GM takes over Tesla using electric cars, boats, planes, and trucks

General Motors started the electric boat business. Actually, as an American car giant pushed President Joe Biden’s colorful and ambitious plan to speed up the operation of electric cars, GM is relatively quietly working on a desire to build electricity. planes, trains, ug shipping trucks – all powered by self -battery and hydrogen fuel cell technologies.

With many GM-operated electric vehicles, you can get the chance to drive or ride one of the new electric boats. The company recently announced this bought a 25 percent stake in Pure Watercraft, a Seattle -based startup that makes battery -powered outboard motors for boats. As part of the deal, GM will provide Pure Watercraft with components at the same discount rate as its internal divisions and help Pure Watercraft build its manufacturing network. Following GM’s investment, which totals $ 150 million in cash and in-kind investments, Pure Watercraft is valued at $ 600 million.

The companies haven’t shared what specific products they’ll be working on together, but the team developed GM’s Forward Marine First, an electric pontoon boat that was the company’s first. debuted at the Miami International Boat Show in 2019, join the collaboration.

“Boating has historically benefited from advances in automotive technologies,” Andy Rebele, CEO of Pure Watercraft, told Recode. “They’ve been using automotive engines and automotive technology in boats for many, many years, and this is kind of what happened in the age of electric vehicles.”

GM’s dive into the electric boating industry is a sign that the company is serious about “all-electric future. ” That commitment involves investment at least $ 35 billion to release 30 EV models worldwide in 2025 – 20 of those vehicles can be used in the United States. GM went a step further this year and announced it phase out all of these gas- and diesel-powered vehicles by 2035 and make its operations carbon neutral by 2040. Now the company is racing to build the equipment and factories it needs to achieve that goal.

The key to GM’s electric dreams is Ultium lithium-ion cell battery technology, which will be incorporated into a wide range of vehicles. on collaboration with LG, the company spent billions to build two manufacturing plants for batteries in Ohio and Tennessee, to be completed in 2022 and 2023, respectively. More battery factories COMPLY in the coming years. GM also entered into a strategic supplier agreement with semiconductor maker Wolfspeed earlier this fall to acquire computer -specific chips. designed for EVs. And last week, GM hosted President Biden at its grand opening newly renovated $ 2.2 billion electric vehicle assembly plant, Factory Zero. Electric GMC Hummer pickups and Chevy Silverado trucks were some of the first cars made there.

“The reason electric cars often cost more than the equivalent internal combustion engine car is the battery,” Karl Brauer, an executive analyst at the automotive search engine website,, told Recode. “Controlling all aspects of batteries – production and cost – is probably the most effective thing an auto company can do in a world moving towards electric vehicles.”

As the company doubles its EV manufacturing capabilities, it is also designing components so that they can be retrofitted for other forms of transportation. In particular, GM has invested heavily in Hydrotec in it hydrogen fuel cell technology, which uses hydrogen and oxygen from the air to generate electricity. (Unlike batteries, which directly store electricity, these fuel cells store hydrogen which is then converted into electricity). The company has already found many customers for this technology, including truck company Navistar, the manufacturer of aerospace equipment Liebherr-Aerospace, and the Wabtec freight rail factory, which uses Hydrotec fuel cells as well as GM’s Ultium batteries.

GM’s path to an all-electric future is not easy. GM is actually competing with every legacy automaker in the world to get its share of the EV market, and there are some wrong moves. Earlier this year, the company was remembered by all 141,000 of the electric Chevy Bolt electric cars it has been around since 2017 due to the fire hazard associated with the battery. Meanwhile, new electric vehicle startups have attracted a lot of attention and investment. Electric truck maker Rivian and luxury electric car maker Lucid have competing with or even ahead of stock price valuations of Ford, GM, and Stellantis, which own Chrysler, Dodge, and Jeep. Tesla also showed no sign of slowing down. The company plans to complete a new Gigafactory, an electric vehicle manufacturing plant, in Texas this year, and it recently became a trillion-dollar company.

Many other companies are carving out their own place in the electric vehicle industry. In addition to Pure Watercraft, the electric boating sector also includes a startup called Arc, which is building a $ 300,000 24-foot boat with maximum speed of 40 miles per hour. Electric semi-trucks are employed by many companies, including Chinese auto manufacturers. world and Geely as well as Tesla. There are also startups that are developing electric air taxis, some of which can also be autonomous. Palo Alto -based company Kitty Hawk plans to launch their first flight within next few months with its CEO Sebastian Thrun as its first passenger. Some companies are even thriving electric tractors.

But GM may have an advantage. Biden has consistently expressed support for union -backed auto companies, and also honored GM CEO Mary Barra who has powered “the entire auto industry.” The White House also doesn’t have the best relationship with Tesla, that is no union and not invited to the August White House summit on electric vehicles. At the same time, Biden’s Build Back Better spending package, among other purposes, will provide additional tax credits on electric cars built in the U.S. and made by union companies – that is exactly what GM is trying to do.

And then there’s the fact that GM is a century -old manufacturing automaker more than half a billion cars throughout the life of its corporation. That experience will be critical as GM races to integrate not only its vehicles, but many different modes of transportation, into its future electricity.

This story was first published in the Recode newsletter. Sign up here so you don’t miss the next one!

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