General Motors (GM) is investing $2 billion to upgrade six of its U.S.-based plants.
Much of that funding will go towards modifying its Spring Hill, Tennessee assembly plant, which will become the company’s third vehicle manufacturing site to produce electric vehicles (EV). The all-new Cadillac LYRIQ will be the first EV produced at GM’s Spring Hill factory, and the plant renovation is scheduled to begin immediately.
GM’s investment is its latest move toward electric vehicles and part of the company’s new “triple zero” mantra: zero crashes, zero emissions, and zero congestion.
Is electric the future?
Over the past two years, GM, Volkwagen, BMW, and Fiat-Chrysler have all put a great number of eggs in the EV basket. While those manufacturers may not want to admit that Tesla has proven there’s a market for EVs, the Elon Musk-led carmaker has certainly challenged the automotive world’s good ‘ol boys. The fact remains that it’s consumers who will determine if a widespread EV marketplace is sustainable. Subaru, for one, is betting that consumers won’t give an electric car or truck the time of day.
All told, GM has committed to invest more than $4.5 billion in U.S. electric vehicle production since March 2019. Earlier, the company said its plans included releasing at least 20 new electric vehicles around the world by 2023.
“We are committed to investing in the U.S., our employees and our communities,” said GM Chairman and CEO Mary Barra in a news release. “These investments underscore the success of our vehicles today, and our vision of an all-electric future.”
GM plants reaping benefits
Pumping $2 billion into six of GM’s U.S. plants will bring the total amount that the company has invested or committed to invest in its U.S. manufacturing sites to more than $29 billion since 2009.
The company plans to move production of the next-generation GMC Acadia to the Lansing Delta Township Assembly -- an investment of more than $100 million. A total of $32 million will also be invested at Flint Assembly for future production of heavy-duty Chevrolet Silverado and GMC Sierra pickups. Both models have been a headache for GM over the last few years, issuing recall after recall.
Another $17 million has been set aside for GM’s Romulus, Michigan propulsion plant to enhance automation and increase capacity of GM’s 10-speed truck transmission found in full-size pickups like the Chevrolet Tahoe and Suburban, GMC Yukon and Yukon XL, and the Cadillac Escalade.
Another $3.5 million will be invested at Orion Assembly, and $750,000 will be invested at GM’s site in Brownstown Charter Township, Michigan. Both investments are related to additional production of the Cruise AV -- GM’s autonomous test vehicle -- at Orion Assembly.