Chevrolet has implemented a strategy that will make EVs affordable for everyone.
Electric vehicles are known for their exorbitant costs, putting them out of range for folks on a budget. But thanks to General Motors, that’s about to change. Earlier this week, the company revealed that it’s reducing the price of its cheapest Chevrolet Bolt EV to $26,595. That’s a $5,900 reduction from the 2022 model year. The announcement makes it the cheapest of its kind in the United States. Although, most car companies have not released their prices for the 2023 model year at this time.
The Detroit-based automaker cut the cost of its larger Chevrolet Bolt EUV by $6,300. The vehicle now has a starting price of $28,195. Interestingly, the news comes as most car manufacturers increase prices on their electric vehicle offerings. They have cited changing market conditions and rising commodity costs as the reason, specifically for materials needed for EV batteries.
Speaking to CNBC via email, Chevrolet spokesman Shad Balch said the price adjustment is an effort to stay competitive in the EV marketplace. “Affordability has always been a priority for these vehicles,” Balch explained. He added that it better aligns the manufacturer’s suggested retail price with the average sale price for customers. However, he declined to discuss the profitability or build costs of the Bolt models which are probably lower than newer vehicles.
The Chevrolet Bolt EV has been in production since 2016 and features older battery technology. The company’s latest electric vehicles, like the GMC Hummer pickup and Cadillac Lyriq, are equipped with the automaker Ultium technology. The lower prices should help boost Bolt sales, which Vice President of Chevrolet Marketing Steve Majoros said, is expected to reach a record in 2022. As such, the company is committed to producing a record amount of these vehicles this year.
According to CNN Business, General Motors’ electric vehicle push has faced a few challenges. In September 2021, it was hampered by a recall of Chevrolet Bolt batteries. This led to supplier LG paying out $1.9 billion to the company last year. The reason for the recall was a series of fires, which was among the most expensive ever on a per-vehicle basis. The carmaker resumed production in April this year and introduced a Bolt crossover called the Bolt EUV.
The Chevrolet Bolt’s new pricing is likely to attract interest from people who can’t afford other electric vehicles. Tesla’s cheapest vehicle (the Model 3) sells for $46,990, reaching $48,440 after fees. While some of the additional costs are industry standard, the Model 3’s price has increased 34% from three years ago. Ford has also upped the price on its Mustang Mach-E electric vehicle. And Rivian has followed suit with an increase in its vehicle prices.
These increases aren’t totally surprising since the local and global economy has seen record inflation this year. This has impacted the cost of everything from groceries to smartphones to cars. This makes General Motors’ Chevrolet Bolt price cut even more astonishing. However, it’s worth noting that the slashed price still comes with a mandatory $995 destination charge.