During the recent Barclay’s Global Automotive Conference, GM CEO Mary Barra laid out the automaker’s ambitions to deliver a robust EV portfolio, while simultaneously driving consumer adoption and quickly creating shareholder value. During the event, Barra named Travis Hester as the new Chief GM EV Officer. In his new role, Hester will head GM’s EV Growth Operations organization, which aims to combine the agility of a start-up with the backbone strength of General Motors.
“The team will be entirely focused on the EV business and driving mass consumer adoption,” Barra explained. “[Hester] will be empowered to minimize complexity and make decisions fast.”
Hester previously served as President of GM Canada and GM Global Vice President of Customer Experience, and is credited with creating an expansive automotive software engineering workforce, all of which is critical experience when managing the high-tech GM EV lineup.
“[Hester] has spent the past year working to elevate every customer interaction and experience to world-class levels through our entire purchase and ownership process,” Barra said.
Additionally, Hester served as the chief engineer for the Cadillac CT6, often considered GM’s technological flagship with regard to its innovative Omega architecture, rear-wheel steering technology, and Super Cruise semi-autonomous driving technology, among other innovations. Check out GM Authority’s previous coverage for Hester’s insights into what made the CT6 so compelling.
During the Barclays event, Mary Barra laid out General Motors’ ambitions to accelerate GM EV adoption and quickly create shareholder value, saying, “We’ll do this with beautifully designed EVs across brands and price points, technology development that improves range and lowers cost, and an exceptional customer experience with services our customers expect and that create new revenue streams.”
The rapidity with which various GM EV products have been developed was also mentioned, as was the automaker’s ability to leverage its numerous iconic brands, widespread customer loyalty, design and manufacturing expertise, and numerous test facilities, not to mention the global scale of its operations.
“We’ve developed these assets and capabilities over decades. They are real competitive strengths that start-ups will struggle to match,” Barra added.