General Motors has announced it will stop production of all petrol and diesel passenger cars by 2035 – but excluded some of its most popular models from the plan.
The move means all 'light-duty' models from General Motors, which includes full-size SUVs, will be fully-electric by the middle of the next decade.
"For General Motors, our most significant carbon impact comes from tailpipe emissions of the vehicles that we sell – in our case, it’s 75 per cent," GM CEO Mary Barra said in a statement.
"That is why it is so important that we accelerate toward a future in which every vehicle we sell is a zero-emissions vehicle."
Above: GM CEO Mary Barra.
While the plan does include the most popular variants of the Chevrolet Silverado and its non-identical twin, the GMC Sierra, it appears petrol and diesel will continue to play a part in GM's medium- and heavy-duty utes, which made up 9.1 per cent of the company's 2020 sales.
The American car giant also announced it intends to be carbon-neutral by the year 2040.
Barra said the company will spend US$27 billion (AU$35 billion) in developing electric vehicles (EVs) by 2025, by which time 40 per cent of the brand's US models will be electrified.
Speaking to CarAdvice earlier this month, former GM executive Bob Lutz said the company had the ability to pursue a future in electric powertrains.
"GM has the deepest well of battery, EV and autonomy talent of any car company on the planet, and will surprise the world. If I were Elon Musk, I'd start taking tranquilisers," Mr Lutz said at the time.
The comments came as rumours of an all-electric Chevrolet Corvette SUV emerged. This latest announcement confirms icons such as the Corvette will be battery-powered by 2035.
Large jurisdictions such as the US state of California have proposed a complete ban on petrol and diesel passenger car sales by 2035, while countries such as the UK and Japan are set to impose new-car sales rules which specify hybrid-electric powertrains by 2030.
Electric Vehicle Council CEO Behyad Jafari says GM's announcement highlight's Australia's emissions policies: "The rational view for GM to form is that Australia is a low priority nation for its all-electric future."
The General Motors announcement comes almost a year after the company announced it was closing the Holden brand in Australia.
"Not only are we one of the only countries not to enforce fuel efficiency standards, we are the only nation proposing brand new punitive taxes on electric vehicles instead of incentives," Mr Jafari said.
"The unimaginative and cynical approach our politicians have taken to electric vehicles in recent years means Australia is being left behind as the rest of the auto industry zooms ahead."