Watch As Chevy Bolt EV Is Stripped Down For Cost Analysis Research


What’s under the hood of this Chevrolet Bolt EV?

As our hardcore readership is well aware, we love to share videos on InsideEVs. We’re well aware that the visual stimulation may appeal to much of the internet-surfing audience. However, some people just don’t have time to deal with long videos. Instead, they’d rather read an article. Many of these deep-dive cost analysis shares are super lengthy. But, this recent share via FT Transact regarding the Chevrolet Bolt EV is short and sweet. You get the best of all worlds: the most important details and a concise article with a short video attached.

If you follow the segment, you’ve likely heard of UBS. It’s a Swiss investment bank that tends to perform such tear downs to get a better idea of what costs are involved. In fact, there was a bit of a situation fairly recently between Sandy Munro and UBS, of which we never really received final details. At any rate, this short video share talks about the Chevrolet Bolt EV and its overall value based on a cost analysis piece-by-piece and/or part-by-part.

UBS notes that EVs are becoming increasingly less expensive to produce and will eventually cost less to build and to buy than comparable ICE cars. Check out the video and let us know your thoughts in the comment section below.

Video Description via FT Transact on YouTube:

Electric Vehicles: Who wins under the hood?

Electric Vehicles are going mainstream, but when will they become profitable for manufacturers, and which sectors and firms are set to benefit the most? UBS strips down a 2017 Chevy Bolt and lets at a team of 39 analysts loose on its 563 parts to find out where the profits lie in what’s set to be a major industrial disruption.

The content in this video was relevant on 16th July 2017. Current views may differ.

Categories: Chevrolet

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55 Comments on "Watch As Chevy Bolt EV Is Stripped Down For Cost Analysis Research"

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Tesla was built as an EV from the ground up. The Bolt is a compliance car as they used the a Spark and placed it on a battery skateboard. Cheap! Cheap! Cheap!

Bolt was not built on Spark platform. They’re not even close to the same size.

Typical fanboy. False information is easier than learning the subject. It would certainly be easier to have a discussion on these topics without them. Do your research before you spread false information. You owe it to yourself not to be an idiot.

Typical Tesla hater, regurgitating fact-free pravduh B.S. and exposing his deep ignorance of the subject.

Is Sandy Munro a “Tesla fanboy” too? Well, come to think of it… I guess he is, after having done a teardown and test drive of the Model 3. What a road-to-Damascus like conversion experience for Sandy, going from a Tesla basher and cynic to an enthusiastic Tesla fanboy!

* * * * *
Here’s what Sandy had to say about the Bolt EV. Caveat: This is taken from what appears to be a ‘bot’s voice-to-text transcript, so accuracy not guaranteed:

…from an engineering point of view I’ll start with a Bolt the Bolt did a good thing GM doesn’t have a lot of money to throw at all the different cars that they’re developing they took a Spark ripped out the bottom told somebody else to come in here put in batteries and motors and whatnot saved a tremendous amount of engineering costs and whatnot and NRE and and boomp wound up with a car and got it into the marketplace quick…

That’s from time stamp 23:30 – 23:57 in the video featured at the article linked below:

He didn’t say anything about Tesla until you brought it up as far as this sequence of thread is concerned.

Anyone can scroll up and see the very first word in the OP is “Tesla”, MMF. What you’re saying is quite clearly not true.

But hey, nice attempt there to change the subject. The point I made is that asserting the Bolt EV is a development off the Spark is a very, very well-informed opinion… about as far from “false information” as it’s possible to get.

What’s false information is asserting that Scott is not well-informed on the subject. He is clearly quite well informed.

Sandy is full of BS on this one. The intitial test mule had the back end of a Sonic. Not a spark.

But the rest of the platform they ended up design the chassis from scratch for the production version.

Come on man. You get an F+ as a TSLA fanboi trolling GM. Lol
Unless you are trying to be like Elon with the outright misinformation.

That’s pretty much what Sandy Munro said, too, when comparing the Bolt EV to the Tesla Model 3. I wanna be a fly on the wall when you try to tell Sandy that he’s a trolling Tesla fanboi, or that it’s “outright misinformation” that the Bolt EV was developed from the Spark.
🙂 🙂 🙂

Munro also got stumped by his show hosts when they stumped him in the face about using aluminium in F-150 after he proclaimed how “bad” decision is to go with aluminium.

