General Motors Enters New Era Of Mobility With Creation Of Global Propulsion Systems Division

FEB 19 2016 BY MARK KANE 21

GM Powertrain Timeline

GM Powertrain Timeline

The New 2016 Volt Features 53 Miles Of All-Electric Range, And A 1.5L Generator That Nets 42 MPG Thereafter

2016 Chevrolet Volt

General Motors announced the renaming of its GM Powertrain division to GM Global Propulsion Systems, in order to better reflect new era in propulsion technology and product diversity.

According to press release GM Global Propulsion Systems employs more than 8,600 people that design, develop and engineer all propulsion related products and controls for GM worldwide.

Interesting is also that nearly 50% of engineering workforce is involved with alternative or electrified propulsion systems.

“GM is the first OEM to formally transition to a new naming convention to reflect industry trends and its evolution over the years. GM’s expanding capabilities include the estimated more than 200 miles of range on a single charge on the all-electric Chevrolet Bolt EV (based on GM testing). GM also produced the highest non-hybrid passenger car fuel economy in the US market at an EPA estimated highway 46 mpg in the 2.0L diesel powered Chevrolet Cruze. GM Global Propulsion Systems is also known for its experience with hydrogen fuel cells.

Nearly 50 percent of the Global Propulsion Systems engineering workforce is involved with alternative or electrified propulsion systems. Other notable systems include award-winning products like the all-new 3.6L V6 with cylinder deactivation available in the Cadillac CT6. GM has more vehicles on the road with this fuel-saving technology than any other manufacturer. Other recent recognized achievements include the award winning second generation Voltec propulsion system in the Chevrolet Volt and the highly acclaimed drivetrain for the Opel Astra.”

Chevrolet Bolt EV Motor - 266 lb-ft of torque/200 hp

Chevrolet Bolt EV Motor – 266 lb-ft of torque/200 hp

Mark Reuss, executive vice president, Global Product Development said:

“The new name is another step on our journey to redefine transportation and mobility. Global Propulsion Systems better conveys what we are developing and offering to our customers: an incredibly broad, diverse lineup – ranging from high-tech 3-cylinder gasoline engines to fuel cells, V8 diesel engines to battery electric systems, and 6-, 7-, 8-, 9- and 10-speed to continuously variable transmissions.”

Dan Nicholson, vice president, GM Global Propulsion Systems said:

“Gone are the days when a gasoline engine and a transmission designed independently meet a customer’s expectations. Today’s customer is demanding unprecedented technology integration that requires unprecedented engineering and supplier partnerships. The diversity of our propulsion systems requires a name that reflects what we are already working on and delivering to our customers. I believe this will establish an industry trend.”

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21 Comments on "General Motors Enters New Era Of Mobility With Creation Of Global Propulsion Systems Division"

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L M A 0…………

GM certainly deserves kudos for its breakthrough, cutting edge Voltec engineering.

Not so much for re-labeling things and describing them with a huge pile of meaningless corporate-speak.


Just Slap some Cadillac Badges On a Chevy Nova or a Chevy Cavalier…Fancy it up a Bit & Put a Cadillac Price Tag on it… l o l …

Wow, someone remembers Seville and Cimarron. I used to think they did the same with Volt to ELR.


Just like ingredients on food items you buy in the grocery store, the item listed first is the item with the most significance/content, then the less significant all the way to the least.
Look where “battery electric” lands in the list.

In my experience, renaming a major division in a large entity typically means someone high up either gained or lost a big position during the change.

I work for a large corporation in the aerospace industry. Amazing to see all the snarky comments!!! Every time there is a new VP or CEO things get shaken up and new divisions are created old ones are renamed. This is how people in power put their stamp on a Corporation. As stupid as it sounds to people on the outside this is probably a pretty big deal. Old corporations with a culture of doing things the way they have always done take a Lot of effort steered in a new direction. I believe that is what is happening here and I applaud GM for doing it. The folks bashing are probably the ones who loved Toyota 5 to 10 years ago. If you were looking for a big corporate entity to bash try the one who was the leader and decided to stop innovating not the one who made crappy cars and decided to lead the pack. Make no mistake the voly and the bolt are leading the pack. Granted GM is no tesla but for a very large corporation entrenched in making large gas guzzling SUV’s they are reinventing themselves the best they can.

Yup and my hope is those gaining are from the alternative propulsion division. Not trying to dis the fuelly guys as the ICE will be around for a long time and it’s important to keep improving too; albeit a road of rapidly diminishing returns.

Gsned57: Finally an educated comment! I could not have elaborated any better! Thank you!

GM leading with the Bolt a car that does yet exist? There were some snarky comments true, but when it comes to the New GM I don’t feel they are too misplaced.

Special interests & agendas for personal Profits And /0r Gains….

I for one am willing to finally declare energy crisis over. The energy crisis has lasted for the last forty years, ever since the oil embargoes of 1970s. We have seen oil prices fluctuate over that time but never have they been as low relatively as they are now. I don’t believe the oil companies will ever again be able to exert the strangle hold on world’s economies like they have done in the past. The oil companies can say electric vehicles are irelaventirrelavent as much as they want but the fact is that modern EVs give us a very viable alternative to oil burners. If the oil companies ever again try to jack up prices just to increase profits they will see a mass migration to EVs eroding their market share. No we have not seen the end of oil burners and the air pollution they cause, I’m afraid the end of oil burners is still going to take many years and major effort by politicians and consumers to see that happen. But our lives will never again revolve around how much fuel we can afford. It’s a good feeling to know that my grandchildren will never have to… Read more »
FFE, there has never been an energy crisis nor will there be when all FF is gone or at least not economical to produce. The sun shines 5Mwhr/day on an average US 100’x100′ lot. If you can’t get your energy needs from that or wind, biomass, wastes, etc clean power, fuels it is isn’t my problem. Our only energy problem is being dependent on FF with subsidies for FF so large in rules like it is illegal to sell solar power in Fla except by utilities that don’t have it, pollution, land, air, water destruction, etc it is hard to overcome even with superior tech. That will soon be in them with US big oil/NG going for a carbon tax last month throwing coal, oil sands under the bus. But that seems to have been cracked and clean power showing not paying for FF, etc cost, clean power costs less, not more. And getting cheaper. Soon plug and play here, already normal in the 3rd world, will allow even renters to have their own cheaply, not even hooking into the grid. And EV’s the same thing though I’ve been driving them 23 yrs now, has reached the point of no… Read more »

The oil companies have all cut CAPEX spending.
Capital Expenditures, development of new reserves.

We’re just in a bigger Boom and Bust cycle.
You’ll see $5 gas in the future.
The only question is will you have switched to an EV and won’t care.

The irony is that DRILL BABY DRILL attitude in America has caused low oil prices along with flat worldwide oil demand, but all that will change if a Republican gets in White House and invades an oil producing nation….IRAN HAS WMD

That 50% figure is bit misleading. If someone works on a belt that’s primarily for gas engine, but also happens to be used by EV, that engineer counts to the 50%. Technically true, but not what we’d expect. I suspect dedicated EV workforce is a tiny minority, though those guys are really good.

It would be interesting to see an org chart of the propulsion division with the head count for each subdivision.

The headcount for the EV division will naturally be lower.
1) LG Chem is doing the battery work.
2) GM only need build an electric motor.

No need for a gas engine, transmission, emissions section or exhaust section.

No need for EPA compliance of any kind.

If those stats for the Bolt electric motor are true, I’d love to swap it into my LEAF in about 5 years.