Holden has taken steps to bring a fully-electric car to the Australian market, but the business case depends on government support.
In August 2017, Holden lodged a trademark application to protect the use of Chevrolet Bolt. The company then transported a vehicle to Australia for local testing – and display at the Holden Dream Cruise in 2017.
The Chevrolet Bolt is an all-electric car capable of travelling 320km between charges, and retails for around US$30,000 in its home market.
While all signs suggest a business case is being built for the Bolt, Holden was burned after poor sales of the Volt forced its axing in 2015. The company is now relying on government support before attempting to build (another) case for our market.
"The business case for electric [cars] is a significant challenge. Whether it's for us as a brand or for the customer as well. You see markets around the world where EV has taken off," said Mark Bernhard, Holden boss.
There is a level of government support and that's around regulations or incentives. We don't have that just yet in Australia. What we do know is that EVs are coming. What we don't know is when the right time is. Part of our job as a business is to work out when the right time is and bring those cars."
If (or when) the Australian Government decides to make electric vehicles a priority, Holden is confident a business case for Bolt will follow.
"You do find when you do have that level of support, you can find a business case. I think whether it's the FCAI or someone working together with government on policies and then giving all of the brands an opportunity to have time to react, whether they're emissions regulations or incentives," Bernhard said.
Would you like to see the Chevrolet Bolt on sale in Australia?