GM Says Chevy Volt Battery Pack Redesign a Possibility, Offers Buyback

By · December 05, 2011

2012 Chevy Volt

GM CEO Dan Akerson announced that General Motors will consider redesigning the battery pack that powers the Chevy Volt.

General Motors CEO Dan Akerson announced last week that a redesign of the T-shaped lithium ion battery pack that powers the Chevrolet Volt is under consideration to address issues raised after the NHTSA opened a formal investigation into safety-related issues involving the Volt's potential to catch fire after a side-impact crash. Akerson stated:

"We want to assure the safety of our customers, of our buyers, and so we're just going to take a time out, if you will, in terms of redesigning the battery."

Meanwhile, a GM spokesperson stated that no immediate modifications are planned for the Volt's battery pack and reiterated that the automaker believes that the plug-in hybrid Volt is indeed a safe vehicle.

2012 Chevy Volt

General Motors agrees to buy back Chevy Volts from owners concerned that the vehicle is a fire risk.

In addition, General Motors announced that it will buy back Volts from any owner concerned that the vehicle is a fire risk. This offer—first reported by The Wall Street Journal—comes in addition to GM's official announcement that it will provide loaner vehicles to any of the 6,000-plus US Chevy Volt owners worried about the safety of their vehicle.

GM spokesman Selim Bingol said that no one has yet requested to turn in a single Chevy Volt. As Bingol told the Wall Street Journal, "If someone asks, we'll snap it up in a second."

GM is currently working with the NHTSA on ways to reduce the risk of battery fires involving crash Volts. Furthermore, the automaker went on record stating that it would not deliver any Opel-branded versions (Opel Ampera) of the Volt until its engineers and safety regulators finish investigating the battery-related fires.

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