Did GM lie? So says Edmunds.com. And it appears they are right. Technically.

On the other hand, the exception to GM's statements that the car is purely an electrically driven vehicle appears to be quite minor: At speeds OVER 70 mph, the gasoline engine (whose main purpose is to recharge the electric motor) does kick in to ASSIST the electric engine in driving the wheels.

In all but very high speed cruising, GM's description is fully accurate. Further, unlike standard hybrids, the Volt's gasoline engine cannot drive the wheels by itself. And the assist actually improves the energy efficiency of the vehicle. So Edmonds likening the Volt to the Prius appears to be as inaccurate as the GM statements.

So how does this square with the first Page Principle – Tell the truth?

While recognizing that the truth is not always purely objectively obvious, my take would be that GM should have been more careful. A more technically accurate description of the drive train characteristics would have been the right thing to do and would have served the company – and its stakeholders – better.

Having said that, the inaccuracy is not egregious, and the Edmonds.com headline appears to be a bit over the top. My guess is GM will suffer some slings and arrows, but emerge without excessive damage. The Detroit News and Motor Trend, among others, already are brushing the concerns aside.