Ever since GM announced their new Chevy Volt concept car at this year’s Auto Show, rumors have persisted that the concept was PR-motivated vaporware. Not so, says GM Vice Chairmen Bob Lutz. In this open letter he directly addresses the two major stumbling blocks to the Volt’s production: acquiring workable lithium-ion technology and demonstrating that GM’s innovative E-Flex drivetrain can feasibly be offered in a production vehicle:
By the end of this year, we will begin testing the lithium-ion batteries developed in prototypes of the Vue Green Line plug-in hybrid. In the same timeframe, we also expect to have our first demonstration vehicles that use E-Flex. Our previously announced test fleet of Chevrolet Equinox fuel cell vehicles also use the E-Flex system, with a fuel cell stack instead of batteries as a prime supplier of electricity, a further demonstration of our commitment to electric drive and energy diversity.
Make no mistake: These programs are a top priority for GM.
GM is currently our strongest auto company, and the Volt is likely our last best hope at pleasing the market, and re-entering global competition in auto manufacturing. Of course, if any of this will actually translate to good Michigan jobs remains to be seen.
(via Absolute Michigan)