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General Motors announces another $7 billion investment for electrification

General Motors has doubled down once again on electrification with the announcement that it will invest another $7 billion on the technology and expand its manufacturing activities in Michigan. This will see the creation of 4,000 new jobs and the retention of an existing 1,000. A new battery cell plant will be built in Lansing Michigan while the Orion Township facility will be retooled for battery-electric vehicle production.

“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,” said Mary Barra, Chair and CEO of General Motors. “We are building on the positive consumer response and reservations for our recent EV launches and debuts, including GMC HUMMER EV, Cadillac LYRIQ, Chevrolet Equinox EV, and Chevrolet Silverado EV. Our plan creates the broadest EV portfolio of any automaker and further solidifies our path toward U.S. EV leadership by mid-decade.”

This latest investment, the largest ever announced in GM’s history will bolster the company’s goal to become an EV leader in the North American market by 2025. The facilities in Lansing and Orion Township will support an increase in production capacity for the company’s electric full-size truck offerings, which will grow to 600,000 units when combined with GM’s Factory Zero.

Orion Township will be the second production site for the Chevrolet Silverado EV and the GMC Sierra EV, making up $4 billion of the $7 billion investment. The facility will produce electric trucks on the Ultium platform and is expected to retain 1,000 jobs while making 2,350 new ones. It will include significant facility and capacity increases plus new body and paint shops, and new general assembly and battery pack assembly areas. Production of the Silverado EV and Sierra EV begins there in 2024. GM says that the Bolt EV and EUV will continue to be built at Orion Township during its conversion, which begins immediately.

Lansing, Michigan will be the site for a new battery cell plant co-owned by GM and LG Energy Solution. It will be operated as part of their Ultium Cells joint venture, making it the third U.S. battery cell manufacturing plant. This facility will get an investment of $2.6 billion, creating 1,700 new jobs when it becomes fully operational. Site construction preparations start this summer with production scheduled to start in 2024. It will supply battery cells to the Orion Township facility plus other nearby GM assembly plants.

In total, there will be three GM plants making battery-electric vehicles in the U.S. That includes Factory Zero in Detroit-Hamtramck and Orion Assembly in Orion Township, both of which are in Michigan, and Spring Hill Assembly in Spring Hill, Tennessee. Outside of the U.S., the CAMI facility in Ingersoll, Ontario, Canada, and the Ramos Arizpe Assembly in Mexico will also be building EVs. By the end of 2025, GM will have a total EV production capacity of over 1 million units in North America. Two more Ultium battery cell plants are being built in Ohio and Tennessee respectively to support EV production.

In addition to its EV investments, GM also announced that it will invest $510 million for two more facilities in the Lansing area. Lansing Delta Township Assembly will get part of that to prepare it for the production of the next-generation Chevrolet Traverse and Buick Enclave, both of which are likely going to be EVs. The Lansing Grand River Assembly will also get an infusion of cash for plant upgrades.

General Motors aims to dedicate 50 percent of its North American capacity to EV production by 2030. It’s also working with partners to create a new supply chain for batteries and EV components with a focus on scalability, resilience, sustainability, and domestic production. These include strategic supplier agreements with companies like MP Materials to scale rare earth magnet sourcing and production in the U.S., VAC to build the new U.S., magnet factory, and POSCO to build a North American plant that processes Cathode Active Material. Other partners include GE Renewable Energy, which will supply rare earth and other materials, and Wolfspeed for developing and providing silicon carbide power device solutions. Controlled Therman Resources will work with GM to develop a local source for lithium via a closed-loop process to lower carbon emissions.

Written by Stefan Ogbac
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