GM’s Electric Future – 300 Miles Of Range, Desirable And Affordable


NOV 27 2017 BY MARK KANE 172


General Motors Electrification Mission (source: GM’s CEO Mary Barra – Barclays Global Automotive Conference)

Wrapping our minds around General Motors’ vision of the automotive future has taken a bit of time and we’re still not fully confident that GM will pull off all it claims, but regardless of that, what was shared at the recent Barclays Global Automotive Conference is certainly worthy of everyone’s attention.

General Motors developed one of today’s most important electric cars with 238 miles of range – the Chevrolet Bolt EV. Now, GM lays out plans for the whole lineup.


GM: new battery pack in 2021 – cost below $100/kWh

The electrification mission includes:

  • Desirable
  • Obtainable
  • Profitable vehicles
  • Over 300 miles of range

The affordability of the Bolt EV is indisputable, as it was the first long-range model with a price below $30,000 after the federal tax credit.

By 2020, GM will introduce two new electric cars – one of which is a BolT-based CUV to sport a Buick badge.

Around 2021, an all-new platform is to be introduced for multi-brand and multi-segment vehicles.

Battery cost of $145/kWh was breaking news in the past, but the automaker is now moving forward with a goal of 30% reduction to less than $100/kWh in the new platform.

Lower prices and higher energy density will translate into battery options of up to 300 miles of EPA range! Also, DC fast-charging will be improved in terms of acceptable power.

An InsideEVs source anonymous) was at a focus group this Summer, and confidently states THIS is GM’s next all-electric vehicle – a compact utility offering under the Buick badge

Here’s an overload of info, in slide form, from GM’s presentation:


General Motors Electrification Mission (source: Barclays Global Automotive Conference)


General Motors Electrification Mission (source: Barclays Global Automotive Conference)


General Motors Electrification Mission (source: Barclays Global Automotive Conference)


General Motors Electrification Mission (source: Barclays Global Automotive Conference)


General Motors Electrification Mission (source: Barclays Global Automotive Conference)


General Motors Electrification Mission (source: Barclays Global Automotive Conference)


General Motors Electrification Mission (source: Barclays Global Automotive Conference)


General Motors Electrification Mission (source: Barclays Global Automotive Conference)


General Motors Electrification Mission (source: Barclays Global Automotive Conference)


General Motors Electrification Mission (source: Barclays Global Automotive Conference)

Source: GM’s CEO Mary Barra – Barclays Global Automotive Conference

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172 Comments on "GM’s Electric Future – 300 Miles Of Range, Desirable And Affordable"

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Nice to see them taking about infrastructure development.

GM., Can you say , “Charging Infrastructure”… …..yes?…It can be done overnight. Now You’re Talking !

EV manufacturers should not be building charging stations any more than ICE manufactures built gasoline stations. All charging stations should work for any light (not heavy truck) EV.

Unlike Tesla’s seemingly money loosing charging system (admittedly necessary to get things going) electricity will have to be sold at a profit for the whole thing to work.

As I was reading down over the list I have to admit I was a bit surprised to see GM mention fast charging infrastructure. I guess we’ll see.

Obviously it needs to be multi stall 150+ kW ChargePoint Express Plus fast charger style setups in order to properly serve all EVs soon to come and for the next decade.
ChargePoint’s Express Plus is capable of up to 400 kW. That’s plenty enough for BEV SUVs and pickup trucks.

It all takes time tho. ChargePoint said its ChargePoint Express Plus fast charger was going on sale in July, but I haven’t heard of any being bought and installed by anyone yet.

Thanks, but the article on Diamler is only about them investing, and the Instavolt deal is simply them saying they will buy (which they may have by now), but definitely nothing has been installed yet.

(⌐■_■) Trollnonymous

“when necessary”

That’s about as empty of a promise as you can get…
That rollout will be even slower than the Model 3!!!!

As my Model 3 is about a year away, Tesla has over 100 Supercharger Stalls under construction in Ontario now, 5 sites each with 20 Stalls, and 2 with 8! Plus, Ottawa went live just a week or so back, with, I think, at least 8, as well!

Plus, there are more sites planned in Ontario for 2017, as well as for 2018!

I suspect there is a large # of Tesla Sales in Ontario (Canada)! And, LOTS of Model 3 Reservation orders!

Tesla will build all their EV’s in both LHD and RHD but will GM ?

GM doesn’t sell cars in RHD countries any longer, so probably not. Unless Opel or some other company wants to pay to engineer the cars for those markets.

Holden Australia still exists as a GM subsidiary.

That said, given the lukewarm reception of the Holden Volt, GM is probably not going to offer another RHD EV until they have a proven LHD high-volume seller, which later gets adapted to RHD markets.

Interesting to find out what the “low roof” and “luxury low roof” cars turn out to be. I’m sure the luxury car = Cadillac. I’d guess the other low roof would be a Chevy…hopefully some Camaro/Corvette e-variant.

So in 2021, it seems 300 miles will be the new standard for GM plug-ins. Future looks good!

High roof means SUV or CUV so expect low roof to mean car.

Not sure I agree. The Bolt is a relatively high roof car.

Yes, GM would like you to think the Bolt is a CUV

Buick will have an EV CUV based on the Bolt.

The Bolt it a CUV? Absurd! But that’s marketing for you.

BMW’s X6 and Mercedes GLE are both “coupes”…

Two counterpoints…
1. The term CUV is less than a decade old by my recollection so its definition is rather arbitrary.
2. The Bolt is Compact, it has Utility, and is in fact a Vehicle soooo…technically….

