GM is changing course with plug-in hybrids for Silverado and Sierra

In 2022, General Motors’ president, Mark Reuss, declared to Business Insider: “We will not dilute our investment with hybrids.” However, since then, GM has changed its mind. During an investor meeting last month, CEO Mary Barra announced plans for plug-in hybrids. A recent report indicates that plug-in hybrid versions of the Chevrolet Silverado and GMC Sierra are currently in development.

GM in fast track mode for PHEV Silverado and Sierra

According to sources familiar with the matter, Autoweek claims that GM is hurrying to launch plug-in hybrid versions of the two trucks. The company has reportedly initiated an “intensive program” to accelerate the development and market launch of these electrified derivatives. We have requested comments from Chevy and GMC, and will update the story if we receive a response.

Bridging the gap with electric models

Plug-in hybrids would bridge the gap between the traditional gasoline-powered Silverado and Sierra models and the newly launched fully electric models. The PHEV duo would address range anxiety, particularly for vehicles used for towing and/or carrying heavy loads.

A strategic shift at GM

In 2019, Mary Barra emphasized during an investor conference that customers are generally not interested in hybrids. However, by 2024, the demand for electric vehicles (EVs) is decreasing, prompting GM to consider plug-in hybrids as a temporary solution before full electrification.

Pressure from dealerships for hybrid models

The Wall Street Journal reports that influential dealerships are pressuring GM to launch hybrids in order to retain customers not yet ready to switch to EVs. In January, Barra confirmed that the future plan includes the introduction of plug-in hybrid technology in North America.

GM revises its electric plans

According to Autoweek, GM apparently will not replace the older Express and Savana with electric vans by 2026. The initial plans with the Ultium platform and the BrightDrop Zevo 600 model are being questioned.

Cancellation and suspension of electric truck projects

Plans for two electric trucks are affected: one has been canceled, and the development of the other has been suspended.

Return to hybrids for Silverado and Sierra

If a Silverado and Sierra hybrid hits the market, it wouldn’t be a first for GM. In the 2000s-2010s, GM had already paired a 6.0-liter V8 with two electric motors for a two-mode hybrid system.

PHEV successors on the horizon

The old hybrid models could operate on electricity only at speeds of up to 30 mph (48 km/h). If GM is planning them, their successors will be PHEVs, with a charging port to recharge the battery, similar to the Silverado EV and Sierra EV models.

With information from Autoweek
This text comes from L’annuel de l’automobile – Actualité automobile