In the same week that the Obama administration announced its new fuel economy standard, U.S. automaker General Motors announced it would halt production of the Chevrolet Volt electric car for four weeks, citing the car’s failure to meet targeted sales projections, according to Bloomberg news.

(Related Photos: Rare Look Inside Automakers’ Drive for 55 MPG)

GM sold 10,666 Volts in the U.S. in July. Global sales were targeted at 60,000 units, with 45,000 on the U.S. market. Sales for 2011 were also under target, and even though an investigation into vehicle safety concluded that the Volt did not pose a fire risk, the congressional hearings on the issue led to a slow-down in sales.

According to Bloomberg, citing Automotive News, GM will halt production at the Detroit-Hamtramck assembly plant between 17 September and 15 October, though GM did not independently confirm those dates.

“In the past couple of months, the production of the Volt was running ahead of sales, but I thought that might be for this particular process because they’re bringing in the new vehicle, so they were intentionally trying to get ahead,” Alan Baum, principal of Baum & Associates, told Bloomberg.

This is not the first time GM has stopped Volt production because of weak sales: The automaker also did so earlier this year, just before the model was named European Car of the Year.

Charles Kennedy

This post is based on one from and was republished with permission.


  1. jayman419
    Pittsburgh, PA
    September 10, 2012, 5:34 am

    The light-duty truck isn’t a bad idea. The 2.0 liter engine produces more torque than an S-10, with no engine noise, in the configuration they use for the car. I bet they could beef that up quite a bit if they wanted to, and have a pretty nice little handyman truck.

    And I bet a hatchback would do better than the sedan they’re trying to sell, again especially if they tweaked the performance a little bit and made it along the lines of the Sonic RS.

  2. Raymond Babcock
    Topeka Kansas
    September 7, 2012, 8:47 pm

    i do not have a clue why the volt does not sell more why dont you all get with and work the problem out

  3. Malcolm
    September 4, 2012, 11:46 pm

    The volt was a good idea, but over priced, incorrectly marketed, and not very attractive. The volt is an electric car with a gas powered generator to keep you going. The major issues are:
    1) Unless you are an electrician or know how to run a 220Vac circuit, you are going to have to hire an electrician to be able to properly charge the batteries. Yes, I know there is the 110Vac option, but it’s not made for deep charging the cells.
    2) The car is approx $40,000 before options. For about $3000 more you can buy two Mitsubishi Miev’s.
    3) The added accent lines and just overall body style screams economy car. It look cheesy and plastic.
    4) I have seen 3 commercials for the volt in the time it has been on the market. They never show off the car, instead use actors to give “testimonials” that are farcical at best.

    If GM wants to sell this concept, they need to expand the line. The addition of a smaller, cheaper hatch-back and a light-duty truck would work wonders.

  4. Mike
    September 4, 2012, 4:24 pm

    And it’s comments like the one above that keep the US auto industry from making real progress. Instead of figuring out how to make a car that runs on water, or anything more environmentally friendly than gasoline, let’s scoff at award-winning vehicles. #TimeForNewIdeas

    P.S. When was the last time a US automaker won the European Car of the Year award? I’m guessing it wasn’t for the Pinto.

  5. BermudaTriangle
    September 4, 2012, 4:00 pm

    It’s what happens when you try and sell what looks like a $20,000 car for $40,000.

  6. Adam Smalley
    Tampa, Florida
    September 1, 2012, 10:53 pm

    No serious buyer wants a Volt. I have been working in automotive engineering for over 30 years; I know from experience that to compare the Volt with the latest model gas-powered car is comparing lead with gold. European Car of the Year? I laughed out loud when I read that. How can a car of the year worthy of the name undersell so badly?