General Motors revealed a new electric SUV Thursday that the automaker expects will be the cheapest compact electric SUV on the market when it goes into product in about a year. The Chevrolet Equinox EV will have a starting price around $30,000 which, at any rate, will make it among the cheapest electric vehicles of any sort.
The average electric vehicle available today has a base sticker price of about $47,500, according to Edmunds.com. The $30,000 price for the Equinox EV would be, of course, for the simplest version with no optional features. That price does not include tax credits but GM is not currently eligible for any electric vehicle tax credits, anyway, and it’s uncertain if any GM vehicles will be eligible under new rules, either.
Among 2022 model year mass-market EVs, only the Nissan Leaf, with its base price $28,500, costs less and it also currently qualifies for a $7,500 federal tax credit. There are a few other models in the low- to mid-$30,000 price range, too. Among them are Chevrolet’s own Bolt EV and the SUV-ish Bolt EUV.
The big question is how much money is GM willing to lose on EVs before it achieves the scale necessary to turn a profit. There is nothing easy about building an SUV at a price point that is thousands less than the nearest competitor. It suggests the company is going to be at the mercy of commodity prices in just the same way that oil deters consumers from buying gas guzzlers.
The share remains on a recovery trajectory. That’s a clear example of the adage “the market can stay irrational longer than you can stay liquid”