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Manufacturing Dive

Dive Brief:

  • General Motors will invest $918 million in four manufacturing sites to prepare them to produce the next generation of a gas-powered engine, as well as to support EV production, the automaker announced on Friday. 
  • The bulk of the money, $854 million, will be used to prepare machinery and operations to produce the sixth generation of the Small Block V-8 gas engine. An additional $64 million will be put towards castings and components to support EV production in Rochester, New York and Defiance, Ohio. 
  • Investments are meant to provide protection for the plants’ roughly 2,400 employees. “These investments. . . enable us to build world-class products for our customers and provide job security at these plants for years to come,” GM EVP of Global Manufacturing and Sustainability Gerald Johnson said in a statement.

Dive Insight:

GM’s investment in its gas-powered engine comes as the company pours money into the expansion of its EV production and component sourcing. 

The company seeks to produce only zero-emission light-duty vehicles by 2035, and as of November, said it expects its EV portfolio to be “solidly profitable” by 2025. 

Yet GM’s Small Block V-8 continues to be a bestseller, pushing the automaker to release the next iteration of the gas-powered engine. 

The companies will invest $579 million in its Flint, Michigan site to prepare it to produce the Small Block V-8 engine, as well as related block, crank and head machining. Similarly, it will spend $216 million at its Bay City, Michigan plant to prepare the facility to build camshafts, connecting rods and block/head machining to support the Flint V-8 production. 

At its Defiance, Ohio site, GM will invest $47 million to prepare the site to build block castings for the new engines. It will also spend $8 million to build a casting development cell for castings to support future EV development. 

Finally, the Rochester, New York plant will receive $12 million to prepare for building intake manifolds and fuel rails for engine production in Flint. And for EV production, it will receive $56 million for the production of battery cooling lines. 

Union leaders for the plant hailed the announcement and the job security they hope it brings. 

“Our union celebrates the announcement of these new investments into our GM facilities which will benefit our members at Locals 659 (Flint, Michigan), 362 (Bay City, MI), 211 (Defiance, OH) and 1097 (Rochester, NY),” UAW President Ray Curry said in a statement. “The skill and dedication of UAW members are a key part of GM’s success, and this investment recognizes that our members will remain a vital part of GM’s future.

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