GM Unveils Latest Chevy Bolt EV Featuring Advanced Ultium Battery Technology
General Motors revealed today that it is creating the next-generation Chevrolet Bolt, which will be based on the automaker's Ultium battery and motor technology and would have "great affordability, range, and technology."
It will be released with three other electric vehicles from Chevrolet this year: the Equinox and Blazer SUVs, as well as the Silverado pickup truck. Here's what we know so far:
General Motors is revealing next-generation Chevrolet Bolt based on Ultium battery
GM CEO Mary Barra stated during the company's Q2 earnings call that the new Bolt will be released on an "accelerated timeline," but she did not provide specifics on a release date for the affordable EV after GM announced in April that it would discontinue production of the original model, which was plagued by fires and an expensive battery recall.
The missed launch date is yet another indication of persistent supply concerns that are apparently limiting General Motors Ultium battery output. According to The New York Times, most of GM's 50,000 EVs produced in the first half of this year still use older third-party batteries, and GM has sold fewer than 2,800 vehicles in the US that use its new Ultium battery packs.
The Detroit Free Press reported earlier this month that major supply chain concerns were impeding battery production. Rory Harvey, GM's North America president, stated that the only supply chain issue affecting production was battery module capacity and that he expected "a lot more EVs being built in the second half of this year."
Ultium batteries are employed in only a few GM vehicles
Ultium batteries are now employed in only a few GM vehicles, including the Cadillac Lyriq SUV, the $90,000 GMC Hummer, and delivery vans under the automaker's BrightDrop subsidiary brand.
GM chief financial officer Paul Jacobson said on a conference call with reporters on Monday that "it's been a little bit challenging," but that the business is still on track to produce 100,000 EVs in the second half of 2023 as manufacturing ramps up.
Barra stated the automaker's aim to deliver 400,000 electric vehicles in North America through 2023, with the lofty goal of generating 1 million EVs in the region by 2025, back in February 2022. Due to battery production challenges, the initial 400,000-unit target was already pushed out to 2024 in October of last year.
GM has invested heavily in the development of electric vehicles. When it first presented its modular EV platform in 2020, the company indicated plans to invest tens of billions of dollars in developing its Ultium batteries.
Some of that money has gone towards creating Ultium battery cell plants in the United States; the batteries are manufactured at a $2.3 billion joint production facility in Ohio built by GM and LG Energy, with two other sites under construction in Tennessee and Michigan.
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