General Motors Again Promises 200-Plus Mile $30,000 Electric Vehicle is Coming Soon

4 years ago by Inside EVs Staff 34

Envia Graphic From What Seems Like Ages Ago Now

Envia Graphic From What Seems Like Ages Ago Now

General Motors is once again touting its 200-plus mile range $30,000 electric vehicle.

Envia Info

Envia Info

This vehicle will likely be offered at some point in the far-off future, as Doug Parks, GM’s vice-president of global product programs, told the Wall Street Journal that the cost of batteries are simply too high to make this a reality today.

This certainly isn’t the first time we’ve heard General Motors make similar claims.  GM has long since promised that a 200- to 300-mile pure electric vehicle with breakthrough Envia battery technology is right around the corner.

If GM does make this 200-plus mile electric and can actually price it in the $30,000 area, then obviously Tesla will have some competition.  Tesla’s Gen III electric, which we’re guessing will debut in 2017, will have over 200 miles of range and will likely carry a mid-$30,000 price tag.

In all honesty though, we suspect Tesla will beat GM to market in this segment (200-plus mile, $30,000 pure electric), but we’d love for GM to prove us wrong.

Source: Wall Street Journal

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34 responses to "General Motors Again Promises 200-Plus Mile $30,000 Electric Vehicle is Coming Soon"

  1. kdawg says:

    “the cost of batteries are simply too high to make this a reality today.”
    ——–

    Well right now, the Spark EV gets nearly 100 miles of range and costs $26,685 before tax incentives. Put another $4k of battery in there, and possibly more energy-dense battery, and you are at 200 miles AER and ~$30K price.

    It doesn’t seem that far fetched to me.

    1. ItsNotAboutTheMoney says:

      Spark EV is a compliance vehicle and therefore its pricing bears no relation to reality, other than the competition to sell compliance vehicles.

      1. kdawg says:

        It’s price bears no relation to reality? Other than this is what it will cost you to put it in your driveway. Seems pretty real to me. Or is your point they are losing money on the Spark EV? Since a regular Spark price is $12K with profit, I think removing the ICE and putting in some batteries and a traction motor, then pricing at it $26.6K, it should have a nice profit.

      2. Bret says:

        The Spark isn’t just a California compliance vehicle. GM has said many times, they plan to sell it nationwide. If they were losing money on it, I doubt they would do that.

      3. Nate says:

        ItsNotAboutTheMoney — If it is a compliance vehicle, then why are they bringing it to market in other nations? Is there any possibility that a limited roleout of a vehicle has to do with testing markets?

    2. GRA says:

      Please remember that manufacturing costs only make up about 50% of the MSRP of a car, so you need to double the price of batteries. Just because a manufacturer sells a car for $X dollars MSRP with Y/kWh, doesn’t mean they can add Z kWh of batteries and sell the car for $X + (Z x $/kWh), even if nothing else changes. It’s more like $X + (2Z x $/kWh) .

      1. kdawg says:

        Why 2*Z, the first Z is already in price X? I don’t see the assembly cost going up for installing a larger pack. And the assembly of the pack is already baked into its cost.

  2. Bloggin says:

    When battery pricing hits the sweet spot, Ford and GM will have the clear advantage with volume production of a 200 mile EV, under $30k. The massive economies of scale the two automaker giants have world wide gives them tremendous leverage.

    The ability to create a purpose built EV, and retrofit the platform for ICE/Hybrid/Plug-In Hybrid models as well, lowers the materials cost considerably, along with not having to recoup all costs from the sale of EVs alone.

    Tesla should be a leader in the compact luxury EV segment at about $40k.

    1. scott moore says:

      Depends on what Musk wants. Tesla has a lead on everyone right now for everything: Motor technology (look how many other makers are using a Tesla drivetrain), batteries, use of aluminium panels (which is actually quite difficult), and composites use in cars. Plus I think everyone would agree the Model S scored big on style points.

      Don’t count Tesla out. GM isn’t. This vaporware announcement means they are scared $%^&*( of Tesla.

      1. Taser54 says:

        The fact that you call it vaporware vitiates your post.

        1. scott moore says:

          Where is this car? Does it exist?

