General Motors announced Thursday that it will extend the production shutdown of its Chevrolet Bolt until mid-October. The company had already halted assembly of new versions (including the new Bolt EUV SUV) until September 24th, hoping a solution could be found with battery maker LG. The units supplied to GM by the latter led to the recall of all models manufactured since the product's introduction in 2017.
The extension of the production shutdown at the Orion plant will continue at least until October 15th. Meanwhile, and due to another situation, GM has also said it is cutting production at six other North American assembly plants due to the current shortage of microchips.
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As for the Bolt, we are in standby mode. Yesterday, the company recommended that owners park 15 meters (50 feet) from other vehicles and structures. The goal here is simply to educate owners in order to avoid unfortunate incidents.
GM has said it will not resume production or sales of the Bolt until it is satisfied that a solution is found (and effective) with LG's batteries. The two companies are working together to find a solution to the problem.
Remember that in August, GM extended the Bolt recall to more than 140,000 units to replace battery modules, all at a cost now estimated at $1.8 billion. The automaker said it would seek reimbursement from the LG battery supplier.
It is not known how long it will take GM to obtain new battery modules for the recalled vehicles. It is not clear whether it will have diagnostic software that will allow it to certify that certain modules do not need to be replaced.