GM targets building 600,000 electric pickups a year


GM targets building 600,000 electric pickups a year with historic Mich. investment
GM is committing nearly $7 billion, the single largest investment in its history, to EVs and other projects in Michigan.

Via Automotive News

January 25, 2022

General Motors is committing nearly $7 billion -- the single largest investment in its history -- toward building more electric trucks and EV batteries in Michigan.

The plans revealed Tuesday include a battery-cell plant and the conversion of GM's Chevrolet Bolt assembly plant to build battery-powered versions of the Chevy Silverado and GMC Sierra full-size pickups. The investment eventually would let GM build up to 600,000 full-size electric pickups in the U.S. annually.

"Today we are taking the next step in our continuous work to establish GM's EV leadership by making investments in our vertically integrated battery production in the U.S., and our North American EV production capacity," GM CEO Mary Barra said in a statement. "Our plan creates the broadest EV portfolio of any automaker and further solidifies our path toward U.S. EV leadership by mid-decade."

The new battery plant in Lansing, Mich., and conversion of the Orion Township assembly plant marks the next step in GM's commitment to electrification as rival Ford Motor Co. begins construction of two EV campuses in Kentucky and Tennessee.

GM has promised to spend $35 billion on electric and autonomous vehicle development, launch 30 EVs globally and have more than 1 million units of EV capacity in North America, all through 2025. By 2030, GM aims to convert half of its North American assembly capacity to EV production.

GM and its battery partner, LG Energy Solution, on Tuesday won tax incentives exceeding $824 million to add production capacity and battery cell manufacturing in Michigan. Other states were in the running, GM President Mark Reuss told reporters, but Michigan, the home of GM's headquarters, global technical center and first electric truck plant, was "highly desirable," he said.

"If you look at where we put other cell plants, like Lordstown, Ohio, and Spring Hill, Tenn., of course we are looking at other states where we have footprints," he said. "Making efficient and agile manufacturing footprint decisions is only good business, but also we have a vested interest in Michigan and Detroit.

"So we're going to look here, and we're going to really invest our time to make sure that that we have those collaborations and partnerships in place."

GM plans to spend $4 billion on Orion Assembly, which today builds the Bolt EV hatchback and larger Bolt EUV crossover powered by GM's previous-generation batteries. It will become GM's third U.S. plant assembling Ultium-powered EVs, joining Factory Zero in Detroit and Spring Hill Assembly in Tennessee. GM also is converting CAMI in Ingersoll, Ontario, and Ramos Arizpe Assembly in Mexico for Ultium-based EV production.

The automaker plans to start making the Silverado EV in 2023 at Factory Zero, then add production of the truck at Orion Assembly the following year. Once both plants are fully ramped up, GM expects to have capacity for 600,000 Silverado EVs and electric Sierras annually.

The Orion investment is expected to create more than 2,350 jobs and retain about 1,000 existing jobs. GM will add new body and paint shops at Orion, along with new general assembly and battery pack assembly areas. Site work is scheduled to begin immediately, and production of the Bolt EV and EUV will continue during the plant's conversion.

GM and LG Energy Solution are investing $2.6 billion to build the 2.8 million-square-foot battery cell manufacturing plant in Lansing, the third U.S. plant for their Ultium Cells joint venture. The 50 gigawatt-hour plant will supply battery cells to Orion and other GM assembly plants. The investment is expected to create more than 1,700 jobs.

Ultium Cells also is building battery-cell manufacturing plants in Ohio and Tennessee.

ICE investment

GM also is investing $510 million in its two existing assembly plants in Lansing to upgrade production capability for internal-combustion vehicles.

The investment at Lansing Delta Township will go toward the next-generation Chevy Traverse and Buick Enclave crossovers. The investment at Lansing Grand River, which builds the Cadillac CT4 and CT5 and the Chevy Camaro, will be used for plant upgrades.
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