A View from Kevin Bullis
GM's Volt Gets a Break in California
New certification gives access to carpool lanes and a $1,500 state rebate, and could help sales.
Dismal sales of the Chevrolet Volt called into question whether the GM could sell the 30,000 Volts it’s said it wants to this year. But part of the problem was the original car, although it operates without gasoline for short trips, didn’t meet California’s emissions standards to qualify for carpool access (without a passenger) and a state tax rebate of $1,500.
Today GM announced that Volt’s with a new low emissions package meet the state’s standards, and will be available at 140 dealerships in California by the end of the month. That’s too late to help February sales figures, but it could give sales a boost in March.
Carpool access is a big deal on the crowded highways of Southern California. GM says commuters who use them cut their driving time by 36 minutes per day.