Originally published on CleanTechnica.
While we’ve alluded to the fact that the Korean firm LG is actually the force behind much of the Chevy Bolt in the past, we’ve never really gone into detail on the matter. It seems worth doing so….
It’s not an uncommon strategy amongst auto manufacturers these days to outsource much of the design and production — with many companies focusing solely on engines, maybe motors, etc. — but considering that the Chevy Bolt is intended as a Tesla competitor, it seems worth making a comparison. Tesla, it should be remembered, is somewhat atypical amongst many current auto manufacturers in that the company designs the vast majority of the elements in its vehicles.
With regard to the Chevy/GM Bolt, a comment made by “flathillll” on the Tesla Motors Club forum has me laughing, so I’ll go ahead and post his overview below. Enjoy.
I used to have zero respect for GM. Now my respect has dropped below zero. Pretty sad they outsourced the heart & future of the company.
Prediction: Korea is going to buy GM the next time they go bankrupt.
LG supplied an array of new components and systems for the Chevrolet Bolt EV, including:
- Electric Drive Motor
- Power Inverter Module (converts DC power to AC for the drive unit)
- On Board Charger
- Electric Climate Control System Compressor
- Battery Cells and Pack
- High Power Distribution Module (manages the flow of high voltage to various components)
- Battery Heater
- Accessory Power Module (maintains low-voltage power delivery to accessories)
- Power Line Communication Module (manages communication between vehicle and a DC charging station)
- Instrument Cluster
- Infotainment System
The commenter continued, noting, “I will never buy GM knowing what I know but I think it is great EVs are going mainstream. Pretty sad they had to outsource the heart of the vehicle to LG Chem. Not only was the whole battery (not just the cells) made by LG, the motor, inverter, charger, and much more. My respect level has gone from zero to below zero. The only way GM is going to compete when the Model 3 comes out is price. They will move production (really just assembly) of the Bolt out of the USA. Did you see now GM is importing cars made in China to the USA for the first time ever? They have no soul. A true corporate GRUNCH. Tesla is going to make cars in China to sell locally, not to undercut.”
Boom. While I agree with much of what’s stated above, though, I will note here that I actually have quite a good opinion of the Chevy Volt plug-in hybrid (PHEV). It seems to very definitely be the best PHEV on the market. It’s too bad that GM seems to be looking to outsource so much, though….