It took just about 10 minutes to end eight years of loyalty to a brand.
In July, the lease expired on my wife's third Chevrolet Volt. She drove it to the dealership and waited during a quick inspection of the car. Then she signed a piece of paper and we were gone.
It is highly unlikely we will step into a Chevy showroom again soon. There is nothing there that either of us want. Oh, I'd happily have a new Corvette, but that will have to wait a few years.
My wife would have moved from the Volt to an Equinox had General Motors followed through with its initial plans and offered the Volt's range extender gasoline-electric drivetrain in the compact crossover.
But GM is out of the hybrid business and going full electric. I think that's a mistake. The Volt offered the best of both worlds and was, in our experience, a superbly engineered and built car.
Because my wife works close to home, her commutes were solely on electricity. I doubt she filled the fuel tank more than four or five times a year. We've saved thousands of dollars on gasoline since 2013. The Volt did everything GM said it would do, and it did it well.
For many consumers, the walk will be a long one from a gasoline-powered vehicle to an electric one, and many drivers will need a bridge to get there.
An Equinox hybrid would have solved many problems for those thinking of an EV but who are not really sure about the technology. It would have shown drivers the many advantages — the instant torque, the soothing smoothness, the greatly reduced maintenance — while getting them used to plugging in and driving past gas stations.
For both of us, it was painful walking away from a brand that kept its promises. And right now our driveway doesn't feel quite right without the Volt in it.