GM Open to Work with Other Automakers on Electric Vehicles, CEO Says
DETROIT (Reuters) - General Motors is open to working with other automakers on the development of electric vehicles, Chief Executive Mary Barra said on Thursday.
Asked whether the No. 1 U.S. automaker would team up to share the cost of EVs, Barra said on a conference call with analysts that GM already works with Japan's Honda Motor Co Ltd (7267.T) on battery cell technology and other EV parts but was open to more partnerships.
"We are open to working with other (automakers) on leveraging it even further, but we're already doing that with Honda, and it definitely provides savings from an engineering perspective, and has scaled benefits as well," Barra said.
Honda is working jointly with the Detroit automaker and its autonomous driving division Cruise to develop an innovative autonomous vehicle that "minimizes congestion on crowded city streets" Cruise CEO Kyle Vogt wrote in a blog post last year.
Vogt said that Honda brings its experience in "space efficient design". He declined to offer a timeline for the new vehicle's release and said his company is "moving as quickly as we possibly can."
GM noted that the new vehicle will be manufactured at high volume "for global deployment." without providing any further details.
GM's U.S. rival Ford Motor Co last month agreed to use an EV platform developed by Germany's Volkswagen AG as a way to mitigate those development costs.
Other carmakers are turning to China, the world's largest auto market, to develop new electric models. Volkswagen and Ford Motor Co. VW is working with Anhui Jianghuai Automobile Co. In 2017, Ford entered into a new joint venture with Anhui Zotye Automobile Co. to build electric models for China.
Last month, Toyota announced a partnership with BYD Co. to jointly develop electric vehicles. The two companies will work together on electric sedans and sports-utility vehicles with the goal of introducing them during 2020 to 2025. The partnership also includes the development of batteries for the vehicles the companies said.
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