In a world where electric vehicles (EVs) are increasingly gaining popularity in mass markets, it’s no surprise that the US military has decided to jump on the bandwagon and take a greener path. These prototype batteries will be based on General Motors‘ most advanced battery technology – the Ultium platform. We try to find out more about the Ultium platform in which General Motors is investing $35 billion to maximize its potential.
What is GM’s Ultium Platform?
The Ultium battery line is General Motors’ answer to the internal combustion vehicles of today’s world. The reason for Ultium’s success is the scalability and storage configurations of up to 200kWh using various chemical configurations. These batteries use pouches made of a nickel-cobalt-manganese-aluminum mixture, take up less space and can be stacked on top of each other.
This layout allows car manufacturers to optimize space and helps the overall layout of a vehicle to remain compact and sleek. This equates to more miles per single charge of each battery, reducing the cost of electricity. The fact that this battery configuration is more scalable makes it ideal for the military, as tactical vehicles used by the military need to withstand extreme conditions and go as far as possible on a single charge.
The Ultium battery architecture provides more power and range than any other technology currently available and is also adaptable to future technologies as they become available.
What gives General Motors a technological advantage in batteries?
Developed by a subsidiary of General Motors – GM Defense – the Ultium platform is already used in some of GM’s mainstream vehicles like the GMC Hummer EV and the Cadillac Lyriq. The new Chevrolet Blazer EV and Equinox EV will also be based on the same technology and will offer flexibility in terms of charging speed, range and performance. This will allow the user to choose the perfect combination of their needs and excitement.
The GMC Electric Hummer started reaching customers and the numbers are anything but usual. The power output of the top-end variant is over 1,000 hp and it delivers 11,500 lb-ft of torque. The GMC Hummer EV pickup goes from 0 to 60 mph in about 3 seconds and the “slightly heavier” SUV takes half a second longer at 3.5 seconds to break the 60 mph barrier.
The 800V DC fast charger will provide approximately 100 miles of range in just 10 minutes of charging. The GMC Hummer EV pickup has an estimated range of up to 350 miles and the “heavier” Hummer EV SUV has fewer miles to go at 300 on a full charge. The reaction to the GMC Hummer EV has been such that General Motors had to halt reservations a few days ago after the number broke the 90,000 mark.
Little has been revealed about the Cadillac Lyriq but Lyriq 2023 orders are already complete. You can still order the 2024 Cadillac Lyriq, though features, specs, pricing and colors will be revealed near the start of production.
General Motors says the futuristic Chevrolet Blazer EV will have an estimated range of up to 320 miles on a full charge. The Chevrolet Equinox EV will have an estimated power output of 290 hp with a towing capacity of 1,500 lbs and a range of up to 300 miles on a full charge.
How green is the future of military vehicles?
As markets around the world look to electric vehicles to replace traditional internal combustion engines, it was apparent that the US military was also beginning to look for possibilities. Unlike traditional electric vehicles with lithium-ion batteries, the Defense Innovation Unit (DIU) wanted a more practical approach that was more sustainable in terms of practicality and utility.
When GM provided a GMC Hummer EV pickup to the U.S. military in July for analysis and demonstration, DIU had found a possible answer to reducing its reliance on fossil fuels. The Ultium platform had ticked many boxes, making it a potential replacement for the gas-guzzling machines the military has used for decades.
Commenting on the development, Steve duMont, President of GM Defense said: “This award is a critical catalyst for non-traditional defense companies like GM Defense to deliver commercial technologies that support our customers’ transition to a more electric future. autonomous and connected. Commercial battery electric technologies continue to mature.
GM Defense offers a unique advantage with our ability to leverage proven commercial capabilities and billions of GM investments in electric vehicle and autonomous vehicle technologies to help provide our customers with the most advanced capabilities than the commercial market. can offer.
Source: General Motors