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GM to offer electrified Corvette as early as next year

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Chevrolet/Walker
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GM's iconic Corvette will have a hybrid electric option as early as 2023, and a fully electric version will follow

General Motors says it will offer an electrified Chevrolet Corvette as early as next year.

President Mark Reuss said in a statement on LinkedIn Monday that the automaker will also sell a fully electric Corvette sometime in the future.

An electrified vehicle generally means a gas-electric hybrid or a plug-in rechargeable hybrid, but more details on the vehicles are expected at a later date. Interest in electric vehicles is increasing among consumers as demand for an electric Corvette has been building among the sports car’s fan base.

Last August President Joe Biden even discussed how he’d had a conversation with General Motors CEO Mary Barra about wanting to test drive an electric Corvette once it is built.

Earlier this month GM and Honda announced that they are planning to co-develop some affordable electric vehicles that will use GM’s next-generation Ultium battery technology.

The vehicles, which will include a compact Chevrolet Equinox SUV that will sell for around $30,000. It’s expected to go sale in North America next year.

In January GM said that it plans to spend nearly $7 billion to convert a factory to make electric pickup trucks and to build a new battery cell plant.

GM has set a goal of building only electric passenger vehicles by 2035. It has pledged to have 30 electric vehicle models for sale globally by 2025.

The company hasn't released details on what the hybrid electrified Corvette will be like.

Brian Moody is executive editor with Autotrader.

He said it might have been tempting for GM to decide its iconic Corvette, with its traditional engine rumble-and-roar, well enough alone. But with sports cars, performance matters, and electric sports cars far outperform gas-powered ones. He figures GM can't afford to let the Corvette remain in the past.

"It's not going to work anymore to have a car that has the right vibe as a sports car, but everything else outperforms it," he said.

But Moody said it's reasonable to assume the car will have electric motors that boost the performance of the gas engine.

He said GM needs to be able to compete in the electric sports car space — which is filling up fast.

"Tesla sort of taught us what we really wanted from an electric car," Moody said. "Which was a luxury car that has great performance. That's what we learned from Tesla, and now look who all the comers are: Audi, Jaguar, BMW, Mercedes Benz."

For its part, Ford Motor Company decided to lend the Mustang credibility to a new all-electric compact SUV - the Mach-E. Sales of the Mach-E were robust from the beginning, but Ford recently had to close orders for the vehicle because of the computer chip shortage that's been hampering production around the world.

The Associated Press is an independent global news organization dedicated to factual reporting.
Tracy Samilton covers energy and transportation, including the auto industry and the business response to climate change for Michigan Radio. She began her career at Michigan Radio as an intern, where she was promptly “bitten by the radio bug,” and never recovered.
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