Word leaked this week that Detroit automaker General Motors is testing a new electric prototype at its Milford Proving Ground, details of which suggest that GM may be ahead of upstart rival Tesla in rolling out mass market, long distance capable electric vehicles.
The new Chevy model, the Bolt, is slated for release during 2017, and will be capable of driving 200 miles on a single charge.
That’s the time-frame that Tesla, as well as other competitors, are expected to be launching comparable models, notably the long-rumored Tesla 3. Yet the Tesla 3 has been delayed a number of times as it seeks to achieve the $35,000 price point which will make it viable for mainstream consumers.
Chevy’s Bolt project on the other hand is, according to sources, rolling along smoothly and is undergoing testing well ahead of the Model 3. It will also hit with a price of $30,000. This means that Tesla will face a a vehicle of equal specifications when it launches the Model 3, though it may win in the looks / cool factor department.
Tesla, as we’ve covered here, appears to be making massive investments in battery technology while GM is working with third party suppliers. The moves by Tesla to enter both the battery and vehicle markets suggests it may have larger or different ambitions than just vehicles, while GM and other car makers focus solely on passenger vehicles.