It’s National Drive Electric Week!

National Drive Electric WeekIt’s that time again! This week is National Drive Electric Week. What does that mean to you? Well, that depends on where you are in the electric Vehicle (EV) world:

  • If you’re curious about what all this electric vehicle hubbub is about, you have a chance to meet owners of EVs to get it straight from the horse’s mouth. No salesperson trying to get you to buy something, but real honest-to-goodness EV owners who want to share their experience with you. Their experience can help you select the right EV for your needs. (yes, just like old-timer gas-powered cars, not every EV is right for everybody)
  • If you’ve made the leap to EVs recently and want to learn more about EVs and the things associated with them, like:
    • charging stations
    • electric utility discounts
    • ways to increase electric range
    • renewable energy sources to power your EV (like solar or wind power) or
    • cool ways to customize your EV
  • If you’ve been driving an EV for a while, this is your chance to move this revolution forward. You can go to a public evert and share your knowledge with those thinking about stepping into the future of transportation. It’s also a chance for you to meet like-minded people (at least in regards to EVs…) and meet new friends. It’s a chance for you to make a difference in your world. EV owners come from the entire political/social spectrum. There are conservatives who want to free our country of its dependence on foreign oil and military entanglements. There are environmentalists who want to stop pollution and curb global climate change. The are budget-conscious people who are looking for a less expensive mode of transportation. There are gadget fans who want to play with all the cool toys. And yes, there are performance enthusiasts who love the torque and acceleration of electric motors.

No matter where you are in your electric vehicle journey, there’s fun to be had out there. So check the National Drive Electric Week website for links to events in your area and have a blast!

P.S. If you’ve found My Electric Vehicle Journey to be helpful in your journey, please let others know about it so they can benefit as well. Thanks!Plug-in Day Event

 

#MEVJ #NDEW #EV

August 2014 Sales Numbers

The news is mixed this month, with some plug-in sales increasing, some decreasing and some about the same. Let’s dive in.

Sales, compared to the previous month, looked like this:

  • Chevy Volt: up 24% (2,511 vs. 2,020)
  • Nissan Leaf: up 6% (3,186 vs. 3,019)
  • Plug-in Toyota Prius: DOWN 40% (818 vs. 1,371)
  • Tesla Model S: down (estimate) 14% (1,200 vs. 1,400)
  • Cadillac ELR: up 4% (196 vs. 188)*
  • BMW i3: UP 282% (1,025 vs. 363)**
  • Ford Fusion Energi: very slightly down 0.3% (1,222 vs. 1,226)
  • Ford C-Max Energi: up 26% (1,050 vs. 831)
  • Chevy Corvette Stingray: down 12% (2,679 vs. 3,060)***

*The ELR’s adoption curve reminds me of the I-MiEV. Great car (the ELR, not the I-MiEV), but price may kill it…

** Charles & I recently test drove the i3 for a couple days and shot a video review. Stay tuned…

*** The switch from the 2014 Stingray to the 2015 model year occurred mid-month in August, which may explain the drop.

The increase in Volt sales, combined with the major drop in Plug-in Prius sales has placed the Volt back ahead of the Prius (year-to-date). However, this year, the big news seems to be the year-to-date dominance of the Nissan Leaf. In the U.S. this year, the Nissan Leaf has outsold the Chevy Volt by 44%! (18,941 Leafs vs. 13,146 Volts) A friend of mine who was looking into leasing a Volt, ended up leasing a Leaf. He told me that the leasing incentives were so good that it was like getting a free car, when compared to the gasoline-powered vehicle he’d owned before. In his opinion, Nissan is “betting the company” on the Leaf. At the current pace, total sales dominance by the Leaf is still about ten months away. Long before then, the new Volt design will be out. The new Volt design, the first major change for the Volt, since its inception in December 2010, is set to be shown to the world at the North American Auto Show in Detroit. I plan on being there to cover it, so stay tuned…

August 2014 Sales NumbersSales, compared to the same month a year ago, looked like this:

  • Chevy Volt: down 25% (2,511 vs. 3,351) This is the same decline as last month year-over-year.
  • Nissan Leaf: up 32% (3,186 vs. 2,420)
  • Plug-in Toyota Prius: DOWN 54% (818 vs. 1,791)
  • Tesla Model S: down 33% (1,200 est. vs. 1,791 actual)
  • Cadillac ELR: (did not exist a year ago)
  • BMW i3: (did not exist a year ago)
  • Ford Fusion Energi: up 104% (1,222 vs. 600)
  • Ford C-Max Energi: up 69% (1,050 vs. 621)
  • Chevy Corvette Stingray: way up 309% (2,679 vs. 655)

Gas prices continue to decline with the end of the Summer season but do not seem to be impacting EV sales.

