GM’s Mary Barra Has a Plan to Win the Electric Vehicle Race – The New York Times

“WARREN, Mich. — General Motors made a splash last year when it announced a bold plan to ramp up sales of electric vehicles and said it would stop making gasoline-powered vehicles by 2035.

But more than a year later, some other automakers appear better positioned to lead the industry’s transition to E.V.s. Tesla had global sales of more than 310,000 electric cars in the first quarter of this year, while G.M. is far behind unless it counts E.V.s made by its Chinese joint ventures. It sold fewer than 500 E.V.s in the United States in the quarter. Ford Motor has just started production of an electric F-150 pickup truck and has taken customer reservations for more than 200,000 of them.

Yet, G.M.’s chief executive, Mary T. Barra, is unconcerned. In her view, the G.M. strategy should enable the company to make more affordable E.V.s than most competitors, and eventually to win over many of the tens of millions of mainstream car buyers who are not yet shopping for electric vehicles.

Last year E.V.s accounted for about 3 percent of the 15 million cars and trucks sold in the United States. As that percentage grows, G.M. expects this cost advantage to allow it to overtake most of its rivals within a few years and to challenge Tesla for the lead in E.V. sales before the end of the decade.”

Peter Rawlinson Helped Build Tesla. Now He Hopes to Do the Same at Lucid. – The New York Times

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“It celebrated the production of its first cars less than two months ago. Deliveries have just begun. But for a company with so few vehicles on the road, Lucid Motors is generating a lot of buzz.

Its debut sedan, the $169,000 Lucid Air Dream Edition, has been hailed for its workmanship and the ability to travel a record 520 miles on a single charge. MotorTrend magazine declared it the car of the year. And Lucid’s shares have more than doubled in the last month, putting the company’s worth at $85 billion — a valuation higher than Ford Motor’s.

The accolades are a tribute to Lucid’s chief executive, Peter Rawlinson, an auto industry veteran who engineered the Model S, the sedan that established Tesla as a serious carmaker. Now, he hopes that the Air will do the same for Lucid.

“The first product defines the brand,” he said recently in an interview at Lucid’s factory in the Arizona desert. “We’ll need to create a technological tour de force, and I think that’s what we’ve got in Lucid Air. We define our brand, we define our future.” “