I suspect there will be usual anti GM idiots talking about compliance car blah blah. Just like Tesla will get over NDA issue that you bitched about, GM will eventually sell in much wider markets. Future does indeed looks good for EV, but I wish GM would make EV that could beat Tesla Roadster at Corvette price.

Just want GM to offer a comparable EV sports car to the Camaro (price, performance, size) but better looking. I’m not a huge fan of the retro muscle car look.

The Vette has always offered the most performance per dollar for sports cars and GM could try to keep that going in the EV age but performane BEVs are cheap and easy to do compared to ICE so any manufacture can do cheap performance now…
Need more battery price reductions along with cooling so you can go fast in more than a short straight line…

I wouldn’t mind even short straight line performance. Considering Vette pulls 1.2g lateral acceleration, even 0.9g (similar to Tesla 3) might be fine with me.

I don’t even know what the low roof lux car is, but I want it. 😀

Maybe they should start taking $1000 deposits. (j/k)

They can definitely do it. Today we have a $44,000 midsize EV sedan that gets 310-328 miles of range. So it’s not unreasonable to think that in 4 years GM can make an EV with similar range for $10K less.

They already have that. It’s called a Volt.


It’s a hell of a thing when the automobile industry has reached the point where SUVs and CUVs are the default product, and a real car is seen as the “low-roof” variant. It’s like automobiles have suddenly gone back in time 80 years in their proportions.

Well the good news is that a lot of CUVs actually still get good gas mileage. The only difference is the profile shape, but they’re not actually heavy or inefficient anymore. They also don’t actually have much utility, but it turns out people just want the illusion of utility, not the real thing (and to be honest probably 90% really don’t need an actual SUV).

Nice to see them talking about partnering for charging infrastructure.
The last thing we need is a bunch of manufacturer specific charging networks.

I sort of agree. GM should partner with Tesla. That would make the Bolt a car worth considering for long range use.

I’ve long hoped that Tesla would spin out their power division (generate, charge, store), add other charging interfaces and make a business that caters to all.

But I don’t see any sign of that happening.

I’ve been bemused by various people claiming that Tesla is “really” an energy company, and that it only sells cars as a means to that end.

And yet, Tesla is trying hard to make its Supercharger network revenue neutral. Clearly Tesla does not think it’s in the business of making a profit by selling electricity! And guaranteeing the low rate of 7¢/kWh for its Megachargers, charging Tesla Semi Trucks, doesn’t sound like a profitable enterprise, either.

* * * * *

The Ford Motor Co. did not need to build a nationwide network of gas stations in order for its Model T to sell, in 1908-1927. I don’t see GM building its own network of EV chargers, either, for the same reason.

GM has every reason not to do so, so long as selling gasmobiles is more profitable for them than selling PEVs (Plug-in EVs). Suggesting GM is going to change its policy on this is IMHO just wishful thinking. So I don’t see GM doing any more than a token effort toward building any EV charging network, unless the economic situation changes and GM thinks it can make more profit selling PEVs.

But by mandating that all dealerships that want to sell the Bolt install DCFC chargers, they already have put thousands of chargers out in the wild. They could do the same thing for the next BUICK EV. Or indeed for each of those 20 models they plan.

Dealership Chargers are not ‘In the Wild’, they are like a caged animal at a Zoo! You have limited Visiting hours at the Zoo, and Dealerships are the same!

Does anyone seriously know the MINIMUM sized DCFC CCS required for the dealership?

My Bolt dealership, which, of 11 dealerships the family owns – happens to be the largest of their stores, and was the only one that had a 30 amp (6 kw) docking station. They’ve since added a SECOND 40 amp (8 kw) docking station presumably to charge all the BOLT’s they are selling and test driving. The surprising thing is their smaller chevy and cadillac dealers never ever had anything L2 let alone L3. The small chevy dealer would use the ‘occasional use’ cord set to recharge the volts and ELRs at 110, using an extension cord to reach the car.

But I don’t think they have a fast charger yet, and checking Alibaba you can find very cheap ccs chargers in the 6-10 kw range.

IF it is just to test the DCFC facility, I wouldn’t think you’d need much.

Tesla should just adopt CCS and be done with it.

Or everyone else should stop fighting the Leader, and go with Tesla’s plug! Far more versatile! However, only CHAdeMO is the same everywhere!

Tesla doesn’t even use its own plug on all of its cars. Not every country is willing to allow automakers to intentionally fracture the EV charging market for their own interest.

And while it’s true that CHAdeMO is the same everywhere, it’s also true that it’s the only connection that doesn’t support AC charging.

Chademo ‘doesn’t support AC charging’

True, unless you have a DC charger at home.

Anyone know what $100/KWh cell cost translates into in terms of consumer cost for a complete battery installed in a vehicle?

For example, if the cells for a 100KWh pack cost $10,000, does that translate to $12K, $15K, $25K… as part of the MSRP of the vehicle?

My guess would be around $15,500 per 100kWh pack if cell cost is $100/kWh. That’s using the current $145/kWh cell cost in the Bolt and the current 60 kWh pack cost of $13,500 as reference.

But if you are talking about a midsize sedan you wouldn’t need 100 kWh. The long range Model 3 was getting 328 miles from the EPA with a 75 kWh pack.

It looks like a 300 kWh pack would put the Bolt up around 300 miles too. 100 kWh would be closer to 400 miles.

Frankly I think 300 miles is enough and after that point the focus should be on reducing price and physical battery size. Only once EVs are at parity with ICEs should they push for more range than that.

Sorry that should have read 75 kWh pack, not 300 kWh which would have a range of more like a thousand miles if it were actually practical to do.

