GMC Considering Electric Sierra Pickup Truck, Plus Plug-In SUVs

JAN 24 2019 BY ERIC LOVEDAY 92

Electric trucks and SUVs seem to be the focus of the moment.

And that’s perfectly fine by us.

Triggered by the big Rivian R1T electric truck and R1S electric SUV reveals, it seems several automakers are now considering joining the growing electric truck and SUV movement. And it’s not just startups like Atlis Motors with the XT truck.

Rather, now we’re bringing big players into the discussion, including the likes of General Motors.

Duncan Aldred, vice president of the GMC brand, told CNBC that the automaker is actively looking it the possibility of an electric GMC Sierra, as well as battery-electric SUVs. This follows after news that Ford is working on an electric F-150.

Duncan Aldred, vice president of the GMC brand, stated “Certainly, it’s something we’re considering,” when asked by CNBC of the outlook for an electric Sierra. And it fits on the automaker’s “path to an all-electric future” too.

CNBC reports:

A fully electric version of the GMC Sierra would likely be accompanied by a battery-electric version of the more mainstream, albeit higher-volume Chevrolet Silverado, said David Cole, director-emeritus of the Center for Automotive Research in Ann Arbor, Michigan. The trucks share the same underlying platform, as well as conventional internal combustion powertrains. That would increase economies of scale and bring down the cost of developing and producing a battery drive system, several industry observers pointed out.

Yes, it’s a no brainer to bring along the Chevy Silverado for the electric ride too if the Sierra goes down that path.

Electric SUVs Too?

Why not.

Cadillac will head this push with its recently announcement electric SUV, but again those economies of scale will likely lead both Chevy and GMC to follow suit.

Look for the mid-size and larger SUVs to go pure electric first, as the added battery costs can be more easily offset by higher sticker prices carried by these family-hauling vehicles,

CNBC adds:

For his part, GMC chief Aldred told CNBC that battery technology still carries a fairly hefty premium that makes it difficult to target mainstream segments, unless a carmaker like GM is willing to accept lower margins. As a result, the executive said, automakers would likely target higher end products.

Pickups, on the whole, carry some of the highest profit margins in the auto industry, particularly some of those sold through the GMC brand. But the entire industry has been pushing pickups up-market, adding on more options and luxury touches to drive up the price.

To us here at InsideEVs, it was always just a matter of time before domestic trucks and SUVs turned towards electric. Now, it looks like that shift is beginning to get underway.

Source: CNBC

Categories: Chevrolet, Trucks

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92 Comments on "GMC Considering Electric Sierra Pickup Truck, Plus Plug-In SUVs"

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Considering

IMO they probably already have R&D mules driving around, just like Ford. What was missing was the decision from above to go forward with production.

Ford doesn’t have any F-150 EV’s driving around, it only exists on paper. Your probably thinking of the F-150 Rivian used as their mule (before they unveiled their design).

No, I mean Ford.

https://insideevs.com/electric-ford-f-150-coming-says-ceo/

The Ford executive would not have announced plans to electrify the F-series at a major auto show without the company having done years of R&D on the project first. No doubt in my mind they have electric R&D mules driving around.

I dunno, that may not indicate anything coming soon. What inspired GM to put the Volt into production was the announcement from Tesla that they were going to start making an electric sports car. That would have been in 2003 or 2004; the Volt concept car was first shown in 2007, and the car went on sale in December 2010.

Hopefully we’re less than 6-7 years away from seeing a plug-in pickup or SUV from GM!

What Lutz actually said was leapfrogging Prius not building another expensive EV. Bob was on late night TV saying that they already have a $100k car. It’s called a Corvette.

Caught flat-footed.

Now we have the Cadillac announcement. Hopefully they can build their way out of being the next Kodak or RIM.

Kodak’s problem wasn’t the digital camera. They created them and at one point was the market leader in sales. What they didn’t foresee was the smartphone which caused the digital camera market to disappear almost overnight.

So a Kodak moment would be Tesla going out of business because of electric flying cars that cost the same as EV’s.

I wouldn’t be surprised if EV-only companies like Workhorse, Bollinger and Rivian start selling trucks before Ford and GM. Workhorse in particular has said it expects to deliver some battery-only pickup trucks to fleet customers this summer.

https://cleantechnica.com/2019/01/12/a-conversation-with-workhorse-ceo-steve-burns-cleantechnica-exclusive/

Yeah, some. GM sold half a million pickups last year. Some just ain’t gonna cut it.

