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General Motors presented its electric vehicle strategy on Wednesday, introducing about a dozen products as part of an attempt to show investors the seriousness with which it takes its electric future.

GM showed off some of its future vehicles and unveiled a new modular electric car platform with a new battery called Ultium. The brand's system must be flexible to adapt to a wide range of vehicle types and shapes, just like Volkswagen's MEB platform.

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Unlike cylindrical cells, which can be stacked vertically or horizontally, the new batteries are unique due to the “large format cells, bag type”. These batteries offer a range of 50 to 200 kWh, which translates to “400 miles or more”. The engines support rear, front and four-wheel drive.

The chemical composition of GM battery cells has also been changed. Unlike most current electric car batteries, which use NCM (nickel, cobalt and magnesium), Ultium adds aluminum (NCMA) and reduces cobalt by 70%. The wiring currently included in the Chevy Bolt EV's battery has been reduced by about 80%. This should lower costs to less than $ 100 / kWh and increase the automaker's production capacity for electric cars.

The cars with Ultium are designed for fast charging level 2 and CC, according to the company. Most batteries will be 400 volts and have a fast charge capacity of up to 200 kW, while the electric truck platform will have 800 volts batteries and a 350 kW recharge capacity. GM wants to address the two main problems with having an electric car: cost and recharge time.

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The event was intended to convince investors that GM is capable of catching up with Tesla, which has soared in recent valuations, despite the auto industry suffering from the effects of the new coronavirus.

The automaker announced that it plans to launch 20 different trams by 2023, and will publicly release three of them in the coming months: the Cadillac “Lyriq” EV crossover in April, and two electric versions of the GMC Hummer in May. “Soon” will come Cruise Origin, a shared, electric and autonomous vehicle, produced by Cruise and Honda.

All four GM brands will launch electric cars. The Cadillac Lyriq will be the first built on the company's new BEV3 architecture. Next, the Hummer EV will be presented in pickup and SUV formats. There will also be an updated Chevy Bolt EV and EUV with a longer wheelbase, a compact Chevy crossover, two Buick SUVs and a Cadillac sedan called “Celistiq”. All of this is part of GM's plan to spend $ 20 billion in capital and engineering costs by 2025.

Earlier this year, the automaker announced an investment of $ 2,2 billion to modernize its Detroit-Hamtramck plant to produce electric and autonomous vehicles. This will be the company's first plant fully dedicated to assembling these vehicles. Last December, GM said it was closing a joint venture with South Korea's LG Chem to mass produce batteries that would power the Detroit-Hamtramck plant.

Although GM is aiming for “zero emissions,” the company, along with Fiat Chrysler and Toyota, supported the White House's efforts to eliminate stricter emissions rules in California, claiming that the federal government should set the requirements , not the state.

Street: The Verge