National Drive Electric Week, September 15-21, 2014

Drive ElectricIt’s that time of year again. National Plug-in Day has morphed into National Drive Electric Week. This year, the dates are September 15th through the 21st. The week is set up for those curious about plug-in vehicles to meet owners of plug-in vehicles to get answers to their questions without the pressure sometimes associated with a trip to a dealership. Many people have commented in forums that, when they went to the dealership to discuss plug-ins, they knew more than the salesperson! Here’s a chance for those of us “in the know” can share that information with those “dying to know!”

Together, we can move this revolution down the road a bit. You may find more curiosity about your EV when you’re out and about that week. Be ready to discuss your EV experience with those seeking information. If you’re especially industrious, consider printing your story, including results pro and con, to hand out to others, when they approach you. We don’t want to spread propaganda, but instead we want to help people understand if a plug-in vehicle is right for them. For some people an EV will be a godsend, for others it just doesn’t meet their needs.

Plug-in Day EventThe area in which you live may have events scheduled at parks or dealers. Drop in and meet other early adopters, like yourself, who’ve taken the plunge. I’ve met lots of EV owners and they are a fun bunch. Paraphrasing Will Rogers, “I never yet met an EVer I didn’t like.” They’re all interesting, a bit daredevil, forward-looking individuals. You may be surprised to find people with whom you have a LOT in common but that may look different from your usual social group. Take my advice: Get to know them. You’ll end up with a great, new friend!

If you’re in the Dallas / Fort Worth area, there are week-long events planned at various dealers. The dealers who have signed up for this have people on-site that truly understand the value of their brand of plug-in and may even know the competition pretty well. I have volunteered to work from open to close every day that week (except Sunday, as we’re closed then) to be there to discuss the Chevy Volt, as well as other EVs, with anyone wanting to learn more. There will be drawings to win really cool stuff at the participating dealers. Check for both local sites and the national site (linked above) to find out when and where the events in your area will occur!

I followed this advice last year and ended up in a whole new, wonderful career! If you are in the DFW area, come on by Classic Chevrolet, in the DFW suburb of Grapevine, and say hi! (I’m located in the main showroom).

Go get ‘em, gang!!!!

The Dream

It’s just before 6:00AM, and this morning I woke up, during a dream. Like most people, waking from a dream can leave me with vivid memories of it, for a short while… then it fades away. I’ll admit it seems strange writing about a dream in “My Electric Vehicle Journey,” but this one has so much to do with the journey that I think it fits, and writing about it will help me move it into my long-term memory. I need to remember this.

If you’ve been reading my blog for a while, you may want to skip past my history…

First, a little background: Leasing a plug-in vehicle changed the course of my life. Actually, it goes back farther than that. A car accident changed the course of my life. I was just like everyone else that had never owned a plug-in vehicle. I had not given EVs much thought and considered them something interesting that would come along as a viable option in another decade or so. When the Tesla Roadster hit the streets, with a price tag of over $100,000, I lusted over it but knew I’d never own one. It cemented in my mind the impression that affordable electric cars were far enough in the future that I didn’t need to spend much time thinking (or learning) about them.

