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GM Drops Voltec for Cadillac, Kills Converj Program

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"Bloomberg reported that the program has been cancelled specifcally so the company can focus on bringing out lower cost plugin parallel hybrids for the Cadillac brand."

http://gm-volt.com/2010/03/02/report-gm-drops-voltec-for-cadillac-kills-converj-program/

I've said before that that makes much more sense. That is also what Toyota is doing.

I particularly liked this quote:

"According to analyst Eric Noble, president of CarLab, an automotive consultant, GM’s decision to kill the Converj is “a tacit admission from GM that they over-batteried the Volt.”"

He sounds like me.

This one too:

"Apparently GM’s internal research concluded that GM could not produce the Converj with sufficient features and performance to be compelling enough to buyers at the same time producing a profit. This information was obtained from two GM executives who asked not to be identified.

To have made the Converj perform as intended, faster and smoother with heavier seats and larger wheels, its range would have been halved to 20 miles, while at the same time increasing its price by $30,000."

GM has been telling us that the Volt is so quiet and smooth and drives like a car with 250HP and has amazing handling. That seems sufficient to be sold as a Cadillac with minor-to-no performance enhancements. Certainly nothing in the scope of halving the range of the Volt AND of incurring a cost increase equivalent to 85% of a complete CTS. The Volt's price already includes a navi-screen after all!

Looking deeper, there should be nothing so different about the Converj that if GM is able to make a go of the Volt that they shouldn't been able to do the same with the Converj at an even higher profit. It must be a real pain for GM to actually have to produce the Volt after wringing the PR out of it for the past few years without actually having to sell the car (see: Lutz's recent "GM will lose money on hybrids" and the incredibly low production volume for the Volt).

I wonder how many GM execs wish they could quit the Volt like they just quit the Converj?

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