By on May 31, 2012

General Motors will announce tomorrow that their consolidated line at Oshawa, currently building both the Chevrolet Equinox and Chevrolet Impala, will close. 2,000 of the 4,000 jobs at the Oshawa plant are located at the consolidated factory, and GM apparently won’t be re-investing in the facility.

Under the new plan, GM would move Chevrolet Impala production to the Detroit-Hamtramck plant, and any overflow production would not return to the Oshawa “flex line” because the 2014 Impala is a “different body style”. The Equinox will likely move to Spring Hill, TN

A report by a local media outlet quoted CAW Local 222 President Chris Buckley as stating that Impala production would be split between Michigan and a plant in Alabama, but no GM plants in the South come to mind. Buckley is also quoted as saying that the UAW agreed to be more flexible with their contract in a bid to bring more vehicle production to the USA.

Although TTAC often gets accused of anti-GM, anti-Union bias, its a sad day when 2,000 hard working GM employees get caught in the midst of corporate politics factors like an a favorable exchange rate (as the B&B have pointed out). One of GM’s best plans, which has won accolades for the high quality of its vehicles, will end up shuttered permanently. No official announcement has been made, but we’ll be keeping an eye out.

 

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86 Comments on “GM Closing Oshawa Consolidated Line, Equinox And Impala Production Moving To United States...”


  • avatar
    Zackman

    Man, say it ain’t so…thinking of Mikey here and his colleagues. I know he’s retired, but probably many of his co-workers aren’t. Hope GM changes its mind and finds another use for the plant.

    I’ll be watching this one too…

    • 0 avatar

      Mikey tipped me off to this…

    • 0 avatar
      highdesertcat

      I think this is a prudent business move and I wish that GM would do more to streamline its operations and reduce its expenditures. I would like to see GM return to profitability and pay back the tax payers.

      Another thing GM could do to reduce expenses is to fold GMC into Chevrolet and sell or give Buick to its operations in China. GM needs to focus on its core brands which are Chevrolet and Cadillac.

      When GM sells more cars all the people let go from this plant will be called back to work at a different plant. It’s happened before. Look at Chrysler and their Jeep plants. All those people got called back and then some.

      • 0 avatar
        tuffjuff

        @highdesertcat

        Make a little money now by selling Buick, or make a lot of money long-term, including now, by having Buick basically print money for GM? Verano = Cruze with $5,000 extra equipment, looking and selling for $7,000 extra = $2,000 “free” profit.

        Economics 101.

      • 0 avatar
        highdesertcat

        tuffjuff, it appears that GM may be following your line of thinking, and I suppose it could work if the Verano is selling. I have serious doubt that the Verano, if it is selling, can save GM from a repeat ultimate financial collapse and second bailout.

        Just Cadillac alone is dragging GM’s bottom line into the financial abyss at an alarming pace, not to mention GM’s European operations, liaisons and partnerships. And then there’s GM’s China (ad)venture.

        As I recall, GM was betting on the Volt to save them from further financial disaster after the bailout and nationalization. That didn’t work. The Verano=Cruze+$5K won’t work either.

        The problem for GM remains what it has been for decades. How does GM attract more people who actually want to buy a GM product? GM won’t have that answer until GM can accomplish what Fiatsler has done, and that is to build winners like the Jeep Grand Cherokee and Wrangler, Chrysler 300 and 200.

        All of GM’s line-up is dated stuff, as in antique. Their reputation is shot. Former GM customers have deserted the brands for better competitors. Drastic changes are needed.

        Among those changes: offer lightweight, all-aluminum, DOHC, 32-valve V8 engines in their half-ton pickup trucks, and save the dinosaur pushrods for the 3/4 and 1-ton classes.

        Bury the Impala and bring on the Holden products, including an SS V8 model. Most needed: a full-size sedan to compete with the Taurus and Avalon in the $30K price segment.

        Reverse-engineer the Camry and incorporate its best features into the Malibu. Most needed: add value to the Malibu!

        Offer a 10-year/100,000-mile bumper-to-bumper warranty on GM products. It worked for Hyundai. It paid off for Hyundai in increased sales and profit.