I’d say the rule of thumb should be to add 25-30% to the OEM cost for pack-level cost, as opposed to cell-level cost.

But cost isn’t price. How much the OEM is going to add on to the cost for a profit margin will vary widely, and depends on the business strategy involved. For an extreme example, Tesla is adding $9000 for an extra ~25 kWh in the Long Range Model 3. That’s $360/kWh! Obviously that’s far above Tesla’s cost, and there is a pretty fat profit margin baked into that price.

Why didn’t GM mention their advanced EV1 car and how it was crushed?
Why didn’t they developed a fast charge network like,Teska?
Why did they make the Hummer 1 H2 and H3 to fit the work vehicle incentive of 100k, then 59k and now,25K. Instead of making electrics?

They are doing some pretty good electrics now but I don’t see the commitment like it should be uet. So far compliance is,still number one and 2 and 3.

You are really scraping the barrel here trying to find something to complain about, aren’t you?

GM has done more for electrification than any other legacy car manufacturer. At least GM did develop the EV1, the other companies bet everything on lobbying the CARB to remove the regulation.

Dodge did the TEvan. Ford did the EV ranger. Toyota did the RAV4-EV. Honda did the EV plus.

But besides that. You’re right.

The EV Ranger and the Rav 4 EV were adopted compliance cars intended to meet the CA mandate. Only the EV1 was purpose-built.

And way too expensive given the technology at the time, which is why they were crushed. No conspiracy really. By the way, every other automaker crushed their compliance EVs too, even if a select few escaped that fate.

Thersno excuse for the fact they were crushed, that was just done out of spite. Stop making/selling, yes. Crushing, no.

The leadership of GM had their heads up their asses at that point. Fortunately in recent years they’ve come around and there’s no point continuing to gripe about something that happened over 15 years ago.

Unfortunately, they could not find people to pay $500,000 each to buy one. Maybe you would’ve bought it?

You’re moving the goal posts.

The Honda EV plus was also purpose built. All the late 90s test EVs were for CA including the EV1.

GM and Honda were the only manufacturers who went out of their way to crush every copy.

Also, I’m not sure what your point is? Every major manufacturer made EVs for CARB just in case they could not kill the clean vehicle mandate. That’s all I was saying.

My only point was that GM has been serious about electrification for a long time, conspiracy theories about evil people crushing cars for alterior motives aside.

Yes, you’re right about the EV+. Unfortunately Honda hasn’t been as forward thinking as of late.

I think GM was part of the CARB lobbying too. Corporations that big can move on multiple contingencies, but they show you what their preferred outcome is by their lobbying. They want EVs merely to add to current sales, without anything affecting their current ICE buyers. Which means, no real transition, just twice as many cars, half of which still guzzle gas.

I thought it was LG Chem that did all
GM’s electrification work.

That is so rude.

Maybe, but more true than GM wants to admit!

“Someone out there” said: “At least GM did develop the EV1, the other companies bet everything on lobbying the CARB to remove the regulation.” Wow! I see revisionism is alive and well and living in GM fanboys! GM lobbied hard to get CARB to roll back the ZEV mandate; a mandate which was inspired by the news that GM was putting the EV1 into (limited) production. In other words: The politicians at CARB got all excited when they heard GM was putting the EV1 into production, and created a zero-emission mandate. GM realize it had created a sort of Frankenstein’s monster, and abruptly killed off the program as part of its efforts to demonstrate that there was not a viable market for EVs. (And indeed, at that time, there wasn’t, despite the propaganda of “Who Killed the Electric Car?” Batteries were light-years from being good enough and cheap enough at that time to support making a profit selling passenger car EVs.) Repossessing the leased EV1’s was part of GM’s ultimately successful campaign to get CARB to roll back the ZEV mandate. Crushing the repossessed cars turned out to be a public relations disaster, but only because of the optics; the… Read more »

“GM lobbied hard to get CARB to roll back the ZEV mandate; a mandate which was inspired by the news that GM was putting the EV1 into (limited) production.”

Of course they did. The EV-1 cost hundreds of thousands of dollars. GN did not want a prototype like that mandated.

I never denied GM being part of the lobbying. Fact remains though that GM went much farther to meet the mandate than anyone else.

The EV1 was never going to be profitable. They crushed them so they wouldn’t have to support them for many years forward. They were GM’s property, they could do what they want with them.

The ZEV mandate rules were known by manufacturers in 1990, which was the same year GM commissioned the Impact prototype from AC propulsion which eventually became the EV1.

GM claimed their high cost over and over again. How do you know? Remember they were claiming this in order to get the rules changed.

NiMH packs gave the car >160 mile range (Much more than my own 2011 li-ion powered EV).

“Why didn’t GM mention their advanced EV1 car and how it was crushed?”
– bringing up negative events that happened almost 2 decades certainly would make sense for a presentation on future plans. *rolleyes*

“Why didn’t they developed a fast charge network like,Teska?”
– We’ll have to find out who this Teska company is first.

“Why did they make the Hummer 1 H2 and H3 to fit the work vehicle incentive of 100k, then 59k and now,25K. Instead of making electrics?”
– same reason Tesla developed a battery swapping scheme, only to scrap it once they found out they couldn’t milk more ZEV credits by doing it.
Oh, and they developed the Model X to take advantage of that same “Hummer” incentive too.

Why do people constantly pick on the EV1 situation, when Ford or Chrysler didn’t bother to develop much?

Both had something, but neither company captured the imagination of GM’s EV1.

