party, or the water cooler, not for very long anyway. To achieve these ends: don’t drive, drive less, drive a small car, carpool, take public transit, walk, let your fingers do the walking (make a phone call).  Oh, and eat vegan, bathe less, flush less and attend more church; and stay off the sauce; and stop beating your wife.  Else buy a small car they make in the millions of units over production runs spanning decades.

References

  • Jim Holder; Electric tech on small cars “nonsensical”; In Autocar; 2013-01-15.
    • Bob Lutz
      • The outburst is oriented at promoting Via Motors; it’s wise marketing.
      • Genre: “my last baby was ugly, but my next one is going to be beautiful”
      • His product doesn’t exist yet; it’s a Chevy Silverado HD aftermarket conversion with 402bhp 4.3-litre V6 + Li battery for 40 miles priced at 2x the original Silverado (“like a Volt but in a truck shape” unclear how much GM/Volt tech he was able to license).  Disassembling this product isn’t the point here.
    • Quotes
      • “Hindsight is a wonderful thing of course, and we shouldn’t forget that the Volt and sister car Opel Ampera are the world’s best-selling electric car, but the truth is that even then it’s not meeting sales expectations, and that’s because most customers don’t want to pay out a major expense for the technology to make minor savings.”
      • “Frankly, unless that customer is philosophically, religiously or economically affiliated to buying an electric vehicle, then they can’t be convinced. The first two types of buyer will buy whatever’s built, but the latter is a harder case. The obvious answer is to electrify as big a vehicle as you can, because that’s where the fuel and running cost savings make the most sense.”
      • “If I had my time again at GM then I would have started with the Cadillac Escalade for the range-extender technology, and brought the Volt in later. The more gas-guzzling the vehicle, the more economic sense of electrifying it. Car companies need to get their minds on that: electrifying an Opel Corsa that uses virtually no fuel anyway and then lumping a huge premium on it to cover the battery costs is nonsensical. Why bother? It uses virtually no fuel anyway.”
    • And there is a really cool (hpotoshopped) product image in the articleElectric tech on small cars "nonsensical"
    • Requoted
  • Staff; Why The Chevy Volt Is Attracting Wealthy Buyers; In AOL Autos; 2011-10-04.
    Teaser: The average household income for owners of the extended-range hybrid is $175,000

    • The article is built around a presser & press relations quotes & totes from GM
      • the average income of Volt buyers is $175,000 a year.
      • 20% of Volt buyers are owners of luxury cars
      • 20% coming out of Toyota Prius.
    • Bill Visnic, senior editor for Edmunds.com
      • “The Volt appeals to an affluent, progressive demographic, It’s rare. It’s hard to get one.”
      • “It’s the same reason that people buy the really rare exotic cars: Because other people can’t have one.”
      • He seems to appear in the article purely for the appearance of balance.
    • Rob Peterson, communications director for GM
      • (his words, paraphrased inline in the article) “About 20% of people who buy a Volt trade in a luxury car, and another 20% trade in a Prius. The people purchasing Volts now are early adopters, who are comfortable taking risks.”
      • (quoted with attribution in the article) “They tend to have a higher income level as well. It’s more of a lifestyle of taking risks and trying to be first that got them into that upper echelon in the first place.”
      • “The Volt has comparative drive train dynamic to some luxury vehicles.”
    • Jim O’Donnell, BMW of North America President
      • Quoted from 2010-08, a quotes & totes with AOL Autos.
      • He seems to appear in the article purely for the appearance of balance.
      • “We are very impressed with the Volt … it’s surprising that they didn’t make it a Cadillac instead of a Chevy.”
    • And there is a really cool product image in the article
    • Editorial license
      • The AOL editors chose to add “whopping” in front of $175,000.
      • “That the Volt is attracting the fat-wallet brigade is not all together surprising.”
      • “No wonder the wealthy are buying them.”
    • See also notes Informal Polls of Volt Owner Demographics

Informal Polls of Volt Owner Demographics | age & income distribution

Average Age of Volt Owner; In GM Volt Forum; 2012-09-28.
Results & commentary:

  • N=121
  • Duplicate poll
  • Seems like different people are answering this one than the previous one
  • Notable self-identification statements (quotes)
    • “I am 27″
    • Bought mine when I was 29, 31 now.”
    • “We own two Volts: my wife is 58, I an 57.”
    • “I’m 24, and I consider myself an elite — usually people my age don’t earn enough money to want to spend the kind of money a Volt costs.” [cite; Again a trust funder or drug dealer?  Age 24 is just out of college, but mere 2-year "new college grad" income history.  A low-end lessee?]
      Range Percent Count
      0-21 1.65% 2
      21-29 7.44% 9
      30-39 22.31% 27
      40-49 24.79% 30
      50-59 26.45% 32
      60+ 17.36% 21

