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GM to Increase Bolt Production in Move Toward All-Electric Future

March 8, 2018 0 Comments

During a speech plotting General Motors’s path to a zero-emissions future, CEO Mary Barra announced that the automaker is planning to expand its Chevrolet Bolt production.

Barra’s address came at the end of an oil-viability focused day at the annual CERAWeek by IHS Markit conference in Houston, TX, where several energy executives “challenged the notion that alternative fuels and electric vehicles will soon displace the internal combustion engine.”

Driving-Sales-Automotive-News-GM-General-Motors-Increase-Bolt-Production-Move-Toward-All-Electric-FutureOn Monday, Saudi Aramco CEO Amin Nasser told CNBC that he thought it would take “generations” for a total transformation to electric vehicles in the industry to take place.

“I think it’s going to happen more quickly than decades,” Barra said to CNBC in a sideline-interview at the conference. “As more and more people recognize that we have the right range, understand that we have a charging infrastructure so they don’t think you’re going to be stranded, I think you’re going to see EV adoption continue.”

GM is planning to increase Bolt production at its Orion Assembly plant near Detroit later this year to meet the growing demand worldwide for the all-electric model, Barra announced Wednesday. She did not specify what the scale of the production increase would be, but did say that the ramp-up would create new jobs at the plant.

In her speech, Barra called on the energy industry and other stakeholders, asking them to partner up with the automaker and expand the U.S. network of charging stations. The infrastructure would boost consumer confidence to use EVs anywhere and anytime, Barra added.

“You’ve got to have good consumer confidence that they’re going to be able to drive their vehicles and it’s going to support their daily lives and their hectic life,” she said. “We see a role in investing, in partnering and making sure that that customer need is fulfilled.” She noted that GM is working on some partnerships, but did not have anything to announce yet.Driving-Sales-Automotive-News-GM-General-Motors-Increase-Bolt-Production-Move-Toward-All-Electric-Future

The CEO further implored the power sector to “continue developing renewable energy generation” to pull environmentally-conscious drivers off the sidelines, as well as to lower the carbon footprint of EVs.

In the U.S., about 30 percent of electricity is sourced from coal-fired power plants, meaning plug-ins still rely on a major contributor of global warming.

Barra also said that Congress should expand tax credits for electric vehicles.

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