Sometimes, he just makes comments about something he doesn’t really know. He is now an owner of a company and his engineers do the actual work.

I didn’t claim that everything Sandy said is correct. For example, I think he’s wrong about the TM3 when he claims the car would be better off with a strong battery pack casing rather than a strong bottom to the car body. Tesla did exactly what he’s advocating in all three of its previous models, including the old Roadster, but they changed to a light casing for the TM3. I think Tesla must have had good reasons for the change, despite what Sandy thinks.

But altho nobody is right all the time — that includes both Sandy and myself — Sandy certainly has a much, much better informed opinion than either you or I about the build quality of the Bolt EV, especially as compared to the quality of the Tesla Model 3 and the BMW i3.

““As soon as the battery was ready, engineers at GM’s Michigan proving ground hacked together a bastard car using the front half of a Chevy Sonic and the rear of a Buick Encore. “

Meanwhile the real body was being developed and 100 prototypes built and thousands of changes made.

The Bolt is it’s own platform.

It is meaningless semantics. GM did start with the Gamma2 platform but modified it so heavily that they consider it a new platform.

It shares a lot of design DNA with other Gamma2 platform siblings like the Buick Encore, but the actual parts are not the same due to the extensive modifications to fit the battery in the skateboard.

That’s how every new vehicle architecture is developed. Why reinvent the wheel. The Bolt EV is on BEV2. While GM did start with Gamma II as the foundation that morphed into the new BEV2 platform. The Bolt EV only shares one part with any Gamma II car. It literally is an all new car built as a BEV from the ground up.

Wrong; the Bolt is built from recycled toilet paper on a donkey cart chassis and uses a voltaic pile and an electric jigsaw motor for propulsion.

another uneducated, poor comment made by a Tesla fanboy.

Another example of unintended irony by a serial Tesla basher.

You are the one who started using ANY TERMS relating to Tesla in this thread. Look it up. So, maybe you should look in the mirror for once.

Good grief, MMF, are you actually doubling down on your very obviously false statement?

Look at the very first word in the first comment here. That word is “Tesla”.

And the second response to that was from a serial Tesla basher which started “Typical fanboy. False information…”

So you get a round of Bronx cheers for your multiple false statements. 😛 😛 😛

It’s funny seeing how InsideEVs became a battleground for anti-tesla and tesla fanboys.

Yeah, that kinda thing goes on with the ‘MOMMY’S BASEMENT’ types until Mommy yells for them to calm down.
With some of them Mommy has got to be in her late 80’s by now, if the commenters are around 64.

Tesla makes almost everything in-house including their motors vs outside suppliers(middlemen) from other manufacturers. Without a gigafactory making its own batteries other manufacturers will be dependent on battery bottlenecks(middlemen)from other manufacturers cutting significantly in their own profit margin.

Battery bottlenecks like Tesla has with Panasonic?

Relationship with Panasonic is definitely a bit special. For instance, the tooling from Panasonic is actually counted toward’s Tesla capex and the agreement is to buy the entire output. The difference is really the level of up front commitment to scale as well as joint efforts to lower energy footprint and costs.

“Battery bottlenecks like Tesla has with Panasonic?”

No, Mr. Serial Tesla Basher. Much, much worse than the ongoing problems Tesla has had with Panasonic not ramping up production as fast as Tesla needs. Most notably, VW has had to go to multiple cell suppliers for its contracts just for the near term, because no one battery cell maker can supply them.

And with VW apparently locking up much or most of the increase those battery cell makers will be building out in the next few years, it looks like other auto makers won’t have any chance at all to make long-range plug-in EVs into high production, unless and until they pay to build their own cell factories.

I guess we ought to see Nissan’s plan to use AESC batteries rather than LG batteries for the Leaf Plus as being a very good thing.

