GM has resumed production of the 2022 Chevrolet Bolt EV and EUV and now has access to a supply of new battery packs that should be safe from fire hazards. This comes after the Chevrolet Bolt was recalled due to potential battery fires affecting all model years, which led to a complete production freeze on the Bolt EV and EUV vehicles since last August.
“Our goal is to get back to and, quite frankly, exceed business metrics,” said Chevy’s VP of marketing Steve Majoros on a press call yesterday. The comeback plan for the Bolt includes catching up with new 2022 Bolt EV and EUV orders (2023 orders will begin in July), a new TV ad campaign coinciding with the opening day of Major League Baseball, and the “herculean task” of replacing all battery packs affected by the recall.
A “herculean task”
“We have a very, very good reliable supply coming in to make sure we can handle all of these current needs,” Majoros said on the subject of battery replacements. Majoros revealed that there are 6,700 Bolt vehicles in stock at dealerships awaiting new batteries, and that battery supply will be prioritized for current owners affected by the recall rather than the unsold inventory.
Majoros did not comment on how many Bolt owners are still waiting on new batteries, how quickly they’re being replaced, or any other statistics related to the recall. But when a customer does get a new battery pack, Chevy says it will come with an updated eight-year, 100,000 mile warranty, plus an additional 20 miles of range. The only other detail shared was that the National Highway and Traffic Safety Administration is in close communication with GM about the status of the faulty battery replacements.
The original 2020 recall from GM included 68,000 Bolt EVs worldwide but later grew to around 140,000 of the electric vehicles, affecting even the newest Bolt EUV. But Majoros says that GM is “in a much better place” in regards to the supply chain affecting the Bolt EV and EUV. The same can’t be said of Chevy’s Camaro sports car, for which GM halted production this week due to unspecified supply chain issues.
Old batteries coming from the recalled Bolts will be fully recycled or reused, according to GM’s Kevin Kelly, but it was not revealed how they will be reused and if the corrected battery packs share any parts with the old ones. But Majoros did mention that the new batteries are not the same as the ones used in GM’s Ultium battery platform, which are used with partner companies like Honda and also in other GM electric vehicles like the GMC Hummer EV, which may assure customers of those other vehicles.
The meeting also revealed GM spends more on the Bolt EV and EUV than almost any other product in its lineup, including marketing and manufacturing. The company's most costly product is the Chevy Silverado pickup truck, which is also getting its own EV version soon. GM plans to manufacture twice as many of the larger EUV compared to the smaller hatch, according to Kelly. The Bolts will join the Cadillac Lyric and GMC Hummer EV as the company’s electric vehicle offerings that are actively in production.