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GM adds Spark to electric vehicle market

Unveiled at the Los Angeles International Auto Show, the Spark EV uses a GM-developed 130bhp electric motor and lithium ion battery pack designed based on knowledge gained from the Volt. It will also be the first vehicle in North America to offer optional fast charging based on the new SAE Combo DC Fast Charge standard, recharging to 80% capacity in 20 minutes. 

The electric drivetrain will be built at the carmaker’s plant in White Marsh, Maryland before being shipped to the GM factory in Changwon, South Korea where the Spark is assembled. GM has yet to release any details of its electric range, but said it expects this to be among the best in its class.

Bespoke features include a graphic range gauge on the dashboard’s seven-inch LCD screen, with the same iPhone connectivity as the recently launched Vauxhall/Opel Adam supermini. An aerodynamic bodykit is claimed to improve the range by 2.5 miles.

At launch, the Spark EV will be sold in California, where it qualifies for the desirable High Occupancy Vehicle access stickers, and Oregon in the United States. Canadian launch markets comprise Quebec, Ontario and British Columbia, where it will be sold exclusively to fleet customers. South Korea, where the Spark is assembled, will also be among the launch markets.

Mark Reuss, president, General Motors North America, said: ‘When you engineer a technology-filled, all-electric mini car that goes from zero-to-60 mph in less than eight seconds, customers won’t miss the gas. The Volt and now the Spark EV show that Chevrolet not only knows EVs better than anyone else, we also know how to help customers get the most out of their EV experience.’

Alex Grant

Trained on Cardiff University’s renowned Postgraduate Diploma in Motor Magazine Journalism, Alex is an award-winning motoring journalist with ten years’ experience across B2B and consumer titles. A life-long car enthusiast with a fascination for new technology and future drivetrains, he joined Fleet World in April 2011, contributing across the magazine and website portfolio and editing the EV Fleet World Website.

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