Over a year after its launch, the Chevy Bolt EV is still alone as an all-electric vehicle with a range of over 200 miles for less than $40,000, but GM hasn’t taken the opportunity to sell more vehicles despite clear important demand.
In Canada, the significant demand and limited availability have created a backlog of up to a year.
Some dealerships have been telling potential buyers that the wait time has increased for up to 12 months for people getting on the wait list right now.
A GM spokesperson confirmed to GreenCarReports that there’s a waiting list:
“There is currently a waiting list for the Bolt EV in Canada. This is not uncommon with launch products, particularly such unique game changers like the Bolt EV. We have also seen an increase in demand for the popular Volt,”
I grabbed a review unit at a GM dealership in Quebec last November and I asked the representative what would be the process if I wanted to buy the car, he said that they would take my name, but they couldn’t confirm when I’d get the car because they were only getting a few units.
Over the last year, GM delivered 2,107 Bolt EVs, but it looks like they could deliver many more thanks to significant EV incentives, especially in Ontario in Quebec.
In the US, Chevy Bolt EV sales have been slowly getting back to normal after a slow start to the year, but we are still talking about fewer than 2,000 vehicles per month. Buyers report that it’s a lot easier to get the Bolt EV in the US, especially in CARB states, like California.
Earlier this year, GM’s CEO announced that they are increasing Chevy Bolt EV production, but she didn’t elaborate on how significant an increase it will be.
We haven’t seen much evidence of that planned production increase yet, but it could potentially be linked to the new model year.
The Chevy Bolt EV 2019 is also coming soon, but it only features 3 new color options and a few minor updates.
I think GM is missing the boat with the Chevy Bolt EV. With Tesla significantly delaying the less expensive version of the Model 3, the Bolt EV had the opportunity to capture some of the demand for the vehicle at a lower price, but they are simply not taking advantage of it.
I got a lot of opposition when I suggested that GM would use the Bolt EV as a compliance car before the launch last year, but there’s really an argument to be made for it now if GM is not taking advantage of the demand over a full year into the production.
At this point, it’s clear that they focused sales in CARB states and limiting availability in places, like Canada, where there are no or only weak ZEV mandates.
Now there’s still hope if Barra says that they are increasing production, but we have yet to see that materialized.
What do you think? Let us know in the comment section below.
Subscribe to Electrek on YouTube for exclusive videos and subscribe to the podcast.