General Motors Confirms Plans To Build An Electric Truck (News)

We may see a production model by 2022

2019 GMC Sierra 1500 Denali blue
2019 GMC Sierra 1500 Denali.

CEO Mary Barra confirmed the news Tuesday.

Today, General Motors confirmed what we suspected was in the pipeline: an electric truck. The Detroit Bureau reported the announcement, which came as little shock alongside Ford, Tesla and Rivian’s plans to bring their own electric trucks to market. Last week, Ford announced a $500 million investment in Rivian to co-develop a new model, leapfrogging GM in the process.

“[General Motors] will not cede our leadership,” CEO Mary Barra told industry analysts and media. Head of GMC Duncan Aldred told The Detroit Bureau “it’s something we’re considering” when asked whether an electric truck was coming. As talks with Rivian broke down and Ford secured the deal, it appears GM still plans to move forward on its own.

What exactly an electric truck from GM would look like is unclear. Tim Herrick, head of development for the Chevrolet Silverado, said the company had “future-proofed” the pickup by accommodating a wide range of powertrain options. That means the current platform could support an electric powertrain. However, the company may wait until the next generation to translate an electric powertrain to its full-size trucks.

Sam Abuelsamid, senior analyst with Navigant Research, said GM may break into the midsize market first, according to The Detroit Bureau. He suggested GM may surprise the industry by delivering an electric Chevrolet Colorado or GMC Canyon by 2022, while everyone else focuses on full-size models.

Will we see an electric Silverado? Possibly, but likely not for a few years. [Photo: Chevrolet]

The race is on

As General Motors throws its hat into the electric truck ring, the race is on to see which company can make it to market first.

Tesla is one of the current frontrunners, but we have no technical details beyond a few renderings of its pickup. Rivian is becoming more of a favorite as it secures massive investment from companies like Ford and Amazon. It also has the actual R1T prototype, which it showed at the 2018 LA Auto Show. Rivian plans to enter production by October 2020.

Ford is developing its own electrified architecture for the next-generation F-150. The company likely won’t use Rivian’s technology in the F-Series, instead using its “skateboard” platform for a different, as-yet unspecified model.

Which electric truck are you most excited to see? Let us know in the comments below!