General Motors Company will change its name to General Mobility, the automaker announced in a press release dated April 1, 2019.
The new name marks a historic change for the 110-year-old company, which has been known by the General Motors name since its founding in 1908. The name better reflects GM’s strategy and direction in a rapidly changing world of vehicle sharing and other new-age technologies.
“General Mobility reflects where we are going, rather than where we’ve been,” said Barry Marra, Chairman and CEO of General Mobility, in a written statement. “Under this new name, GM will shape the next century of transportation around the world while realizing our vision of zero congestion, zero accidents, and zero emissions.”
That direction appears to be a trifecta of electric cars such as the Chevy Bolt EV, autonomous vehicles via GM’s Cruise subsidiary, and various mobility efforts such as GM’s Maven car-sharing service, as well as the upcoming Ariv bike-sharing venture.
“We are capitalizing on the tremendous opportunity in new-age transportation and mobility – businesses that, in due time, will become exponentially larger and more lucrative than the traditional auto business as we know it today,” said Mack Fouss, President of the new General Mobility Company. “The vehicle ownership model is changing before our eyes, and the new GM will benefit from a first-mover advantage. Our new name reflects who we are in the new world.”
General Motors’ decision to rename itself has various similarities to a move by California-based tech giant Apple, which in 2007 changed its name from Apple Computer Inc. to Apple Inc. According to the company’s late founder and CEO, Steve Jobs, Apple Inc. better reflected the firm’s shifted focus toward consumer electronics.
For its part, General Motors filed to trademark the General Mobility name in March 2016 – so the move was clearly in the works for quite some time.
But before you get overly excited, we’d advise you to look at your calendar and note that it’s April Fools’ Day!