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GM president: ‘We never have one answer’ for supply chain risks – Metro US

GM president: ‘We never have one answer’ for supply chain risks

General Motors President Reuss talks about the Chevrolet 2021 Suburban
General Motors President Reuss talks about the Chevrolet 2021 Suburban and Tahoe SUVs in Detroit

DETROIT (Reuters) – General Motors Co President Mark Reuss said Monday the automaker is confident in its 2022 outlook and its plans to accelerate the launch of a new Cadillac electric vehicle, despite intensifying global supply chain risks.

The geopolitical risks posed to automotive supply chains by the war in Ukraine are real, Reuss said during a conference call. But GM is managing the pressure, and is pushing ahead with its plans to speed up launches of new electric vehicles such as the Cadillac Lyriq, he said.

“We are not new to this game,” Reuss said. GM has long-term contracts for materials, and multiple sources of supply, he said. “We never have one answer.”

Reuss said GM has not changed its 2022 financial outlook, which called for operating profit this year of $13 billion to $15 billion, following a record $14.3 billion in operating profit for 2021.

Some rival automakers have hiked prices on their electric vehicles, or warned that 2022 financial projections are at risk because of higher oil prices and surges in prices for materials such as aluminum, neon and nickel hit by Western sanctions on Russia.

GM on Monday formally launched production of its Cadillac Lyriq electric utility vehicle at its complex in Spring Hill, Tennessee. The Lyriq, a compact utility vehicle, will compete with the Tesla Model Y, the best-selling vehicle in Tesla Inc’s EV market leading lineup.

Reuss and other GM officials said consumer interest in the Lyriq is stronger than expected, with more than 240,000 people expressing interest.

Cadillac will allow customers to place firm orders for the 2023 Lyriq starting May 19.

“We are looking to accelerate production,” GM Vice President for Cadillac Rory Harvey said on Monday’s call.

Reuss said the Spring Hill plant will have the parts and materials needed to ramp up Lyriq output, and could build as many as 200,000 Lyriqs a year. But he said the plant also needs to keep making combustion engine SUVs and save room for additional EV models.

Over the past year, consumer demand for EVs and aggressive moves by rival Ford Motor Co have pushed GM to accelerate its plans to build electric vehicles in high volume.

GM said earlier this year it now plans to build 400,000 electric vehicles this year and next.

(Reporting By Joe White)

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