After several months of sporadic recalls, emergency software updates, and fire warnings, GM has announced a recall on all models of the Chevy Bolt. The company says that its flagship EV is prone to spontaneous combustion due to defects in the LG batteries.
GM identified the cause of its battery fires a few months ago—folded separators and torn anode tabs. The corporation previously believed that these defects only appeared in LG batteries produced in an Ochang, Korea plant.
But further investigation shows that batteries from multiple manufacturing plants are affected. GM hasn’t clarified which factories are to blame, a sign that it hasn’t uncovered the full extent of this problem. (Bear in mind that Hyundai encountered the same problem with LG batteries earlier this year.)
GM plans to replace all Chevy Bolt batteries as part of this recall, and will ensure that all new modules come with an 8-year 100,000-mile limited warranty (160,000 km in Canada). Until GM notifies Chevy Bolt owners that replacement parts are ready, the company suggests the following actions:
- Don’t let your vehicle exceed a 90% charge. You can use the Target Charge Level mode to do so. Instructions are on the Chevy Bolt recall page.
- Charge your vehicle more frequently and avoid depleting the battery below the 70-mile (or 113 km) mark.
- Park your vehicle outside when it isn’t charging, and don’t charge it overnight.
If you aren’t comfortable following these steps, take your Chevy Bolt to the dealer. You can also contact the Chevrolet EV Concierge service (1-833-EVCHEVY) for more information on the recall. The line is open weekdays 8:00am to 12:00am ET and weekends 12:00pm to 9:00pm ET.
Oh, and if you’re wondering how much money Chevy’s lost in this recall, the company’s PR estimates that it’s spent a total of around $1.8 billion. That number will almost certainly go up, and Chevy makes a point to say that LG will help foot the bill.
Source: GM via The Verge