GM Announces Future Plans for Driverless Cars, Ride-Sharing
Oct. 2, 2015—General Motors will introduce a fleet of autonomous Chevrolet Volts late in 2016 on its Warren Technical Campus for employee use, according to a report by USA Today. In addition, GM has also announced a New York City ride-sharing project, a concept for an electric bicycle and that its joint fuel-cell work with Honda will produce a fuel-cell vehicle by about 2020.
"We're working to redefine customer's choices and the future of mobility. The convergence of rapidly improving technology and changing consumer preferences is creating an inflection point for the transportation industry not seen in decades,” said Mary Barra, GM CEO, according to the report.
GM also plans on cutting $5.5 billion in costs from its traditional car and truck business between now and the end of 2018 by reducing purchasing, manufacturing and administrative expenses.
GM’s “Let’s Drive New York,” is a small-scale service where eligible residents of the Ritz Plaza can reserve a vehicle and access parking in one of 200 parking decks across Manhattan. The program, which was tested over the summer, will start small but GM plans on expanding.
GM will invest $5.4 billion in 40 U.S. manufacturing sites over the next few years. About two-thirds of the money will go to three assembly plants that build large pickups and SUVs in Flint, Mich.; Fort Wayne, Ind.; and Arlington, Texas.
The need to update those traditional vehicles has not gone away. GM said on Thursday that 26 percent of its global sales volumes have come from vehicles updated or replaced in the last 18 months. The company expects that percentage to reach 39 percent next year and 40 percent in 2017, according to the report.