70+% of phones purchased in China in 2021 will be 5G, so it's no surprise GM will start upgrading telematics to 5G. By 2022, about 80% of China will have 5G coverage. Parts for 5G have been coming down rapidly in price. The 5G upgrade will probably add about five dollars to the cost.

GM will also start incorporating V2X & V2V intelligent technologies. Those will probably work fine in 4G, although 5G has the theoretical ability to handle a million connections per square mile. So far, I've never found a system that requires more connections than 4G can handle.

The U.S. blockade on advanced chipmaking gear to China may cause a problem for GM. GM is strongly committed to "almost all parts coming from local suppliers." UNICOM, a Chinese company, is now making a 5G chip that could be manufactured at 12 nm in China. But the most advanced 5G chips require EUV lithography, only available from ASML in the Netherlands. The U.S. is currently blocking ASML from shipping the machines to China.

China is working hard on a Chinese EUV tool, but until that becomes available, GM will have to choose between sacrificing 5G performance or importing 5G chips.


GM Outlines China Advanced Technology Roadmap for Accelerating “Drive to 2030”


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SHANGHAI and DETROIT – General Motors today announced its technology rollout plan for electrification, intelligent driving and connectivity in China, with an immersive display at the PATAC Design Dome in Shanghai and virtual presentations from the Warren Design Dome in Michigan.

At Tech Day, China’s version of GM’s EV Day held in March in Warren, the company provided a fast-forward look at its technologies developed globally that combine a local perspective. They included GM’s new global EV platform, the Ultium battery system and next-generation EVs to be launched in China.

“As GM’s largest market and a global center of innovation, China will play a crucial role in making our vision a reality,” said Mary Barra, chairman and CEO of GM. “With our joint venture partner SAIC, we are blending global insights and scale with local market expertise to redefine what is possible for our customers and for society.”

GM has been relentlessly pursuing a future of zero crashes, zero emissions and zero congestion, vowing to invest more than $20 billion in electric and automated vehicles by 2025. In China, since the introduction of its “Drive to 2030” vision at World Expo 2010 Shanghai, the company has built the largest connected customer base and enhanced its highly localized technical capability and supply chain to support its long-term development.

China Advanced Technology Roadmap Highlights

In electrification, more than 40% of GM’s new launches in China in the next five years will be electrified models. They will all be manufactured in China, with almost all parts coming from local suppliers. The state-of-the-art Ultium battery system and third-generation global electric platform will integrate GM’s engineering flexibility, technology advances with highly localized manufacturing, and supply chain in China to enhance quality and cost competitiveness.

In intelligent driving, GM will help strengthen consumer trust in China through the continued rollout and upgrade of the Super Cruise driver assistance system, which will be featured on Cadillac’s entire lineup by mid-decade and expanded to Buick and Chevrolet models. The company will also accelerate the development of China-specific solutions for intelligent connected vehicles, with its first global vehicle-to-everything (V2X) program set for launch this year on a Buick GL8 MPV for China.

In connectivity, nearly all GM vehicles in China from its global brands will be connected via flexible platforms and industry-leading scale. GM will capitalize on mega-trends like 5G, artificial intelligence, smart cities and big data. In 2022, 5G will be available on all new Cadillac models and most Chevrolet and Buick vehicles going forward. The most up-to-date connected services will be provided through over-the-air updates.

“We will enhance local integration and global collaboration by capitalizing on China-leading market trends and playing to the local industry’s strengths,” said Julian Blissett, GM executive vice president and president of GM China. “We are ready to activate a new era.”