        That old adage, “If you build it, they will come”, worked great for the Prius. It failed miserably for the Volt. Advertise the Volt for what it really is: a unique electric vehicle powered by a battery and a gasoline-driven generator.

        The cut-back at Oshawa is just the beginning. Unless GM sales improve there will be a lot more ‘adjustments’ coming. Unless GM sells more cars, more lay-offs will also follow.

    • 0 avatar
      mikey

      @Zackman….Thanks dude. Its a lot deeper than the article suggests The problem is two fold.

      First issue: The plant is old, 80s technolgy from the plant 1 hooked on to plant 2 in the dark days of 2008.

      The biggest issue: 32 percent of GM belongs to the US treasury. Another big piece belongs to the UAW/ VEBA. We no longer have a 58 cent dollar.

      I ask you sir,if you ran GM,where would you alocate production?

      • 0 avatar
        PenguinBoy

        “We no longer have a 58 cent dollar.”

        I believe this has a lot to do with the situation in Oshawa. While the commodities boom has been good for many of us in the West, the attendant rise in the dollar has been murder for the manufacturing heartland in Central Canada. To me, this story is similar to all of Bertel’s posts about Japanese production moving offshore due to the high yen.

        All the best to your former colleagues at Oshawa Mikey. I have been through a few plant closings in a different industry in the past, and they are never easy.

        While there are plenty of jobs out West and up North, it isn’t easy to pick up and move – especially for folks who have been in the Oshawa area for a while and have put down roots.

        Sad news indeed – especially when the plant itself has won many awards for Quality in the past. It looks as though Oshawa is closing despite, not because of, the quality of work done by the employees there.

      • 0 avatar
        marauder_pilot

        Most Canadians are cheering the par-or-better exchange rate, but that’s what kept so many of these American car plants running. It’s just too much to retool these old plants at par dollar.

  • avatar
    mikey

    I started in 1972 plant 1,or the “Chev line” “B” as it was called. We had plant 2 next door the “A” line. Down the sreet, the truck plant. We also had the North plant. [as I write thier breaking ground for a new Costco at the former Fab plant}

    20,000 hourly 8000 salary. It was the life blood of this city. Everbody,everywhere had a connection to GM. My best friend is 5th generation. Even today most driveways have a GM product parked.

    When the last Impala rolls of the line, the total hourly, and salary work force….maybe 3500?

    Its a very sad day, indeed.

    • 0 avatar
      highdesertcat

      I’m not making light of this, but don’t you think that GM and the UAW/CAW saw this coming?

      GM products fell out of favor over a very long time. What is happening here is just the inevitable. The bail outs delayed the inevitable. It all started with NUMMI. There’s more to come.

      Yeah, it’s terrible that so many people, and more, will lose their job, but when GM sells more cars more people will be hired back for a newer plant, like Spring Hill, maybe.

      Or would you rather see GM moving more production to Mexico? You know that’s going to happen.

      The age-old question remains, how does GM attract more potential buyers to sell cars to?

      • 0 avatar
        mikey

        @highdesertcat… Of course we saw it coming. Oh yeah, theres always a few idiots in denial. “We” as in the rank, and file have no control,or say in anything. You just roll with the punches.

        The turning point for me? I read Robert Farago for about three years. After a while,I started paying attention.

        So about August 08 a big retirement package was put on the table. We had 30 days to pi$$ or get off the pot. The six figure union leaders,couldn’t get thier pens out any faster. Talk about your rats off a sinking ship eh?

        One night at a local bar, we must of had 50 guys debating the pros and cons, over many jugs of beer. Right there, and then,I knew it was every man for himself.

        I signed the papers the next day. My last shift was Dec 19 2008. For the record, George W wrote the first bailout check the same day.

      • 0 avatar
        highdesertcat

        Yep, I know how you feel about pulling out in time. I had a similar experience divesting myself of US Auto stocks during 2007/2008 prior to the big collapse.

        I was against the bailouts, handouts and nationalization for anyone, anywhere, because it is my belief that they only delay the inevitable. This just proves it. Can’t make money on Oshawa, so GM cuts back.

