GM’s Brownstown Plant Builds New Spark EV Battery

General Motors announced it is bringing all its electric vehicle battery building in-house with production of battery systems for the 2015 Chevrolet Spark EV at its assembly plant in Brownstown, Mich.

This also means there is a new battery coming in the Chevy Spark EV.

“Using our in-house engineering and manufacturing expertise enabled us to deliver a battery system that is more efficient and lighter than the 2014 Spark EV without sacrificing range,” said Larry Nitz, executive director of GM global transmission and electrification engineering. “Our successful working relationship with LG Chem has allowed us to deliver a new battery system for the Spark EV that helps us to better leverage our economies of scale.”

GM stated the newly designed battery system features an overall storage capacity of 19 kilowatt-hour and uses 192 lithium-ion cells. The battery system weight of 474 pounds is 86 pounds lighter than the system in the 2014 Spark EV.

The Spark EV battery is built on a dedicated production line at Brownstown, which also manufactures complete battery packs for the Chevrolet Volt, Opel Ampera and Cadillac ELR.

Changes in battery design will not affect the Spark’s MPGe, or gasoline equivalent, performance compared to the 2014 model, added GM. Range will remain at an EPA-rated 82 miles and MPGe will remain at 119.

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Chevrolet quotes the Spark EV price “at $19,995 with full federal incentives.” This assumes one qualifies for full incentives, or actual price is $27,495 without any incentives – i.e., the $7,500 federal tax credit.

Currently on sale in California and Oregon, the 2015 Spark EV features, according to GM, segment-leading technology including Siri Eyes Free, 4G LTE and DC Fast Charging.

GM added Brownstown Battery Assembly’s 479,000-square-foot, landfill-free facility south of Detroit produces the lithium-ion battery packs for GM’s extended-range electric vehicles. It started mass production in October 2010 and is the first high-volume manufacturing site in the U.S. operated by a major automaker for automotive lithium-ion battery production. The site was made possible with the help of American Recovery and Reinvestment Act funding through the U.S. Department of Energy.