GM introduced again the Chevrolet Bolt EV this week, as a future inexpensive EV product peg for the corporate’s product plan, timeline but to be disclosed.
That stated, the timeline for the Bolt EV disappearing from dealerships stays confirmed. In April, GM confirmed that it could discontinue the Chevrolet Bolt EV and EUV on the finish of 2023, as manufacturing winds down on the Orion Meeting plant in Michigan, which GM had already dedicated to manufacturing of the Chevrolet Silverado EV and different giant electrical vehicles on its Ultium platform.
“Drawing on varied Ultium and Ultifi technological developments will assist GM convey this common mannequin again to market on an accelerated timeline,” GM stated, confirming that the long run Bolt EV received’t carry over its current propulsion tech.
GM Ultium battery – cell stacking
Future Bolt EV received’t be all-new
The automaker additionally instructed that not every part on the Bolt EV will likely be new, because it famous that it “will execute it extra rapidly in comparison with an all-new program with considerably decrease engineering expense and capital funding by updating the automobile with Ultium and Ultifi applied sciences and by making use of our ‘successful with simplicity’ self-discipline.”
Ultium is the broad commerce time period making use of to GM battery and electrical propulsion households, and Ultifi is the time period making use of to its EV software program, so this merely signifies that the long run Bolt EV received’t carry ahead with its present-generation LG Chem cells—which had been the main target of a very costly, large-scale recall.
GM had no incentive to hold that tech ahead anyhow. “We’re already on the street to delivering a 60% cost reduction in comparison with the Bolt EV with the following era of Ultium,” Barra stated in 2021, of tech set to reach mid-decade, as a part of an announcement touting the automaker as one of many few to have an EV that’s as inexpensive because the Bolt household.
Attainable electrical Chevrolet Camaro in GM Ultium teaser video
Did GM ever truly kill the Chevy Bolt EV?
GM executives had already hinted to Inexperienced Automotive Reviews and different retailers that whereas future electrical small automobiles may be within the works, these wouldn’t use the identical large-format Ultium pouch cells that it deliberate to deploy on every part from the Chevrolet Equinox EV and Blazer EV on as much as huge vehicles just like the GMC Hummer EV and Chevy Silverado EV.
Likewise, GM and Honda introduced in April 2022 that they had been working collectively on a joint architecture for affordable EVs—one that might use “next-generation Ultium battery know-how,” in accordance with GM.
At the moment, these compact EVs had been set to reach for 2026. It’s arduous to think about GM engaged on a number of compact EV platforms outdoors China, so this week’s announcement probably indicators that the challenge has been pulled forward—just like the automaker managed to accelerate development of the Cadillac Lyriq, maybe.
GM might have offered a number of the reply to what comes subsequent. Earlier this 12 months the corporate clarified that it would embrace the flexibleness of cylindrical cells in future EVs, as a part of its Ultium tech however not as a part of the Ultium Cells LLC three way partnership. That was made clearer this April with the announcement of a three way partnership between GM and Samsung SDI, because of mass-produce cylindrical cells for GM products beginning in 2026.
The lower-profile cells would assist reply the dimensional challenges that make these large-format cells more durable to bundle inside a small automobile or beneath the ground of a low-profile automobile.
UAW-made sticker on 2022 Chevy Bolt EV
Bolt EV’s manufacturing dilemma
Whereas the Bolt EV’s Michigan plant shifts to truck manufacturing later within the 12 months, the automaker doesn’t produce other fast choices for U.S. manufacturing. GM vacated its Lordstown, Ohio, plant that used to assemble compact automobiles and is positioned close to the Ultium LLC cells facility. It’s now below the possession of Foxconn, which can probably assemble the $29,900 Fisker Pear urban EV there.
In the meantime, demand for the Bolt EV surges, and GM will face a niche in its lineup after the top of the 12 months. Of the 36,024 EVs GM delivered within the first half of 2023, simply 2,365 had been of its new-generation Ultium EVs. The remaining 33,659 had been Chevrolet Bolt EVs.
In its replace for traders earlier this week, CEO Barra pointed to the Bolt as one in all its most in-demand autos, at or below a 10-day provide in vendor stock.
“Really, we will not construct sufficient Bolts proper now,” stated Barra to Wolfe Analysis analyst Rod Lache.