        But these cutbacks, realignments and reapportionments of production and work are not limited to just GM. Tomorrow will bring more news on the US-job front and for the remainder of the year many businesses, large and small, are going to be re-evaluating their strategy both in the US and abroad. A lot of people in the US will be let go after Christmas, to beat the new regulations that will take effect Jan 1, 2013.

        The Chrysler Division of Fiat is a different story. It is hiring back a bunch of its old workers in the US and hiring brand new workers as well as they ramp up production under the watchful eye of Sergio and the Fiat BoD.

        The Chrysler story is a story with a happy ending. GM not so much. Now, it’s true that GM is now having to act on the inevitable that was delayed by the bailouts, but GM may not have enough new business to warrant re-opening the plants they are shutting down now.

        We’re I a betting man, I would place my money on GM importing more cars from Australia, South Korea and Mexico, and even toying with the idea of making them in Europe and importing them to the US. That was the formula for success for Toyota, et al, in the past. Does anyone remember the Sterling? Made in England; 6000 years of history, uninterrupted by progress.

        OTOH, the GM plants in Mexico are humming, much to the chagrin of the UAW and the Obama administration. But such are the unintended consequences of NAFTA.

        So it is bad that many people will lose their jobs and livelihood but this is only the beginning when it comes to US companies trying to blend in their products with the global economy.

        In the US, we’ll see a lot more lay-offs ahead due to the uncertainty for business because of Obama’s national economic policies and the anti-business agenda of his administration. These are tough times for the US, and they will be even tougher after Obama is re-elected.

      • 0 avatar
        28-cars-later

        “The age-old question remains, how does GM attract more potential buyers to sell cars to?”

        The $64,000 dollar question.

        For a long time they had it all figured out, big cars, body-on-frame, big displacement, sub-par steel, and American styling. Later they peaked, (all of Detroit) got caught with their pants down with the 1973 Oil Embargo, around the same time faced a Japanese invasion, and just never recovered.

        I’m not sure how to save GM, but I do know models like the Cruze were needed 20 years ago. Don’t get me wrong I was a Cavalier fan, but in its class the Civic was better for the same money and well most people knew it. Ironically today is the Civic better than the Cruze for the same money, line by line, option by option? But being better doesn’t make you number one, just ask Microsoft.

        Maybe its as simple as, what do people buy and what are the projections for the next ten years of that model/type. Ok so we forecast strong sales in the C size hatchback segment, ok build one. We don’t forecast increased truck sales, ok, stick with what were building and re-allocate resources etc.

        My only other thought is stop pretending its 1966 and your most bitter rival/threat is FoMoCo. I enjoyed the Superbowl commercial as much as anyone, but the Ford reference at the end felt so childish, dated, and out of an elementary school playground. Your real enemies are the implants and always have been. Start talking about how your trucks kick the tar out of Toyota’s or how the Cruze is superior to a Corolla and cite actual facts. Mention the Lexus Land Cruiser clone production was cut because of rollover issue but the Escalade doesn’t roll over as much (ok that one was silly). Maybe point out Nissan’s iffy record on CVTs and how your product doesn’t have known issues of the sort etc. C’mon guys its business, not personal, but start acting like you give a crap in your marketing. If you can’t go toe-to-toe with Japan how are you going to compete with the Chinese juggernaut? Heck they will be happy to sacrifice worker’s lives in order to undercut your pricing, what then?

      • 0 avatar
        George B

        “The age-old question remains, how does GM attract more potential buyers to sell cars to?”

        I believe that GM needs to find a way to use continued interest in old cars from their past to generate sales of new models. I grew up in a Chevrolet family with two Impalas, a Suburban, and a Silverado in the family fleet. My first car was a Chevrolet Chevelle Malibu. ALL had small block Chevy V8 engines. ALL were objectively horrible cars with poor reliability and truck like handling. ALL would be desirable vehicles to restore because of the combination of interesting design and V8 exhaust note. The current mass market Malibu and Impala have none of the emotional appeal of their 60s and early 70s models. We have Chevelle the band but not Chevelle the car. What generic Daewoo or Opel based model would inspire the name of a rock band? The Camaro tries, but it needs to lose several inches of height below the beltline and a couple hundred pounds of weigh. The internet teases us with Holden models that, while deficient on styling, show GM is still has the V8 RWD recipe to make real Impalas, Chevelles, and El Caminos. Instead we get news that the next FWD Epislon II Impala production is moving from Canada to Detroit.

