As part of General Motors‘s 2021 full-year earnings report, the company’s Chair and CEO Mary Barra penned a letter to shareholders describing GM’s commitment to its electrification strategy.
“Since 2017, GM has been fundamentally reimagining every aspect of our business to prepare for an all-electric future,” Barra says. “Last year, after committing billions of dollars to develop the Ultium Platform — a high-energy, low-cost battery cell and one modular EV architecture and component set — we delivered our first GMC Hummer EVs and BrightDrop EV600 cargo vans to customers. These two products couldn’t be more different despite sharing Ultium DNA, which underscores the industrial and financial strength of our strategy.
Now, backed by consistently strong financial results, including record EBIT-adjusted of $14.3 billion in 2021 and the overwhelmingly positive customer response to other Ultium vehicles we have shown so far, like the Chevrolet Silverado EV, the Cadillac Lyriq and the Chevrolet Equinox EV, we are accelerating our plan.
This includes our most recent investment announcement of $7 billion — the single largest in our history — for a massive expansion of battery cell and EV assembly capacity in the United States.
Since 2020, we have announced investments totaling more than $14 billion in 10 sites across North America to increase our manufacturing capacity in the region to more than 1 million EVs annually by the end of 2025. This is a key step to deliver on our commitment to achieve carbon neutrality in our global products and operations by 2040.”
Barra says that strong EV demand is driving the acceleration of GM’s EV manufacturing, and expects this demand to grow through 2022.
“Customer reaction to the GMC Hummer EV Pickup is overwhelming. Our next electric pickup will be the Chevrolet Silverado EV. More than 110,000 Silverado EVs are reserved so far, including reservations from more than 240 fleet operators, and the numbers keep growing.
Some of the world’s largest fleet customers, including FedEx Express, Merchants Fleet and Walmart, are adopting BrightDrop’s electric vehicles and technology to make their delivery operations more efficient. All told, we have more than 25,000 production reservations for BrightDrop cargo vans.
The next Ultium-based EV to launch is the stunning Cadillac Lyriq SUV. Customer interest in the Lyriq is now so strong that we will forgo a new round of reservations and begin taking customer orders soon after the Debut Edition launches in March.
We also recently previewed the Chevrolet Equinox EV, and it’s highly anticipated for important reasons. The design of Equinox EV is compellingly new, and it’s affordable, with an estimated starting MSRP of $30,000.
The efficiencies created by the Ultium Platform are a key reason why we can deliver truly affordable EVs like the Equinox. It’s a part of the market that startups aren’t targeting in North America. But I believe affordable EVs are key to driving mass-adoption of EVs, which is a national and global priority.”
As long as semiconductors continue to flow into the U.S. from China, Barra projects GM’s commitment to EVs will make for a successful 2022.
“With Ultium-based vehicles arriving now and Cruise on the cusp of generating revenue, the door is opening to a more sustainable, equitable future for all our stakeholders,” Barra says. “As we move through the year, the massive scale of our transformation and the value it will deliver will become even more clear.”