General Motors wants to be part of the fight against climate change by “putting everyone in an electric vehicle,” over the course of the coming years. While the automaker still has a long way to go to achieve that vision, its EV sales are slowly ramping up, with the American automaker selling over 200,000 EVs globally last year.
According to GM’s 2020 Sustainability Report, the automaker sold a total of 202,488 electric vehicles in 2020. The vast majority of these EV sales were in China, unsurprisingly, as the country has expansive EV charging infrastructure, good government support for the adoption of EVs and relatively strong consumer sentiment.
The HongGuang Mini EV was the best-selling EV in General Motors’ portfolio last year, with the automaker’s Chinese joint venture selling 117,599 examples of the battery-powered city car. The Chevy Bolt EV was a distant second with 26,552 sales.
The Baojun E100 and E200, small electric city cars that are similar to the HongGuang Mini EV, were third and fourth overall with sales of 20,571 units and 14,359 units, respectively, followed by the Buick Velite 6 in fifth with sales of 9,034 units.
It’s worth noting that automakers count the sales of electrified vehicles as EV sales, so this annual sales figure also takes into account plug-in vehicles like the Buick Velite 6 PHEV and Cadillac CT6 Plug-In. That said, General Motors is shying away from hybrids in favor of pure EVs, so its 2020 plug-in sales were paltry compared to pure EV sales. Pure electric models represented 98.8 percent of its EV sales last year, while plug-ins made up just 1.2 percent. This is a big change from 2018, when 47 percent of the automaker’s EV sales were plug-ins.
General Motors is poised to grow its EV sales in 2021, with the automaker set to launch several new EVs in North America and abroad in the coming months. These include the 2022 Chevy Bolt EV and 2022 Chevy Bolt EUV, GMC Hummer EV pickup and Cadillac Lyriq crossover.
“As we add new EVs to our portfolio, GM has the advantage of a family of brands with vehicles across segments and price points,” the automaker said in its sustainability report. “We also have the benefit of scale, which will help us continue to bring battery manufacturing costs down. But getting everyone in an EV is about more than price. As part of the global vehicle development process, our portfolio planning team listens to customers to understand their needs in terms of vehicle size, body style, range and more.”