Unless AESC has recently licensed significantly better battery chemistry/tech from LG Chem or some other leading battery maker, I don’t see how it’s possible for that to be a good thing for Nissan. Continuing to use the same obviously inferior battery cell chemistry they’ve been using in the Leaf is clearly a losing proposition.

I’m not quite sure why the GM fanbois disagree with this comment. GM is dependent upon LG for the manufacture of the powertrain, battery and electronics. LG has already announced that they cannot keep up with demand. And GM is demanding very little from LG.

To be fair, LG has had a rapidly growing list of clients all clamoring for their lower-cost EV cells. GM is only one of LG’s clients. I don’t know that GM has to get in line with everyone else, but certainly LG’s increases in volume of battery cells in the coming years can’t all go to GM and nobody else.

The brain of Tesla comes from China. China is controlling Tesla cars.

“…will eventually cost less to build and to buy than comparable ICE cars”

UBS did **NOT** say that. Please don’t perpetuate this myth. The numbers aren’t even close.

UBS estimated BEVs would reach “TCO parity” in 2018 in Europe and 2025 in the US. TCO parity means higher upfront cost offset by lower operating cost. It happens in Europe sooner because they have much higher gas prices.

UBS said this initial TCO parity price would produce operating losses for OEMs, but as costs continued to decline OEMs would reach operating breakeven by 2022 in Europe and 2027 in the US. Operating break even means they cover costs of production, sales, warranty and R&D but do NOT recover their upfront investment in buildings and machinery and such. UBS then said OEMs would reach a typical 5% EBIT margin in 2023 in Europe and 2028 in the US.

They never said BEVs will reach purchase price parity or build cost parity on any of these dates. The whole idea is silly outside of a few niches.

The Tesla Model 3 is arguably already at purchase price parity with many other vehicles in its segment.

Model 3 price is close to BMW 3 series in the US, or will be if they ever make a base version. Imported performance sedans are the main niche I had in mind.

Model 3 is similar to Camry/Accord, though, except for 0-60 time. Tesla can’t come near those prices, even if they reduced motor power.

Let’s race a Model 3 with a Camry/Accord in a straight line, around a track. up a hill, down a hill. Where, in that line of racing, will a Camry/Accord come close to keeping up?

OTOH, a Model 3 will compete against any 3 series in all those races listed above. You attempt to insult the Model 3 is as worthless as your post.

I am imagining a Toyota Camry going for a lap record at Laguna Seca. It is brown with spots, like a dog. In fact, it is covered in plush and has floppy ears on the side. The BMW i3 is next only it is shaped like a beer keg and the driver and copilot are wearing military helmets. Then there is a Nissan Leaf. It is a bit like a dune buggy or a banana and there is a surfboard on the roof. The drivers look like beatniks. There is a bright green Bollinger driven by two bears wearing neckties and fedora hats. FUNtastic!

“Model 3 is similar to Camry/Accord, though, except for 0-60 time.”

Maybe the quality of the Model 3 is that low on Earth-2. Here in the real world, the Model 3 was made to compete with the BMW 3-Series and the Audi A4… and is doing so quite handily!

Ouch, talk about a slam against BMW and Audi in the quality dept. !

That was low.

Quality? Please tell me you’re joking.

Model 3 sells on performance, futuristic tech features (s/w integration, AP, nifty HVAC vent, etc.) and branding. It doesn’t come close to Camry/Accord in build quality.

My point is the stuff Tesla does very well don’t really add much cost. Use a less powerful motor and save a hundred bucks. Don’t integrate the s/w so well and build cost would go UP.

Tesla does well in the premium/performance segment, and they have a lot of untapped premium segment available (CUV, SUV, pickup, etc.). But neither Tesla nor anyone else has a path to build a mainstream car that competes with Camry and Accord on upfront cost. The equation gets even worse in the Corolla/Civic segment.

There’s way too much fantasy around here on this particular subject.