Back in the mid-70’s, I started my career in outfield manufacturing, working the night shift in a factory and attending college during the day. I started as a drill press operator and progressed to CNC machine operator, CNC programmer and eventually CAD/CAM specialist. The oilfield economy collapsed in the early 1980’s bringing with it, layoffs, high unemployment, a real estate bubble burst (in Houston anyway). I moved to the Dallas / Fort Worth area to find work in a new manufacturing industry and have lived there ever since. Within a few years of moving to DFW, I came to the attention of a recruiter in the CAD/CAM software sales industry and transitioned from using CAD/CAM software to selling it, as the technical person on a sales team. I absolutely LOVED that time. I was highly valued for my real-world experience, using the software in industry and my ability to speak in front of an audience. I won a prestigious company award. My income tripled in a relatively short time. I traveled all over the U.S. plying my new trade. After years of working on a manufacturing shop floor, wearing safety shoes, jeans and t-shirts, smelling of cutting fluids and hearing the whine of CNC machines all day, I was now wearing suits, flying around the country and helping companies working on advanced designs and manufacturing processes. I was in heaven! I was a jet-setter! Everyone I worked with said I should be in sales, not just the technical person on the sales team. I demurred, preferring to learn the intricacies of software rather than the intricacies of the forms of persuasion.

Then 9/11 happened.

The economy went into a recession. The company I was working for, at the time, laid off all their field engineers but one. The sole remaining engineer was working with our largest client at the time (believe it or not, a large U.S. automobile manufacturer!). Once again, I was laid off and wondering where my life was headed next. (and getting a little scared…)

As it turned out, one of my clients had always wanted me to work for his company and found out I was unemployed. He asked me to come to his factory for a tour. It was a new industry for me, aerospace manufacturing, and I would be going back into being an end-user of CAD/CAM software (albeit as a manager) instead of helping sell it. I spent five years there, working very long hours and earning very high compensation but was not happy.

An opportunity to work for Apple as a Business Manager presented itself and I jumped at it. I had never owned a Windows-based computer although I had used UNIX- and Windows-based machines my entire career. As a Business Manager, I was tasked with building a team in my Apple Store that specialized in selling to businesses. The pay was less than half what I had been making, but it was an opportunity to work for a company I idolized. I was there about 2 1/2 years, when the car accident happened.

My car accident happened at a time when I had no funds set aside for my next vehicle. I thought I’d be driving it for another two to three years before getting my next vehicle. After an exhaustive search, I ended up with my current (no pun intended) vehicle, the Chevy Volt.

Much to the annoyance of my friends, I couldn’t stop talking about it, so I started this blog. I had always considered myself an environmentalist. When we hiked in the National Parks, if we came upon a discarded can or plastic bag, we’d pack it back out. We had been a customer of Green Mountain Energy for twelve years, so that we could use wind-generated electricity.

However, owning the Volt made me much more aware of environmental issues. Global climate change became a real, urgent threat to everyone I cared about. I wanted to make a difference, so I ended up working in sales at Green Mountain Energy. I was a complete flop! Almost no one I spoke with cared about the environment. Global climate change was seen as a liberal conspiracy. Even if I could save people money, they felt it was just too much of a hassle to change.

Then National Plug-in Day came along and my life took another major turn. I went to work in car sales at the number one Chevrolet dealership in the U.S. as an EVangelist (Volt sales specialist). It’s been challenging, exciting, grueling and enlightening. I had (and still have) much to learn, but that’s one of the things I need, in my career, to keep me happy. I’ve been fortunate to work with some of the nicest, funniest and helpful people I have ever met. In my eleventh month, the month that just ended, I earned more in a single month than I have ever made before. Right now I am exhausted, happy and eagerly looking forward to the future of my career.

For those skipping my history, you’ll pick up here…

The very night that completes the best month I’ve ever experienced in my career, I have this dream:

I was dressed in a suit, walking toward a very nice office building. The courtyard in front of the building had gardens and statuary. There were wide steps leading up to a glass entrance. I was there for a job interview. In fact, my manager and a manager from the truck sales department of my dealership had set up the interview for me.

The receptionist welcomed me and knew of my appointment. A very professionally dressed woman emerged from a nearby elevator and welcomed me. She was the person who would be leading the team that was interviewing me. We entered the elevator and proceeded to the interview.

The office space was very expansive and we sat down with a small group and began the formal interview. Everyone seemed happy to meet me and the interview process seemed more like a nice group conversation. It seemed to be a foregone conclusion that the position would be offered to me and that I would accept it.