They had hybrid mules running around two years ago, they probably put plugs on some of them.
https://www.trucks.com/2017/01/23/ford-f-150-pickup-truck-spy-shots/

Ford alone does not but ford, working with company called xlfleet already does have electrified F-150, F-250s, and Transits on the road, make no mistake.
https://www.xlfleet.com/
They are strictly fleet vehicles for Cali municipalities but there are 100% ford F-150s with battery technology on the road. They have been 100% under the radar and I have no idea why no one has had a major story on it yet. My guess is they will use their technology and incorporate it in large scale come 2020.

Perhaps their consideration will be considerable. Or maybe they’ll just say ‘truck it’.

I bet if asked he would echo VW’s mantra: 5 years out

VW’s current mantra is “this year” – The E-Tron and the I.D.

ID Nero Porche Taycan Audi ETron GT Audi Etron A4

It’s always “this year”. I predict they will be right…eventually.

Unless they’re going to scrap all the E-Trons they have already built then this year means this year…

I was going to say that’s all well and good but with no supercharger network it’s a non-starter, but last weekend I went to the San Fransisco outlet in Livermore and there were 20 Tesla Superchatgers next to 20 Electrify America DC fast chargers. The Superchatgers were all taken and the 20 Elwctrify America DC fast chargers were empty.

So, it looks like we need the cars that uses those empty DC fast chargers..

“So, it looks like we need the Cars that use those empty DC fast chargers..”

….or adapters for those TM3s that do exist.

It’s very unlikely that we’ll see any legacy auto maker build out a support network of EV chargers as Tesla has done. In fact, in the long run, it would be counter-productive of them to do so, because they would restrict access to their own cars.

When motorcars were a new thing, you had to buy gasoline in a tin at the hardware store or drug store. The rising popularity of motorcars created a demand which was eventually filled by gas stations. Similarly, the rising popularity of EVs over the coming years will create a demand for for-profit public chargers.

The VW Group is spending billions to build a CCS network in the USA through its Electrify America subsidiary. I know they were forced to do it by the diesel scandal settlement, but the important thing is that they are doing it.

Also consider that Tesla cars for Europe and China will not be using the Tesla charger port. Given how large those two markets are, it is likely that in the future the majority of EVs coming out of Tesla factories will not be using the Tesla port. Combine that will all the future non-Tesla EVs that also will not be using the Tesla port, and the Tesla port starts looking like an endangered species.

I’m not so sure the Silverado would come alongside the Sierra. I’d suggest they would probably release an EV Sierra at least a year or two before the Silverado, largely because the Sierra is seen as the premium offering of the two.

They have already started this differentiation with the interior build and presumably people are willing to pay more for the GM over the Chevy ($10k difference in top trim). That additional price premium would be able to help cover the added cost of the EV drivetrain and further differentiate the GM from the Chevy.

TL:DR – People will be more willing to buy an $80k BEV Denali Sierra than an $80k High Country Silverado.

Sure, but they’ll be built on the same platform (assuming they get built, they are just “considering”). So they won’t need much time to release on the Silverado if they choose to do so.

People, meaning a few rich cowboys….

All talk no walk

Typical GM! Three months ago they say “no, we will not be electrifying our trucks in the next decade” Ford announces the PHEV & BEV F150. GM now; oh we have plans to do that too!

Nothing wrong with that. Market dynamics in action, and we will benefit.

All the legacy guys have now got the message and the transition is underway. May take a while, but it is not reversible.

The only problem is playing catch-up isn’t that easy. If one of the early adopters has patented a specific solution to a common problem the legacy companies have to engineer a different solution, which may be inferior or more expensive.

It’s not like GM doesn’t have any experience in EVs !

They don’t. LG builds the interesting bits of the Bolt.

And yet, despite development of the EV1, the Spark, and the Volt, GM farmed out development and manufacture of the Bolt EV’s entire powertrain to LG Chem/Electronics’ fledgling automotive division.

That doesn’t exactly show a real commitment to developing and selling compelling plug-in EVs on the part of GM, now does it?

Well, technically, the Volt also uses LG Chem motor and battery… The Spark in 2014 used A123 battery, and from 2015 to 2017 it used LG Chem batteries.

Wasn’t the entire power train, and much of it was codeveloped with LG AND GM engineers.

GM design/engineered. Manufactured/assembled by LG.

Most auto companies will happily infringe on each other’s patents. They all have enough that they know there will be no winners if they start a patent war.

They said they didn’t have plans to electrify. Now they are saying they are considering it. But I pointed out back then that the my claim they designed the Silverado to accept hybrid, PHEV, and BEV powertrains. So they have been thinking about it for awhile.

