GM to jointly design, build electric vehicles for Honda; Ford shuffles executive ranks

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May 11, 2020

General Motors (GM) and Honda will jointly develop two electric vehicles (EVs) for Honda, based on GM’s flexible global EV platform powered by Ultium batteries. The exteriors and interiors of the new EVs will be designed by Honda, with the platform customized to Honda’s specifications.

Honda EVs will be manufactured at GM plants in North America. Sales are expected to begin in the 2024 model year in Honda’s U.S. and Canadian markets.

GM and Honda are already collaborating on fuel cells and the Cruise Origin, an electric, self-driving vehicle revealed in San Francisco earlier this year. Honda joined GM’s battery module development efforts in 2018.

“This collaboration will put together the strength of both companies, while combined scale and manufacturing efficiencies will ultimately provide greater value to customers,” says Rick Schostek, executive vice president of American Honda Motor Co. “We are in discussions with one another regarding the possibility of further extending our partnership.”

Doug Parks, GM executive vice president of Global Product Development, Purchasing, and Supply Chain, adds, “This agreement builds on our proven relationship with Honda, and further validates the technical advancements and capabilities of our Ultium batteries and our all-new EV platform.”

Automakers are trying to boost EV scale to lower component prices and make EVs profitable. Sharing resources will allow GM and Honda to make more vehicles using a shared bin of parts, ideally making each component less expensive.

GM is developing its battery technology with partner LG Chem, and both companies are in the process of building a $2.3 billion plant in Lordstown, Ohio, to make EV cells. https://www.gm.com; https:www.honda.com

Ford shuffles executive ranks

As part of the Creating Tomorrow Together restructuring effort led by newly named Ford COO Jim Farley, the automaker named new executives to focus on product and launch execution, expand use of connected vehicles and Big Data, improve quality, lower costs, and create a dedicated commercial vehicle business in the U.S. and Canada.

Retired Col. Gil Gur Arie joins the company as chief, Global Data Insight and Analytics, reporting to Farley. Gur Arie brings experience in Big Data and artificial intelligence (AI), information technology, digital-age human-machine aspects, and multi-domain large scale analytics.

Kumar Galhotra expands his role as president, Americas & International Markets Group, and is responsible for the business units including a newly established commercial vehicle business.

Lyle Watters expands his role as president, South America & International Markets Group, reporting to Galhotra.

Lisa Drake becomes chief operating officer, North America, focusing on product launches, warranty cost reduction, and material cost improvements. Drake continues as vice president, Global Purchasing. Ted Cannis becomes general manager, Commercial Vehicles, for the U.S. and Canada, also reporting to Galhotra. This new business aligns functional areas to optimize operations.

Burt Jordan becomes vice president, Global Purchasing Operations, reporting to Hau Thai-Tang, chief product development and purchasing officer.

Stuart Taylor named executive director, Enterprise Connectivity, reporting to Thai-Tang. Taylor is responsible for developing connectivity solutions.

Alex Purdy joins the company as director, Business Operations, Digital Experience, and Connectivity, reporting to Taylor. https://www.ford.com