          1. Taser54 says:

            It exists just as the Gen III exists.

            1. scott moore says:

              Absolutely, my friend. Don’t put too much stock in what people say, what they do is more important. Just as what telsa says isn’t the end of GM, neither is the converse true.

              I’ll still take the bet that tesla moves faster than GM.

              1. WopOnTour says:

                You would lose that bet, just like you lost the bet that the Volt was vaporware, then the EV Spark. Tesla must be just as concerned that GM has a record of coming through on their promises and typically over-delivering at that!

  3. David Murray says:

    Yeah, I think a 200 mile EV is possible today with existing battery and prices and still come out with a car much cheaper than a Tesla. Sure, it won’t be as good as a Tesla in all regards. But lets look at it this way. A Nissan Leaf is $28,800 and gets 75 miles range. So lets assume the battery costs around $8,000 (it is probably less than this) then a battery 2.5 times that large is $20,000. With that battery, the Leaf would cost $40,800. After tax break it is $33,300.

    Now, I understand the Leaf probably can’t hold a battery that large so they’d need to redesign the car to hold a larger battery pack. But the point is valid as far as what can be done with today’s battery technology. Honestly, 200-miles range is probably not necessary. I think a lot of people would be happy with 125 to 150 miles of real-world range. With that sort of range combined with fast charging you really would never have to worry about running out of power while driving around town. Even trips to other nearby cities should be possible with that sort of range.

    1. Brian says:

      I agree that 125-150 miles would be fine for around town. In fact, a true 100 miles (in the cold northern winter, with heater running) with quick charging will suffice for most.

      Where the 200 mile mark comes in is for road trips. Most people I know take trips of 300+ miles at least a few times a year. In order for an EV to truly meet all of one’s needs, you need 200 miles + supercharging.

      Also, keep in mind that 200 miles of range which GM/Tesla talk about is actually more like 150 in the real world (e.g. winter time with heat).

      1. kdawg says:

        200 mile range is relevant if you don’t want to rely on finding a place to charge at your destination. Leaving some buffer in there (say 20 miles), that gives you 180 miles of range or a 90 mile radius. This is good for going to a nearby town for the day and driving home on a single charge. Very important to me.

    2. Anthony says:

      Early in the LEAF’s life, there was a study in Japan that showed people felt comfortable to go about 1/2 the range of their car per day. By building a 200 mile range car, they’re effectively making a car that people feel comfortable driving 100-125 miles per day. Adding fast-charge stations throughout cities (not in between them) will help a little, giving people comfort knowing that if they absolutely had to, they could pay $5 and quick charge for 15 minutes and get 60 miles of range to finish off their day.

    3. Warren says:

      Your 2.5 times pack is 60 kWh…just like a Tesla S. How do you propose making a steel Leaf as light and aero as a Tesla S for $40K?

  4. IDK says:

    If true and if GM can get the car out by (some reports) 2015 and beat Tesla’s date of late 2016…they could potentially steal a good chunk of sales from Tesla. People are more likely to purchase a car from a company with a proven track record of being around. Not saying Tesla won’t be around but they don’t have the track record (yet). There is still a lot of speculation of when and who will buy Tesla. A thought that is still in a lot of consumers minds when considering a purchase from Tesla.

  5. Spec says:

    I have my doubts as to whether this is really possible. But I will be delighted to eat crow if GM and/or Tesla pulls it off. Who needs gasoline?

  6. Ocean Railroader says:

    I think GM could pull this off faster then we think in that they are a giant car company that finally feels Tesla is a large enough threat to them. So now they are using there large weight to finally to try and crush Tesla. But the question is who will get their car out sooner Tesla or GM.

  7. Warren says:

    There have been, and will be, breakthroughs in battery tech, but the car makers didn’t initiate any of it. It all came from outside…consumer electronics, government mandates, advocate pressure. Now that we have EV’s in large numbers, the car makers may feel willing to pressure battery makers.

  8. scott moore says:

    This is GM pulling an old IBM play. Announce a product that does not exist, and hopefully damp a bit of the competitor’s sales as customers wait for your vapor product. IBM got into anti-trust trouble with this. I doubt seriously that GM will move faster than Tesla.

