200,000 Hours Of Testing For Spark EV Battery

GM is getting ready for the launch of the Spark EV, officially rolled out at the Los Angeles International Auto Show, Nov. 28, and revealed the new EV’s batteries have undergone over 200,000 hours of testing.

“When our team set out to develop the propulsion system for Spark EV, we knew we had to provide surprising fun-to-drive acceleration with maximum efficiency,” said Spark EV Chief Engineer Chuck Russell. “What we think customers will enjoy most is how fun the Spark EV is to drive; it’s seamless and power is available at every stage of the drive. This will help us to provide an exciting option for those customers who are looking for an EV that’s as much fun to drive as it is environmentally responsible.”

As per GM, the Spark EV’s electric motor is an oil-cooled, permanent magnet unit that will produce at least 100 kilowatts (130 horsepower) and provide instantaneous torque of about 400 pound-feet with the coaxial drive unit, resulting in 0-60 mph acceleration in less than eight seconds.

The electric motor gets its power from a 20-kwh lithium ion battery pack that is comprised of 336 prismatic cells using Nanophosphate lithium ion phosphate chemistry.

“Spark EV’s battery has undergone more than 200,000 hours of testing in our global battery systems labs,” said Larry Nitz, executive director of GM’s global electrification engineering team. “This testing paved the way to allow Spark EV customers to use the recently approved SAE combo charger for DC Fast Charging to recharge up to 80 percent of the battery capacity in about 20 minutes.”

According to GM, the Spark EV team was able to reduce development time and cost by using many of the same components and systems from the Chevrolet Volt and GM’s Two-Mode hybrid truck programs.

GM says more than 75 percent of the propulsion system components used are from other GM vehicle programs.

The Spark EV will go on sale in participating dealerships throughout California, Oregon, Canada and other global markets next year as a 2014 model-year vehicle.

The Spark EV will be eligible for coveted high-occupancy vehicle (HOV) lanes in California.