GM Claims to Make History with Domestic EV Motor Manufacturing
General Motors is celebrating its status as the first domestic automaker to build electric motors and drive units in the U.S., as manufacturing of 130-horsepower permanent magnet motors for the 2014 Chevrolet Spark EV has commenced at GM’s Baltimore operations plant in White Marsh, Md.
Pilot motor production took place in Wixom, Mich. The Chevy Spark EV itself is to be built in Changwon, South Korea. The new battery car is to priced at less than $25,000.
“The era of using electricity to help improve performance and fuel economy is already here and the trend is only going to grow,” GM sustainability VP Mike Robinson said in a release. “Today is further proof GM is leading in the development of electric vehicles that will improve America’s energy security.”
“By designing electric motors in Michigan and manufacturing them at Baltimore Operations, GM controls the design, materials and production processes, as well as reducing costs and improving performance, quality, reliability and manufacturability,” said plant manager Bill Tiger.
“Electric motor development and manufacturing is a critical area of expertise GM has mastered as we grow our portfolio of electric vehicles to address the needs of our global customers.” said Larry Nitz, executive director of vehicle electrification engineering.
SAE Fast-Charge Option
GM says that its engineers designed and developed the Spark EV’s motor and drive unit to provide maximum efficiency and power with world-class reliability. “The permanent magnet motor features a unique design to provide precise delivery of power,” GM says. The Spark EV motor will produce 130 horsepower and 400 foot-pounds of torque to deliver acceleration of less than 8 seconds from 0 to 60 mph.
The Spark EV will be sold in California and Oregon this summer and sales will expand to Canada, Europe and South Korea later, GM says.
The car is also being promoted as the first all-electric vehicle in North America to offer optional SAE Combo DC Fast Charge capability, which GM says will be able to charge the vehicle’s 20-kilowatt-hour lithium ion battery to 80% of capacity in about 20 minutes. Single-charge range will reportedly be about 80 miles.
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Source: GM release with Fleets & Fuels follow-up