Amped Up! GM to hire 1,000 engineers and researchers for electric carsTue, 30 Nov 2010 00:00:00 -0800
General Motors will hire 1,000 engineers and researchers in Michigan for research and development of electric vehicles, CEO Dan Akerson said on Tuesday morning in Detroit.
The new hires will work on batteries, electric motors and power-control technology. Akerson made the announcement at the factory that builds the 2011 Chevrolet Volt.
“We are well on our way to the electrification of the automobile,” Akerson said.
The GM chief executive drove onto the stage in the Job One Volt, which is headed to the company's heritage collection. The first retail Volt will be auctioned to benefit the Detroit Public Schools Foundation. The opening bid is $50,000, a bit above the $41,000 sticker the car will have. With incentives, it can cost about $33,500.
Bidding starts on Tuesday, and the winner will be revealed on Dec. 16.
The car has a fuel-economy rating of the equivalent of 93 mpg, with 37 mpg on gasoline and 35 miles on electricity, the EPA said.
In a bit of a surprise, former GM vice chairman Bob Lutz made a guest appearance to show off the vehicle he's championed since its debut in concept form at the 2007 Detroit auto show.
“GM's biggest challenge is reputation, and the Volt will go a long way toward changing the perceptions of people in California and on the East Coast,” said Lutz, who's now an adviser with British sports-car company Lotus.
By Greg Migliore