Chevrolet and General Motors took a huge step forward in solving their battery problems with the 2017-2022 Chevrolet Bolts. The automaker and its battery maker LG Electronics have come to an agreement over who will pay for the huge recall for the defective batteries. LG will reimburse GM $1.9 billion of the $2.0 billion in costs for the recall.
“LG is a valued and respected supplier to GM, and we are pleased to reach this agreement,” said Shilpan Amin, GM vice president, Global Purchasing and Supply Chain. “Our engineering and manufacturing teams continue to collaborate to accelerate production of new battery modules and we expect to begin repairing customer vehicles this month.”
The Chevrolet Bolt Recall
General Motors was forced to recall every Chevrolet Bolt it has produced because of concerns about battery fires. Earlier, Chevrolet recalled most of the 2017-2019 Bolt EVs, because of concerns about fires. Later, the auto giant decided to recall all of the Bolts because of some additional Bolt fires. The total recall covers an estimated 141,685 vehicles, including the all-new 2022 Bolt EUV. GM and Chevrolet decided a total recall was best. Plus, GM is already planning to switch to a different type of battery.
At the time, Doug Parks, GM executive vice president, Global Product Development, Purchasing and Supply Chain said “Our focus on safety and doing the right thing for our customers guides every decision we make at GM. As leaders in the transition to an all-electric future, we know that building and maintaining trust is critical. GM customers can be confident in our commitment to taking the steps to ensure the safety of these vehicles.”
Battery Production Problem
A manufacturing defect at LG caused the recall. While GM has confirmed 13 fires, an investigation found the defect that causes the fire in some of the new batteries, so they have decided to issue the total recall. No deaths have been reported but there have been smoke inhalation injuries. There was also fire and smoke damage to homes and garages.
According to GM, “In rare circumstances, the batteries supplied to GM for these vehicles may have two manufacturing defects – a torn anode tab and folded separator – present in the same battery cell, which increases the risk of fire. Out of an abundance of caution, GM will replace defective battery modules in Chevrolet Bolt EVs and EUVs with new modules.
My Colleague, John Goreham, has written extensively about the Bolt recalls.
GM and Chevrolet will ease owner concerns by giving the owners new 8-year/100,000 mile battery warranties.
Customers with questions or concerns can visit www.chevy.com/boltevrecall or contact the Chevrolet EV Concierge 1-833-EVCHEVY (available Monday through Friday from 8 a.m.–midnight ET; Saturday and Sunday from noon–9 p.m. ET) or contact their preferred Chevrolet EV dealer.
General Motors and LG are partnering on a new battery platform for the future. GM is switching to a new Ultium battery platform, which can be reconfigured to suit a number of different sized vehicles, including the all-new 2022 GMC HUMMER EV and 2024 HUMMER EV SUV as well as the 2023 Cadillac LYRIQ.
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