GM challenges Tesla with electric cars, boats, planes and trucks

General Motors is getting involved in the electric boat business.In fact, as an American car giant push President Joe Biden (Joe Biden) proposed a grand and ambitious plan to accelerate the launch of electric vehicles, and General Motors has been quietly working on building electric vehicles. airplane, train, with Delivery truck -All powered by its own battery and hydrogen fuel cell technology.

Among the various electric vehicles produced by General Motors, you may actually have the opportunity to drive or ride one of the new electric boats.The company recently announced that it Purchased 25% of Pure Watercraft, A Seattle-based startup that makes battery-powered outboard engines for ships. As part of the agreement, General Motors will provide Pure Watercraft with components at the same discount rate as its internal divisions and help Pure Watercraft build its manufacturing network. After GM invested 150 million US dollars in cash and in kind, Pure Watercraft was valued at 600 million US dollars.

The two companies have not yet shared the specific products they will jointly develop, but the team that developed GM Forward Marine First is the first electric pontoon boat developed by the company Debut at the Miami International Boat Show In 2019, will join the cooperation.

“Boating has always benefited from advances in automotive technology,” Pure Watercraft CEO Andy Rebele told Recode. “They have been using car engines and car technology on ships for many years. This is a manifestation of what happened in the age of electric cars.”

General Motors’ involvement in the electric boat industry shows that the company’sAn all-electric future. “The commitment includes investment At least 35 billion U.S. dollars 30 electric vehicles will be released globally by 2025—— 20 of them Will be listed in the United States.GM went one step further this year and announced All gas and diesel powered vehicles will be phased out by 2035 And achieve carbon neutrality of its operations by 2040. Now, the company is racing to build the tools and factories needed to achieve that goal.

The key to GM’s electric dream is Ultium lithium-ion battery technology, which will be widely used in various vehicles.exist Cooperation with LG, company Is spending billions to build two manufacturing industries plant For the battery Ohio with Tennessee, To be completed in 2022 and 2023 respectively.More battery factories Can follow In the years to come. Earlier this fall, General Motors also signed a strategic supplier agreement with semiconductor manufacturer Wolfspeed to ensure the safety of computer chips. Designed specifically for electric vehicles. Just last week, General Motors received President Biden at its grand opening. Newly renovated electric vehicle assembly plant and zero factory valued at US$2.2 billionThe electric GMC Hummer pickup and Chevrolet Silverado truck will be one of the first vehicles produced there.

“The reason that electric cars are always more expensive than the equivalent internal combustion engine car is the battery,” Karl Brauer, executive analyst at the car search engine website, told Recode. “Controlling everything about the battery-production and cost-is probably the most effective thing a car company can do in the world of electric vehicles.”

Since the company has doubled its electric vehicle manufacturing capacity, it has also designed components so that they can be modified for other forms of transportation.Especially General Motors has invested heavily in its Hydrotec Hydrogen fuel cell technology, It uses hydrogen and oxygen in the air to generate electricity. (Unlike batteries that store electricity directly, these fuel cells store hydrogen and then convert it into electricity).The company has found several customers for this technology, including Truck company Navistar, Aerospace equipment manufacturer Liebherr Aerospace,as well as Freight rail manufacturer Wabtec, It uses Hydrotec fuel cells and Ultium batteries from General Motors.

GM’s road to an all-electric future will not be smooth sailing. GM is essentially competing with every traditional car manufacturer in the world to grab its share in the electric car market, and some mistakes have already occurred.Earlier this year, the company recalled all 141,000 Chevrolet Bolt electric vehicles Due to the fire risk associated with the battery, it has been in production since 2017. At the same time, newer electric vehicle startups are attracting a lot of attention and investment. Electric truck manufacturer Rivian and luxury electric car manufacturer Lucid Comparable with the stock price or even exceed the stock price valuation Ford, General Motors and Stellattis which own Chrysler, Dodge and Jeep. Tesla also shows no signs of slowing Plan to complete a new super factory, An electric car manufacturing plant, this year in Texas, has recently become A trillion dollar company.

Many other companies are opening up their own niche markets in the electric vehicle industry.In addition to Pure Watercraft, the electric boating industry also includes a start-up company called Arc, which is building a 24-foot boat worth US$300,000 Top speed 40 mphSeveral companies, including Chinese automakers, are developing electric semi trucks world with auspicious and also TeslaThere are also some start-ups that are developing electric air taxis, some of which will also be self-driving.Kitty Hawk, a Palo Alto-based company, plans to Next few months Its chief executive Sebastian Thrun (Sebastian Thrun) is its first passenger.Some companies are even developing Electric tractor.

But GM may be at an advantage. Biden often expresses his support for union-backed auto companies and praised General Motors CEO Mary Barra for making “the entire auto industry” alive.The relationship between the White House and Tesla is not the best, the latter No union with Not invited The White House Electric Vehicle Summit in August.At the same time, Biden’s “Rebuild Better” spending plan will provide additional tax credits for electric vehicles manufactured in the United States and manufactured by union companies among other goals-this is Exactly what GM wants to do.

There is also the fact that General Motors is a car manufacturer with a century-old history More than 5 billion cars In its corporate life cycle. As General Motors races to integrate its cars and many different modes of transportation into its electric future, this experience may be crucial.

This story was first published in the Recode newsletter. Register here So you will not miss the next one!

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