Sources said that General Motors Co. seeks to double the 2012 production capacity for the Chevrolet Volt to 120,000 as it aims to boost the plug-in hybrid's sales.
Earlier this month, GM CEO Dan Akerson said that Volt output this year may increase to 25,000 from the initial plan of 10,000. GM is presently working with suppliers to increase 2012 capacity from an earlier target of 60,000.
These sources also said that if the parts aren’t available or if demand isn't that high, the company may not boost its production up to that many.
Akerson, who became CEO in September, seeks to sell more of the $41,000 Volt and is pushing to use its Voltec gasoline- electric drive system for models sold by other GM brands. Akerson said that he prefers that GM will have more fuel-efficient models prepared for a possible increase in oil prices to $120 a barrel.
On Jan. 11, Akerson told analysts at Deutsche Bank's Auto Industry Conference in Detroit that it wants to keep its sharp focus on technology. He said that it doesn’t want what happened in 2008 to be repeated.
It can be recalled that in 2008, crude oil increased to over $140 a barrel and average gasoline prices exceeded $4 a gallon. As a result, sales of trucks and cars with large engines plunged, contributing to GM's $30.9 billion loss that year.
Randy Fox, a GM spokesman, didn’t provide details about production plans. He also couldn’t say how many orders have been received for the Volt or how long the wait will be. [via autonews - sub. required]