Welcome to The Grid, R&T's quick roundup of the auto industry and motorsports news you should know this morning.
GM Will Develop and Build Electric Motors In House
As part of its huge investment in EVs, General Motors will design and build a family of electric motors in-house. The company released a few details today on the three electric motors and five drive units, collectively known as Ultium Drive, that will move all of its future EVs. Everything from the next-generation Bolt, to the Cadillac Lyriq (pictured) above, to the new GMC Hummer. "GM has built transmissions for many notable automakers," said GM EV boss Ken Morris in a statement. "Making motors, transmissions, driveline components and systems are among GM's best-known competencies, and our manufacturing expertise is proving not only transferable but advantageous as we make the transition to EVs." It would be cheaper and easier for GM to source motors and drive units from a supplier in the short term, but developing this technology in-house will lower cost in the long term.
Kia to Launch New EV Next Year
Yes, Kia offers an electric version of the Soul (though not in America), but soon, it'll have an electric car riding on its own dedicated platform. Automotive News reports that Kia will launch a new EV on a dedicated platform next year. It'll be the first of seven to be launched before 2027, and Kia hopes this new family of EVs will contribute to 25 percent of its global sales by the end of the decade.
Sebastien Bourdais to Return to IndyCar for 2021
French driver Sebastien Bourdais lost his IndyCar seat for 2020 when Dale Coyne Racing decided to hire rookie Alex Palou to pair with Santino Ferrucci. Seb ran sports cars for this year, but soon, he'll make his IndyCar return. Racer reports that Bourdais will join AJ Foyt racing for the last three races of the 2020 season, in preparation for a full-time drive for next year. It's great news for Bourdais, who isn't quite ready to leave IndyCar. "I wasn’t ready to stop last year, and I'm still not," he told Racer. "So clearly, so we're going full steam ahead and try and get it done the best we can, so A.J. can enjoy being at the track again and have some good results."
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