Details of electrification strategy shows automaker is serious about being major EV supplier.

Spencer Chin, Senior Editor

September 15, 2022

3 Min Read
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Tim Grewe, GM’s Director of Electrification Strategy, speaking during a keynote session on Day 2 of the Battery Show.Image courtesy of Spencer Chin

General Motors has long been the leading automaker in the U.S. and one of the largest global automakers. But when company chairman and CEO made it clear several years ago GM was going to be a leader in EVs, the world has been eagerly awaiting the automaker’s ambitious plans.

During the keynote session at Day 2 of the Battery Show in Novi, MI, Tim Grewe, GM’s Director of Electrification Strategy, detailed the multi-faced approach the automaker is taking to leverage its electric technology not only for passenger vehicles, but also for commercial and industrial vehicles. The centerpiece of its technology is a modular electric vehicle architecture that can be easily adapted to produce electric powertrains for vehicles ranging from smaller crossovers to full-size pickup trucks. GM will back the technology with a comprehensive charging infrastructure and customer service.

GM’s battery platform, called Ultium, relies on multi-cell submodule assembles now being built in a plant in Ohio, through a joint venture with LG. According to Grewe, the modules can quickly be assembled into multiple pack and systems solutions for vehicles with different wheelbases. GM is offering different electric motor configurations for vehicles with front-wheel drive, rear-wheel drive, and all-wheel drive. The architecture can be easily scaled for future electric vehicles GM will introduce in coming years.

Related:Chevrolet Bolt EUV Delivers Value With an Affordable EV Price Tag

Extensive Charging Network

GM has developed a wireless battery management system that will monitor the EV's battery’s health in real time. On top of wireless battery management, the company expects to offer a wide network of charging optionsꟷat home, the workplace, or public charging stations.  

More specifically, GM’s Grewe said the company was planning to install over 100,000 public charging stations in both the U.S. and Canada. There would also be 40,000 chargers available through the GM dealer network, as well as fast chargers at some locations. GM would offer Smart chargers producing 11.5 kW at 48 A, or 19.2 kW at 80 A.

In conjunction with the chargers, GM will make available an Ultium charging app that would help electric vehicle owners monitor their electric use as well as locate available charging stations. The app would also provide cost of ownership information.

Beyond Passenger Vehicles

GM’s Crewe revealed the company’s plans to leverage its battery platform beyond passenger vehicles. He said GM was seeking to develop battery solutions for recreational vehicles, commercial trucks, locomotives, and conversion kits for passenger vehicles and trucks. Other possible applications include delivery vehicles, farm equipment, military ground support equipment, people movers and buses, and racing and motorsports.

Related:GM Sprints to Launch Cadillac Lyriq Production Nine Months Early

Crewe also mentioned some discussion was underway with Pacific Gas and Electric to reimburse customers for battery capacity they paid for that goes unused, providing additional incentives to move to electric vehicle power.

“Nobody will be left out and everyone will be able to take advantage,” Crewe said in conclusion.

Spencer Chin is a Senior Editor for Design News covering the electronics beat. He has many years of experience covering developments in components, semiconductors, subsystems, power, and other facets of electronics from both a business/supply-chain and technology perspective. He can be reached at [email protected].

About the Author(s)

Spencer Chin

Senior Editor, Design News

Spencer Chin is a Senior Editor for Design News, covering the electronics beat, which includes semiconductors, components, power, embedded systems, artificial intelligence, augmented and virtual reality, and other related subjects. He is always open to ideas for coverage. Spencer has spent many years covering electronics for brands including Electronic Products, Electronic Buyers News, EE Times, Power Electronics, and electronics360. You can reach him at [email protected] or follow him at @spencerchin.

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