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GM Plans to Have 500,000 Electric Vehicles On the Road by 2017

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General Motors estimates that it will have up to 500,000 vehicles on the road with some form of electrification by 2017, according to GM's top product development executive.

"The plug-in offers a unique opportunity to change the way people commute," Mary Barra, senior vice president of Global Product Development told media attending the GM Electrification Experience in San Francisco. "Plug-based solutions will play a significant role in our technology portfolio going forward."

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"What started out as a technology proof point... has turned into a real-world starting point to push EV technology further and faster than we thought possible five years ago," she said. "The unique propulsion technology pioneered in the Volt - the same technology that will be featured in the Cadillac ELR - will be a core piece of our electrification strategy going forward."

Learning from the Volt is being liberally applied to the Chevy Spark EV, which will go on sale next year in the certain U.S. markets and South Korea with other markets to be announced soon.

"We'll meet requirements set by certain regulatory agencies, but we're not building the Spark EV to check a regulatory box," Barra said.

GM is currently on track to sell more than 50,000 vehicles with some form of electrification this year.

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