As we discussed my duties (I was going to be back in the design software field, as an end-user) and my schedule, I detailed my schedule at the dealership. Apparently, I saw the new job as an augmentation to my job at the dealership but the interviewers saw it as a replacement for my job in auto sales. Although the offices were very plush and I loved the feel of the suit on me and looked forward to dressing as I had earlier in my career, I did not want this job to replace my career at the dealership.

I asked about compensation but never seemed to get a straight answer. As the interview concluded, the woman who had led me to the interview was leading me back to the elevator. She entered a large tiled opening, and as I followed, I realized we were heading through the women’s restroom and showers (I’m not making this stuff up!). It was a large facility, sort of like a restroom in a large airport, where a person walks in through an entrance, proceeds through the restroom, and leaves through a different exit. I could hear women’s voices, echoing off the tiled walls ahead. In a panic, I did an about-face and left through the opening through which I had entered.

Then I woke up.

Upon awakening, I realized fully, how much I like what I am doing now. I have customers that have become friends, but I’ve always had that happen wherever I have been in customer-facing roles. I have coworkers and managers (mostly) who are generous in their help, knowledge and encouragement. I don’t always get to sell Volts, but selling a Corvette Stingray can be fun too. I help people find or build the perfect vehicle for their needs/circumstances. Sometimes I am able to help a person out of a bad spot when they thought there was no way possible. I love what I do and I think my dreaming self wanted to make sure my waking self knew it as well.

To the tune of “Rawhide”

 To sing along, click here

IdiocyRollin’, rollin’, rollin’,
Rollin’, rollin’, rollin’,
Rollin’, rollin’, rollin’,
Rollin’, rollin’, rollin’,
Suicide!

Rollin’, rollin’, rollin’,
Keep that coal a-rollin’,
Get that black smoke blowin’
Suicide!

My emotions are a-seething’
My lungs ain’t a-breathin’
That crap your truck is spewin’ far & wide.

If I was a police-man,
Here’s what I’d be a-doin’,
Ticketing your dirty, stinkin’ ride.

CHORUS:
Pull it out, your head is up,
Head is up, now pull it out,
Can’t you see your head is up your backside?
Pull it out, your head is up,
Head is up, now pull it out,
Can’t you see your head is up your backside?

Rollin’, rollin’, rollin’,
Keep that coal a-rollin’,
Get that black smoke blowin’
Creepyyyyyy!

You’re over compensatin’
For what ails your matin’
How tiny can one guy’s member be?

For those who drive in hybrids:
You seem so damned inbred,
Is it true your bride is your auntie?

CHORUS:
Pull it out, your head is up,
Head is up, now pull it out,
Can’t you see your head is up your backside?
Pull it out, your head is up,
Head is up, now pull it out,
Can’t you see your head is up your backside?

Out with the old…

Statue of Liberty text

Text on the Statue of Liberty

In a Facebook group I love, Chevy Volt Owners, people were expressing their horror and anger about an American journalist, James Foley, cruelly murdered in Iraq. Understandably, they were angry and craved justice. Some mentioned military retaliation. Many wanted America to return to isolationism, as we did after World War I. Some mentioned sealing our borders. These are all popular ideas fomented by the talking heads on political talk shows. This is something I’ve been thinking (and writing) about for a while. Here’s my advice to the country I love:

We are entering a new era in warfare. One where an enemy is impossible to separate from the innocent. Now, instead of countries as enemies, we face opponents who wear no uniforms, who have no cities or installations we can attack.

After the fall of th
e Soviet Union and the resulting economic chaos that ensued, there was far better security around buildings that held food than there was around buildings that held plutonium and nuclear weapons. Scientists who had made a good living designing and building nuclear weapons were unable to feed their families, so they (and other, lower-level workers) sold the one valuable thing to which they had access, namely weapons and weapons grade plutonium/uranium. Some of these people were caught. How many were not?

It is only a matter of time before these materials are turned into a weapon that is NOT delivered by an aircraft or on a missile, which could be easily tracked back to its source. We won’t see it coming. We won’t know its origin. When the day comes, and I believe it will, when one of these weapons is detonated in an American city, how will we be able to retaliate? Jack Bauer aside, in the REAL world, we have an incompetent government which cannot protect us. MAD, or Mutually Assured Destruction, kept the peace in the era of countries. Russia never launched an attack, because they knew it would begin the end of the world for them as well as us. That no longer works.

