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Chevrolet Confirms New Bolt EV Powered by Ultium Is in the Works

GM CEO Mary Barra announced that a next-gen Bolt is on the way

Chevrolet Bolt EV badge
  • CEO Mary Barra announced a new Bolt will be coming.
  • GM initially canceled the Bolt, making room on its production line for electric trucks.
  • Now, the next Bolt is set to arrive on an "accelerated timeline."

During a quarterly earnings call, GM CEO Mary Barra announced that the Chevrolet Bolt EV — the small electric hatchback that serves as the entryway to GM's EV offerings — wouldn't disappear after the 2024 model year, as Chevy said in April.

“Our customers love today’s Bolt. It has been delivering record sales and some of the highest customer satisfaction and loyalty scores in the industry,” said Barra. “It’s also an important source of conquest sales for the company and for Chevrolet.”

We were disappointed when GM initially reported the Bolt EV and its Bolt EUV crossover cousin would be gone entirely by the end of the year. The Bolt EV and Bolt EUV are two of the most affordable long-range EVs on the market, and both qualify for considerable tax credits for certain buyers. They were set to be discontinued entirely, as the assembly plant in Michigan that builds them will soon be repurposed for electric truck production.

Now, Barra says things are different: “[We] will keep the momentum going by delivering a new Bolt … and we will execute it more quickly compared to an all-new program with significantly lower engineering expense and capital investment by updating the vehicle with Ultium and Ultifi technologies.”

The automaker says the next Bolt will continue to deliver what consumers expect from the nameplate — an affordable EV with usable range and a solid suite of tech features. It initially appeared that the $30,000-ish Equinox EV was to replace the Bolt, and with the new Bolt expected to utilize GM's more advanced Ultium platform, we expect its price to creep up a little. With the Bolt EV and Equinox EV then theoretically running side by side in terms of price, it isn’t clear what that means for the bottom end of Chevy’s EV lineup.

So why resurrect the Bolt? It’s possible GM wasn’t able to keep the Equinox EV close enough to the Bolt’s old price point, pushing GM to reconsider the small electric vehicle's cancellation. Record sales of the Bolt EV and EUV might have helped sway the decision-makers, too. In any case, Chevrolet says that more details on the next-gen Bolt will be announced at a later date. It won’t be too long, as Chevy says the plan is to bring the model back to market on “an accelerated timeline.”

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Edmunds says

Chevy reviving the Bolt so soon after its announced cancellation is a clear indicator of demand for wallet-friendly long-range EVs. As battery technology becomes cheaper, we expect to see more electrified competition around this price point. It's great to see the Bolt leading the charge once again.