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How Chevrolet thinks it can beat Tesla in the new EV market

Nora Naughton   

How Chevrolet thinks it can beat Tesla in the new EV market
  • Chevrolet is ready for the new wave of EV customers.
  • The stalwart Detroit brand is ready to close the gap with Tesla.

Chevrolet is just getting started on its takeover of the electric car market, says Steve Majoros, the brand's chief marketing officer.

The longtime Chevy executive sat down with Business Insider at a Tuesday press event for the launch of two electric vehicles that underpin the automaker's future plans: the long-awaited Silverado electric pickup truck and the electric Chevy Equinox.

It's not exactly a great time to put more electric vehicles on sale. A changing EV shopper demographic has thrown the segment for a loop, and two years of runaway growth is finally hitting a plateau.

Despite this gloomy backdrop to the day, Majoros is fired up. He starts the conversation by musing at how long this moment has taken to arrive (the electric Silverado was first teased in a Super Bowl ad in 2022) and how exciting it is to see GM's EV ambitions come to fruition.

While Chevy and other legacy car brands spent the better part of the past decade playing catchup with Tesla, executives have promised that their century of manufacturing expertise would eventually close the gap.

"Sometimes you see things as these discrete pieces and wonder how they're all going to snap together, and then all of a sudden it's like, 'Wow, the puzzle pieces really came together here,'" Majoros said.

Chevrolet is done playing catchup with Elon Musk

While Chevrolet isn't exactly new to the EV market (the electric Chevy Bolt has been on sale since 2016), the stalwart Detroit brand has spent the better part of the last decade lagging behind Elon Musk's Tesla.

Early adopters favored techy startup brands like Musk's over dinosaurs like GM and in the time the Chevrolet spent selling a single electric model in the US, Tesla released a slew of new models, including its affordable Model 3 and Model Y vehicles, which compete directly with the Bolt.

Tesla also beat Chevrolet to the punch on an electric pickup truck, launching the Cybertruck late last year.

But the tides finally are turning in Chevrolet's favor, Majoros said, as EV shoppers gravitate to more practical options and legacy brands.

"Customers will say 'if it doesn't haul or tow or fit my kids or have the safety features I want, I'm tapping out,'" Majoros said. "I don't care if it runs on electricity, gas, or hamsters."

GM is a second-half team

GM has always been a second-half team, Majoros said, and he thinks the Chevy brand is perfectly situated to meet a new wave of electric car shoppers.

"Momentum is a true force, whether it's autos, sports, whatever," Majoros said. "We've got some momentum, so let's see how the second half unfolds."

There is certainly an opening for Chevrolet in this changing electric vehicle market.

Recent studies on a new cohort of electric car shoppers show that they are more inclined to consider purchasing an electric car from a legacy brand. After years of a virtual monopoly on the EV market, shoppers are growing tired of Tesla and looking for fresher options.

"For people weighing the pros and cons they can look at Chevrolet and see a product they know and trust," Majoros said.


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