GM never made money off of the EV1. If they had continued, they would have filled for bankruptcy. The company lost $400 million on the project, even *WITH* government subsidies (read: your tax money handed to them on a silver platter). This is why they quit selling EVs even before the zero emission mandate was repealed.
Only 87% of leases had positive reviews.
Even the 87% who liked them, were not an accurate representation of America. Many were "techie people" who wanted an EV to say they had an EV (oh I'm special I have an EV). Some were crazy eco-nuts who think driving their EV means they are "saving the planet". But most people are not going to ignore the limitations of a car for those lame reasons. The fact Toyota canceled their EV program for lack of a market, I suggest as proof of this.
Of course there were people who loved their EVs. Problem is, they were insulated from the true cost of an EV. EVs were horribly expensive. No one would buy them if they paid the true cost. This is why GM had to lease them, and why GM killed the program. In order to make money, they'd have to sell them, but no customer would do that.
This is how much it would cost if the customer really paid the price. (this would have to happen for GM to make money, and thus keep making these cars)
1. The car. Average price (not including government subsidies) MSRP $44,000. $44 thousand for a 2 seat car, 10 cubic-foot trunk (my car has 20), and a 70 mile Lead-acid range, or 95 mile NiMH range. Oh what a deal. (some people have higher range estimates, but to let the battery get that low is horrible for it, and significantly reduces battery life)
2. Magnecharger and required 220 volt source. Charger costs $1500. Plus most homes do not have a 220 volt source, so hire an electrician (very expensive if you don't know). In some cases the amperage needed by the Magnecharger will exceed your homes power rating, in which case you'll need city approval to get a higher power rating ($$$).
Note: Without a 6.6 KiloWatt magnecharger, the EV1 will take about 12 hours to charge, and 24 if you have NiMH batteries. (plus long slow charges like this reduce battery life) With it, it will take 3, or 6 for NiMH.
3. Magnecharger repairs. By the end of the EV1 project, Edison Electric (the contractor for GM) had a waiting list of over 100 people, to have their home chargers repaired. I have no idea what the cost would be for this, but you'd have to pay it if GM didn't.
4. Special tires. The EV1 used special tires that were custom made, and expensive. I could not find exact prices, but a few people had to have them replaced.
5. Power Inverter. I found at least 1 creditable report (two others I couldn't verify) of the power invert going out in under a year. The Tesla Roadster's power inverter is over $2,500. An off the shelf, who knows how good it is brand, is $1,500.
6. Batteries. The lead acid packs last about 1.25 years, and cost around $20,000. A NiMH pack is estimated at $50,000 or more and was expected to last 3 years. (they can last longer under limited use. But people are not going to like "oh you can drive farther, but don't")
7. Power costs. $5 Dollars per 100 miles. (roughly) Average yearly cost estimates, based on 15,000 miles a year, at $0.12 per KiloWatt, is $750. (some places have an off peak rate, which is quite a bit less, and a summer on peak rate, which is nearly double. My area does not have either)
So lets add it all up:
1. Car $44,000
2. Charger $1,500
3. Electrician service (unknown cost)
4. In 1.5 years you'd spend up to $1150 on power, and possibly $20,000 on lead-acid battery.
5. In 3 years you'd spend $2250 on power and up to $40,000 on NiMH batteries.
6. Unknown repairs on Inverter $1500 and charger.
So it could be as much as $80,000 in 3 years, for a butt ugly, 2 seat, 10 cubic foot trunk, 100 mile a day max, performance worse than a Dodge Neon, plug it in for 6 hours to charge, car. Absolutely no one would do this.
"Well GM should have a warranty!" Well great, but one engineer said it was costing GM well over $80,000 per car. GM would be out of business in just a few years at that rate, in which case you'd have to pay for all repairs yourself anyway. So of course, GM killed the program, and reclaimed all EV1s and dismantled them.
GM is required to sell replacement parts and is required to warranty their product. If you want GM to sell EVs, the best way to get them too, is to remove that requirement. Then GM will do it, I promise. Because when that $40,000 dollar NiMH battery pack goes bad, and the customer pays for it, GM will just smile and walk away with their money. But as it stands, not going to happen.