GM Owners Slam Ultium EVs: Not Just the Blazer.

Common Complaints of Cadillac Lyriq, GMC Hummer, and Chevrolet Blazer EV

It appears that the 2024 Chevrolet Blazer EV’s events in Virginia were not just a single, unfortunate occurrence with an unlucky vehicle. Unfortunately, it appears to signify a propensity for catastrophic breakdowns among this model of automobile.

The subsequent day from when our narrative was posted, Edmunds unveiled a piece describing their difficulties with the Blazer EV. For two months they’ve had the car, but more than a fortnight has been passed in the dealership’s repair center dealing with a host of employments. Similarly, after reporting on our Blazer EV adventure, owners of GMC Hummer, Cadillac Lyriq and Chevy Blazer EVs have soundly voiced their concerns with regards to their motors’ tribulations.

It is as if the flood barriers have disintegrated. Herein lies an assemblage of messages delivered to me from owners of the Cadillac Lyriq, GMC Hummer EV, and Chevrolet Blazer EV; all of which feature their troubles – some near-identical to mine – detailed in their own voices.

Recollect, all of these cars are constructed atop GM’s just-revealed Ultium platform, a commonplace EV architecture which in the coming years will serve as the foundation for every single recent model from GM as they plan to become completely electrified by 2035.

Despite being somewhat scarce on the streets, data from GM indicates that in the first three quarters of this year, roughly 6,900 vehicles operated on Ultium-based technology were sold. Moreover, a plethora of new cars powered by this model are due to hit the market soon, and each of the involved automakers has designated particular models for it. Have contacted GM to obtain comments on the matter but haven’t gotten any response yet; we will update our report when we do.

The Edmunds staff and I experienced the same troubles; Our infotainment systems were prone to randomly crashing, flickering for ages until eventually, shutting down fully. This appears to be a widespread problem with all three versions of the car, specifically the Blazer EV and Cadillac Lyriq.

Andrew Kozar shot me off two messages shortly after each other; he’s only had his Blazer EV since the 27th of November. After a mere 5 days of having it, the automobile’s infotainment display broke down and became caught in an identical cycle that we have previously outlined.

“Three days after the issue initially occurred, we brought the car to the dealer. However, no one there seemed to know how to address the problem,” Kozar recounted. “After two weeks, a technician was finally able to replicate the issue after I provided picture proof that I was not making it up. The solution was to do a software update, yet this ended up bricking both the infotainment system and the gauge cluster, making them completely unusable since you can’t drive without a speedometer. We are now waiting for a replacement module and it has been three weeks since the dealer has had my car. Fortunately, I was able to drive it for five days before the issue happened.”

Approximately sixty minutes after his initial correspondence, Kozar answered and revealed that the garage had changed the full radio system. It was set up, however, Kozar claimed the mechanics at the store were not able to link the fresh module to the automobile, resulting in it still not functioning correctly. Kozar is uncertain when he will get his Blazer back.

On Nov. 12, Jeffrey Wiens made the same pick-up as Kozar, a Blazer EV. He recounts three days of having it before the in-car displays started giving out, of which he has had to go through three and a half weeks of bearing an infotainment unit that continuously collapses and reboots without much recompense from his local GM vendor.

Sammy Kumar, the proud owner of a 2023 Cadillac Lyriq, ultimately chose to trade his vehicle in due to issues with the infotainment screen and Super Cruise. His replacement? A brand-new Escalade-V.

“I had the infotainment issue where the screen would just cut out while driving,” Sammy recounted, “but the thing that made me sell the car was Super Cruise. I had it on my previous Escalade and it worked perfectly. Unfortunately, the Lyriq had a tendency to disengage from SC without any real explanation. I remember one particular stretch of highway that was completely straight, and SC disconnected four or five times with no obvious cause. It was a sunny day with light traffic, so there was no reason why it should have happened. Another time, the car started merging into another lane without any warning. I had Super Cruise’s automatic lane switch feature which is supposed to display on the screen before it switches lanes. I think there must have been a lag with the display/infotainment system because there were other times when I used the turn signal to invoke the on-demand lane departure and the alert didn’t show up until after the car had already switched lanes.”

In spite of the similarity concerning the user experiences in the Escalade and Lyriq that are powered by Google-based framework, according to Kumar, the former has proven to be much more steadfast.

Infotainment issues are a different story. Although they can possibly be serious enough to impair the operating of the vehicle, notably the part responsible for reporting the speed, they usually just turn out to be irksome, not stopping customers from buying it.

Many owners have reported experiencing charging problems, which can significantly affect the performance of their automobile. Complaints concerning these events have resulted in a considerable amount of vehicles being sent for servicing.

One of our long-time commentators, referred to as Carac, and his GMC Hummer EV has potentially been one of the most impressive stories featured here so far. This Hummer had two disparate challenges while attempting to quickly charge at an Electrify America charging station, and unfortunately this occurred at the exact same DC Fast Charge location in which I encountered an issue in Wytheville, VA.

On Oct. 4th, Carac reported stopping in Columbia, South Carolina at 11:35 p.m. with his Hummer at around 30%. “I was the only one there, plugged into a 350 [kilowatt-hour DC fast charger], it charged for a minute and 55 seconds, max 300 kW then I noticed the charge rate jumped suddenly and it stopped charging, then the ‘Charge Port Error’ came up on the screen,” he said via e-mail. This experience likely resonates with many EV owners. Unfortunately, after that incident, his Hummer wouldn’t charge at all.

The local GM dealer removed the codes, and everything seemed to be alright. That was until the date of Nov. 21, when the same issue arose in Wytheville with the Hummer. There was an abnormality though – the car could still charge, yet it was at a very low rate of 9 kW. Following this, the GM craftsman deleted the codes again and the vehicle carried on. To remain prudent, Carac has been opting out from visiting Electrify America stations altogether.

The Cadillac Lyriq and the Chevrolet Blazer EV are unsurprisingly not unscathed from charging issues. For instance, Bill Boyance experienced difficulties with his charging and infotainment apparatuses. Reportedly, despite initially being unable to charge up, his Blazer’s infotainment system started to operate erratically followed by a red alert indication. As a result of this, Boyance had to have the car replaced with a gas-powered ICE Blazer RS. Other reports on Reddit disclose instances where the Lyriq was only capable of 7 kW at a DC fast charger.

Obviously, I have received some feedback from Lyriq, Hummer, and Blazer owners who were satisfied with their acquisition, even if they experienced a few troubles with their car. Still, it has been worrying to see so many issues arise even though merely a limited number are out driving around in Ultium-based models.

The emails demonstrate a definite sentiment of dissatisfaction since some owners claimed that the service departments are unable to identify the issues with their automobiles, let alone figure out how to address them properly.

GM and Electrify America are still endeavoring to ascertain precisely what transpired during our trek to North Carolina. We will deliver you the official clarification from both entities when it is available.

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