CES 2016: General Motors Launches 2017 Chevrolet Bolt EV Fit For Ride Sharing
As a proof point of the commitment to their core brand values, Barra launched the all new 2017 Chevrolet Bolt EV. It is an all-electric vehicle that can travel 200 miles on a single charge.
Mary Barra, Chairman and CEO of General Motors, was on the day 1 keynote roster for the Consumer Electronics Show (CES 2016) where she delivered her strategy for the future of automobiles and launching a new electric vehicle in the process. While General Motors carries several brands, Barra only talked about Chevrolet.
The key to the Chevrolet strategy is in finding value for customers in the convergence of connectivity, electrification, and autonomy in vehicles. These three pillars are core to the Chevrolet brand.
Barra reminded everyone that Chevrolet pioneered the connected car back in 1996 using OnStar technology. The technology has fulfilled over a billion customer requests such as remotely unlocking doors, emergency assistance, remote vehicle diagnostics, and theft recovery. In 2016, Chevrolet will have 12 million connected vehicles worldwide. In Canada and the U.S. alone, Chevrolet has 4 million vehicles equipped with 4G LTE connectivity to the Internet.
In the area of electrification, Chevrolet already has the broadest electric portfolio with the Volt, Spark EV and Malibu Hybrid. The scale of General Motors allows the Chevrolet brand to bring new technology to the market faster.
Like everyone else, Chevrolet’s autonomous strategy is under development. They have recently secured partnerships with Lyft to create a fleet of autonomous ride-sharing vehicles. Chevrolet also secured a partnership with MobileEye to crowd source highly precise real-time maps. This is a requirement for the development of a fully autonomous car.
2017 Chevrolet Bolt EV
As a proof point of the commitment to their core brand values, Barra launched the all new 2017 Chevrolet Bolt EV. It is an all-electric vehicle that can travel 200 miles on a single charge. It has an affordable price tag of $30,000 US (after government incentives). It is the first EV that has long range capabilities with an affordable price according to Barra. This vehicle will be in full production this year.
It comes with all the usual Chevrolet connectivity features such as OnStar and 4G LTE, but it also has a navigation system that plots the optimal route so you can get the most distance on a single charge. It also considers location of charging stations when the system maps the route. The Bolt EV has low power Bluetooth that will detect and pair your smartphone instantly when you approach the car. Your custom home screen and playlist is automatically loaded for you. It has an app that can remote start the engine and check the charging status. This technology really enables personalization with the driver and sets up this car to be suitable for ride-sharing programs.
Lastly, an innovation developed by Chevrolet and built into the Bolt EV that makes driving even safer is that they have incorporated a wide-angle rear view mirror. The rear camera of the car is streamed into the mirror giving the driver a much better view and ability to avoid collisions when reversing.
Chevrolet is truly innovating where it meets the needs of today’s urban driver. Compare this to the kudos I gave Chevrolet back in 2014 Toronto Auto Show. Their innovations keep getting better and better.