While GM is investing heavily in electrification of its entire fleet, it is also investing over a billion dollars into the vehicles that are keeping the company profitable. Today, GM announced that it is investing in two plants that produce the popular Chevrolet Silverado and GMC Sierra HD internal combustion powered trucks. It also announced that the company will be building ICE trucks “for years to come”. The plants are located in Flint, Michigan.
Chevrolet Silverado and GMC Sierra HD Trucks Growing in Popularity and Market Share
GM says it is spending over $1 billion to upgrade two plants to “prepare those plants for production of the next-generation internal combustion engine (ICE) heavy-duty trucks. This investment will enable the company to strengthen its industry-leading full-size truck business”.
GM is not releasing any details about the future HD trucks or the timing involved. Both the 2024 GMC Sierra and Chevy Silverado HDs were recently freshened. In 2022, GM saw a 38% year-over-year increase in HD pickup sales with nearly 288,000 trucks sold. Additionally, the 2023 Chevrolet Silverado HD was the best-selling retail full-size HD pickup. The growth in HD popularity mirrors a growing trend toward off-roading and towing.
During the pandemic, all automakers saw huge growth in truck owners using their vehicles to go off-roading. Studies show that more than 90 percent of HD truck owners tow or haul something at some point. The towing could be for work or leisure. Many tow campers, trailers, ATVs or boats. Both the Silverado and the Sierra HD models have added new high-end off-roading packages for 2024.
"Today we are announcing significant investments in Flint to strengthen our industry-leading full-size pickup business by preparing two plants to build the next-generation ICE HD trucks,” said Gerald Johnson, executive vice president, Global Manufacturing and Sustainability. “These investments reflect our commitment to our loyal truck customers and the efforts of the dedicated employees of Flint Assembly and Flint Metal Center.”
Details of the Flint Investments:
GM will invest $788 million to upgrade Flint Assembly to build GM’s next-generation ICE HD trucks. Plant updates will include a body shop building expansion, general assembly conveyor expansion, and new tooling and equipment.
GM will also invest $233 million for new stamping equipment at the nearby Flint Metal Center stamping plant.
"When business is booming as it has been for the past decade — due to the hard work of UAW members — the company should continue to invest in its workforce,” said Mike Booth, UAW vice president, GM department. “It is good to see that GM recognizes the hard work you, the UAW membership, contribute to the success of this company. We are proud that UAW-GM members will continue to build quality, union-made products here in the USA."
GM has previously announced more than $1.7 billion in investments for Flint-area operations in 2023, including $579 million in Flint Engine Operations for sixth-generation Small Block V-8 engine production and $103.5 million in Davison Road Processing Center for technology upgrades. These investments come just as the Detroit Three automakers are heading into what are expected to be contentious contract talks with the UAW.
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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