GM Won't Sell 500,000 EVs by 2017 as Promised, Will Work Harder to Reach Goal

Chevrolet Bolt EV Concept 1 photo
Photo: Chevrolet
When automakers make long-term sales forecasts, they usually back their arguments up with sturdy research and reliable studies. But that doesn't guarantee things will go as planned.
General Motors found themselves in a similar situation. It has to do with how many electric cars the American automotive giant thought it would sell until 2017.

We don't know if you remember, but back in 2012, Mary Barra - who was Senior Vice President at that time - said GM was ready to have up to 500,000 vehicles on the road "with some form of electrification by 2017 with a focus on plug-in technology".

Back then, General Motors were putting all their hopes in the Chevrolet Volt plug-in hybrid, which was bound to borrow similar technologies to his luxurious cousin, the Cadillac ELR - which to this day was sold in modest numbers.

Half a million EVs and PHEVs sold in just five years is a significant goal even for a company like GM, and there's no surprise it proved a tough nut to crack.

In a recently-published sustainability report focusing on vehicle and manufacturing progress, General Motors revised their ambitious target, after admitting the 500,000 target is not realistic anymore: "For our commitment to electrification, our forecasted outlook currently projects us, along with the broader automotive industry, falling short of expectations for 2017."

However, officials stated their will to work towards reaching the initial goal. They also say at this moment, GM has 180,834 EVs and PHEVs on the road in the U.S – up from 153,034 in 2013.

How does GM's electrified fleet look like?

The company's electric range is currently includes the ongoing Volt, the Spark EV, plus the Caddy ELR. In addition to these models, GM will introduce the Malibu Hybrid, the Cadillac CT6 plug-in hybrid and the eAssist technology for the Buick LaCrosse and Buick Regal.

In addition, Chevrolet will enter the market with the new 2016 Volt, which will be followed by the Bolt most likely in 2017. Sure, there's also the FNR Concept shown at Auto Shanghai 2015, but let's stick to down-to-Earth intentions for now.
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