US-based automaker General Motors (GM) has introduced a new battery system called Ultium to power its electric vehicles (EVs).

Ultium features large-format, pouch-style cells that can be stacked vertically or horizontally inside the battery pack, providing engineers with additional flexibility when installing the battery systems in the vehicles.

The new line offers an energy range between 50kWh and 200kWh, powering vehicles for up to 400 miles on full charge.

Most of GM’s EVs will have Ultium 400V battery packs, with a fast-charging capability up to 200kWh. The truck platform will be equipped with 800V battery packs and 350kW fast-charging capability.

With the new battery technology, GM also seeks to reduce battery cell costs below $100 / kWh.

The launch of Ultium batteries is part of the company’s strategy to grow its EV portfolio and support sales.

GM chairman and CEO Mary Barra said: “Our team accepted the challenge to transform product development at GM and position our company for an all-electric future.

“What we have done is build a multi-brand, multi-segment EV strategy with economies of scale that rival our full-size truck business with much less complexity and even more flexibility.”

By 2025, the company plans to invest up to more than $20bn on all-electric and autonomous vehicles, Reuters reported. The investment will be used for engineering and capital spending.

Prominent brands under GM such as Chevrolet, Cadillac, GMC and Buick will roll out new electric vehicles this year.

GM president Mark Reuss said: “Thousands of GM scientists, engineers and designers are working to execute a historic reinvention of the company. They are on the cusp of delivering a profitable EV business that can satisfy millions of customers.”

Last year, GM, Ford and Toyota agreed to establish a consortium called Automated Vehicle Safety Consortium (AVSC) in association with the automotive industry group SAE International.

The group will work to create a set of standards for safe-advance testing, pre-competitive development and the deployment of SAE Level 4 and 5 automated vehicles.