GM partners with LG for upcoming Bolt EV with 200 mile range

Posted on 27 Oct 2015 by Cobey Bartels

General Motors (GM) has selected LG Electronics as a key supplier of components for its next generation Chevrolet Bolt, which is set to offer consumers the first long-range and moderately-priced electric vehicle (EV).

Chevrolet said it has designed the Bolt EV to meet the daily driving needs of Chevrolet customers around the globe and has promised the Bolt will offer more than 200 miles (320km) of range and a price tag around US$30,000.

The range is a significant increase from Chevrolet’s current model Volt EV which has an electric range of about 38 miles (61km), and is more than double the range of the Nissan Leaf which offers around 84 miles (135km) of range on full charge.

By comparison, the United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) official range for the Tesla Model S Performance model equipped with an 85 kWh battery pack is 265 miles (426km).

Partnership with LG lowers cost

The Detroit automaker said it is able to offer a low-cost, long-range EV thanks to the development partnership with LG, which will produce almost all of the powertrain components, as well as other electronic parts.

Components and systems supplied by LG for the Chevrolet Bolt EV include the motor, power inverter module, on-board charger, battery cells, infotainment system, instrument cluster and more.

The exterior charge port of the Chevrolet Bolt - image courtesy of Chevrolet.
The exterior charge port of the 2016 Chevrolet Bolt EV – image courtesy of Chevrolet.

GM has partnered with LG since 2008 for its EV batteries, and since then the South Korean electronics company has continued to become more involved in the development of the vehicles and systems.

LG has invested more than $250m in an engineering and manufacturing facility in Incheon, Korea, to develop and manufacturer components for the Bolt EV.

GM executive vice president of global product development, purchasing and supply chain, Mark Reuss, made it clear that the partnership is a way of combining the expertise of each company.

“Chevrolet needs to be disruptive in order to maintain our leadership position in electrification.

“By taking the best of our in-house engineering prowess established with the Chevrolet Volt and Spark EV, and combining the experience of the LG Group, we’re able to transform the concept of the industry’s first long-range, affordable EV into reality,” Reuss said.

LG stands as a strong player in the EV technology game, with this partnership solidifying the potential of the company to work with automakers.

“Being selected as GM’s EV technology partner positions LG as a key player in next-generation vehicular technologies.

“The opportunity to work with GM on such game-changing technology is indicative of exactly the type of contributions that traditional tech companies can make in the automotive space,” said Lee Woo-jong, president and CEO of the LG Electronics Vehicle Components Company.

The Chevrolet Bolt EV was shown in concept from at the North American International Auto Show in January, with GM confirming almost a month after the Show that production would commence in late 2016.