GM says production starts on replacement batteries for Bolts

<p><p>General Motors said Monday that production has resumed for battery modules used in recalled Chevrolet Bolt electric vehicles, and customers could start getting replacement parts by mid-October.</p></p><p><p>GM said supplier LG has restarted production at plants in Holland and Hazel Park, Michigan, and is adding capacity to make more battery cells.</p></p><p><p>The recall follows reports of 13 battery fires, GM said, which can occur when two separate defects are present in the battery modules.</p></p><p><p><a href=”″>More than 140,000 Bolts</a> are covered by the recall, which is expect to cost $1.8 billion. GM said it continues to negotiate with LG over who will pay.</p></p><p><p>Shares of General Motors Co. fell more than 5% in afternoon trading.</p></p><p><p>GM said it expects over the next 60 days to develop diagnostic battery software that will let car owners charge their cars unattended and to full power.</p></p><p><p>Currently, owners are told to limit charging to 90% and to park outdoors.</p></p><p><p>GM and LG have been looking into how to fix the batteries.</p></p><p><p>“We absolutely have figured out how these defects happened … to make sure that they can’t happen going forward, and that’s what started our production up again,” said Tim Grewe, GM’s director of battery cell engineering<span class=”print_trim”>, told reporters Monday</span>.</p></p><p><p>Grewe said the company’s goal in rebuilding customer confidence is to “statistically prove that none of these defects can get out of our factories.”</p></p><p><p>For the recall, customers will be ranked according to where their battery was made and their recharging style.</p></p><p><p>Owners who usually run their batteries nearly to zero power before recharging raise the risk of a fire, company officials said.</p></p><p><p><span class=”print_trim”>GM shut down its Orion plant where Bolts are manufactured through the week of Oct. 11. It gave no update for resuming production there.</span></p></p><p><p><span class=”print_trim”>The recall is a hitch in GM’s push to sell more electric cars and eventually sell only emissions-free vehicles.</span></p></p><p><p><span class=”print_trim”>And, along with recalls involving Ford, BMW and Hyundai, it has raised safety questions about lithium-ion batteries that are used in nearly all electric vehicles.</span></p></p><p><p><span class=”print_trim”>GM issued the first Bolt recall last November after getting reports of fires, one of which spread to a house.</span></p></p>