Buick Electric Cars May Be On Hiatus29
General Motors was an early adopter of plug-in hybrids and electric cars. Thus, it puts the automaker at a serious disadvantage with reference to the $7,500 federal tax credit. The automaker will likely reach the 200,000-vehicle cap this year.
And the consequence may be felt at Buick, which allegedly will push its electric-car plans into next decade. Automotive News reported plans to bring Buick into the electric-car fold in North America may be stalled—or dead altogether—as GM reevaluates its strategy. The federal tax credit is a major motivating factor. Buick also showed the Enspire electric SUV concept earlier this year, which likely previews another future EV for China.
Previously, it was understood Buick had a more luxurious electric car in the pipeline based on the 2018 Chevrolet Bolt EV. Said car may not debut for North American any longer, but it will likely show up in China. If it does come stateside, AN believes it could wear a Chevrolet badge since dealers already feature the necessary equipment for electric cars.
GM plans for 20 new electric cars by 2023, but the automaker never explicitly noted all 20 would come to North America. Instead, look for a large portion to debut for China, which will regulate the number of “new-energy vehicles” for sale. The cars that do come to North America will likely wear Cadillac badges, the luxury brand’s ex-President, Johan de Nysschen, told the press earlier this year.
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Screw GM if this is true, way to squander your lead in EVs. You are losing your early adopters like myself with this crap (GEN 1 Volt Owner)
Paul, don’t blame GM. Blame the non-EV drivers who don’t want to change to a better and cleaner vehicle. If few Volt and Bolt EV models are bought in the U.S, then GM will offer them where the drivers WANT them as in China. That is good business! You can help change this by convincing all your family members, friends, neighbors and co-workers to buy an EV. Maybe that number of sales will convince GM to keep the new EV models in the U.S.
I’ve done what you’ve suggested for years, I’ll be steering folks to other EV makes at this point.
GM is making a practical business decision based on the fact that they will soon be at a price disadvantage against their laggard competitors, which will ultimately be a $7500 gap. How can you possibly blame them?
Dear VFanRJ, How many people really can take full advantage of the $7,500 tax credit? I really don’t think that many. One would have to earn about $47,000 in taxable income to get the full $7,500 credit back under US current tax brackets. The catch is “Taxable income” which is income after all deductions.
The best way to take advantage is to lease the vehicle. The $7500 goes to the bank as cap cost reduction for a payment of about 280 less per month. This is why leases on the Volt were optimal and would suffer afterward of losing this incentive.
Everyone who leases a Volt has access to the full tax credit, and because EVs are changing so rapidly leases are very popular.
Thank you for your opinion, Paul. While I obviously hate to see anyone go, you are literally at the bottom of my list of concerns. Heck, you’re below the bottom. You don’t even make the list.
Yr Hmbl and Obdnt Srvnt,
This is a mistake.
This is an excellent-looking vehicle and since the Enspire already will be developed & produced, the marginal cost of bringing it to the US is not that much.
Buick is supposed to be a “near luxury” brand, so while I understand that price is important, these type of brands should be comfortable selling vehicles that cost $40-$50,000, tax credit or no.
Buick needs to still work on making the brand younger and more upscale, and the Enspire — if brought over to the US/Canada, and properly marketed and supported and dealerships — would help them do that.
Buick must reinvent itself aside from the three crossover line up. EVs would make Buick into a younger, more unique brand especially in contrast to GMC.
Avenir is a one in a lifeline second chance for Buick that can’t be squandered. The sunbrand allows for Buick to challenge Lexus while maintaining a less expensive stock aimed at traditional buyers off the brand.
Agreed. The Bolt should be a Buick. The alliteration helps reduce confusion with the Volt name.
Also thinking about the car market shrinking. TourX establishes Regal into a crossover. Spin the TourX name off into a Buick twin of the Volt crossover. The Regal can go crossover with that strong Enspire design, whether or not they decide to go forward with an EV Enspire in the States.
Also an Avista that’s above Mustang sized would be able to do more for Buick’s image than that Caddy rendering helping theirs. The best advertising for Buick would be for people to see its drivers pulled over for speeding.
Something else to consider is the fact that the US National Power Grid cannot support an additional 1 Million EV; the situation is the same for all countries around the world who thought it was Politically Correct to sign the Paris Climate Accord because 2023 is fast approaching and the European continent has done nothing to upgrade their big jump in need for electricity in under 5 years.
The sh_t will hit the fan when European car makers begin building an all electric fleet in the fall of 2022 and the continent has still done nothing; Donald Trump will have a good laugh and Tweet how every country leader that signed the Paris Climate Accord was a moron.
Obama didn’t think of the $Trillions it would take to build the US Infrastructure to support possibly tens of millions of EVs.
Dear omegatalon, What you say is false. The latest study done June 2018 by the University of Oxford concludes that Europe’s electricity infrastructure will have no problem meeting the future demands of electric cars. The title of the study is “Electric Vehicles and Electricity” by the Oxford Institute for Energy Studies, June 2018. They conclude, “A recent study by the Regulatory Assistance Project confirms that electricity infrastructure should not be a serious barrier to EV penetration in Europe. Indeed, it concludes that electricity distribution networks run at well below their full potential, implying that unused network capacity could be utilised for charging EVs with little or no need for additional capacity. It also concludes that smart pricing and smart grid technologies are important to limit investment requirements.”
