One year with the Chevy Volt: What a fun ride it has been!

After 12 months and 15,000 miles, was the Chevy Volt the right car for us? With our prior home solar panel investment and driving habits: yes. But it’s not a good car for everyone and there’s one thing I’d change.

Waiting for the EV market to materialize

It was a tough week for electric cars, with Chevy Volt’s sales falling short and Aptera’s filing for bankruptcy. The barriers to EV adoption are widely known but center around a few major issues, including range anxiety, charging time and initial cost. Range anxiety and unease about charging time will decline as consumers get more comfortable with the product. That leaves the real long-term issue: initial cost.

Today in Cleantech

News arrived yesterday that GM won’t hit its 2011 sales goal of 10,000 for the Chevy Volt. Add to that was a report that in some safety tests, the car can catch fire 7 days after a side impact collision. Talk about a delayed response. GM has offered to buy back Volts from unhappy customers. This double whammy isn’t great for a car that will be important to the automakers hitting their new fuel efficiency standards. Next year will see more EV rollouts with a Tesla sedan and perhaps finally a car from Fisker. We can’t read too much into these early figures, but it’s certainly raises the question: Are EVs still too expensive and are they only generating interest from cleantech aficionados?