Volt delivered to first customer

The Chevrolet Volt has reached its first official customer – a retired airline pilot from New Jersey.

Jeffrey Kaffee of Parsippany, N.J. returned home from vacation early to pick up his Chevy Volt at his local dealership. The Parsippany Daily Record reports that Kaffee paid about $42,000 for the vehicle before the $7,500 federal tax credit.

Kaffee has a history with green vehicles, as he traded a used Toyota Prius to help lower the cost of the purchase.

Chevrolet announced that Kaffee is the first of nearly 360 customers who will receive their Volt this week. The first areas to receive the new vehicles are California, Texas, Washington D.C. and New York City. The cars are being delivered from a manufacturing plant in Detroit.

The Volt recently took home the Car of the Year awards from two major publications – Motor Trend and Automobile magazine. The series hybrid can travel for 35 miles on electricity only before switching to gas mode.

The main rival to the Volt, Nissan's Leaf, appears to have beaten GM out of the starting gate. The company announced last week that it had delivered the first Leaf to a customer in California.

Drivers who want to make the switch to a greener vehicle should consider selling or trading their current car. They may also want to wait until the models hit the used car market.