GM invests $336 million in Detroit-Hamtramck plant
General Motors will invest $336 million in the Detroit-Hamtramck
assembly plant to begin production of the Chevrolet Volt
electric car, with extended-range capabilities, in 2010.
This brings GM’s combined Volt-related investments in
Michigan to $700 million, covering eight facilities.
Detroit-Hamtramck will be the final assembly location
for the Volt, using tooling from Grand Blanc, lithium-ion
batteries from GM’s Brownstown Township battery pack
manufacturing facility, camshafts and connecting rods
from Bay City, and stampings and the Volt’s 1.4L engine-generator
“We expect the Detroit-Hamtramck plant will be the first
facility in the United States owned by a major automaker
to produce an electric car. It is the hub for the wheel
that we began rolling in 2007 when the Volt debuted at
the North American International Auto Show in Detroit,”
said Jon Lauckner, GM vice president of global product
planning. “Since then, the field of challengers and partners
has grown significantly. This competition will expedite
the development of electric vehicle technology and infrastructure.”
After the Volt’s debut in January 2007, other automakers
announced 6 plug-in hybrid or electric vehicles later
that year, followed by 19 introductions in 2008 and 5
more this year.
In addition to GM’s $700 million in Volt-related facility
investments, there are the many suppliers, utility companies
and organizations investing in Michigan and the United
States to support Volt production and electric vehicle
development. In August, the United States Department
of Energy selected 45 companies, universities and organizations
in 28 states for more than $2 billion in awards for electric
drive and battery manufacturing, and transportation electrification.
“Electric vehicle development is creating entirely new
industries. These include battery developers, builders
of home and commercial charging stations, and power control
and electric motor suppliers,” Lauckner said. “These
investments in the electric vehicle ecosystem are creating
new jobs and strengthening Michigan’s and America’s long-term
To reduce cost and maximize flexible manufacturing techniques,
some equipment for Volt production is being reused from
other GM facilities and installed in the Detroit-Hamtramck
plant’s body shop. The Volt will be built on the existing
assembly line at Detroit-Hamtramck. Assembly of Volt
prototype vehicles will begin in the spring, with the
start of regular production scheduled for late 2010.
Detroit-Hamtramck opened in 1985, and currently employs
about 1,200 workers, including 1,100 hourly workers represented
by UAW Local 22.
“This investment is great news for the workforce as it
helps pave the way for the future and the electrification
of the automobile,” said Cal Rapson, vice president and
director, UAW International Union.