General Motors Unveils New Electric Vehicles
American auto giant General Motors has unveiled an updated and more affordable Bolt EV, in addition to its new electric offering, the EUV.

GM plans to reveal 20 electric vehicles by 2023 which will all use GM's platform named Ultium. This list of EVs consists of four luxury cadillac SUVs, two chevrolet SUVs, one chevrolet pickup truck, one GMC hummer pickup truck, one GMC hummer SUV, one buick SUV, one buick crossover, and one autonomous vehicle that will be manufactured in partnership with Honda. The aspects that caught most people's eyes was a Chevrolet BET electric truck which GM claims will offer over 400 miles of range on a single charge.

At first it may seem surprising that GM was able to achieve such a high range. However, a few subtle hints show that this actually isn't that fantastic of an electric vehicle. Throughout the sustainability report GM based the range of their EVs using the NEDC range test. The NEDC range test, also known as New European Driving Cycle test, is known for overestimating the driving range of a vehicle in comparison to the EPA range test. For example, the Tesla Model 3 long range version has an NEDC range of 419 miles and an EPA range of 322 miles. Clearly, this is a move by GM to inflate the performance of their upcoming vehicles.

Another aspect that catches attention is the fact that the price of the Chevrolet BET truck is never mentioned or hinted at throughout the report. This comes incredibly suspicious. To top it off, GM claims that its battery energy storage goes up to 200 kiloWatt-hours. So if the Chevrolet BET truck has a 200 kilowatt battery pack, it means that the truck has a battery size 2.6 times larger than the long-range version of Tesla Model 3.

Nonetheless, Elon Musk has been waiting for the competition for quite a while now, and a NEDC-range above 400 is still a major improvement for GM. The reason why GM is able to improve the range of its vehicles is because of GM's new battery technology, as the company recently unveiled its new battery testing laboratory.

This lab is part of GM's 1.5 billion dollar investment into the General Motors technical center. GM claims that its Ultium battery has 70 percent less cobalt than usual, and eliminates 80% of the wiring in the original bolt EV. The company also claims that its batteries that are going to be manufactured in partnership with LG Chem, will cost less than 100 dollars per kiloWatt-hour which is quite impressive. These batteries will be produced in a new battery plant in Lordstown, Ohio into which GM has invested 2.3 billion dollars.

The factory is expected to have a capacity of 30 gigaWatt-hours per year. To put this into comparison, Gigafactory One had an annual output of 35 gigaWatt-hours per year in 2019. Therefore, GM expects its factory to manufacture almost as much as Tesla. What's ironic however, is that after GM announced its plan to build a Gigafactory, Elon Musk raised the bar and hinted at an upcoming Terafactory.

Now along with the list of EVs GM plans to release in the next few years, we also got to see some leaked designs of the GM lineup. This includes the Cadillac Lyriq, the Chevy Menlo, the GMC Yukon XL, Denali, GM's autonomous vehicle, and Buick Enclave. The only vehicle out of this list that we got a range on was the Chevy Menlo which has an NEDC range of 254 miles.

The funny thing about this, was that GM was too scared to put the range in the unit miles, so the automaker had to put the range in the unit kilometers. Add on the facts that the NEDC range test is vastly inaccurate and we're looking at a vehicle that has a range in the high 100s.

Dane Parker, GM's new Chief Sustainability Officer actually stated that GM has already been part of a revolution in the way we transport people and now they have the opportunity to do it again with EVs. But if we compare it with Volkswagen, the CEO has converted plenty of the automaker's gas factories into electric plants and is investing every penny of cash he can get his hands on into electric vehicles. Therefore, until we see GM spending 90% or more of their cash on electric vehicles, and transitioning some of their ICE car plants to electric, GM will not be qualified as being serious about EVs.

While GM has previously stated that they were all in on electric vehicles, the truth is that GM is still investing in gas-powered cars. Back in October 2019, the GM CEO told reuters that 30 percent of GM's cash will go to investing in future gas-powered vehicles. GM has been all talk and little action in the past and with the new report, it is either no different, or all talk in a little bit more action.