GM has resumed production of the Chevy Bolt EV and EUV after one of the most extensive car recall operations by any automaker. The company will continue battery replacements alongside new car production.
After halting production due to a recall that affects more than 100,000 cars, GM is ready to resume manufacturing the Chevrolet Bolt EV and EUV. The recall was due to a fire hazard associated with the battery supplied by LG Electronics. All the Bolt’s model years were affected. GM froze production last August.
GM plans to catch up with the orders for 2022 before the orders for 2023 begin in July. The company also plans to run an ad starting on the opening day of Major League Baseball. It will then begin the arduous task of swapping out the batteries on the affected units.
Chevy’s VP of marketing, Steve Majoros, confirmed GM had acquired a good supply of enough good batteries to meet all its current needs. He revealed that almost 7,000 new Bolts are parked at dealerships awaiting battery replacements. However, the battery supply will be prioritized for current owners instead of stock waiting to be sold.
Majoros did not touch on how many Bolts are due for battery replacements or how soon the owners can get the replacement. However, Chevy has already stated the new battery packs would come with a fresh eight-year or 100,000-mile warranty. The new battery will also increase the car’s range by 20 miles, not a bad bonus for all the troubles.
The National Highway and Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) closely coordinates with GM on the battery replacement program.
GM started the recall with 68,000 units but eventually expanded it to cover about 140,000 units globally, with even the latest Bolts affected. However, Majoros assures Majoros is much capable of handling all the supply issues relating to the recall, even though that much could not be said for the Camaro sports car, which was halted for unspecified reasons.
On what will happen to the replaced batteries, GM has said they will be fully recycled or reused. How they will be reused has not been stated, nor whether parts of the old battery fit in the new ones.
However, what is clear is that the new batteries are not from the Ultium battery GM wants to use in its new EVs like the Hummer EV and the electric Silverado pickup truck. Honda is also using the new Ultium battery.
GM says it spends the most money on the Bolt line, including marketing and production. However, the company says it will produce double the larger EUV Bolt as the smaller EV Bolt, apparently responding to purchasing trends, even though the larger Bolt offers a slightly less driving range.
GM says LG has agreed to bear most of the cost of the recall, and the two companies continue to work together on EV batteries.