Plug Pulled on GM EVs

April 16, 2003 by Jeff Shepard

General Motors Corp.(GM) is taking back the remaining 375 of its 1,000 EV1s as their leases expire because it can’t supply parts to repair them. Some will end up in research labs or museums. Others will be used for spare parts.

The end of GM’s EV program comes as California again rewrites its once-ambitious zero emissions vehicle rules. The plan launched in 1990 would have required 10% of cars for sale in the state this year to be non-polluting. Today, state regulators are asking that 10% be at least low-pollution by 2005, but even that goal is on hold for now.

GM and other automakers are now focusing on hybrid electric models, natural gas powered vehicles and hydrogen fuel cells. GM plans to have five fuel cell models, which have twice the range of its best EV1s in the Los Angeles city fleet by June.