General Motors could be open to partnerships with other OEMs to help push up volume and share cost on its Volt powertrain technology.
GM's global powertrain chief, Dan Nicholson, told Automotive News that GM wants to be a "partner of choice" in propulsion system development. The report noted that the Volt's entire hybrid powertrain, comprising a 1.5L 4-cylinder engine, electric transaxle and power electronics, could be made available to a number of manufacturers as it currently fits into a relatively compact car. The advantage for other OEMs would lay in sidestepping the enormous development costs that GM has incurred.
OEMs are under pressure to meet tighter CO2 and fuel economy regs in both Europe and North America. Supplying to other automakers could also help GM recoup cost.
General Motors estimates a total driving range of more than 400 miles for the Volt and, with regular charging, owners can expect to travel more than 1,000 miles on average between fuel fill-ups, the company claims.