General Motors Moving Towards EV Profitability in a Shot at Tesla

In the race for electric car profitability, General Motors has fired a warning shot at Tesla with its recent doubling down on its mission to produce profitable electric vehicles.

This week, General Motors announced plans to launch a new electric vehicle lineup in 2021 with a focus on profitability. Specifically, 20 new electric vehicles are expected by 2023.

According to General Motors, these electric vehicles will be 30 percent cheaper to build than its flagship model, the Bolt EV, as a result of advancements in tech, shared platform use between different models, and lithium-ion battery cell costs.

"We are committed to a future electric vehicle portfolio that will be profitable," Barra said at the Barclays Global Automotive Conference in New York.

GM's platform, better referred to as a modular EV platform, will serve as the foundation for all vehicles, with the ability to accommodate nine different body styles and sizes.

In the short term, General Motors is aggressively working towards a 2020 timeline in introducing three new electric vehicles using the Bolt platform.


As of Nov. 19, General Motors has catching up to do, with Tesla's market cap now exceeding GM's despite a $773 million loss in 2016, missed production deadlines, and Tesla's 76,000 units sold versus GM's 10 million in the same period. Critics have long blasted Tesla for its invincibility, with production delays, record-breaking cash burn, and direct-to-customer sales barely making a dent in its overvalued stock price.

However, its most prominent supporters cite Tesla's entry into new markets, such as solar and car-sharing as reasons for the high valuation.

To learn more about General Motor's electric vehicle plans, you may download its Barclays Automotive Conference presentation deck here.