If You Own a VOLT what is Your Age?; In GM Volt Forum; 2012-09-28.
Results & commentary:

  • N=450
  • GM Volt readers willing to respond (obviously).
  • Points made, claims asserted, insights imputed into the results (of course they are insulting, it’s an open thread on an enthusiast forum; permalink citations omitted)
    • Young people live in apartments; have lower salaries; do not have secure access to plugs.
    • Is flat across the monied 30-60 demo buckets.
    • People 40-50 are too busy to bother with polls.
    • People over 60 avoid computers or don’t know computers enough to read GM Volt or do the poll.
    • People in their 60′s who avoid computers will also avoid buying a Volt, for that very reason.
  • Notable self-identification statements (quotes)
    • “Canadian Volt owner of 63″
    • “We (56-60) are the “moonshot” generation. A lot of groundwork for today’s technology came from NASA and the space race. It drove me to be an Engineer. The engineering in the Volt drove me to own one.”
    • “I’m a 34 yr old male conservative catholic voting for Romney/Ryan and I fully intend on the Volt being my next vehicle (hopefully very soon)!”
    • “I’m also in that group that you were talking about (59).”
    • “I’m a 72-year-old guy who loves the technology of my 2013 Volt. I’m one old-fart who isn’t afraid of computers!”
    • “I’m 31. Nothing to do with politics. I’m not even registered to vote. I’m just sick of spending $400/month on fuel and sitting in traffic while people in the carpool lane fly by me.”
    • “Another conservative Catholic and Romney/Ryan suporter here. I am 71, my wife is 65.”
    • “I’ve been in the computer/networking field for 15 years now (I’m 33).”
    • “My wife and I are both 60.”
    • “I’m 25 but driving my Volt you’d guess I was 80.”
    • “Baltimore Volt owner – 17. Purchased it myself” [cite, I don't believe it; He's either a trust funder or a drug dealer.  Where is a kid of 17 going to get $50K for a vanity car?  And why not get a chic magnet Camaro or a 'vette?  Pics or it didn't happen]
    • “I was 30 when I purchased it and now I’m 31″
  • Beyond 60 is “last car they’ll ever own” crew (Crown Vic’, Impala, etc.).
    Head Result Count
    15-20 0.42% 2
    21-25 1.67% 8
    26-30 7.10% 34
    31-35 13.36% 64
    36-40 13.15% 63
    41-45 12.94% 62
    46-50 13.99% 67
    51-55 12.32% 59
    56-60 11.90% 57
    61-65 6.89% 33
    66-70 4.18% 20
    71-75 1.04% 5
    76-80 0.84% 4
    81-85 0% 0
    86-99 1% 1

Volt buyers make $175k plus a year? And don’t need the tax credit?; In GM Volt Forum; In GM Volt Forum; 2011-12-02.
Result & commentary:

  • N=407
  • Poll defined in response to some guy, Congressman Kelly PA (who?) bitching about the “rich” Volt owners; something about the average annual income of a Volt buyer is $175,000 and they don’t need a tax credit.  Source uncited
    • “Isn’t this Kelly guy the same Chevrolet car dealer who fired an employee for trying to see a Volt?” cite
    • The backstory seems to be around this
    • They closed his dealership, he’s vocal and in Congress.
  • The thread devolves into R-vs-D politics in the contemporary national mode: Fox Business, their own twisted logic, the Republicans, middle class, the top 1%, job creator, small business owner, etc.
  • Statistically improbable phrases: robust estimator, outlier, gaussian, normal, median, average.
  • Some allegation that it’s well known that Suburban purchasers have higher income than Escalade purchasers.  No citation. That’s one take on the folklore: Suburban is for understated utility beyond the minivan, the Escalade is for urban flaunting showoffs.
    Income Percent Count
    $0k-$50k 10.81% 44
    $50k-$70k 12.04% 49
    $70k-$90k 16.46% 67
    $90k-$110k 15.48% 63
    $110k-$130k 11.30% 46
    $130k-$150k 8.11% 33
    $150k-$170k 6.63% 27
    $170k-infinity 19.16% 78