• Chevrolet Volt gets $5,000 price cut for 2014
  • Price cut comes after similar cuts from rivals
  • Volt otherwise unchanged for 2014 model year

Chevrolet is cutting $5,000 from the base price of its Volt plug-in hybrid car. The automaker announced that the 2014 Volt will start at $34,995 with shipping, a $5,000 price drop compared to the 2013 model.

In addition to its lower base price, the 2014 Volt is still eligible for $7,500 in government tax credits. That means the Volt's base price after taxes will be just $27,495 -- the first time the car has sold for under $30,000.

Chevrolet's decision to cut Volt prices comes on the heels of similar moves from rivals. The fully electric Nissan Leaf, for example, offers a new base-level S trim for 2013 that's priced more than $6,000 below the 2012 Leaf's base price. And Ford recently announced it's cutting $4,000 from the base price of its fully electric Focus Electric hatchback.

Such cuts will undoubtedly spur sales, as electric vehicles and plug-in hybrids have found difficulty attracting large numbers of buyers. And many "early adopters" have already purchased the cars, meaning lower prices will be needed to attract drivers who aren't quite sure if they're ready to move to an electric vehicle or a plug-in hybrid.

"The lower price and cost savings from driving on electricity provide Volt owners an unmatched balance of technology, capability and cost of ownership," said Don Johnson, Chevrolet's U.S. vice president for sales and service. "The 2014 Volt will offer the same impressive list of features, but for $5,000 less."

Indeed, the Volt is mostly unchanged for the 2014 model year aside from its price drop. Other revisions include a leather-wrapped steering wheel and two new exterior colors -- Ashen Gray Metallic and Brownstone Metallic.

Shoppers interested in the less expensive 2014 Volt can get one at dealers starting later this year.

What it means to you: With its $5,000 price cut, the 2014 Chevrolet Volt provides a better value than in years past.

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Doug DeMuro has a wide range of automotive industry experience, from work at a Ferrari dealership to a manager for Porsche North America. A lifelong car enthusiast, Doug's eclectic vehicle purchases include a Porsche 911 Turbo, an E63 AMG wagon, an old Range Rover and a Mercedes Benz G-wagen.

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