By Kimberly Chin 

General Motors Co. plans to roll out an electric version of its Chevy Silverado pickup truck, the latest in its efforts to convert its global lineup to electric vehicles.

The nation's largest auto maker by sales has set a target date of 2035 for phasing out gasoline- and diesel-powered vehicles from its showrooms globally. GM plans to deliver more than one million electric vehicles across the world by 2025, the company has said.

The full-size Chevy Silverado pickup will be designed "from the ground up" as an electric vehicle, the company said Tuesday. GM said it would be built at its Detroit-Hamtramck plant, where the company also intends to make the GMC Hummer EV sport-utility vehicle and an autonomous vehicle for its Cruise driverless-car division.

GM estimates the Chevy electric vehicle would have a range of more than 400 miles on a single charge, roughly matching the range a Silverado would travel on a single tank of gasoline.

During an appearance at GM's Detroit plant on Tuesday, GM President Mark Reuss said the electric Silverado would be sold to individual customers and commercial fleets, which he expects to drive early demand for plug-in trucks.

The choice of the Detroit plant for manufacturing electric vehicles solidifies GM's commitment to making its hometown a hub of future technology amid bets big on driverless and electric vehicles.

The factory was slated for closure before GM reversed course with a $3 billion overhaul plan, outlined in a new four-year labor contract in 2019 that ended a 40-day strike at the company's U.S. factories by the United Auto Workers. GM said in January the investment includes $2.2 billion at the factory site and a further $800 million in supplier investment and other related projects nearby.

Overall the company said it plans to spend $27 billion through 2025 to build electric and driverless vehicles.

Global auto makers are pouring money into the development of electric vehicles. While most early entries have been passenger cars and sport-utility vehicles, legacy car makers such as GM and Ford Motor Co. are drawing up plans for plug-in versions of their brawny pickup trucks, their biggest moneymakers.

Ford has said it would begin building an electric F-150 pickup truck in Dearborn, Mich., next year.

Traditional auto makers likely will face competition from Tesla Inc. and several startups that also are targeting the electric-pickup market, including Rivian Automotive, Bollinger Motors and Lordstown Motors Corp.

GM plans to build a second battery factory in the U.S. as a joint venture with LG Chem Ltd., The Wall Street Journal reported last month.

The Biden administration has made transitioning from gasoline-powered to electric vehicles a cornerstone of its domestic policy agenda, aiming to use the technology to fight climate change and create jobs to help cushion the possible loss of some positions in fossil-fuel industries.

The White House is calling for 500,000 new electric-vehicle charging stations -- five times the size of the national network now -- as part of a $174 billion plan to boost the EV industry in President Biden's $2.3 trillion infrastructure proposal.

Write to Kimberly Chin at kimberly.chin@wsj.com

 

(END) Dow Jones Newswires

April 06, 2021 15:40 ET (19:40 GMT)

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