Chevy Bolt production will restart on April 4.
On Tuesday, General Motors announced its intent to restart its Orion Assembly production line for the Chevrolet Bolt EV and Bolt EUV, after taking it offline in August 2021 due to an ongoing battery recall. At time of writing, the six-month period production has (largely) been offline constitutes the longest safety-related stoppage, as Automotive News points out.
The Orion plant has been idle as GM and LG Energy Solution, which supplies battery packs for the Bolt EV and EUV, figured out the recall campaign. LG will shoulder the majority of the recall cost, estimated up to $2 billion, to replace defective battery modules. GM released diagnostic software in December to troubleshoot module issues. Dealers have also faced a stop-sale order for recall Bolts that did not yet receive replacement battery modules or underwent diagnostic testing.
“We appreciate the patience customers have shown throughout the recall,” said GM communication manager Dan Flores in a statement. “We remain committed to Bolt EV and EUV and this decision will allow us to simultaneously replace battery modules and resume retail sales soon, which were strong before the recall.”
After Orion Assembly production resumes on April 4, dealers will again be able to sell new Bolt vehicles as they come in. In a broader scope, the company has not yet set an official end date for the current-generation Bolt EV and EUV to end. It will obviously continue production for the time being, but the question remains when the model will either be updated to GM’s new Ultium platform, or phased out entirely.
Over the next three years, General Motors aims to invest $35 billion into EVs, and produce 30 EV models globally by 2025. As of February, the Bolt EV’s Build & Price page lists the car’s starting price at $32,495, excluding any cash allowances or incentives.