Green Technology

Chevy Blazer EV Base Price Increased By $12,000


When Chevy announced the Blazer EV, it suggested its new battery-electric SUV in 1LT trim would start at around $45,000 — $15,000 more than the “around $30,000” figure for its slightly smaller sibling, the Chevy Equinox EV. But production has begun at the Ramos Arizpe factory in Mexico and the 1LT entry level trim is nowhere in sight.

That doesn’t mean it won’t appear sometime in the future, but if you want to be the first on your street to park a Chevy Blazer EV in your driveway, it’s gonna cost you. The new base model is the 2LT, and although it comes with a lot of equipment not included in the 1LT trim, it also carries a hefty price tag of $56,715, including a destination fee of $1,396. Yes, that includes all-wheel drive — the 1LT was supposed to be front-wheel drive only — but it is also around $12,000 more than the much anticipated 1LT trim level.

Inside EVs contacted Chevrolet to find out what happened to the 1LT entry level model and was told, “The 2LT is now our entry level trim. We do have more affordable variants coming in 2024, including 2LT with FWD. Customers could qualify for the full $7,500 IRA tax credit with the Blazer EV.” For comparison purposes, the least expensive Tesla Model Y costs $49,130 and the Ford Mustang Mach-E starts at $44,795.

Standard equipment for the Chevy Blazer 2LT includes a 17.7-inch touchscreen and an 11-inch digital cluster, a heated steering wheel, heated front seats and side mirrors, wireless device charging, a power liftgate, adaptive cruise control, and a 360-degree camera system.

The next step up is the RS trim level that adds some cool RS badges on the outside, 21″ wheels, a steering wheel with a flat bottom, ventilated front seats, rain-sensing wipers, heated rear seats and windshield wipers, animated exterior lighting, a HUD and camera-equipped rearview mirror. It lists for $60,215. Both the 2LT and RS versions of the Blazer EV are rated at 279 miles of range by the EPA.

BlazerEV

Blazer EV SS. Image courtesy of Chevrolet.

A rear-wheel drive version of the RS is rated 320 miles by the EPA and comes with a Bose sound system. It starts at $61,790. And sometime next year, the Chevy Blazer SS EV will arrive. It will feature all-wheel drive with more powerful motors and just about every option available in Chevrolet’s parts bin. Chevy has not released range estimates yet, but if you want the biggest, baddest electric Blazer on the block, range is probably not your most important consideration.

Following sometime next year will be a front-wheel drive 2LT version of the Blazer EV. Chevrolet has not announced pricing or range details for that car as of yet.

What’s Going On?

Our readers may have legitimate questions about Chevrolet’s Blazer EV strategy. A $12,000 price hike doesn’t seem like the kind of thing that will get customers rushing down to their local Chevy dealer to check out this next EV from the Bow Tie brand. We have been told there is a Chevy Equinox EV coming next year that is supposed to start at “around $30,000.” That has gotten a lot of interest from people interested in buying a midsize electric SUV.

Bear in mind that Volvo is bringing its latest offering, the EX30, to America soon with a starting price around $35,000. If Chevrolet pulls the same disappearing 1LT trim trick with the Equinox EV it is doing with the Blazer EV, it could find itself with a lot of unsold cars on its hands. The price increase for the Blazer EV is surprising at a time when many other manufacturers are cutting the price of their electric cars. Does Chevrolet know something the others do not?

There is one possible scenario. Maybe GM is hoping to divert some (or all) of the federal EV tax credit to its corporate coffers. As a hypothetical, if business as usual takes place at the dealer level and buyers are able to negotiate a lower the MSRP price (after the initial wave of new model excitement settles down), customers will still be getting a better equipped car for just a little more money than the FWD-only 1LT, after deducting the federal tax credit, and Chevrolet gets to add a little extra ka-ching to its bottom line. Presto! Everybody’s happy.

We don’t know if that is the strategy going through the minds of the bean counters at Chevrolet, but there is the faint aroma of bait and switch here. How Chevrolet decides to proceed with the rollout of its lineup of electric cars is unknown, but if it can nudge the price of the Blazer EV and Equinox EV upward, that gives it room to bump the price (and profitability) of the second generation Chevy Bolt as well.

This is all idle speculation around the breakfast buffet here at CleanTechnica headquarters. Check back with us in about 9 months to see if any of our prognostications turn out to be valid.


 


I don’t like paywalls. You don’t like paywalls. Who likes paywalls? Here at CleanTechnica, we implemented a limited paywall for a while, but it always felt wrong — and it was always tough to decide what we should put behind there. In theory, your most exclusive and best content goes behind a paywall. But then fewer people read it! We just don’t like paywalls, and so we’ve decided to ditch ours.

Unfortunately, the media business is still a tough, cut-throat business with tiny margins. It’s a never-ending Olympic challenge to stay above water or even perhaps — gasp — grow. So …