The problem with the EV1 is that the car was TOO successful. If it was a joke and they crushed it, none of the Big Experts would have cared.

Of course, the way they talk, they sound like the Big Experts are personally going to go around and Crush everyone’s BOLT since they think it is so hideous.

When & Where can I get my “Teska”?

The Teska is only available in China. You can buy it now for around $13,000. Looks a LOT like a Tesla, to an 8-year-old! Do not confuse it with the Tesoule, which is what Tesla Motors had to sell under until they sorted out Chinese intellectual property finger puzzles.

“Teska” is a very, very bad typo for “Thunder Power EV”.

“Why didn’t they developed a fast charge network”

This has been a sticking point with me since they announced no interest in infrastructure on Bolt’s release. But look at page 18 above. They seem have changed their minds, and willing to expand infrastructure. I’m willing to believe them since they have delivered what they promised so far (at least after EV1).

They may or may not have changed their minds.
They’ve just added infrastructure investment to the list of things they might do.

But right now, having exited the European market, not making many Bolts and with so much investment to come from Infrastructure by Fine 2: Age of Volkswagen, really, what’s the point?

Considering they said “NO” to infrastructure on Bolt release, yet they say “YES” now, and the fact that they have delivered everything about EV so far, I have fair amount of confidence they will also deliver on infrastructure.

I love how people dredge up the EV1 when it’s so patently obvious now that the battery *really* wasn’t ready for prime time back then. They probably didn’t want to ever have them outside of California because of what capital-W Winter would do to the range. Face the facts: the EV1 was a science project, not a real car. It wasn’t EvilCorp that stole it from us, it was physics and The Real World.

Battery development was still being done at that time, it’s just that it was being done by the people who wanted to put them in cell phones and laptops. What’s past is past, and the present shows us that GM is not screwing around anymore.

Let the EV1 die already.

Brave Lil’ Toaster said:

“I love how people dredge up the EV1 when it’s so patently obvious now that the battery *really* wasn’t ready for prime time back then.”

Yeah, it’s sad how many EV enthusiasts let their dedication to the cause swamp their critical thinking. “Who Killed the Electric Car?” pronounced batteries “not guilty” of killing the EV1, but that’s pure propaganda, and simply not true. As you say, that claim has nothing to do with reality or science or technology. Or economics, either.

EV batteries are at best still not quite “ready for prime time” even now; they certainly were not back in 1996-1999!

Except that, the NiMH EV1 had more range at 140 Miles, than the 30 kWh Leaf at 107 Miles, and the 125 Mile Range eGolf, and to Some People, ALL EV’s are Junior High Science Projects! Plus NiMH handled the Cold quite well!

No they had not more range. They where tested with a different drive cycle. The 30kWh Leaf can also be driven 180 miles if you go by the old test cycle.

“Why didn’t GM mention their advanced EV1 car and how it was crushed?”

Yeah, why didn’t they s*** on themselves in their own press release?

This is dumb even by the standards of this comment section.

THX for some reasonable words.

Why are you still believing this crap?

Because we’re talking about GM, not Tesla or VW. These are the people that actually announce and release EVs & PHEVs. Not like others who just announce and then delay/abandon.

I sincerely hope you don’t believe Tesla is late intentionally. And, they did release 30 Model III’s on July 31, as intended. The ramp-up, well, yeah, that definitely slipped by a quarter! Considering they just released their Semi this month, and now they are getting permission to do NV-CA testing for their own logistic needs from the Gigafactory to Fremont, I’d say that counts as a strong commitment.

Is it me, or does that new GM battery have a very strong resemblance to the open source patent design from Tesla?

Also, the upcoming CUV was discussed here already. It’s the Buick Bolt equivalent. Mind you, I’m happy about that, but let’s not forget they just dumped the Ampera-E so adding the Buick is a zero-sum. There’s still a plus-one out there. I hope that means there’s an all-electric new chassis coming. I also hope crime goes down in Detroit, and they fix the hurricane problem in Florida.

They are still building Ampera-e, but not many. It’s Opel they sold off.

Technically correct. By the time this mystery EV duet from GM shows up, though, right?

(⌐■_■) Trollnonymous

I guess Leasing only then crush EV’s is a better company?…….lol

At least they delivered them on schedule and fully functional.

I’m not the biggest fan of GM designs, but the Volt and Bolt are two very good reasons to “believe this crap”.

Or, the fact that they can’t tell China how to ‘Suck it up’ and keep buying GM’s ICE Vehicles!

Or, they know that those 500,000 Model 3 Reservations are going to not be GM Conquest Sales,so they want to put a ‘Finger in the Dike’, before the flood!

I expect solid-state batteries should make an entry in the market in that timeframe, 2021. Solid-state will allow cheaper, lighter and more robust batteries. There is still some performance left to squeeze out of today’s batteries but for a significant jump in performance we need solid-state.

Major revolutionary batteries are always 4 years away.

Sorta like how the hydrogen fuel cell car is perpetually the “car of tomorrow”….that will never become the car of today.

Yes because they actually have to be tested thoroughly before commercialization. Doing several thousand charge-discharge cycles takes time and if it fails prematurely there is a lot of work figuring out why and finding an alternative and then testing starts over again.

Hey! It’s getting better. They used to always be 5 years away. 🙂

+1 !!!

But then the batteries we have today at current energy densities and cost ($150 kWh vs. $600-$1000 kWh in 2010) ARE revolutionary compared to the packs in 2010 when the Volt and Leaf were new and the Model S had yet to roll off the line.

So the future is here 7 years later! Maybe next round will take another 7 but who cares. That’s not that long.

