GM restarts Chevy Bolt plant after battery fire calls | Michigan News

DETROIT (AFP) – General Motors said it will start making Chevrolet Bolt electric cars again in early April after an eight-month hiatus caused by a series of battery recalls.

The automaker said Tuesday that battery supplier LG Energy Solution is now making enough to supply replacement units for recalls as well as to resume production.

The company will start making hatchback and SUV versions of the Bolt on April 4 at its North Detroit plant. These should start arriving at merchants after a few weeks. Vehicles in dealer collections can be sold at the time of the recall once the battery units have been replaced.

In August, General Motors expanded its previous recall to more than 140,000 bolts sold worldwide since 2016 because battery manufacturing defects could cause vehicle fires.

The company said at the time that in rare cases, batteries with two manufacturing defects could cause fires even when parked.

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GM said the recall follows reports of 13 battery fires, which can occur when both faults are present in the battery modules.

In October, LG agreed to reimburse General Motors for $2 billion in recall costs, and the company is still in a joint venture with the company to build batteries for its next generation of electric vehicles.

The battery fires and recalls were an embarrassing setback for General Motors, which has lofty goals to switch from internal combustion to battery-powered cars. GM sold just under 25,000 screws in the US before telling dealers to stop selling them due to the recall in August.

To capture the US electric vehicle market share leadership, GM plans to spend $35 billion to roll out more than 30 battery-powered vehicles globally by 2025, including about 20 in North America. The company said it aspires to manufacture only electric passenger cars by 2035.

General Motors has said it plans to overtake Tesla to become the world’s largest seller of electric vehicles. Tesla sold just under 353,000 electric vehicles in the United States last year, according to estimates by Motorintelligence.com.

General Motors has started selling its large electric Hummer and plans to start building a Cadillac SUV next month. A Chevrolet Silverado electric pickup is set to follow in 2024.

By the end of the decade, GM expects $90 billion in additional annual revenue from electric vehicles.

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