Every innocent civilian killed, leaves behind friends and family who will hate America and gladly die to avenge their loved one’s death. Would you do less, if a country was responsible for the agonizing death of your son? Your daughter? Your parents? The actions we take today, create the enemy who will gladly volunteer to carry a weapon of unbelievable destructive force into the heart of America. We are fighting a new type of adversary, using old strategies. There will be a price for this and it will be high. They don’t have to have the advanced scientists we had to have, to make and design these weapons. Plain old dynamite, used to disperse radioactive material could be used to make downtown areas of Chicago, Los Angeles or New York uninhabitable for decades, centuries or millions of years. What if the focus was a port? What would the economic cost be for the loss of the port of Houston, Los Angeles or New York?

Want to bring America to its knees? Fight an economic war. Make us lash out at enemies we cannot find, much less eliminate. Osama bin Laden understood that and it was the basis for his attack on us. In the case of Jim Foley’s murder, that economic war is exactly why they released the video of his murder to the world. They want the U.S. to overextend itself economically. This strategy has worked phenomenally well. Osama bin Laden may have died, but our economy was severely damaged and almost destroyed (with the assistance of greedy Wall Street gamblers). Our middle class has been decimated. Class warfare is tearing us apart. We are a country divided against itself.

The America of our ancestors overthrew the sovereign governments of Iraq, Iran, Panama and many more. We’ve earned our enemies’ ire. We created them. It’s time we owned up to this and showed the world that’s not who we are anymore. We cannot eliminate a foreign government just because we want or need their land or resources. If we really believe in the dream of America, we must renounce the old ways and embrace the America we claim to be. Love your enemy. I know that may sound corny in this modern era, but the wisdom of those words is undeniable. Help other countries develop and rise to the economic prosperity we enjoy. There can no longer be a “third world.” The very idea of the term “third world” should be repugnant to us as human beings. No one life is more valuable or less valuable than another. We should all have respect for others, their struggles and their lives.

As we are starting to see with Ebola, unsanitary conditions and poor medical facilities, half a world away, can endanger the entire human race. We should be building state-of-the-art hospitals and schools in developing nations (and here). We should be building and maintaining roads there (and here) to safely transport our products. We should be building facilities to generate clean water for the citizens of developing countries. We should be building wind farms and solar energy plants there (and here). We should be getting everyone connected via the Internet so that the dialog between our peoples is at the person-to-person level, instead of government-to-government. We would not only be helping these countries develop and their citizens to prosper, WE WOULD BE BUILDING THE CUSTOMERS FOR AMERICAN BUSINESS AND INGENUITY! Think of it as an investment that will pay off in a big way for us.

I’ll rephrase an earlier question: if your son’s, daughter’s, or parent’s life was saved in a hospital built with American assistance, would you resist those that aim to hurt America?

History is at a crossroad and we cannot be the America of the last century. We have to become who we claim to have been for the last 238 years. As we’ve learned in Vietnam, Korea, Iraq, Iran, and countless other places, we cannot win the hearts and minds of others by killing. This can only be done through love.

It will be a slow process. We’ve got decades of damaged reputation to repair. But if we could put a man on the moon, eliminate deadly diseases, build marvels of engineering, etc, we can do this too. We have to stop listening to extremists at the far ends of the political spectrum and return to the centrist ideals of America. Our media extremists have made themselves rich, turning us against a one another and against other cultures and countries. Their time must end if we are to step into a prosperous, safe and just future.

Part of this change is each of us doing what we can to eliminate the temptation to take from other countries. Drive an EV so we don’t need the oil others have. Put solar panels on your home so we don’t have to destroy the planet to power our homes. Elect leaders who have a plan to build a better world FOR ALL PEOPLES, rather than just naysaying their opponents.