    1. ItsNotAboutTheMoney says:

      Well, given that the competitor is in effect trying to do the same thing, I don’t think that this is a big deal.

      I think it’s more “Volt Look Volt at Volt all Volt the Volt research Volt we’re Volt doing. Volt We’re Volt really Volt tech-cool Volt.”

  9. Bill Howland says:

    ·”…..“We may do a couple of cars up there too because that’s a great place to be and we’re a full-line manufacturer,” said Parks. …..”

    Its refreshing that at least someone at GM has half a brain. If they made a big EV, or PHEV, that surpassed the “S” ‘s creature comforts, they’d have that market all to themselves for years. I don’t mean coming in with a bigger touch screen. There are ways to make a Big Comfortable Car without gadgets.

    · Ok lets have some fun with this…

    How bout making a Cadillac Fleetwood ( or to prevent date – ing myself), or Mercedes E-Class vehicle size wise?

    Have they got the Synergy Drive manufacturing cost down now so that the marginal cost of individual units is minimal? Ok Great.

    Put Two SD’s in, one for the left front, and right front. Stick with the 4 inverters since they are now cheap to make. Have that Toyota Subsidiary do a once over on their CadCam software to plunk out a mirror image of what they’ve already designed.

    In the center put in a big 4 cylinder engine with dual shafts (170 hp, double what they have in the ELR now). To really stand out, put in a 48 kwh battery, giving the thing a 100 mile range on battery alone.

    Whether they want to stick with GM’s 3.3 kw charger is fine by me. Maybe they could take a page out of Tesla Marketing and shoehorn TWO of them giving 6.6 kw so that the battery would charge up overnight. As for a QuickCharger option, I vote for Chademo but I’m in the minority there. Maybe leave that for the next year’s enhancement until the standards situation improves.

    Put it in an Elegant Car Body and sell the thing as “Kinda like an S, but a lot MORE”
    .

  10. alainl007 says:

    Hello,

    General Motors Again Promises …………………what?? EV1 story for sure!!!!!! What else from a pétrol engines makers? Envia?? What?? Sponsorized by GM, and gaz?? Ahh, too funny!!!!!!!!
    Yeah, yeah, we know it!!! Bla bla bla and bla bla bla, GM have to sell old pétrol engines!!!
    Yeah, yeah, we all know that!!!
    The only dream of a pétrol engines makers, and friends ExxonMobil and ….. ………..it’s to kill Tesla!!!

    Regards.

    1. Kickincanada says:

      Brutal commentary sorry but you are ignorant.

  11. Bret says:

    I am rooting for GM and especially for the Envia batteries. 200 mile, $30,000 EVs are a game changer, that could sell in the millions and cause people to choose EVs over less expensive ICE vehicles. People used to make fun of hybrids, like the Prius, but they are definitely buying them now.

    Tesla doesn’t need a battery breakthrough to sell a 200 mile Gen III for $35,000. Elon Musk has already confirmed this to the press. They can easily produce a battery pack needed for the Gen III from the 18650 laptop cells at the required cost. GM and others using large format cells are definitely going to need a breakthrough, such as the Envia batteries, if they are going to compete with Tesla in the mass market. I truly believe we are just a couple of years away from some great EVs.

  12. Kickincanada says:

    Personally the recent comments by GM are the most positive I’ve seen in a long time. I was one of the first Volt owners in Canada to own a Volt and I’m always amazed at how quick everyone is to put down GM or jump ship. GM, Nissan and Tesla were first out of the gate GM has continued to deliver. Lets hope they deliver something that looks as good as a Tesla!

  13. ModernMarvelFan says:

    I think we are all going to be the judge of this in 3 years….

    Many Volt owners would easily be the next buyer of the so called 200 miles $35K BEV. However, both GM and Tesla are claiming it. Neither has shown any real product close to that idea. Tesla is depending a declining battery price and GM is hoping for a battery breakthrough. Two different approach that end up giving us the choice…

    Whoever gets there with the best product will get my hard earned money….

  14. Future EV Driver says:

    This news is the result of GM’s DTF regarding Tesla.

    I’m sure they will have this EV ready for 2016! 😉