Chevrolet Bolt EV to get electric sibling, with Michigan plant investment


2017 Chevrolet Bolt EV pre-production

2017 Chevrolet Bolt EV pre-production

General Motors announced on Friday that it will build a second electric car for Chevrolet, alongside the Chevy Bolt EV.

The new model is widely expected to be a somewhat larger crossover SUV, though GM would not confirm that at this point.

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It will share the Bolt's underpinnings, rather than be based on GM's new BEV3 platform, which is expected to go into production with a Cadillac badge sometime after 2021.

In January, the company announced that Cadillac will become its lead electric vehicle brand in an effort to make GM's electric cars profitable by 2023. It can charge more for Cadillacs than for Chevrolets.

Future Cadillac long-range electric large luxury utility vehicle (rendering), 2019 Detroit auto sho

Future Cadillac long-range electric large luxury utility vehicle (rendering), 2019 Detroit auto sho

The Bolt EV, the new model, and a new lineup of electric cars on the BEV3 platform are the first-fruits of GM's efforts to transition to building all electric cars as part of its vision, announced in 2017, for a world with "zero crashes, zero emissions, and zero congestion," as Barra has articulated. “This new Chevrolet electric vehicle is another positive step toward our commitment to an all-electric future," she said during the announcement Friday.

As part of the new announcement GM said it will invest a $300 million investment in its Orion Township, Michigan, factory where the Bolt is built to add the new model.

READ THIS: Barra blogs again: GM plans to double EV, self-driving investments

The new car was originally expected to be built outside the U.S., but GM CEO Mary Barra said at an event announcing the new vehicle that terms of the new U.S./Mexico/Canada trade agreement encouraged the company to build it in the U.S.

Last month, the company stopped building the Chevrolet Volt plug-in hybrid hatchback, and in January company President Mark Reuss hinted that GM would not develop further hybrid or plug-in models.

CHECK OUT: GM president dashes hopes of future Volt, says no more hybrids

The November announcement that the company would shutter factories and discontinue the Volt and Chevy Cruze, among other models, prompted a public feud with President Trump, who tweeted "all-electric is not going to work." Last week, he took to Twitter again to demand that Barra "act now" to save 1,500 jobs at the closed Lordstown, Ohio, factory that produced the Cruze.

The investment in Orion township is expected to create 400 new jobs. Meanwhile, the Akron, Ohio, Beacon Journal reported this morning that GM is entertaining offers to sell its  "unallocated" Lordstown factory.

 
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