General Motors Co. stands to lose as much as $9,000 on every Chevrolet Bolt that leaves a showroom once the all-electric subcompact starts rolling out. Sounds crazy, but the damage makes perfect business sense under the no pain, no gain policy driving the electric-vehicle boom in the U.S.
California crafted the doctrine, with tough clean-air rules and a mandate that automakers sell some non-polluting vehicles if they want to do business in the Golden State. Nine others have adopted it, New York and New Jersey among them, and all told they make up close to 30 percent of the U.S. market. That goes a long way to explaining why zero-emissions models from more than 10 brands are on the roads, with more on the way. Most are destined to be loaded with red ink for their makers, but they’ll be great deals for consumers as companies unload them to meet their targets.