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GM Has 12 EVs Coming: Here's What They Are (Probably)

GM's EV strategy has seemingly been laid bare by an investor website.

After General Motors launches two electric Cadillac SUVs and the GMC Hummer electric pickup truck that was sneak-peeked in a Super Bowl LIV commercial earlier this month, it will get another three Cadillac and six Chevrolet, Buick, or GMC BEVs to market by calendar-year 2023, Seeking Alpha reports. The Cadillacs are to use real names instead of alphanumerics, investment analyst (and Tesla skeptic) Anton Wahlman writes in his provocatively titled post, "Cadillac Eldorado Might be Back, GM Outlines Its 12 New Electric Vehicles."

The plans were revealed in plain sight, Wahlman writes, noting that presentation slides from GM's Capital Markets Day on February 5, as read by company president Mark Reuss, combined with a November 2017 presentation to investment advisors reveals its electric vehicle road map.

GM announced in the 2017 presentation it would introduce 20 pure electric vehicles by 2023. The first two already are on the market, although they're not cars, trucks, or SUVs: They're the Ariv Meld compact folding eBike and the Ariv Merge eBike, both on sale since early 2019 in Belgium and The Netherlands.

In case you're any good at math, that leaves 15 more models, not 12, after the two bikes, the two Cadillacs, and the GMC Hummer, the latter three of which we expect to see this spring. Obviously the six non-Cadillacs Wahlman outlines will include some models to be shared between Chevy and Buick-GMC, with unique sheetmetal and interior designs.

The first two Cadillacs will consist of XT5- and XT4-sized two-row SUVs, a midsize and a compact, Wahlman deduces. Those two BEVs and the GMC Hummer pickup will go on sale between the second half of 2021 and "well into 2022," Wahlman writes. The other 12, which are scheduled to roll out by '23, are:

  1. Ride-sharing driverless minivan.
  2. Regular minivan with a steering wheel, similar in size and purpose to the Volkswagen ID Buzz.
  3. Cadillac compact sedan/hatchback to target the Tesla Model 3.
  4. Chevrolet Bolt compact hatchback replacement.
  5. Small Chevrolet or Buick crossover, as replacements for the Trax and Encore. (Both brands seem likely to us, considering the popularity of the Buick Encore. )
  6. Compact CUV about the size of a Chevy Equinox, but with a lower roof for Chevy and/or Buick.
  7. Compact luxury SUV, a Cadillac version of number six.
  8. Large three-row SUV, replacing or complementing Chevy Traverse and/or GMC Acadia.
  9. Luxury three-row Cadillac SUV, replacing or complementing XT6 and/or Escalade. [Considering the new-for-2021 Cadillac Escalade's margins will help pay for all these BEVs, we'd bet on this model to be more like the XT6 than the 'Slade.]

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Wahlman notes Reuss said February 5 that Cadillac BEVs will revert to actual words as names, and the Seeking Alpha investment analyst figures this could include Eldorado, DeVille, Fleetwood, Seville, and Brougham (we figure Eldorado is the only one among those legendary nameplates viable for the 2020s), as well as recent concept car names like Ciel, Elmiraj, and Escala.

GM's objectives are to reduce platform-cost, thus they will share skateboard chassis of various sizes, Wahlman writes. That cost reduction will include lifecycle support so as to not alienate GM customers used to the reliability and longevity of internal-combustion-powered cars and trucks. Both Reuss and CEO Mary Barra have said that GM's electric-vehicle strategy is designed to be profitable.

The strategy also entails choosing the right body styles for the market, Wahlman concludes in his Seeking Alpha report. Electric-vehicle sales remain dependent on regulations around the world, including those from China and the California Air Resources Board. Regulators as well as green-car proponents are counting on expansion of recharging infrastructure, EV range that starts to equal gasoline-fueled cars' range, and consumer prices not much higher than for internal-combustion-powered vehicles.

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