The Spark EV (there is already an internal combustion engine version), slated for release in 2013 will only be available in California and it is expected that only 2,000 units will be produced. The Spark will run on phosphate-based lithium ion batteries, supplied by battery maker A123 Systems. This is GM’s first pure EV since the now cultural icon, EV1, introduced in 1996.
Spark of Genius: Introducing their first pure electric vehicle since the EV1.
Dud: Releasing it only in California with very limited production.
Based on the information released, it certainly feels like GM remains less than committed to EVs. It is obvious that GM is once again dipping their toes into the EV market, testing the water. The sad fact is, that while EV sales are not yet the same as sales figures for other segments, by 2013 cars like the Nissan Leaf will have three years of proof that an electric vehicle can replace an internal combustion engine vehicle in almost all duties.
As much as I admire and love Tesla, maker of high end (and beautiful electric cars), what is needed most is practical and affordable EVs for buyers to choose from. GM’s Spark is just that, but with limited production and availability, potential EV buyers are hearing the same old message, that electric vehicles are not yet ready for the masses. Nothing could be further from the truth.