Interesting piece at the WaPo on the internal tensions at GM over the Volt:
Even now, as General Motors fights for survival, there is something ambivalent about its prescription for saving itself, a conflict implicit in a bit of symbolism that recently greeted arrivals to the Detroit Metropolitan Airport even before they reached baggage claim.
One of GM’s touted new automobiles sat on display in the center of the automaker’s airport gift shop. It was not the coming electric car, the 2011 Chevrolet Volt, championed by Bob Lutz, the GM executive most identified with the Hail Mary that the vehicle represents for the bankrupt company, which faces the immediate future as a ward of the federal government. It was not one of the relatively new GM hybrids. It was not even a mid-level sedan called the Chevy Malibu, which has received flattering reviews and awards, in part for its better-than-average fuel economy.
It was instead a car that flies in the face of all the worries about the American automotive industry, all the calls to make it more environmentally responsible and therefore more viable: the 2010 Chevrolet Camaro SS with a V-8 engine, General Motors’ version of the fast and powerful model that automobile enthusiasts commonly call a muscle car.
Maybe I’m just being naive here, but if the Camaro is a profitable division, and the hybrids and green cars turn out to be profitable, why can’t they keep offering both? What am I missing?