I’ve been away from my blog for a few weeks due to writer’s block and a trip home. Most of the time, I drive the nearly-740-mile trip to the town where I grew up, which takes anywhere from 12.5 to 14 hours, depending on road construction, traffic, weather and my own tiredness. So, being someone who likes to take road trips, I was slightly interested when I heard this week that Chevrolet is finally taking orders for the new Volt, an electric car that has gotten a big build-up from the media, environmentalists and the president…you see why I was only slightly interested?
Glowing comments from those mentioned above mean that something is probably a total bust…and it is. The Chevy Volt will cost $41,000 (unless you take the $7,500 tax credit for buyers of electric vehicles), and will get—wait for it— 40 miles on a full charge of its battery, plus an additional 340 miles on a gasoline-powered generator. My drive to work and back alone would be enough to cause the Volt to have to use the gasoline. The good thing is, from what I understand about the Volt, it does have a way to re-charge the battery while you drive using the gasoline generator, which is what makes it different from other plug-in cars, that take hours to re-charge. The bad thing—it uses premium gasoline, so you’d be paying the top price when you need gas.
Just as a way of comparison, the 2010 Honda Civic I rented to make my drive home allowed me to go about 400 miles on a full tank of regular gas. They cost less than $20,000. My own car, a ’99 Prizm, still gets about 350 miles per tank when the tank’s full—and that car cost me less than $10,000 when I bought it almost ten years ago. Needless to say, I won’t be in the market for an electric car of any type.
Even with the tax-payer-funded assistance to buy it, the Volt isn’t likely to be seen with any regularity in most middle class neighborhoods anytime soon. People still like their SUV’s and pick-up trucks. According to a news report I just heard, sales of large vehicles were up by 19% in the first half of this year, compared to 14% for small cars.
That won’t make Obama very happy. Remember, he said this during the 2008 campaign:
“We can’t drive our SUVs and eat as much as we want and keep our homes on 72 degrees at all times … and then just expect that other countries are going to say OK. That’s not leadership. That’s not going to happen.”
This from the man who flies everywhere on a gas-powered private plane, gets chauffeured around in gas-powered limos, is pictured on every trip he takes stuffing his face with some local fare, and cranks the heat in the winter in the Oval Office. So typical of this “do as I say, not as I do” administration.
He also promised to put 1 million plug-in cars on the road by 2015. But, if he gets his Cap and Trade energy scheme going, that will put many coal mining companies out of business, and since we get nearly half of our electricity from coal, where will the electricity come from to power all of these wonderful cars? No one wants to see every rural field filled with windmills (which are known to be noisy and destroy wildlife), and Niagra Falls isn’t even big enough to generate the power needed by 300 million people every day.
This is just another way the elitists in our government hope to make us more like Europe. They drive tiny little cars there, pay upwards of $6.00 a gallon for gas, and live very close together. I’ve said in previous posts, we are NOT Europeans. We are still Americans, and we like the freedom of driving where we want and when we want, and we really don’t want anyone to tell us what kind of car we should drive. If these Volts and other such vehicles were the wave of the future, the government wouldn’t have to bribe people through tax credits to get them.