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by Matt Brogan

Chevrolet is investigating the possible sale of its extended-range plug-in hybrid Volt to Japan as early as next year in a bid to compete with such names as the Toyota Prius and Honda Insight.

Sumito Ishii, the Managing Director of GM Asia Pacific Japan, said that Volt, which will go on sale in the US later this year, will be sold in Japan as soon as it is feasible to do so.

“One of the things the Japanese market wants is electric vehicles,” Mr Ishii said.

GM understand that selling a foreign car in to Japan will be a difficult task, but believe bringing an advanced, fuel-efficient car such as the Volt to the Japanese market could help counter GM’s poor brand perception.

Last year, GM sold only 2,686 vehicles in Japan, a fall of 14 per cent on 2008 figures.

The company hopes that in addition to Volt to be able to offer four new models in Japan over the next twelve months beginning with the Chevrolet Camaro, Chevrolet Cruze and Chevrolet Aveo. At least one (unnamed) offering from Cadillac is also believed to be on the cards.




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