DETROIT - General Motors will build its future small car at its assembly plant in Orion Township, Mich. and stamping facility in Pontiac, Mich., according to a statement by the automaker. Doing so will restore approximately 1,400 jobs in total - 1,200 at Orion Assembly and 200 at Pontiac Metal Center, said GM.
This decision is dependent on the successful outcome of ongoing economic incentive negotiations between GM and state and local government officials.
"Small cars represent one of the fastest-growing segments in both the U.S. and around the world," said Troy Clarke, president of General Motors North America. "GM will be the only automaker, foreign or domestic, to build small cars in the U.S., and we believe Orion Assembly and Pontiac Stamping are well suited to deliver a high-quality, fuel-efficient car that competes with anything in the marketplace."
A selection team comprised of leaders from several of GM's functional areas, including manufacturing, labor relations and finance, made the final decision based on a specific set of criteria. Orion Assembly will be retooled and is anticipated to be a two-shift operation, building 160,000 cars annually - a combination of both small and compact vehicles.
"This vehicle segment is one of the toughest and most competitive in the world but with our recently modified agreement with the UAW and GM's proven capability in efficient, flexible manufacturing, it is now possible for GM to produce these size vehicles in the U.S. in a cost-competitive and profitable way," said Gary Cowger, group vice president of GM Global Manufacturing & Labor Relations.
With this announcement, GM anticipates that U.S. production levels will increase beyond 70 percent by 2013.
Originally posted on Green Fleet Magazine