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The Silver Volt was so far ahead of its time, it never got built

Windsor was identified as the manufacturing centre for a luxury electric car in 1980.

Electric car would be built in Windsor, Ont., if the money came through

Once the financing is secure, a car maker has plans to manufacture its $25,000 electric car in Windsor. 2:02

It sounds like a comic-book superhero name, and the Silver Volt turned out to be almost as fictitious as one.

In 1980, CBC Windsor had some news for the auto-building town that there could be 2,000 new jobs within the next two years.

"The Electric Auto Corporation has already picked Windsor as the site for production of the Silver Volt," said reporter Ron Lindsay as a prototype car could be seen on a test drive.

The company planned to build 20,000 of the cars that looked like futuristic station wagons with a very large battery under the hood. 

A true luxury

Electric cars were a "specialist" market, according to the chairman of the company that intended to make the Silver Volt. (CBC News/CBC Archives)

And each one was going to cost $25,000 — or $79,000 in 2019 dollars.

"If you look ... at colour television, or self-cleaning ovens, or anything that's new, they start at a high price," said company chairman Jon Samuel. "And then eventually the price will drop." 

According to the New York Times, the company said the Silver Volt used a cobalt lead battery and could travel 300 miles on a single charge.

But there was one large detail that had to be worked out: financing.

And in the end, loan guarantees from the federal government never came though and the Silver Volt went nowhere.

According to an earlier CBC report, The battery in the Silver Volt required lead, which was less expensive in Canada. (CBC News/CBC Archives)