We can’t just fall into isolationism. Whether we like it or not, the sweat and dreams of the Americans that came before us gave us great prosperity and we need to share that with others to lift them out of crippling poverty, rather than just watch from the sidelines and wonder why they hate us. Once someone has nothing for which to live, they will look for something noble for which to give their life. Thus, a suicide bomber is born.

We cannot close our borders completely. The Soviet Union and East Germany tried this and failed spectacularly. We are a world of interdependent relationships. What goes around comes around. A million American soldiers’ lives were probably spared by the dropping of two atomic bombs over Japan. One of the reasons we developed the bomb before our enemies did, was Hitler’s animosity toward Jewish people. Take a look at the names of the people who developed the atomic bomb. Many of them were Jewish. Albert Einstein fled Germany to escape this animosity, and it was his letter to President Roosevelt that brought the idea of an atomic bomb to our nation instead of our enemies. Who knows what child stands at our border today, fleeing from violence, poverty and starvation? Perhaps, properly fed and educated, one of these refugee children will discover the cure for cancer or create a clean and infinite power source. Do we really want to point a gun at the face of the next Einstein and say, “Go back where you came from?” What if that child was born here? Do we want that child to not obtain an education in a quality school?

We are each responsible for what our country does. We elected our leaders. It’s time for us to own that, so we can become the America we can believe in, but more importantly, the America the WORLD can believe in.

Sorry for the long-windedness, but this is something I fervently believe.

Stepping off soap box (for now).

July 2014 Sales Numbers

Lots of changes to the tracking this month. Two new plug-ins have been added, due to their sales performance, the Ford Fusion Energi and the Ford C-Max Energi. The Fusion Energi in fact, bested the Chevrolet Volt and Plug-in Prius! The C-Max Energi hasn’t fared quite as well, but its numbers were enough, in my opinion, to start tracking them as well. These two have been off my radar because I could not understand why someone would select one of them over the Volt or Leaf, since their batteries are so much smaller. But the purpose of these monthly sales performance posts is to document said sales performance, not try to predict it. With Ford becoming a significant plug-in vendor, they should be watched!

As usual, not all the numbers have been announced. BMW, Ford and Toyota will announce their sales figures tomorrow. Tesla will be problematic as they do not separate sales by month or country.

The news so far is that every vehicle we track (except one), for which sales figures have been announced, showed increased sales over the previous month. This includes our benchmark vehicle, the Chevrolet Corvette. The one exception? The Prius plug-in dropped by 200 units from last month’s figures. **UPDATED** Oops. It wasn’t that good a month for everyone. The two new vehicles, both Fords, dropped sales volume wham compared to the previous month.

Sales, compared to the previous month, looked like this:

  • Chevy Volt: up 14% (2,020 vs. 1,777)
  • Nissan Leaf: up 29% (3,019 vs. 2,347)
  • Plug-in Toyota Prius: DOWN 13% (1,371 vs. 1,571)
  • Tesla Model S: (awaiting figures)
  • Cadillac ELR: up 94% (188 vs. 97)
  • BMW i3: (awaiting figures)
  • Ford Fusion Energi: down 37% (1,226 vs. 1,939)
  • Ford C-Max Energi: down 16% (831 vs. 988)
  • Chevy Corvette Stingray: up 12% (3,060 vs. 2,723)

One thing, that’s been going on for a few months now, is the Toyota Prius Plug-in has been out-selling the Volt year-to-date. Beginning with May 2014, when the Prius Plug-in outsold the Volt by over 1,000 units, the Prius has lead the Volt (year-to-date). The last two months, the Volt has outsold the Prius Plug-in, but it just hasn’t outsold the Prius enough to catch back up with the YTD figure. The YTD advantage, enjoyed by the Prius Plug-in currently (pun intended), is just 36 units. The Volt has handily beaten the Prius Plug-in over the last two months, so next month should be interesting…

Sales Numbers July 2014

**UPDATED** Sales, compared to the same month a year ago, were up for every vehicle except for the Chevy Volt. It looked like this:

  • Chevy Volt: DOWN 25% (2,020 vs. 2,698)
  • Nissan Leaf: up 36% (3,019 vs. 2,225)
  • Plug-in Toyota Prius: up 68% (1,371 vs. 817)
  • Tesla Model S: (awaiting figures)
  • Cadillac ELR: (did not exist a year ago)
  • BMW i3: (did not exist a year ago)
  • Ford Fusion Energi: up 301% (1,226 vs. 407)
  • Ford C-Max Energi: up 192% (831 vs. 433)
  • Chevy Corvette Stingray: way up 359% (3,060 vs. 853)

One interesting thing, on the charts, that jumped out at me, was the adoption rates of the Volt (light green curve) and Fusion Energi (dark green curve). These two vehicles’ adoption rates, over the first 17 months of availability, are very similar.