After his teardown analysis of the Model 3, Sandy Munro has had a real “conversion” experience to being a self-confessed Tesla fanboy, after apparently being a Tesla basher and cynic for some time. Sandy’s opinions are pretty thoroughly informed, based on his teardown of the Model 3, the Bolt EV, and also the BMW i3. How about your opinions, Doggy? I’m guessing… not so much. I’m not joking, and neither is Sandy. If you doubt that Sandy Munro has lately been raving about all the many advantages Tesla has over its competition, then listen for yourself in the video in the article at the link below. Yeah, Sandy criticizes Tesla for the lack of quality control in the car body, and for some of what he sees (rightly or wrongly) as deficiencies in the choice of body components. But everything inside the car, and the way it drives, and the control interfaces, and the way everything works together as a whole, Sandy raves about. Judging a Tesla car by just the way the body is assembled is as ill-informed as judging a book by its cover. As Sandy himself says, the type of people who buy a Tesla don’t care… Read more »

There stuff Munro raves about is all the stuff the previous posters says they do well. And all the stuff Munro complained about is all the stuff the previous poster says Tesla still needs to improve at. Tesla ain’t perfect, but they make one helluva Sports Sedan EV.

Did you watch the video? From UBS? They literally sat in the video cost will be lower than comparable ICE by 2023.

I’d be really curious to know how the UBS breakdown compare to the Munro breakdown.

It’s the same teardown. Munro focuses on parts and labor costs. UBS adds on other costs like SG&A and R&D.


I’m glad this video was short because I didn’t learn anything.

It’s funny how everybody back in 2017 thought the M3 was actually going to sell for $35K.

Haha!!! Touche… That, now that you mention it, is very true. And yet people try to say that GM hasn’t achieved anything other thean disparage the quite nice BOLT/Ampera-e – even though you can buy 2 of the cheapest bolts when compared to the “3”)(when real transaction prices are really the only thing that matters to someone actually BUYING a car – not all the self-appointed BIG EXPERTS – some of whom aren’t even legally allowed to drive anything) – those people could not care less about things like
1). Purchase price.
2). Cost to repair.
3). Longevity of the product

since its all ‘armchair’ with them and they don’t live in the real world.

It’s somewhat fair, but I bet we’ll see a 35k Model 3, before we see a desirable EV from GM.

And I would also bet we see the Bolt discontinued around the same time we do see the 35k Model 3.

At this point I trust Tesla far more than GM when it come to future product.

Where are those two new EVs we were supposed to see from GM?

Yeah Paul – If you’ve been paying attention you’ll know I’m not Mary Barra’s biggest fan. I’m very unimpressed they discontinued the ELR and VOLT – without announcing any replacements (and even that Joke that appeared over a year later – the PHEV CT6 which they tried to pick up ELR buyers – they discontinued that one too, even though that is the only one that was deserved since it sold around 1/10th as much as the ‘slow selling ELR’, which they only made for 12 months. The BOLT ev (with the basic Cloth Seats) is perfectly fine, although the competition from the Asian companies is coming up. Discontinuing the VOLT just means people are going to buy the superior value Clarity. And as far as North America is concerned, I wouldn’t be surprised if we just get badge-engineered BOLTS from now on – since – here we have a disagreement – you say it isn’t a nice car, and I say it is – but in any event it looks like the only Electric anything we will basically see from GM in a long time. Of course, then they’ll have to play catch up when Honda, and Tesla eat… Read more »

Honda Clarity PHEV isn’t exactly selling like hot cakes either.

In the US, The Bolt EV is the number 1 selling non-Tesla BEV.

I will state this; That if all Gm’s ev products now musT by corporate dictat be based on the BOLT powertrain, and they will never make a PHEV again – that one car i would buy would have 2 bolt batteries (114 – 120 KWH) and be a large Cadillac.

I would also take a large car with an ICE, and bolt power train to have the thing have 100 mile AER (with the exIsting 57 kw battery and 200 hp electric ,otor

China. They announced two new Buick’s. The Velite 6 EV and PHEV. The baojun e200, and there are another couple Buick EVs in development for China.

Most brain-dead statement of the day is: Winner is “Scott”

“Tesla was built as an EV from the ground up. The Bolt is a compliance car as they used the a Spark and placed it on a battery skateboard. Cheap! Cheap! Cheap!”

— But it was worth a good laught !! More laughable is the article itself mainly because it’s such old news from over a year ago.

Less than informative. Pretty much an ad to make you want to buy their teardown analysis report.