In 2022, cars are like Marvel movies. They get revealed on screens so fans can talk about them on social media and, if done right, they come with little surprise stingers at the end teasing the next one. General Motors GM, +4.96% dropped two new previews on us recently, in the credits of its big winter blockbuster.
GM CEO Mary Barra used her online keynote speech to the Consumer Electronics Show to reveal Chevrolet’s biggest news—an all-electric version of its bestselling Silverado pickup. The automotive press had known that was coming for months.
But Barra also mentioned two more electric vehicles no one knew were coming: an all-electric Chevy Equinox and Chevy Blazer.
Chevrolet will build electric versions of two of its most popular SUVs, both set to reach the market in the fall of 2023. They’ll be sold as 2024 models.
Chevy hasn’t released many details about either vehicle. But Barra did drop one tantalizing fact about the Equinox EV – prices will start at “around $30,000.”
We don’t know how much a gasoline-powered Equinox will cost by the time the Equinox EV gets here. But the 2022 Equinox starts at $25,800 and rises to $33,795 for its most exclusive trim. Chevy charges a $1,195 freight charge on every Equinox.
EV versions of gasoline-powered cars usually come at a premium of several thousand dollars. Assuming the standard Equinox’s price stays consistent with inflation, the electric version may not even be the most expensive Equinox.
GM released photos of the Equinox EV. They show a handsome SUV more streamlined than today’s Equinox, featuring a sharp nose punctuated by a thin, wide LED bar and thick rear pillars that solve the awkward sedan-in-an-SUV-costume look of the current model.
Chevy says it will be available in base LT and sporty RS trims.
End of the line for the Bolt brothers?
The price Barra cited would also undercut Chevy’s current least-expensive electric car, the 2022 Chevy Bolt EV. The Equinox is larger and more popular than the Bolt. It will surely attract many buyers if it’s sitting on a lot next to the Bolt, but with a lower price.
However, the electric Equinox’s arrival could spell the end of the line for the troubled Bolt.
Chevrolet introduced a larger Bolt cousin, the Bolt EUV, for the 2022 model year. The two share an older battery design found on no other GM EV. The Bolts’ batteries have been their Achilles’ heel, subject to an escalating series of recalls due to fire risk throughout the past year.
The Equinox EV will ride on Chevy’s new Ultium architecture – a single unit of chassis, suspension, battery, and electric motor that can be scaled up or down to design vehicles for different purposes. The Ultium platform uses newer, more advanced battery technology than the Bolts.
If Chevy has a cheaper, bigger, more advanced EV almost ready to go, using a battery system untainted by bad headlines, we wouldn’t be surprised to see the Bolt quietly put out to pasture.
Chevrolet Blazer EV
Barra had even less to say about the second upcoming EV she teased. Just one sentence:
“Priced right with a high level of refinement and options, the Blazer SUV will also be available in 2023.”
The Chevrolet Blazer
Given the flexibility of the Ultium platform, we can almost certainly assume the Blazer will use the same system.
Today’s gas-powered Chevy Blazer is a midsize SUV known for sharp handling and sharp looks. That could position it as a rival to Ford’s Mustang Mach-E EV and Tesla’s bestselling Model Y. A fully equipped Blazer today costs nearly as much as a Mach-E.
But Barra offered no photos or pricing info to feed that speculation. GM vehicles are no longer eligible for the federal EV tax credit.
We’ll bring more details when trailers start…er…Chevy releases them.
This story originally ran on KBB.com.