Gas prices, after 8 months of steadily rising prices, decreased in price, over the last month. I’m not sure, but I think gas prices are not, regardless of complaints, a main driver of EV sales. When gas gets close to $4 per gallon, that’s when I notice a real upswing in questions about the Volt from clients.

Leaf sales are surprising to me in one way: The stories of permanent battery capacity loss do not seem to have had an effect on sales. Just in the last month, Nissan announced a replacement battery pack that is less affected by heat. The price for the new pack is $5,499 after the previous battery pack is traded in. Normally, I would think an announcement like that would give people pause. Certainly, questions had to arise about battery longevity, reliability, range anxiety, etc. Admittedly, Nissan has some very aggressive leases available on the Leaf and one friend, whose employer pays him for mileage driven, showed me how his Leaf is effectively a free car. Buying market share is definitely part of the Nissan strategy. Even at the rate sales are proceeding with the Volt & Leaf, the Leaf will probable not displace the Volt in total U.S. sales during this year. Even at an advantage of 1,000 vehicles per month, it would still take the Leaf until February 2015 to surpass the total number of Volts sold in the U.S., since its debut. However, in 2014 the Leaf is kicking the Volt’s butt in sales by 48% year-to-date! (15,755 Leafs vs. 10,635 Volts)

As usual, I will update this post as more figures become available. On to August!

My apologies to Village People

YMCAV-O-L-T (to the tune of YMCA)

Hey there, don’t pollute our blue skies.
I said, hey there, you’re in for a big surprise
I say listen, ’cause there’s a sweet car you’ll see,
There’s no need to drive I-C-E.

Right now, there’s a place you can go.
Your Chevy dealer, to get a car you’ll love so.
You can drive it, without you spending much cash,
You won’t need to buy much gas.

It’s fun to drive in a V-O-L-T!
It’s fun to drive in a V-O-L-T!

It has everything all you people enjoy,
You can drive without making noise…

It’s fun to drive in a V-O-L-T!
It’s fun to drive in a V-O-L-T!

You can get the Earth clean, you can save a great deal,
You won’t believe how great it feels…

Hey there, are you listening to me?
I know you’ll love it, open your mind and you’ll see!
I said, I know it will be the car of your dreams.
But you got to know this one thing:

No one saves the world by themselves.
Those “coal rollers,” we will sure give them hell,
So just go out, and get this great Chevrolet.
I’m sure it will make your day.

It’s fun to drive in a V-O-L-T!
It’s fun to drive in a V-O-L-T!

It shows everything on its central display,
You will check it out all the way…

It’s fun to drive in a V-O-L-T!
It’s fun to drive in a V-O-L-T!

We can get the Earth clean, you can save a great deal,
You won’t believe how great it feels…

Hey there, I was once in your shoes.
I said, I was down from the gasoline blues.
I felt no one cared if this world survived.
I felt the whole world was so jive …

That’s when someone came up to me,
And said, hey there, drive this car up the street.
It’s so groovy, it’s from Chevrolet
You can save Earth in a cool way.

It’s fun to drive in a V-O-L-T!
It’s fun to drive in a V-O-L-T!

It shows everything on its central display,
You will check it out all the way…

V-O-L-T….you’ll love driving a V-O-L-T

Young men, women, there’s no need to feel down.
Young men, women, spread the word all around!

V-O-L-T….you’ll love driving a V-O-L-T

Young men, women, there’s no need to feel down.
Young men, women, spread the word all around!

V-O-L-T….just try out a V-O-L-T

Young men, women, are you listening to me?
Young men, women, how do you wanna be?