US automotive giant details electric vehicle onslaught during the virtual CES event.
General Motors has teased a number of its upcoming electric vehicles (EVs) during the virtual 2021 Consumer Electronics Show (CES), including the flagship Cadillac Celestiq sedan and what appears to be an SUV inspired by the mid-engined Chevrolet Corvette sports car.
Just 20 minutes into the brand’s online presentation, GM Vice President of Global Design, Mike Simcoe, can be seen standing on stage in front of seven of the automotive giant’s future EVs, all dimly lit to highlight their LED daytime-running lights and lighting details.
It’s directly flanked by a pair of Cadillac-badged EVs, on the left by the Lyriq SUV – revealed in September in concept form, and due to launch in the US in early 2022 – and on the right by the upcoming Celestiq sedan.
While the Celestiq has yet to make its full debut in either concept or production form, General Motors confirmed during the presentation the flagship four-door would feature all-wheel-drive and four-wheel steering, thanks to the car giant’s Ultium all-electric ‘skateboard’ platform.
It also detailed the Celestiq’s full-width, electrochromatic glass roof, which is split into four sections to allow the area above each passenger to be individually dimmed or brightened to their liking.
Tucked behind the Lyriq is a pair of high-riding electric SUVs, with the rightmost vehicle sporting a set of LED headlights highly reminiscent of the mid-engined, eighth-generation Chevrolet Corvette sports car.
The Corvette-inspired styling cues have led many online commentators to suggest the model could be the long-anticipated, Corvette-badged SUV, rumours of which have emerged numerous times in recent years, as part of a potential Corvette sub-brand.
However, Simcoe’s announcement that two of the electric vehicles displayed on stage were upcoming Buick SUVs for the Chinese market, before pointing in the leftmost pair’s direction, appears to quash those Corvette rumours once again.
Rounding out the seven-strong group is the recently-announced Chevrolet all-electric ute – featuring a full-width front LED light bar, with an illuminated bowtie logo – and a mystery SUV, the identity of which wasn’t confirmed during the presentation.
Also unveiled during the presentation is BrightDrop, a new brand designed to offer electric vans and other services to delivery companies including FedEx.
Two products were unveiled for the brand overnight, headlined by the EV600, an all-electric delivery van based on GM’s Ultium architecture, offering a 402km estimated range, 120kW DC fast charging (capable of adding 274km of range in one hour), 17 cubic metres of cargo capacity behind the front occupants, and a 4536kg maximum payload.
A 13.4-inch infotainment touchscreen dominates the interior, while a full gamut of active safety technologies will be fitted as standard, including front and rear parking sensors, autonomous emergency braking and a security system for the cargo area, including motion sensors.
FedEx will be the first customer for the van – which will conduct first deliveries by the end of 2021 – with order books to open to other delivery companies and organisations from early 2022.
BrightDrop will also launch the EP1, an electric trolley designed for delivery drivers or shipping warehouse employees, intended to help move heavy packages between the warehouse shelves, delivery van and the customer’s front door.
The EP1 can carry up to 90kg at speeds of up to 5km/h and, according to the results of a trial conducted with FedEx Express, can help deliver 25 per cent more packages per day than with a delivery driver on their own.
GM also teased the upcoming Chevrolet Bolt EUV, a small SUV derived from the small Bolt electric hatch, which is due to be unveiled in February 2021.
Stay tuned to CarAdvice for more details of General Motors’ electric vehicle expansion as production and concept models are unveiled in the coming years.
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CES 2021: GM teases Cadillac Celestiq electric sedan, BrightDrop electric van brand announced