“Major revolutionary batteries are always 4 years away.”

Well, it used to be 5 years away, so is that “progress”? 😉

‘25% Sooner!’ I guess that is ‘Something’, if not Progress!

I hear solid state will also allow light speed warp jumps and better sex life.

How could anyone doubt that? They will cure bad breath and make your kids extra smart, too!

Saves on having so manny Batteries, for your Doll!

Well….alrighty then!

Bring it on. With the Volt first, and now the Bolt, GM has made some excellent plug-in vehicles.

I can’t wait for the “low roof car”. I’d love to see a sporty EV that I could actually afford (plaid mode need not apply).

DCFC is GM’s Achilles’ heel right now. The Bolt can only charge up to around 60kW, and then tapers off very quickly. It takes me about an hour of charging at a 50kW charger to go from 20-80%. That’s still a little too long. Oh, and what chargers there are are few and far between. Expansion cannot come soon enough!

“DCFC is GM’s Achilles heel right now”.

And GM knows that and is addressing that heel going forward, as noted both on presentation page 16:
“Improved DC fast charge”

and page 18:
“We are committed to a robust EV infrastructure to accelerate adoption of electric EV vehicles. We will partner, incentivize and/or invest as necessary”.

Note that GM is dedicated to long-term expansion of the universal charging infrastructure for ALL EVs, using the SAE CCS charging standard – not a proprietary protocol. In the long term, that means developing robust, profitable 3rd-party networks, ubiquitous and universally-available to all. No auto manufacturer can do that – that is not their core business.

I believe that there will be a day where Tesla will also realize that and will divest itself of the Supercharger network through a sale to one or more of the 3rd party charging businesses.

1. Tesla is not proprietary. They have offered both the technology and even use of their network to other cars.

2. Tesla network is at least twice the power performance of other networks.

For better or worse the Tesla network is comoletely proprietary…
And yes they have offered it to other car makers who have obviously found their terms unacceptable…
The first problem with offering it to other manufactures is branding since there is no way Porsce for example would have their cars charge at a Mercedes or Tesla charging station…

Tesla is now half the charging speed of a new network being rolled out in the EU although it is still very small…

Tesla’s charging is proprietary. But based on a tweet, they promise not to sue if you use their proprietary patents and tech “in good faith”. Not sure how many corporate lawyers are going to stake billions of dollars on a tweet, as Tesla could decide at any moment that your company is no longer acting in good faith.

If Tesla were serious about truly “open sourcing” their technology, they could formally apply to the patent office to divest the patents, or license the patents (for free) to a standards body like SAE.

Maybe publish all their design specs and schematics on their website.

“If Tesla were serious about truly ‘open sourcing’ their technology, they could formally apply to the patent office to divest the patents…”

I’ve never heard of such a thing. I’m certainly not an intellectual properties lawyer, but from discussion of this subject on the old TheEEStory forum, my understanding is that all a company has to do is publish a formal notice to the effect that “We freely grant this patent in perpetuity to the public domain”. No application to the patent office necessary.

But if you look at the fine print in Tesla’s “Patent Pledge”, it’s clear that Tesla does not intend to grant its patents to the public domain. They are just offering a free license to use their patents… with some pretty strong strings attached. Not the same thing at all!

Scott Franco said:

“1. Tesla is not proprietary. They have offered both the technology and even use of their network to other cars.”

Hmmm, well, I honestly think Tesla did not originally want or plan for the Supercharger network to be proprietary, but that’s how it developed. And for the present, I think Tesla is quite happy for Superchargers to be seen as an exclusive perk for Tesla car owners only.

If you look at the fine print of Tesla offering to share its patents (see link below) — particularly the part about requiring any company that shares Tesla’s patents is required to also share its own patents freely — then I think that raises legitimate questions about whether or not Tesla actually wanted any legacy auto maker to take them up on their offer. I don’t think it’s realistic to think any established company would accept such terms, and it’s even questionable that a startup would, given the tendency of high-tech startups to use patents to promote their company to would-be investors.

Now, maybe that’s just me being cynical… and maybe it’s Tesla putting in a “poison pill” provision that it knew no established auto maker would agree to.

Investors seem to believe that Tesla’s future is not as a car company per se, but as an all-purpose electricity generation and use company, with the cars serving as a jumping-on point for consumers. This may not be practical, but if it works Tesla might as well make the stations as autonomous as possible using (their own) PV and batteries, and open them up to other brands at a slight premium.

Another Euro point of view

If I understand it correctly from abroad GM has somewhat of a badge problem right ? ( people looking for an EV not always to keen to be seen driving a Chevrolet).
Perhaps GM should create a new brand for their EVs. It seems GM is not too good at marketing/brand value creation in general. I bet there are out there good consultants that could help them with that.

Nobody has more reason to hate GM than I do (my first car, a Vega, was a dead loss). But I have a Bolt. If Tesla does not deliver, I would probably buy another.

Silicon Valley is full of Bolts now, I usually see 3-5 on my commute, and our workplace has at least 4 in the parking lot. These are engineers who could buy any car they want. Nobody seems embarrassed to own a GM bolt.

No, there’s no badge problem.

GM isn’t marketing its plug-ins.

Apparently, something like 70% of Bolt buyers are new to GM/Chevy. So it doesn’t sound like they have a badge problem to me.

Another Euro –

I’m inclined to agree with you that Chevy has a badge problem here in the USA. I’ve always felt that GM should have put a “Buick” badge on both the Bolt & Volt.