It is already designed and being tested. The question is when they were going to release it. Given the price of batteries is still pretty high, it jacks up the cost of the vehicle because they will need a lot of batteries. What we don’t know is if they have figured out cheaper batteries or not. I am guessing no, and they will be 100k trucks.

The only decision left is “Who gets to be last?” The race is on.

Dodge

Toyota or Mazda.

Subaru.

After the Ford announcement, I was highly expecting this. And more.

Yes, the marketing war giving lip service to the EV revolution by legacy auto makers has begun. It remains to be seen which of them will show a real commitment to that. I think VW has, despite their very rich history of EV vaporware. The other legacy auto makers… well, the time has come to fish or cut bait. I don’t see a lot of fishing lines in the water so far, from legacy auto makers.

I would love to but an electric pickup but they won’t work for me. I need an extended range PHEV pickup.

There will be one or more from which to choose. Hybrids, PHEVs and BEVs will all be in the legacy manufacturer product mix over the next few years.

I’m amazed GM doesn’t have a PHEV pickup on the market already.

They now hate PHEV’s. They say why have 2 power trains.. I know that doesn’t make sense but that’s what they say, at least this week.

If Ford and Ram both announced compelling Phevs Mary Barra and Mark Reuss would stand their ground on Principle exactly 10 seconds.

I rather like that Workforce Thingy anyway. Wondering if they’re ever going to ramp up.

They’d be on the phone to LG saying -“Quick – get us a 200 HP, / 60 kwh powertrain designed for 2 wheels of a 4wd and make it so that it fits on our truck! Have it ready by next week!!!!!”

Why won’t they work for you? Range? Charging time?
In an F-250 sized truck, a 200kWh battery would get you 300 miles of driving range, at full payload capacity, traveling 60MPH.
In an F-150 sized truck, a 180kWh one gives you 400 miles of range at full payload capacity.
Rivian has 410 mile range with 180kWh battery. 11,000lb towing capacity.

Wallbox makers would surely like you to make that 200 kwh truck. To recharge in any reasonable length of time at home would require Juicebox’s 75 ampere unit or Clipper Creek’s otherwise slow selling 48, 70 , or 80 ampere units.

400 miles isn’t enough for a lot of people, especially when towing. It’s why trucks come with two fuel tank options, the larger one usually giving 600+ miles of range.

Not everyone drives their trucks in the city, they’re also used in remote locations.

Hey, shocker- once again, other companies (like Tesla and now Rivian) have broken trail for the old curmudgeon ICE legacy manufacturers. No surprise that their discussion about electric pickups quickly comes on the heels of Rivian’s unveiling.

Yep that’s why GM already hit 200,000
Tax credits

GM hit it since 2010! Are people impressed with what a big corp can do in 8-9 years?

Yeah, are we supposed to be impressed that big GM did in 8 years what little Tesla did in less than two years?

Personally, I’m not.

It took Tesla the same about of time to reach 200k. GM did it profitable and Tesla didn’t. Two different paths to the same goal.

So GM has been profitable with its EV’s only? Because that’s the only product that Tesla builds.

(Let’s stay apples to apples)

Then cancelled most of their models.

How have they broken a trail when no one has an electric truck available? Showing pictures and prototypes means nothing.

Sorry, I’ll be more specific. They broke trail by starting with their Roadster 1, and then the Model S. Then came the Model X, and then the Model 3. The effect of that trail-breaking has spawned competitors to roll out models like the Leaf, Bolt, Volt, etc. Then came the working prototype of the Semi, which kicked Daimler and other semi builders to start the transition to electric, and also helped spawn upstart Nikola. Now we have the Model Y upcoming, along with the pickup, and now here comes companies like Rivian, Workhorse, and Atlis. If you don’t think Tesla’s trek as the ONLY pure BEV company over the last 15 years has not only culminated in an eventual EV pickup (for themselves and other companies), but pushed an entire industry in all facets of transportation into the electric space, then we will have to agree to disagree.

It will be 3-5 years before Ford or GM have an all-electric truck in production.

If we’re lucky.

Probably a reasonable timeline. They still need to make something financially viable.

Their startup competition are in that timeframe too – Tesla are unlikely to have anything within the next 3 years (although you may be able to order one in that timeframe going by their historic announement timelines) and Rivian are two years out, and plan on only building single figure thousands for the first year or two.

Highly Consider It…

OR you’ll more than likely end-up out of business IF you do not.

“2022 is the new 2020”

Hmm… the three-quarter view of the fender shape, fender lip and rear window chamfer look rather Rivian-esque. Funny how design themes permeate among various makes.

