General Motors will introduce its first pure battery-electric vehicle, or BEV, sometime in 2013, basing it off the next-generation Chevrolet Spark platform.
The Spark EV initially will be sold in “select” urban markets around the world, including Southern California. It will then roll out to other parts of the world, with GM officials anticipating a slow ramp-up of demand for the vehicle – and for electric vehicles in general.
The Spark minicar will also be among the first GM models to make use of an all-new line of 3- and 4-cylinder Ecotec engines GM plans to bring to market in an effort to both improve fuel-efficiency and expand its own economies of scale,
Demand for the new Spark battery car “will be slow,” acknowledged Jim Federico, GM’s small car engineering chief, as “Customers need to get comfortable and used to” the new technology. Nonetheless, GM officials said they recognize that the global push for cleaner, higher-mileage products will require the expanded use of “electrification” in all its various forms.