I work in the high tech industry (I’m an engineer) and a few months ago I went out to the parking lot to take inventory of what my coworkers are driving. I walked by over 300 vehicles and only 11 were GM products. Of those 11, 4 were Volts. (Saw several Nissan Leafs…) The most common vehicles were probably Toyota & Honda.

GM has a real opportunity to gain a lot of market share with their EV offerings. So far their quality has been really good, which will be a key factor in the long run.

Dave ’86

With all due respect, Dave, a Buick is an old man’s car in the states. Chevy is much more desirable than Buick.

Chevy is an old man’s car. It even wears a bow tie.

Brian – you don’t owe me any respect, LOL. Kind words, however, so thank you.

I do agree with you that Buick is an “old person’s” car. Which is an image problem GM needs to shake. GM needs to try to position Buick to compete with BMW, Audi, Mercedes, Acura, and Lexas. Vehicle electrification gives GM an opportunity to re-position Buick.

That said, at the age of 55, I’d rather be seen today in a Buick than a Chevy. (Hope that doesn’t mean I’m getting old – LOL.)

I used to feel that way, but now the brand is growing on me. Either that or I’m becoming an old man! 🙁

“If I understand it correctly from abroad GM has somewhat of a badge problem right ? ( people looking for an EV not always to keen to be seen driving a Chevrolet).”

I have read many times that GM’s various badges (Chevrolet, Buick, Cadillac, etc.) have a really bad rep in Europe. I don’t know why; perhaps it’s a holdover from when American auto makers were making really crappy cars, designed to fall apart in just a few years, back in the late 1960s thru the late 1970s?

At any rate, supposedly that’s one of several reasons why the Volt/Ampera failed to sell in Europe, but I rather suspect the sticker price of about twice what it was here in the USA was a much bigger reason!

I do agree with those who say that GM should create a new badge (or revive a defunct one) exclusively for its EVs. That should help greatly with the branding problem in Europe.

Did not Saturn sell the GM EV1? How about a ‘New Saturn’ Division? Or ‘Jupiter’? Thats one Big Mother of a planet! Should match the Big Mother #%÷&ing Plans!

Maybe I’ll keep driving my Volt till 2020.. unless I can make it to 2021.

In no rush..

Thinking to take the same approach as you, keep my Gen 1 Volt few more years and then see…

Meanwhile in the real world the mission of GM’s legal teams is to convince the Trump administration to alleviating Obama era MPG mandates finding a more than willing ear in EPA’s Scott Pruitt.

Looks like GM has an all of the above approach when it comes to the changes the industry is facing, both seeking to delay them and making sure to be prepared.

Much as I dislike GM’s lobbying efforts to roll back the emission reduction mandates and movements toward ZEV mandates, it certainly does make sense from a business perspective for GM to want to make those decisions for itself, rather than have the government impose those decisions on the company. If the government tries to mandate that auto makers make cars that they can’t afford to make and sell at a profit, that’s not going to help anyone. And that has happened at least twice: With the CARB mandate of circa 1999, and with China’s ZEV mandate just this year.

In both cases, the governmental regulators were forced to face reality and roll back the mandates. I can certainly see why GM would oppose such efforts, even if as an EV advocate I wish they wouldn’t!

Remember that Aesop’s Fable: “The North Wind and the Sun”. Moral of the story: Gentleness and kind persuasion win where force and bluster fail.

I’d much rather see GM offered a “carrot” to persuade it to strengthen its efforts at making compelling PEVs in large numbers, instead of threatening or beating it with a “stick”!

Carrots cost money and just get eaten. A stick can be used over and over. 🙂

Nonsense. The Obama era CAFE mandates were generally considered perfectly feasible.

Interesting to read between the lines here:

“20 years experience in EV development”

Humm, what car came out 20 years ago? Its missing from the slides… to bad GM can’t feel proud about that car.

“Improved DC fast charge”

Ah, yes, the famous mystery card.

I think they are proud of the EV1 program. I see them reference it elsewhere.

Then someone usually posts something about them getting crushed, followed up by a bankruptcy post, then ignition switches for the trifecta.

Crushed, bankruptcy, govt bailout, ingnition. All of which is 100% True.

Also irrelevant, unless you are attempting a “butwhatabout” argument.

How about legislation, written and sponsored by GM, meant to hamstring Tesla in MI & VA in the marketplace.
I have no consideration or respect for GM and consider them a road block to ev development on the whole as evidenced by their efforts in the political theater to slow it down.

If you are referring to what I think you are, the legislation was NOT “meant to hamstring Tesla in MI & VA in the marketplace” but rather to ensure that GM and Tesla were treated equally. It is not fair to force GM to use a middleman, which necessitates a higher price, and not do the same for Tesla.

(⌐■_■) Trollnonymous

Then GM should’ve argued to be able to sell in the same sales model as Tesla.
But that’s not what they did. They pushed to hinder Tesla sales.

They could have. That would have pissed off their network of independently owned dealerships, on which they rely for 100% of their sales. Doesn’t seem like a sound business decision to me.

Wow I’m surprised a “get government off our backs” conservative actually agrees with a government mandated monopoly by a do-absolutely-nothing middleman CARtel. I’m sure you’re frantically calling your congressman to shut down all those factory direct outlets (Nike, J Crew, Apple Store, etc) that threaten the “small businesses” like Walmart and Target and Macy’s. Why not force them to always sell through a middleman too? Or then again, maybe those laws were meant to reinforce a century’s old franchise agreement freely entered into by both parties, that Tesla never agreed to? Nah that can’t be it, the dealers must be “protecting” consumers somehow. Not sure how, but that’s the only thing that fits, eh?

