G.M. Has Hydrogen Hopes for Hawaii

The ideal early market for hydrogen fuel-cell cars is small, self-contained, facing exorbitant fossil fuel prices and has an abundant supply of renewable energy on tap, according to Charles Freese, executive director of General Motors’ fuel-cell activities.

Iceland, which fits that description, had actually announced its intentions to be the world’s first hydrogen energy economy, but access to fuel-cell cars proved to be a crippling barrier. The Hawaiian island of Oahu, with a population of one million, may be over that hurdle.
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The $41,000 Question: Is the Chevy Volt Worth the Money?

General Motors, after announcing on Tuesday that the Chevrolet Volt plug-in hybrid car would cost $41,000, was unfazed by inevitable comparisons to the Nissan Leaf, a battery electric car that will arrive in select markets at the end of the year, around the same time as the Volt. At $32,780, the Leaf is far less expensive.

“Honestly, they’re two different vehicles,” said Dave Darovitz, a G.M. spokesman. “One is range limited, and the other one offers 40 miles of gas-free driving and then a further 300 miles of travel.”
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Is $17,000 Too Much to Pay for Chevy’s New Cruze Compact Car?

On Thursday, General Motors announced that the base Cruze will start at $16,995 when it goes on sale in September.

That puts the Cruze a few hundred dollars higher than its Japanese competitors in the compact car class: the Honda Civic, which starts at $16,405, Toyota Corolla ($16,200) and Mazda 3 ($16,095). All prices include destination charges.
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Lamborghini Recalling Murciélagos

Lamborghini is recalling 428 of its 2007–8 Murciélago and Murciélago Roadsters because welds holding the fuel pump inside the gas tank may fail as the result of a poor weld and owners driving aggressively.

If owners simply motored sedately the problem might not occur, according to a report the automaker filed with the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. Lamborghini said “stress generated by the back and forth movement of gasoline inside the fuel tank during lateral and longitudinal accelerations, accompanied by vertical vibration” could cause a spot weld to fail.
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Last Call for Hummer

General Motors’ efforts to sell the Hummer brand to another manufacturer have not been successful, and the automaker announced on Wednesday that it was going to begin making payments to dealers that would enable them to close their Hummer franchises.

The good news for anyone who might still covet one of the brand’s big S.U.V.’s is that G.M. is offering substantial rebates and special financing on the about 2,200 vehicles that remain unsold. According to CNNMoney.com, the automaker is offering either a $6,000 rebate or no-interest financing for six years on 2009 Hummer H2s and H3s, along with various incentives on other models.
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