General Motors has postponed its goal of delivering a total of 400,000 electric vehicles in North America by the end of 2023 by six months. As GM CEO Mary Barra explained during the company’s announcement of its latest quarterly results, battery production cannot be ramped up as quickly as planned.
The delay, she said, is due to the fact that it has taken longer than expected to hire and train the more than 1,000 workers needed to staff Ultium Cells’ first battery cell plant in Warren, Ohio, which began production in September. It also took a little longer than planned to assemble the battery pack, he said.
“Due to a slightly slower launch of cell and pack production than we expected, our plan is now to produce 400,000 EVs in North America over the course of 2022, 2023, and the first half of 2024,” Barra said. The GM CEO first announced the 400,000-unit goal to investors in February 2022.
Still, she expressed confidence that the delay will be no more than six months and will not grow. “All of our 2023 launches are progressing well,” Barra said now. Among them are the two smaller models, the Blazer EV and Equinox EV, which will be built in Mexico starting next year. In terms of unit sales, these two models will make a more important contribution than, say, the expensive GMC Hummer EV. But the Chevrolet Silverado EV and GMC Sierra EV electric pickup trucks will also be cornerstones of the strategy to “rapidly grow EV volumes in high-volume segments,” according to the shareholder letter.
But the company is already thinking beyond late 2023/mid-2024. General Motors plans to invest several billion dollars in expanding manufacturing capacity for electric vehicles and battery cells – in Michigan and throughout North America. By the end of 2025, production capacity is expected to be more than one million electric vehicles, including 600,000 pickup trucks.
In the shareholder letter, GM also stated that it had achieved record sales for the Bolt EV and Bolt EUV in the third quarter. In early October, General Motors announced it would expand production capacity for the two model lines from 44,000 to 70,000 units – due to high demand. However, Chevrolet had lowered the price by as much as $6,000 in the summer.
And the company has already achieved another sustainability goal: GM says it has managed to procure enough renewable energy to fully supply all of its US American locations with it from 2025.
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