The next generation of the Chevrolet Bolt EV will arrive in 2025, General Motors CEO Mary Barra said Monday.
GM plans to discontinue its affordable electric vehicle at the end of this year as the automaker prepares to retool the Orion Assembly plant near Detroit to make electric pickups by late 2025. The Bolt EV and EUV currently are built on GM's older battery platform and will be redesigned and reintroduced on its Ultium EV architecture.
Barra did not disclose additional details Monday in remarks to the Automotive Press Association in Detroit but said she has heard from customers who love their Bolt.
"That's been something that has been really great this year, and that informed the decision that we'll have that back again in '25," Barra said.
In April, Barra confirmed the current Bolt would be retired but a few months later said it would return as an Ultium-based EV. In October, she said GM will purchase lithium iron phosphate battery cells for the redesigned Bolt EV — the first use of that battery type in North American Ultium-based vehicles — and that it would be built at lower cost and on a faster timeline.
Barra last week said the company has not executed well on its Ultium-based EV strategy this year as it has worked to get past a manufacturing constraint on battery module assembly. The automaker has pushed back the launch of several EVs and delayed the start of electric pickup production at the Orion plant, and also said it no longer will provide EV production targets other than that it plans to have capacity to build 1 million EVs in North America in 2025.
"When we talk about optimizing our EV portfolio, we don't mean retreating," she said. "We're still going to be continuing to grow and have more models as we go forward."
Barra likened the EV transition to "the first turn of the first lap of a multi-lap race." She said that while she is excited to see more Ultium-based EVs in the market, customer demand will determine volume and the automaker is focusing on EV profitability. GM continues to focus on building affordable, attractive vehicles that meet customers' needs, she said, while also building out charging infrastructure to help alleviate charging anxiety.
"We'll continue to make progress," Barra said. "When you're making this kind of transformation, I don't think anybody thought it was going to be just a straight line up. It's going to have ups and downs. But that's the industry that we're in."