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GM Chief Promises On Profit From Electric Cars By 2021 Driven By Low Cost Innovative Batteries

GM Chief Promises On Profit From Electric Cars By 2021 Driven By Low Cost Innovative Batteries
It would be by 2021 that General Motors Co would begin making profits from the sale of electric cars, said the company Chief Executive Mary Barra in what is being described as a bold promise to investors.
But how that would be achieved has not been described by Barra. And this is critical because no major automaker has made such a promise so far.
According to experts of the market and former GM supplier executives, high-volume production mainly in China, low cost and flexible vehicle design and proprietary battery technology would be the three pillars for the company to achieve that, the media analyzed. 
Ad by 2020s, there would be two different business that GM would won of the company can meet the ambitions of Barra. The forts would be the traditional focus in North America on trucks, sport utility vehicles and cars fueled with petroleum, and a China centered global electric car company. The second would also have a branch of pay-per-use services like robotaxis.
The electric car market has been primarily driven by consumer demand and government policies and therefore Barra’s promise is a bold one. It is also a market where a lot of cash is being burned by Tesla – the largest electric car maker, at the rate of about $1 billion a quarter and not making enough money from selling of premium-priced vehicles.
The Chevrolet Bolt EV is the latest electric vehicle which has been a success and both Barra and GM are hoping to build on that success along with brining down costs as they do so. This is why the company has been attempting to seriously convince the investors in accepting that the company would be able to compete with Tesla and thus investing in the electrification strategy.
Bringing down the amount of cobalt used in GM’s new EMC 1.0 battery system is the key component of the strategy of the company according to sources. In the last two years, cobalt dealers have been anticipating a steep rise in the demand of cobalt for a corresponding rise in demand for batteries by electric car makers which has driven the price of the metal to very high. The metal is the costliest component in the lithium-ion battery cells used in electric cars. This month, prices of cobalt reached records at the London Metal Exchange.
Sources said that more nickel is being used in the new batteries of GM which would enable the batteries to store and deliver more energy.
Enhanced ways of management of flow of energy and their cooling in the batteries and the better packaging of batteries in the vehicles are amongst the design and technological advances that are being worked upon by GM engineers.
The cost of the battery cells would get reduced by as much as 30 per cent with these improvements, GM said without detailing how. It expects costs to reduce to $100 per kilowatt-hour by 2021 from the current price of $145 per kilowatt-hour.

Christopher J. Mitchell

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