Report: Chevy Bolt Production Could Kick Off in 2017
In revealing the 200-mile-range Bolt EV yesterday, GM CEO Mary Barra did just about everything short of coming out and saying, “Yeah, we’re going to make this thing right here, we’re going to sell it to you for around $30,000, and it’s going to change the way people drive forever,” and dropping the mic onstage. She was, in her way, very to the point: the Bolt represents an affordable electric vehicle that will rattle the status quo, and—most importantly—it represents a vehicle that GM is very serious about making.
The understanding with the Bolt EV Concept is that it’s a precursor to an actual production vehicle—the realistic-if-not-BMW-i3-inspired exterior would suggest that it might actually be more sneak peak than design study—and sources are saying that Bolt production could begin in a mere two years time.
Auto News (subscription required) cites a source close to those in the know that states the production version of the Bolt EV could be on the market in about a year-and-a-half. Of course, the need for covert sources is slightly lessened when Mark Reuss himself came right out and told reporters to “look for it here over the next year or year-and-a-half.”
Barra says that a production version of the Chevy Bolt could serve as a daily driver for Americans in all 50 states. GM would likely follow the pattern of launching the Bolt in coastal areas and major cities first and gradually expanding its reach into Middle America, but it could throw caution to the wind and roll the Bolt out nationwide. While by no means the likely result, that’s the kind of confidence a game-changing vehicle with a 200-mile all-electric range and starting price around $30,000 (after tax incentives) might demand.
There’s no word as to whether the Bolt would spell the end for the Spark EV—currently only available in California and Oregon—but it’s suggested that the Bolt would be underpinned by the same subcompact platform that will support the next-gen Sonic.
News Source: Automotive News (subscription required)
Tim Shults likes to play golf and spend time with his four daughters.