Although the fully electric Chevrolet Silverado EV will likely be built on the same underpinnings as the GMC Hummer EV, it’s shaping up to be positioned very differently for the market—with an emphasis on affordability.
“What's especially important is that this truck will be in a high-volume entry, and one of the most popular and competitive segments in the industry,” said GM CEO Mary Barra last week, in a quarterly financial call.
That’s sounding like a completely different market positioning versus GM’s first venture into electric trucks, the GMC Hummer EV. With entry off-road-equipped Edition 1 prices at $110,595 in SUV form and $112,595 in SUT form, it’s the Hummer EV is a niche model for luxury lifestyles. Even the Hummer EV trucks’ eventual base price of $79,995 blasts past the ceiling of most fleet budgets.
2022 GMC Hummer EV first prototype
‘The initial interest has been overwhelming, especially from commercial and government customers,” said Barra, about the Silverado EV.
The CEO explained: “We gave a small number of them a sneak peek at the interior and exterior design. They said it exceeded their high expectations with zero emissions, long range, pickup capability, innovative storage, and strong value, along with a powerful design.”
GM hasn’t teased the electric truck in full to the public, although it teased partial views of the truck during a presentation last year. It also showed media a rendering of the truck last year, at a no-cameras preview of future vehicles potentially built with its Ultium propulsion strategy. In that, Green Car Reports saw design nods to the former Chevy Avalanche.
GM chief EV officer Travis Hester with Chevrolet electric truck
The Chevrolet Silverado EV will be produced alongside the GMC Hummer EV at GM’s plant in Hamtramck, Michigan, and it’s expected to follow the same “structural sandwich” approach for its design, allowing a skateboard-style battery underneath what’s neither a body-on-frame nor typical uni-body design. The company hasn’t yet disclosed timing or specs for the model, but it’s said that it will exceed 400 miles of range in some of its build combinations.
2022 GMC Hummer EV
The Silverado EV isn’t the only electric truck GM is developing with fleet in mind. GM last year announced the development of a BrightDrop commercial business that will deliver an EV600 electric van—to be built in Ontario, Canada—to its first customer, FedEx Express, by the fourth quarter of 2021, and Barra reported that the company remains on track for the target.
Ford has been up front that it’s looking to prioritize engaging fleet customers with an affordable price and low operating costs for its upcoming electric trucks, including the electric F-150, reportedly due to be called the F-150 Lightning.
If the Silverado lands in the price range we’d suspect, it won’t cost much more than the Lordstown Endurance, a fully electric truck developed by a startup and due to be produced at an Ohio plant GM abandoned in its restructuring toward more EVs.
That truck is expected to be delivered to first customers later this year, while the electric F-150 arrives sometime next year.