The Chevrolet Bolt EV/Chevrolet Bolt EUV production at the Orion Assembly plant in Orion Township, Michigan recently resumed (on November 1), but only temporarily, for about two weeks.
According to Automotive News, the company will take another break for three weeks (between November 15 and December 3).
The reason behind the on/off production of the Bolts is insufficient supply of batteries. General Motors prioritizes the battery recall, while production of new cars will run only at limited speed to "to help optimize LG battery output and support customer and dealer needs related to the recall."
"Prioritizing battery module replacements for existing customers has led to a shortage of battery parts for new-vehicle production. GM notified employees at Orion Assembly that the plant will take downtime from Nov. 15 to Dec. 3. Production is slated to resume Dec. 6."
"Battery module replacements remain the priority. We will continue to adjust Orion's production schedule moving forward to best support the recall,"
The company has to replace batteries in up to about 142,000 cars, but the majority of the cost will be paid by LG companies that produced the faulty batteries.
Chevrolet Bolt EV/EUV battery recall in brief
- the full battery recall was announced on August 20, 2021
- cause: manufacturing defects (a torn anode tab and folded separator) in lithium-ion battery cells (pouch type) supplied by LG Chem's LG Energy Solution may lead to a battery fire "in rare circumstances"
Cells were produced in plants in South Korea and in Michigan
- fire reports (as of September 16, 2021 via Reuters): 12 and three injuries
- cars: about 142,000 cars (including about 100,000 in the U.S.)
all Chevrolet Bolt EV (2017-2022)
all Chevrolet Bolt EUV (2022)
- remedy: replacement of battery modules (newer cars) or entire battery packs (early cars) will start in October 2021
The new batteries will include an extended battery 8-year/100,000-mile limited warranty (or 8-year/160,000 km limited warranty in Canada), whichever comes first.
temporarily: don't charge beyond 90% State of Charge (SOC) or discharge below approximately 70 miles (113 km) of the remaining range (which is close to 30% SOC, assuming roughly 250 miles of EPA range) and keep the vehicles outside.
- estimated cost: $2.0 billion (mostly covered by LG companies)
on average it might be about $12,675 per car (or about $190 per kWh) assuming $1.8 billion
In October GM announced an agreement with LG on Bolt EV recall costs - "GM will recognize an estimated recovery in its third-quarter earnings that will offset $1.9 billion of $2.0 billion in charges associated with the recalls."
- estimated battery volume: 9.2-9.4 GWh
- similar case: Hyundai recall of about 82,000 EVs (including 75,680 Hyundai Kona Electric)
- production: production of new cars was halted in August 2021, resumed on November 1, but will be halted for three weeks on November 15