GM's Bolt EV to have longer range than Tesla Model 3

General Motors its new, fully electric car Bolt EV will have 238-mile range, more than Tesla Model 3.

DETROIT, MICHIGAN(Reuters) - General Motors Co said on Tuesday (Sept 13) its electric subcompact Chevrolet Bolt EV will have an average range of 383km on a full charge, farther than rival Tesla Motors Inc expects for its upcoming Model 3.

The Bolt EV will be launched in a few months, nearly a year before the Tesla Model 3, with a starting price for US consumers of US$37,500 (S$51,230). That is similar to the announced starting price for the Model 3, which Tesla has said will have a range of about 350km.

The Bolt is poised to be the first affordable fully electric car with at least 200 miles of driving range per charge, and a cost of less than US$40,000.

Tesla's Model S and Model X offer driving ranges of more than 321.9km, but prices start at about twice the Bolt's.

The average selling price for a new vehicle in the United States is about US$31,000, and GM reported that in August, its vehicles were sold to US consumers at an average of US$36,730. These prices reflect discount incentives to spur sales, which are not normally generous or even available for the newest of models.

GM shares were down 0.7 at US$30.97 in early trading on Tuesday while Tesla's shares were down 1.4 per cent at US$195.43.

GM has said that the Bolt, along with the plug-in hybrid Chevrolet Volt, will be made available to drivers of the ride-hailing service Lyft Inc, in which GM has invested half a billion dollars.

Tesla and its chief executive, Elon Musk, are counting on the Model 3 to put a shine on the future of the company.

Musk hopes the Model 3 will be the company's first truly mass-market vehicle, and said in July it will generate US$5 billion in gross profit on annual revenue of US$20 billion once production ramps up to half a million cars a year.