GM CEO Barra pushes for autonomous, electric vehicles

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Two big initiatives in the works at General Motors -- AV and EV.

General Motors CEO Mary Barra highlighted the company's work on both autonomous vehicles and electric vehicles at the shareholder's meeting Tuesday.

"We still plan to do a deployment of autonomous vehicles and a ridesharing program next year. We will be guided by safety and that will be the big factor as we go forward. Because this is brand new technology that we would be offering to the customers it is too soon to tell what will happen in years two, three, four but we intend on moving quickly and seizing those opportunities," she said.

GM has partnered with technology investment firm SoftBank to develop the tech to make this happen. SoftBank is now backing autonomous projects underway at both Uber and GM. The automaker is promising 20 new zero-emissions vehicles by the year 2023.

Not only is GM excited about AV-- but equally as excited about EV, or electric vehicles. Barra announced an increase in production of its Bolt hatchback this year to meet a surge in demand. 

"We are really working with our vision of zero crashes, zero emissions and zero congestion to really address the issues that over 100 years have resulted from the auto industry and giving people freedom and mobility," she said.

The news conference set the tone for the shareholders meeting. GM's net income plummeted in the first quarter. Barra says that was expected and was in part because of a realignment in pickup truck production. She says GM is on steady ground and is projecting a strong 2018. 
As for the tariff talk President Trump has promised against Canada, Mexico and others, Barra says she's watching closely.  

"In the middle of the negotiations. We are obviously watching closely and providing input and I think we need to let the negotiations continue and be completed and then to see the impact but to look right now there are so many moving pieces it's really hard for us to say and I do think were in the middle of that negotiation," she said.