They weren’t about to let Rivian, Ford & Tesla have all the fun.
General Motors confirmed in a call that it has designs for an all-electric pickup, with CEO Mary Barra saying conclusively that a zero-emissions pickup is in the pipeline. The question of a tailpipe-less pickup came up during the quarterly earnings call, where Barra’s answer was far more definite than some of the answers the rest of the GM top brass have been bleating recently when posed with the same question.
“We intend to create an all-electric future that includes a complete range of EVs, including full-size pickups.” – Mary Barra, Chief Executive Officer, General Motors
This comes after GM’s attempts to buy into EV startup Rivian didn’t go particularly well, but their fate was sealed after Ford swooped in with a US$700mil cheque and negotiated a seat on the board of directors. Left out on its own, GM will have an uphill battle ahead of it, but it’s a battle that they either have to win or die trying.
The American automaker has already confirmed that a new EV, based on the slow-selling Bolt, will be coming about in the near future. It’s expected to be a crossover of some sort which normally spells a quick & heavy cash injection, but whether that’ll be enough to sustain the investment-heavy phase that must follow remains to be seen.
We personally feel that this move to electrify more rough-and-tough cars is an inevitable one, considering the emissions connotations that are attached to heavy-duty (or even light-duty) vehicles, as well as the towing & payload capacities that come lump-sum when you go electric. Focusing on GM, as we said earlier, their going-it-alone will push their finances & engineering capability to the furthest reaches they can manage. The company cannot afford to maintain their back-foot position when it comes to Mobility 2.0 and with time slowly but surely running out, they’d better light a fire under their collective bottoms and get a move on.