General Motors Turns To 3D Printing

General Motors is not the only carmaker suffering from manufacturing inefficiency and significant contributions to runaway pollution.

But it is reported to have a plan that tackles both.

GM (as you might have guessed from the headline) is specifically looking into 3D printing lightweight parts for its EVs. Of course, EVs need to be as light as possible for the best energy efficiency.

GM in partnership with Autodesk is working on 3D-printed components, such as a stainless steel seat bracket. By reducing the original 8 parts down to one, it can also easily solidify it. The new 3D-printed products is 40% lighter and 20% stronger.

Yes, 3D printing has been used for decades to create prototypes. But the technology is now mature enough to be used commercially.

Overall, GM has made great changes within its operations and in its culture in recent years. 3D printing is a necessary evolution, but hardly one that deserves much mention in 2018, when most carmakers are expected to have already tested assembly line speed and quality throughput with commercial 3D printers.

Is GM really serious — beyond exaggerated PR— about mass-scale 3D printing? And if it is, what electric vehicle models will benefit?

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