Vice President Joe Biden is boldly proclaiming everywhere he goes on the campaign trail that “Osama bin Laden is dead and General Motors is alive.” But GM’s star attraction, the Chevy Volt, is only alive because of costly life support from the American taxpayer.
With $49 billion still owed to taxpayers by GM, the Volt is only adding to that debt. New numbers show that GM is losing approximately $49,000 for every Chevy Volt it produces. What makes this more disgraceful is that figure is more than the list price of the vehicle, which is $39,000. And that figure doesn’t include the $7,500 taxpayer funded subsidy that goes with each Volt purchased.
Almost two years after the introduction of the plug-in hybrid, GM is still losing as much as $49,000 on each Volt it builds, according to estimates provided to Reuters by industry analysts and manufacturing experts. GM today issued a statement disputing the estimates.
Cheap Volt lease offers meant to drive more customers to Chevy showrooms this summer may have pushed that loss even higher. There are some Americans paying just $5,050 to drive around for two years in a vehicle that cost as much as $89,000 to produce.
And while the loss per vehicle will shrink as more are built and sold, GM is still years away from making money on the Volt, which will soon face new competitors from Ford, Honda and others. GM has been on the way down for some time now.
At the beginning of August, Reuters reported, “Three years ago, this administration invested more than $100 billion in taxpayer money to bail out General Motors. On Tuesday, the entire company, not just what the government owns, was worth less than $34 billion. By anyone’s definition, that investment is a glaring failure. Yet over the last few days the Obama campaign, in a $25 million marketing blitz, has flooded the airwaves with ads in battleground states, claiming the bailout should be counted a rousing success.”
In a time when the economy continues to flounder and the current administration ignores domestic oil production in places like North Dakota, it instead headlines a product Americans by and large are ignoring.