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Lackluster Demand for EVs Leads GM to Delay Some EV Pickup Production

GM is pushing back a plant conversion by a year to try and make EV pickups more profitable.


General Motors has confirmed that it is pushing back by one year the mass production of the 2024 Chevrolet Silverado EV and 2024 GMC Sierra EV. The automaker says that the delay has nothing to do with the current UAW strike but is rather a response to lackluster EV truck demand. The automaker is also hoping to make changes to make the EV trucks more profitable.

GM’s New EV Pickup Timeline

GM announced in January of 2022 that it planned to convert its Orion Township plant just north of Detroit over to build the 2024 Chevrolet Silverado EV and the 2024 GMC Sierra EV. Currently, the Orion plant builds Chevrolet Bolt EVs, but that production is scheduled to end at the end of 2023. Now GM plans to idle the plant until late 2025 when the EV truck production will get underway. UAW workers will be offered transfers to other facilities while the plant is idled.

Spokesperson Kevin Kelly said in a statement that the conversion is being delayed "to better manage capital investment while aligning with evolving EV demand.” Kelly added, "In addition, we have identified engineering improvements that we will implement to increase the profitability of our products."

When GM announced the planned $4 billion dollar conversion of Orion Assembly, it said that the facility will get new body and paint shops and new general assembly and battery pack assembly areas.

Current EV Pickup Production

GM is already building the Chevrolet Silverado EV work truck at its Factory Zero plant on the Detroit-Hamtramck border. The plant also builds the GMC HUMMER and an autonomous electric vehicle for Cruise. Obviously, production is limited with three large vehicles being produced at the one plant. According to the original Orion Plant conversion announcement, it was intended to help GM expand EV production and achieve “an increase in total full-size electric truck production capacity to 600,000 trucks when both Factory ZERO and Orion facilities are fully ramped.” Now that won’t happen until late 2025 at the very earliest.  


Chevrolet Photo


Mary Conway is a professional automotive journalist and has decades of experience specializing in automotive news analysis. She covered the Detroit Three for more than twenty years for the ABC affiliate, in Detroit. Her affection for the Motor City comes naturally. Her father ran a gas station while Mary was growing up, in Wisconsin.


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