GM’s $450M investment in next-generation Volt hints at grand plans
Initially reported by The Detroit News on Sunday, this afternoon GM formally announced the infusion of $449 million for the Detroit-Hamtramck Assembly Plant and Brownstown Township battery assembly facility. Said Gerald Johnson, GM’s vice president of North American Manufacturing:
“These investments will help the next-generation Chevrolet Volt build on its position as the leader in electrified propulsion.”
Detroit-Hamtramck and Brownstown are best known as the facilities responsible for producing the Chevrolet Volt and its foreign cousins as well as its luxury sibling, the Cadillac ELR. Detroit-Hamtramck also produces the Chevrolet Malibu and Impala.
Information from various sources on Sunday had indicated that GM would also add 1,400 jobs at the two facilities. The Detroit-Hamtramck plant currently employs 1,600 people on a single shift while Brownstown employs only 100 workers. The obvious conclusion from Sunday’s report is that GM will add a second shift, effectively doubling the production capacity of the facility. However, today the company said only that they hope to add a second shift if demand for the vehicles is strong.
While $384 million of the $449 million investment will be dedicated to tooling, equipment, and plant upgrades for the Hamtramck facility, the remaining $65 million is going toward “the next generation of lithium-ion battery production and future battery systems” that will power future Volts and most likely other electric models.