"We know the customers would like to drive electric but are unwilling to pay, and that's why we're going to be the first company to (produce) electric vehicles that people can afford at a profit," Reuss said.
GM will soon introduce a plug-in, all-electric vehicle based on the Cadillac CT6 luxury sedan, and a Buick extended range electric vehicle similar to the Chevrolet Volt.
Other carmakers such as BMW, Mercedes-Benz, PSA, Volkswagen, Ford and Tesla are promising to bring out additional electric vehicles, including Tesla's Model 3 due out in July aimed at the middle market.
GM's electric vehicles also will serve as a platform for the company's efforts to launch autonomous vehicles, Reuss said. GM has already begun testing self-driving tests in Detroit, Phoenix and San Francisco.