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General Motors Joins Race to Build an Electric Van

By Rich Smith – Jun 4, 2020 at 10:54AM

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Will it be another Hummer?

Electric truck start-up Rivian is building an electric van for Amazon.com's (AMZN -1.07%) delivery fleet, with Ford (F -2.46%) helping out.

British start-up Arrival is building one for UPS (UPS 1.16%), with help from Hyundai and Kia.

And now, you can add General Motors (GM -2.24%) -- the original inventor of the EV-1 electric automobile -- to the list of car companies racing to build an electric van for business use.

Concept art of an autonomous electric delivery van next to a rolling delivery drone

Image source: Getty Images.

Citing five sources, Reuters reports that GM is working to create an "electric van aimed at business users," hoping to capture this segment of the market. According to the news agency, GM has code-named its new van the "BV1" and is planning to begin production late next year.

The new van reportedly will be powered by the company's Ultium battery system, and share components in common with other battery-powered electric vehicles on GM's drawing board. It has not yet been decided, however, whether GM will brand the truck as a "Chevrolet" or "GM" -- or perhaps introduce a new brand under the corporate parent. GM might conceivably pair the van with a new electric pickup truck that is also expected to arrive next year, under the "Hummer" brand.

GM has not confirmed the report, stating only that it is "committed to an all-electric future and is implementing a multi-segment, scalable EV strategy to get there. At this time, we do not have any announcements to make regarding electric commercial vehicles."

That being said, the company plans to release 20 or more battery-powered electric vehicles over the next three years, and this certainly leaves room for one of them to be a van.  

John Mackey, CEO of Whole Foods Market, an Amazon subsidiary, is a member of The Motley Fool's board of directors. Rich Smith has no position in any of the stocks mentioned. The Motley Fool owns shares of and recommends Amazon and Tesla and recommends the following options: short January 2022 $1940 calls on Amazon and long January 2022 $1920 calls on Amazon. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.

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Stocks Mentioned

General Motors Company Stock Quote
General Motors Company
GM
$34.26 (-2.24%) $0.79
Amazon.com, Inc. Stock Quote
Amazon.com, Inc.
AMZN
$113.92 (-1.07%) $-1.23
Ford Motor Company Stock Quote
Ford Motor Company
F
$11.70 (-2.46%) $0.29
Tesla, Inc. Stock Quote
Tesla, Inc.
TSLA
$278.40 (0.87%) $2.39
United Parcel Service, Inc. Stock Quote
United Parcel Service, Inc.
UPS
$163.62 (1.16%) $1.87

*Average returns of all recommendations since inception. Cost basis and return based on previous market day close.

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