GM Commits Large Mfg. Plant To All-EV Production - Here Are the EVs It Will Build And When
General Motors will commit its 4.1-million square foot Detroit-Hamtramck manufacturing plant to building nothing but EVs starting this year. The plant had been building Cadillac CT6 and Chevy Impala sedans powered by conventional engines.
This is the second of GM's large-scale manufacturing plants inside of the United States that have switched from making gas-powered cars to EVs. The first was the GM Plant in Freemont California that Tesla now operates. That plant had been transferred to Toyota before becoming an EV factory. Toyota traded the plant to Tesla for stock, from which Toyota profited handsomely.
GM says the new plant will initially build two very different types of EVs. The first is the Cruise Origin, a shared, electric, self-driving vehicle unveiled by Cruise in San Francisco last week. This is a vehicle that GM envisions competing with companies like Uber and Lyft. We would not be surprised if Lyft was in fact the company that operates the vehicles.
The second will be a consumer-focused all-electric pickup truck. “Through this investment, GM is taking a big step forward in making our vision of an all-electric future a reality,” said Mark Reuss, GM president, during a press event at the plant with Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer and other local and state officials. “Our electric pickup will be the first of multiple electric truck variants we will build at Detroit-Hamtramck over the next few years.”
Detroit-Hamtramck, or D-Ham as GM insiders refer to it, is a large plant, but not one of the largest in the world. It presently employs about 900 people. However, GM says that it will scale up staffing to around 2,200 people. While it is hard sometimes to get a feel for just how important a plant like that can be, consider this; In 2018 while operating at half the staffing level GM plans for the coming years, D-HAM contributed $132,006,736.77 in wages to area families. The state taxes alone on those wages brought in $22 million to the Michigan budget. These numbers will more than double very soon.
“The support from the state of Michigan was a key element in making this investment possible,” added Reuss. “This investment helps ensure that Michigan will remain at the epicenter of the global automotive industry as we continue our journey to an electrified future.”
In its announcement today, GM said that it plans to be shipping EV trucks to dealers at the end of 2021.
John Goreham is a life-long car nut and recovering engineer. John's focus areas are technology, safety, and green vehicles. In the 1990s, he was part of a team that built a solar-electric vehicle from scratch. His was the role of battery thermal control designer. For 20 years he applied his engineering and sales talents in the high tech world and published numerous articles in technical journals such as Chemical Processing Magazine. In 2008 he retired from that career and dedicated himself to chasing his dream of being an auto writer. In addition to Torque News, John's work has appeared in print in dozens of American newspapers and he provides reviews to many vehicle shopping sites. You can follow John on Twitter, and connect with him at Linkedin.