I never expressed my opinion here on whether GM’s dealership model is right or wrong. Interesting that you read so much into my comments.

That’s your prerogative, but the rest of us will continue to rack up EV miles in the 160,000 GM plug-ins on the roads.

Don’t try to glom onto the John Oliver meme. You said they were proud of the EV1. But they crushed it, period. Not even the richest Hollywood libs were allowed to keep theirs. Same people, btw, that were the early Tesla customers, willing to pay up as early adopters in a necessarily more expensive first generation high tech product. GM could have built on that, but they bailed, plain and simple. Stop trying to rewrite history.

Just because the program ended, doesn’t mean they weren’t proud of the engineering. They often mention how a lot of the engineering that went into the EV1 was used for the Volt. Many of the same engineers even. That’s how engineering works. It’s an iterative process.

GM can be justly proud of the 1990 Impact, that electric concept car which was the fruit of GM’s R&D into electric cars; a concept car which served as the prototype for the EV1, which debuted in 1996.

The Impact featured the debut of the modern AC integrated motor controller, invented by Alan Cocconi; the controller (containing the inverter) which enabled much more efficient electric cars and kicked off the modern EV revolution.

The propaganda film “Who Killed the Electric Car?” has given a black eye to GM over the EV1, but in reality GM has a lot to be proud of for its cutting-edge development of the first modern test-marketed, highway-capable, street-legal electric car. There is a direct line of development from the Impact to AC Propulsion’s tZero to the Tesla Roadster.

The line of development leading to the Roadster, the Leaf, and the Bolt EV didn’t start in some EV enthusiast’s garage, making a conversion car EV with a DC motor and lead-acid batteries. It started at GM, with the Impact and all the EVs that lead to.

Nice Post!

I think all of these announcements by GM, especially their 180 degree reversal on supporting charging after their stubborn refusal to admit that charging infrastructure is critical, are a result of the pressure that Tesla has put on the legacy OEMs.

Tesla blazed the path on what is needed to have a compelling PEV and GM at least is not willing to fall any further behind unlike some of the other laggard OEMs who have done little or nothing to future proof.

I predict in the future their will be Tesla at the top-end along with MB, BMW, Audi and GM, VW, and one or two others in the mid-low end and of course the Chinese PEV manufacturers.

And lastly I own and operate daily a 2012 Volt and a Bolt.

Don’t forget that GM and its Chinese partners now have to make EVs in China. So the cars are going to have to be developed anyways. Importing them to the US versus building versions in the US will be a tough decision.

I think it will be cheaper to build locally still. Even BYD is creating North American plants to build its products and it’s a Chinese company.

I don’t expect GM to start building a charging network, just continue to support the charging infrastructure, as they have already done.

They’ve done a crappy job then, because the average number of CCS plugs at any location I’ve seen is still ONE and they are few and far between in nearly the entire country except for pockets of California.

(⌐■_■) Trollnonymous

And some are usually offline/not working……lol

Well, in all fairness it does match what they said they would support for charge infra “when necessary”……lol

They were pushing more for workplace/home charging advancement and EV education.

Lol, you give Tesla way too much credit. Being an Elon groupie though, not shocking at all. Keep dreaming the delusional dreams!

LMAO, so says the mentally ill troll (possibly GM employee-although that might be giving you too much credit) back to
carpet-bombing your anger on all things Tesla.

In any case, it is well documented that GM previously claimed they would not fund or materially support increasing EV charging and NOW they have claimed they are REVERSING THEMSELVES:

Gee, I wonder what changed???

In Europe we won’t see these new cars with the new platform, a compact sedan or a hatchback with this new platform could be interesting for European customers. It’s a pity.

Cadillac is still sold in Europe. I expect there will be a few Cadillac versions off this new platform. I also expect an expansion of Cadillac in Europe. Possibly the re-introduction of Chevrolet to Europe as well. Europe is too big of a market for GM to totally ignore.

How about a Cadillac BOLT/AMPERA-E with Leather Seats and dashboard?

I’ll believe sold state batteries are real for cars when they first appear in consumer electronics like phones and power tools where the weight and volume to cost ratios will be disproportionately better than current Li-ion batteries.

In small devices the additional cost as an actual number is bearable, eg lets say an extra $50 on a high end smart phone to double charge capacity and halve charge time. Or for power tools where the extra cost will be justified.

Until then I simply believe such claims are beyond premature, indeed we dont even know if all these 5 year away claims are even actually realisable in practice and neither do i suspect do the manufacturers like Toyota and Honda that make these claims.

Seems to me they do this to make it seem they are doing something, rather than either delaying the inevitable or caught with their pants down.

GM at least arent making outlandish claims about break through technology, and they do have a very decent EV in the Bolt to back up their credentials.

Yes, first expensive small consumer products, followed by luxury car brands, and eventually it will be in all cars.
How soon price will drop. . Now that is another question.

I like how GM completely left off the Cadillac ELR in its “First Mover of Electric Vehicles” graphic! But it included the even rarer CT6 Plug-in. lol!

“even rarer CT6 PHEV”.

Yeah, the ELR was a success that was prematurely murdered.

The ‘successful’ CT6 PHEV isn’t anywhere near the sales of it, but then the ELR was a serious product, and the CT6 PHEV is a joke.

At 6’3″, the back seat of the ELR was more Japanese Prison, than Passenger Seat, but the Drivetrain was decent!

