Saturday, Feb 25, 2017
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Automotive

General Motors to invest $668 million at Toledo Transmission

No new jobs expected

General Motors plans to invest $668 million in its Toledo Transmission plant to prepare the factory for an unspecified new product line, though no jobs are expected to be added.

The automaker’s announcement about Toledo, made this morning, is part of a larger initiative from the company that also includes investments at a casting plant in Indiana and an assembly plant in Lansing, Mich.

But GM is also cutting more than 800 jobs in Lansing and more than 1,200 jobs at an assembly plant in Lordstown, Ohio, near Youngstown as the company struggles with slow sales of small and mid-size cars.

“As the customer shift from cars to crossovers and trucks is projected to continue, GM will suspend the third shift of production at both facilities in the first quarter of 2017,” the company said in a statement. 

The Lordstown plant, which builds the Chevrolet Cruze, currently has about 4,500 employees. With the elimination of the plant’s third shift, which GM said will occur in January, employment there will drop to about 3,300.

The Lansing plant builds the Cadillac ATS, Cadillac CTS, and Chevrolet Camaro. The facility has 2,700 employees.

GM did say it will invest $211 million in Lansing for an unspecified new product program. Lordstown does appear to be getting any additional investment at this time. 

The Toledo Transmission plant, which builds six- and eight-speed transmissions, has about 2,000 employees. GM said the investment would retain 739 of those jobs with the investment.

Toledo Transmission is GM’s largest transmission manufacturing facility in North America, both in terms of output and employment. The 2.2-million-square-foot facility makes about 5,000 transmissions every day.

In a filing last month with the Toledo-Lucas County Plan Commission, the automaker detailed plans for a 551,000-square-foot addition to the west of the existing facility as well as a 100,000-square-foot addition to the south of the existing facility.

GM initial statement on today’s announcements don’t make it clear if this investment is related to that expansion, though sources had previously told The Blade they didn’t expect the expansion to come with new jobs. 

Contact Tyrel Linkhorn at tlinkhorn@theblade.com or 419-724-6134.

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