DETROIT— General Motors Co. is expanding the launch of the Chevrolet Volt hybrid car to markets in the New York region and Austin, Texas, the Wall Street Journal reported today.
GM Chairman and Chief Executive Edward E. Whitacre Jr. will publically announce the plan Thursday in a speech to the Austin Chamber of Commerce, the paper said.
A GM spokesperson declined to comment.
The Volt is an extended range electric vehicle with a gasoline engine. It is geared for drivers and commuters that travel 40 miles or less a day. If the battery becomes depleted, the gasoline engine kicks in to give the Volt an additional range of about 300 miles.
It can be recharged using a conventional household electrical outlet and is a cornerstone of GM's efforts to recast itself.
On Tuesday, Whitacre and other GM executives provided a briefing on the “new” GM to investors and auto analysts. The automaker hopes to emerge from U.S. government control this fall with an initial public offering.
GM originally planned to launch the Volt hybrid in California, Michigan, and Washington D.C. this fall. The amended markets, in New York and in Austin, Texas, will allow GM to showcase its research and engineering efforts in the nation's biggest media market, and in proximity to Wall Street, as well as truck-loving customers in Texas.
GM also wants to showcase the Volt's ability to operate in hot and cold regions.