How Far Will GM Go in Race to Top Tesla?
General Motors (NYSE:GM) might not want to beat Tesla (NASDAQ:TSLA) outright, but the Detroit Three powerhouse is joining the electric vehicle maker in the race to produce an affordable, long-range electric vehicle. GM announced that it is nearly tripling the size of its battery lab in Michigan while the intensity of its focus on EV production increases. The goal is an affordable electric vehicle capable of covering 200 miles on a single charge.
GM’s Global Battery Systems lab has gotten an additional 50,000 square feet — approximately triple its original size — in which engineers will continue development of battery range and cost efficiency. The labs located in Warren, Michigan, are the site of research and testing for the Chevy Volt and Spark, as well as the Cadillac ELR. According to Doug Parks, the VP of GM’s global products program, it’s about stepping up GM’s electric vehicle profile.
“In the past four years, the competitive landscape in the electrification space has grown exponentially. This has required us to raise our game and draw a new line in the sand,” Parks said in a company statement. In that time, Tesla has come roaring out of the West with an electric car that has set the entire industry on edge. While the Tesla flagship Model S wows consumers in the luxury price range, the real race is to the first affordable long-range electric vehicle.