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Chevrolet's Volt Sales Running Low, GM Idles the Line
CNBC.com | March 02, 2012 | 05:02 PM EST

Chevy's electric car, the Volt, is running on empty. With sales lagging and inventories building, GM has decided to idle production of the Chevy Volt for five weeks. During that time, about 1,300 workers will temporarily be laid off.

GM executives can not be happy that this move will once again raise questions about the viability and long term prospects for the Volt.

But in reality, they had no choice.

Volt sales have been so slow this year, the company needs to adjust production to demand. And so far, Volt demand has fallen well short of original expectations.

Back when GM launched the Volt, it boldly targeted sales of 10,000 in 2011 and 60,000 in 2012. Last year, GM sold 7,671 Volts and just 1,626 this year.

Why have sales been slow?

Some of it is due to the slow ramp up in sales last year. While the entire country saw ads for the Volt, the car was sold most of the year in select markets. Then the controversy and investigation into Volt battery fires left a cloud hanging over the electric car.

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