Quite skeptical about your fear of a grid collapse. Most grids have plenty of spare capacity and a 15amp 240V charger take as much juice as a dryer. We’re ready to go.
Yeah, and the 1980s power grid couldn’t support the internet.
And the 1990s cell phone towers couldn’t support today’s smartphones.
You sound like an American’t. “We can’t do this, we can’t do that, Trump Trump Trump!” Bull. We’re Americans, we can lead the world in EV technology and adoption. Don’t let Putin’s b!tch tell you otherwise.
One will be a high performace Chevrolet (At Chevrolet dealer meeting) and on will be a Buick, based of these bolt chassis. Buick ( last year showed these envision at a one there car meetings), that has not change. 2020 a new electric chassis will come that has not change. These web pages needed to get there facts straight. You will see another web page saying that these buick envision will be build witch it will be.
If Buick DON’T bring out the Enspire they can count me out! Bolt Owner.
Oh no! Whatever will we do without Daniel Graz?!?!? (Other than go on as though nothing happened…)
Dear Daniel Graz, I TOTALLY AGREE!!! I WAS PLANNING ON TRADING IN MY BOLT FOR THE BUICK ENSPIRE IN 2022 BUT NOW I WILL DRIVE MY BOLT INTO THE GROUND AND NOT BUY ANY CAR FOR HOPEFULLY 10 YEARS AT LEAST.
I have been the proud owner of 2 chevy Volts. If this is true, I’m done with GM.
Buick encore BEV. Bolt chassis. Went did gm change this? It looked like these encore went people, a buick focus group seen it. These buick new encore is riding around now, said to have these bolt chassis riding on it. Chevrolet will have there’s, showed it at a dealer meeting in april.
That is really outrageous that GM is now saying that their 20 electrics cars never explicitly noted all 20 would come to North America. BUT IS WAS ASSUMED THEY WOULD ALL COME TO THE USA!!!! Now GM is saying that the Buick Enspire may never come to the USA, OUTRAGOUS!! The tax credit was never an incentive to me buying the Chevy Bolt because I don’t earn enough on my retirement to qualify to get any money back. The incentive for me was getting a great car and saving the environment at the same time!! I am extremely angry at GM for this. I was planning on trading in my Bolt for a Buick Enspire in 2022. But instead I’m now going to drive the Bolt for 10 or more years until it dies and not buy any cars from GM or anyone else. Forget you GM!!!!
It was always clear to me that the 20+ cars were for GM’s global portfolio. The rest of the world is read to move on to EVs, so as a global company GM has moved to take the lead. If America remains mired in the past then GM will have to sell a lineup of ICE dinosaurs for the US and futuristic EVs for the rest of the world.
Hell, maybe if Trump gets a second term, GM will come out with a coal-powered truck for the US.
It’s true that the US isn’t anywhere near where we need to be for large-scale, high-speed recharging infrastructure.
Musk has a growing list of faults, but he IS ahead of the curve with a network of high-speed recharge stations.
Interesting that it’s apparently incumbent on manufacturers to solve it, rather than energy companies providing what ever source of energy your vehicle needs.
And yes, Buick – needing to attract an ever-younger audience, shouldn’t walk away from EVs.
Buick needs that EV asap. Not only does Buick need to attract younger buyers but it needs to take advantage of its older clientele that own homes at a higher rate that can charge at home now while infrastructure gets built out. I have sold my share of preowned TESLA s and guess what they were mostly over 50 and home owners.
I own a Bolt and the tax break was not a factor in my decision to buy. I was going to sell my bolt when someone came up with a 300+ range EV but I like the Bolt so much that I will keep it and still buy the longer range EV. Hopefully the Enspire.
GM needs to upgrade the Bolt’s range soon. I was hoping for 2019 but maybe they’ll do it in 2020.
An SS version would also be nice. At least give us a sport suspension option with performance tires on 18″ wheels.
First gen Volt owner here. Thrilled with the car overall. The second gen just wasn’t as big of a step forward as I wanted to see; for 2019 a little better with 7.2kW charging and -13*F ERDTT. However, my commute is short, so return on investment would never be seen.
Replacing our Acadia with an EV is more realistic for my family. Need something that can take the 4 of us on a week long vacation in comfort. Tiny 3rd row for emergency transport of kids’ friends would be great.
Bolt is just too small. iPace and Model X too expensive. Enspire at $50,000 would have been perfect but perhaps they can’t make it work financially. If the Bolt, with a very basic interior when it comes to materials, MSRP’s in the low $40k’s, then a Buick Enspire with 250+ mile range would probably have to start at $55,000 and go up to $70,000. (1. Larger size means more cells are needed. 2. Buick badge means higher end interior. Just look at price differential between a Trax (which is pretty much an ICE version of the Bolt in every dimension) and a Bolt EV. Then use that rule of thumb to compare Enclave to Enspire.)
How many EV buyers exist that would be willing to drop $62,000 on a mid-grade Enspire? 5,000-6,000 a year in my guesstimation. Tough to support at those numbers. GM, unfairly perhaps, doesn’t have the brand panache that Tesla does (or Jaguar) so it can’t afford to play directly against the iPace, or even at a $5000 discount.
If GM is going to build them in China, perhaps they can ship some over. That may be our last avenue of hope.
It’s tough to be an EV fan and a GM fan these days unless you want a compact car or a subcompact CUV.