After his dismissive comments about the Chevy Volt's styling at a dinner with bloggers the night before the LA Auto Show got started, Bob Lutz saddled up to reporters from larger news organizations and talked up the Volt by mentioning that the concept vehicle will be road-tested early next year, with Job 1 still on track for November 2010. We figure parts of the Volt are already out there, but we'll keep our camera phone shutters ready in case we see Volts cruising the streets in the Detroit area (most likely) in the next six months.
In a Reuters article out today, writer Kevin Krolicki says that a senior GM executive (Lutz) sees the General in a "showdown" with Toyota to build and sell a mass-market, rechargeable electric vehicle. The main factor that will determine the winner will be - surprise - who can best safely harness the power of lithium ion batteries (or other advanced technology batteries) for automotive use. While I'm not discounting the fight these two giants will engage in, let's not forget little Mitsubishi, which might be two years away from selling an EV. The i MiEV might not win over everyone, but it will give Mitsubishi bragging rights to say "first!", kind of like people who leave the initial comment in web forums.
Gallery: Chevy Volt Concept
[Source: Reuters / Kevin Krolicki]
BOLD MOVES: THE FUTURE OF FORD Step behind the curtain at Ford Motor. Experience the documentary first-hand.