Published: Fri, March 22, 2019
Markets | By Otis Pena

GM to invest $300 million into Orion Plant

GM to invest $300 million into Orion Plant

The carmaker will spend US$300 million and add 400 workers at the plant in Orion Township, north of Detroit, where the Chevrolet EV will be built alongside the Bolt model.

General Motors CEO Mary Barra on the automaker's plans to build an electric vehicle plant at a plant in Orion, Michigan, President Trump's criticisms of the company's decision to close a plant in Lordstown, Ohio and the company's commitment to jobs in America.

The Orion plant builds the Chevrolet Bolt EV and Chevrolet Sonic subcompact.

The production of GM's new electric vehicle had been scheduled to be outsourced outside of the United States. The new Chevrolet EV is in addition to the company's earlier announcement that Cadillac will be the first brand to get vehicles off a future EV platform.

"And that's what allows us to make the announcement today, investing in the future with an all-new electric vehicle".

Barra, speaking to reporters after an event at the plant in Orion Township, outside Detroit, with Michigan Governor Gretchen Whitmer announcing the investment, said GM is focused on ensuring that all of the hourly workers at Lordstown find new jobs at other plants.

Responding to a request for comment, GM spokesman Dan Flores issued a statement to 21 News on Thursday regarding the plant which he characterized as "unallocated" instead of "closed".

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The announcement did not address specifics on the new electric auto, but GM shared it will be based on an "advanced version" of the current Chevrolet Bolt EV platform.

The $300 million is part of a wider investment plan for GM. More than 1,100 have already transferred, and others are retiring.

The news comes at the end of a week that saw President Trump continually criticizing GM for closing a factory in OH while Ford revealed a $900 million plan that includes the manufacture of electric cars at its Flat Rock, Mich., plant.

The automaker said in total it is investing $1.8 billion in its USA manufacturing operations this year, creating 700 new jobs and supporting 28,000 jobs across six states. About 3,300 workers in the USA would lose their jobs, as well as 2,600 in Canada.

General Motors has responded to a call from President Donald Trump to sell or "open" the Assembly Plant in Lordstown. GM Chief Executive Mary Barra is expected to make the formal announcement, which could add hundreds of jobs.

Barra has said that she sees no further layoffs or plant closures through the end of 2020.

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