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Published on May 5th, 2016 | by James Ayre


Chevy Bolt Sales Could Reach 30,000–80,000 During First Year, Says Kelly Blue Book Analyst

May 5th, 2016 by  

Originally published on EV Obsession.

How high will Chevy Bolt sales numbers go during the first year of being offered? Is 30,000 a reasonable guess? Or is that low-balling or high-balling it?

How much of an effect will the recent unveiling of the Tesla Model 3 have on sales? Will those previously interested in the Chevy Bolt now choose to wait for the Model 3?


Chevy Bolts by Kyle Field for CleanTechnica | EV Obsession

It’s a bit hard at this point to gauge what the answers to these questions might be. Though, I suppose that we’ll know soon enough, as the Chevy Bolt should begin hitting the market less than a year from now. On that note, a senior analyst at Kelley Blue Book by the name of Karl Brauer recently estimated a first-year sales volume of 30,000–80,000 for the Chevy Bolt — meaning that his expectation is that 30,000 is the expected floor for first-year sales.

Brauer commented: “Tesla has made a lot of noise and created passion. But Chevy and GM will crack the real-world electric vehicle first. Theirs will be available not just months, but years, before Tesla’s.” (Author’s note: A single year, or year-and-a-half, head start seems most likely.)

Barron’s provides more:

Bolts may start trickling into dealerships in late 2016, although GM CEO Mary Barra recently told Barron’s that they won’t be widely available until early 2017. The Bolt will list for $37,500, before federal tax credits worth $7,500.

…Given Tesla’s history, Brauer thinks the first big batch of Model 3 shipments could slip into 2018 or later. As those buyers wait, he says, Chevy could easily capture 10% of the Model 3 preorder base. He forecasts first-year Bolt sales of between 30,000 and 80,000, “and the low end of that is still a win for Chevrolet.”

My personal guess for the beginning of mass Tesla Model 3 deliveries is early to mid 2018 — I remain skeptical that the company will be unable to meet that rough deadline as some have implied.

That still leaves a fairly long period when the Chevy Bolt will be the only 200+ mile electric car out there in the relevant pricing bracket, though. Despite that, I’m not quite sure that I see Bolt sales climbing over 50,000 in the first year…. 80,000 would be great, and really show that interest in electric vehicles (EVs) is growing rapidly, but I’m not sure that I find it that believable.

Hat tip to “don shaw” on the GM-Volt forum for this.

Reprinted with permission. 

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About the Author

James Ayre's background is predominantly in geopolitics and history, but he has an obsessive interest in pretty much everything. After an early life spent in the Imperial Free City of Dortmund, James followed the river Ruhr to Cofbuokheim, where he attended the University of Astnide. And where he also briefly considered entering the coal mining business. He currently writes for a living, on a broad variety of subjects, ranging from science, to politics, to military history, to renewable energy.

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