GM Scores a Win: First Electric Car for the Masses

January 6, 2016


GM’s announcement of the Chevy Bolt gives it bragging rights in bringing out what, at least in theory, is the first 200 miles/charge vehicle at the 30k price point.


General Motors just beat Tesla Motors in the race to produce a truly affordable electric vehicle with triple-digit range.

Moments ago, GM CEO Mary Barra unveiled the all-electric Chevrolet Bolt at CES, providing the first look at what may be the most significant vehicle the automaker has built in decades. The little EV may look like just another five-door compact, but two figures make it an engineering masterstroke: 200 and 30,000.

That first number is its range: 200 miles on a fully charged battery. That’s a number exceeded only by Tesla, whose cheapest model starts north of $70,000. And that brings us to the second number. Chevy promises the Bolt will cost less than $30,000 after the $7,500 federal tax credit. Together, they make the Bolt the first EV that delivers excellent range at a great price. It is the electric car for the masses.

The Bolt, says Chevrolet chief Alan Batey, “is what we mean by leading, not following.”

Leading, in this case, means winning a race among automakers to produce the first 200-mile, $30K EV. It’s the widely acknowledged point where range anxiety ceases to be a major problem for those interested in driving electric, for a cost less than that of the average new car sold in the US. GM’s most prominent competitor here is Elon Musk, who plans to unveil Tesla’s long-awaited affordable Model 3 in the spring and start production in 2017. VW and Nissan are also working on the problem, though neither has announced specific model plans.

Tesla, your move.


9 Responses to “GM Scores a Win: First Electric Car for the Masses”

  1. As a Volt owner, I can vouch for the quality of GM’s engineering when it comes to electric vehicles. This is a hugely exciting announcement.

  2. redskylite Says:

    Excellent news – an EV with a decent range at a decent price, an industry that began in the late 19th century truly restarted, hope that EV’s become the norm in the not too far future. I read today that Norway is leading the way on EV purchases, all kudos to the Norwegians, hope my countrymen follow suite. Fossil fuel enterprises must be revealed and glad that we are finally tackling the problem, can see light at the end of the tunnel and their children may enjoy a better future. Oops I nearly forget Oil chiefs don’t have children . .

    TransCanada to sue US for $15 bn over Keystone XL pipeline rejection.

    “TransCanada Corp. said the denial of a permit to complete the pipeline “was arbitrary and unjustified” under the North American Free Trade Agreement, and that the decision also exceeded the constitutional powers of US President Barack Obama.
    The Obama administration decided in October to deny the Canadian company a permit to construct a key section of the pipeline across the US-Canada border, ruling it would harm the fight against climate change.”

    Thanks for your concern of our climate TransCanada . . .

  3. redskylite Says:

    Oops – relieved not revealed – don’t rely on the spell checker

  4. dumboldguy Says:

    Lets hope this signals a breakthrough. As of right now, there aren’t many more than 400,000 plug-in EV’s in the U.S. (That’s total sales since 2008). New vehicle sales in 2015 look to be around 17.5 million, and 2.5 million of them were pickup trucks. Large SUV sales surged as gas prices dropped also. IMO, EV’s and hybrids are not going to do much until gas prices go up.

  5. While this is awesome, I still won’t buy this car. Why? Because I need something that can haul stuff and get around in the mountains. When is something going to come out that can do that, and that’s electric??

    • dumboldguy Says:

      Not any time soon? We’re too busy making Teslas for the “trendy rich”, and Joe Six-Pack loves his F-150 too much to ever give it up anyway. An electric “stuff hauler” and “mountain goer” does not put hair on one’s chest or make certain parts of the male anatomy bigger.

  6. pendantry Says:

    The headline ‘for the masses’ seems more than a little hyperbolic from where I sit. Although it’s good to see another electric car hitting the market, I must be poorer than I thought I was. There’s no way I’d ever consider dropping $30k on a vehicle.

    An the subject of ’embiggening male anatomy’ (raised by dumboldguy), I’m frankly astonished that electric vehicles aren’t snapped up by those who are impressed by impressive 0-60 numbers…

    (Yes, that’s a Tesla, but it need not be.)

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