Other than the odd vertical LED headlight array, there’s nothing unique about Rivian’s styling. It’s all copied from other designs.

What’s sad is I really wanted a Voltec plug in. They have all the pieces ready to build too bad they said no more. There are places you can’t go, because there aren’t chargers. Last night I traveled to a remote charger only to find it busy, both of them. I like having gas backup.

Workhorse is still planning on rolling out the W15 for non-commercial owners late this year/early next year:

https://cleantechnica.com/2019/01/12/a-conversation-with-workhorse-ceo-steve-burns-cleantechnica-exclusive/

Just buy a salvaged Volt and transplant the EREV system to your choice of GM truck (I recommend the Colorado).

Where can I place my deposit on a BEV Traverse with AWD and a trailering package?

In your dreams

No GM dealer will take your money. Maybe Tesla will and hold it for over three years.

GM is considering?
Elon Musk was considering too,,
why isnt SEC -ShortsEnrichment Comision investigating GM for Stock manipulation now?
their stock went up after all !

Batteries secured

“Funding secured” was the issue there…

They are not interested in selling mild hybrid trucks, why would they sell electric trucks.
GM is loyal to V8 engines and big oil.
RAM has beaten Silverado trucks recently.

Only time will tell what happens to GM.

Time to start with the GM confusing naming mixup!

Volt – out
Bolt – in use
Holt – as in “holt on there just one dawg gun minute”,

“don’t be buyin’ no Ford F-150 EV, or one of them thar Rivian EV what-cha-ma-call-its, and don’t ya dare say that Tesla word ’round these here parts.”

Too funny!

Yup. GM’s comment here seems to be nothing more than an attempt to persuade potential customers from holding off buying an EV light truck from one of their competitors. “We’ll have one coming out in just a few years. Honest! Have we ever lied to you about any EV? Oh, wait… don’t answer that!”

https://media.treehugger.com/assets/images/2011/10/chevy-volt-gm-230-mpg-photo01.jpg

Perhaps GM should consider wether they want to be in business in ten years as that would make considering BEVs much easier.

But that would require that they pull their heads out of the sand. Actually, I think that may have happened, considering the announcement about the Cadillac line.

GM: “Now that we have cancelled our plug-in hybrid technology, Voltec, after 8+ years of production. It is time that we look into maybe making a plug-in SUV in a few years. To go along with our all electric SUV the Bolt. You know that’s an SUV right?”

I am infuriated by GM lack of forward thinking. A 3 row plug-in Traverse/Acadia would have had the volume to fill the now closing factory and given GM one of the most desirable plug-in vehicles in the US. Make it a premium option, the gas savings would justify the higher purchase price.

Well said, sir.

“It’s something we’re considering.”

Well of course they are “considering” it, and have been for some years. IMHO this isn’t exactly news.

I was glad to see that GM has actually made a commitment to convert its Cadillac lines to EVs, or at least they’ve made that claim. That was real news.

GM has everything in the bin for a GMC PHEV SUV. It’s called a CT6.

Replace the 2.0t with a 3.0tt. Configure a 36kwh battery between the frame rails. Beef up the tranny for 5k lb towing. Put a $80k price tag on it. Done. I’ll be there ordering it tomorrow.

If I was a GM engineer, it’d be on the test track already.

I think people need to separate out what GM says and what they do behind the scenes. I would be surprised if they didn’t have an electric truck running around somewhere. When they built the latest Silverado platform they said it would support ICE, PHEV and BEV drivetrains. So they clearly have thought about it. This was a headline story on IEV this time lady year.

Idle chatter as GM has apparently canceled introducing the Buick upgraded version of the Bolt in 2019. GM has more clearly stated it is going to make EV’s a high price/profit, low volume Cadillac product “some time in the future” while canceling the Volt and not upgrading the Bolt which needed power driver seat, dynamic cruise. With Niro and Kona coming out at same price as Bolt Premier but loaded with features and 20% more range, the Bolt will likely disappear along with Volt.

Closing factories, canceling Volt, canceling Buick EV, the Cadillac move. Looks more like GM is hunkering down for the looming recession along with cutting back on mass market EV and PHEV’s.

Or to put it more succinctly don’t believe anything GM says. I’ve been preaching that for years to some resistance, but I don’t think I’ve ever been wrong.

Like watching dominos fall.

This is the problem with GM. F-O-C-U-S.

They just announced that Cadillac will be their EV breeding ground. And now GMC is ‘considering’ an EV pickup?

It should first be an Escalade pickup and then rolled down to GMC and Chevrolet when the price is in line.