Stylish coupes always had problems with the seating. They could have made the car MUCH larger to fit you, but rightly or wrongly it was only 9″ longer, and 3″ wider than the 1st generation VOLT. Any 6′ 5″ friends ride in the front seat. The trunk is also rather small. Life’s tough all over. I call the CT6 PHEV a JOKE since it has such horrible efficiency. No one can get 22 miles all electric range in the thing when the same battery in the gen2 volt goes a listed 53, but many say it goes 70. 70 compared to 22 is pretty horrible. Of course, all that convoluted crap the car has (3 planetary gear sets, plenty of clutches and 3 horsepower electric oil pump to operate them all) makes the thing an Efficiency Pig. The rather involved gen1 VOLT powertrain is a good balance of sophistication and performance. Car and Driver said the car is so responsive it SEEMS faster than it really is. So the car is TRULY FUN TO DRIVE. Efficiency isn’t bad. My 2014 went 50.7 miles this morning- and I sneaked into the driveway without the engine even starting once (it wouldn’t have… Read more »

I’m very glad to see GM talking about EVs with 300+ miles of range. That’s definitely the direction the EV revolution needs to move.

I’m also glad that GM thinks it can get battery cells at <$100/kWh in 2021, four years from now. That, too, is an indication of the direction the EV revolution is advancing.

Now, let's hope that this is not just empty talk from GM, and that they actually follow through by making multiple models of compelling, 300+ mile plug-in EVs in large numbers, within just a few years!

Making just one model of BEV (the Bolt EV) in more than compliance car numbers, and that at only ~30,000 per year, and just one non-compliance PHEV in even fewer numbers — the Volt — ain't gonna cut it as the EV revolution accelerates. GM also needs to quit lobbying federal and state level politicians to slow or halt the move towards zero-emission vehicles.

GM needs to be part of the solution, and not part of the problem!

These presentations reaffirm why GM is being approached to bail on the other manufacturers, in favor of CAFE/CARB. Their leadership stands to pay a big dividend.

Another Euro point of view

It’s good that GM is so exposed to the Chinese market and not only to north American market as NA must be one of the toughest markets to crack for EVs considering low retail price of gas, thus giving not that much an incentive for local car markers to develop EVs.

Brian, you and Clarkson asked what my NEXT ev will be – to which I stated I had the perfect combo already (2017 BOLT & 2014 ELR).

My next ev will be an epa 300 mile GM !!! hehe.

Haha, nice! A 300 mile EV from GM may very well be my next EV too. 🙂

Well, you did tell me your next EV would be the first you could buy with a huge (>100kWh) battery. This could be just the ticket!

My next GM – (I’m assuming it will be a GM since I don’t trust other brands on the reliability score – although SOME have reported the newer Tesla “X”‘s are much improved over the initial ones – but I’m not sure what that means on an absolute scale) – (and although I know you like FORDs, I have had bad experiences with that brand also) I’m not sure whether it will be a PHEV or a BEV, but it will have a relatively large battery. The BOLT ev impresses me with its quietness and high efficiency. I see no reason why it shouldn’t continue to deliver both items years into the future. (Fingers Crossed). When the first gen VOLT came out in late 2010, and later, the Cadillac ELR used the same ‘old-fashioned’ ‘out-of-date’ 4 cyl gas engine – there were many cat-calls about “What happened to the efficient 3-cyl turbo this thing was supposed to have? Why did they put this old-style clunker in the thing?”. Man I’m glad they did. Its been around 8,000 miles since its last oil change, and the thing hasn’t burned any noticeable amount of oil, and that is even going the last… Read more »

Osborne Effect.

Unintended consequences of a company pre-announcement made either unaware of the risks involved or when the timing is misjudged, which ends up having a negative impact on the sales of the current product. This is often the case when a product is announced too long before its actual availability.

Unless it prevents people from buying competitors EVs, or turns them onto EVs in the first place.
And what is the criteria for “too long”?
(that’s rhetorical btw)

Yes! Kwhr. GM is using kwhr as an abbreviation for kw-hour.

Why? Because unless your inner vocalization says “r” many, many people will *frequently* screw up and say kw when they mean kwhr and kwh when they mean kw. Always use kwhr and never screw it up. Because r makes a sound and h doesn’t.

(Inner vocalization “says”, while people write. I meant to be talking about writing. How people–journalists, afficianados–so, so, so, so often *write* kwh when they mean to write kw and vice-versa.

So which is it GM?

First you seem to agree with TOYOTA that your Large Vehicles will be HYDROGEN, and only the smaller ones will be plug-in evs..

Now you seem to be saying they’ll all be plug-in electrics.

I vote for the latter. But your indecision leaves me with a bit of a queasy feeling.

Perhaps CHINA’s mandating electrics in their large cities has forced your hand.

My local Chevrolet Dealer has about a 4 to 1 ratio of Silverado/Tahoe vs. everything else on the lot, but does not sell the Volt or the Bolt.

GM still has a dealer network to drag, kicking and screaming, into the future with them.

The dealership is a for-profit business. They are pursuing their business plan to the best of their knowledge.

No one is forcing you to purchase products from them. There are plenty of other dealerships that will sell you a BOLT ev or VOLT.

Now for instance, If I wanted to purchase a CT6 PHEV, I’d have to drive 380 miles in the States to buy one, since none of the dealers in my area want to deal with that joke of a car.

I noticed how they left out one very important thing: CHARGE TIME. That’s great if they have a 300+ mile vehicle, but if it takes hour(s) to charge, it’s not going to replace the family vehicle. If they truly want to displace the ICE, they have to have really quick DCFC (faster than the Bolt).

I wonder how many people, once they find out how EXPENSIVE 350 kw charging is, that they’ll ‘suffer along’ with a somewhat slower rate.