Sure, General Motors has outsourced production of the individual battery cells to LG Chem, but the American automaker isn't willing to give up much control over the Volt's extended-range EV powertrain. According to a report on Automotive News (sub. req'd), GM plans to focus in on three EV technologies it sees as core to its future business: batteries, the control systems for its electric and hybrid powertrains, and the electric motor. Says GM product development chief Tom Stephens:
GM will take the cells from LG Chem and will assemble them itself into packs capable of fitting inside its vehicle platforms. The complicated control systems and software for its hybrids is already developed in-house and GM soon plans to build its own electric motors. The first usage of these GM-built motors will reportedly be in the next-gen 2-Mode Hybrid systems used in the automaker's fullsize trucks and SUVs.We've taken all three of these and said these are core technologies for General Motors. We've brought them inside and said we are going to have people dedicated to learning more about these three components.