      • 0 avatar
        highdesertcat

        28-cars & George B, GM is just not competitive against any of its rivals anywhere on the planet. They may make a lot of cars but they’re not profitable, viable nor self-sustaining.

        The current GM products remain a yawn for most Americans, already pissed-off at GM and the UAW because of the bailouts and nationalization.

        But GM can take a lesson on how its done from Fiatsler and its Chrysler subdivision: decent styling, decent quality, good value, modern engines and transmissions, while at the same time providing more jobs for Americans building cars for Americans, in America.

        GM never had the money to do what the other car makers did to update their line of products, but GM can now benefit from all that R&D by reverse-engineering the F150 and the Camry and putting the best features into their line of vehicles.

        Toyota did that with the 2007 Tundra, putting in all the best features of their competitors while adding a few zingers of their own, like that magnificent 5.7-liter V8 domesticated brute and that ultra-smooth six-speed automatic with paddles.

        The Camry is a best-seller because it is the best overall value for the money of any sedan on the market in the US of A.

        GM can make money by divesting itself of Buick and GMC, both redundant and not profitable on their own. And to get the buyers attention, GM can offer a 10-year/100,000-mile bumper-to-bumper warranty on all its products. It worked for Hyundai and paid off with more sales and higher profits.

        Oshawa is just the beginning. GM has to make some hard choices and more people will suffer unless GM can attract more real-world buyers.

        (A personal anecdote so despised by a few: After my brothers sold their new-car dealerships last year, the new owners started off this new year by laying off a large number of employees redundant to their operations. What is interesting is that they did not lay-off any of the money makers, like sales-staff and mechanics, just most of the administrative staff, marketing staff and parts staff. Are they more profitable? You betcha!)

      • 0 avatar
        28-cars-later

        Always an in depth and detailed conversation with you HighDesertCat.

        My favorite line was “GM can now benefit from all that R&D by reverse-engineering the F150 and the Camry and putting the best features into their line of vehicles.”

        Now we’re talking!

        Sadly I think RenCen is on cruise control, read many a comment on TTAC and comments in Yahoo articles about ‘business as usual’ being back in force, and I think its the case. You’re right that if they continue this ‘Old GM’ pattern Oshawa will only be the beginning. My current employer (online testing and HR stuff) recently started an innovation initiative which I initially thought was BS but after several subsequent meetings, a bar get together, and a planned sleepover in the office (yes really) they are pretty serious… evidently our future is tied to our ability to innovate. Ford keeps innovating, as does the Japanese and Hyundai. Even Chrysler as you pointed out has turned is act around which is truly amazing how they were able to pull it off since this is like the third or forth time they have come back from the dead in forty years. Where is GM?

        From a financial standpoint you may be right about folding Buick or GMC but I think the big trouble there will be the same as Ford with Lincoln: the dealer network. Some dealers are big enough to absorb a loss, some would go completely away, but even the bigger dealers have lost up to four brands in less than six years (Saturn, Pontiac, Hummer, SAAB) I’m sure losing one or two more won’t be enthralling to them, even if volume was made up in Chevy/Cadillac. I see the only way out as to innovate some new products, as you said build new cars with new engines, and drag some of the dead weight along just a bit more until/if you can turn things around. All due respect to Mopar fans but in my lifetime Chrysler (for the most part) has built nothing but complete garbage, and you knew what you were getting when you signed on the dotted line. Yet in only a few years they have been able to turn that perception around. Amazing what you can do if you try.

        One final comment, while I do not disagree cutting certain staff can immediately increase profitability it can come at great cost. Case in point my former employer, a medical technology division of a large healthcare company (see if you can guess which one). We had a good 08-09 and our profits were used to prop up the other divisions (much to our chagrin) while our benefits were cut, our bonuses eliminated, and our raises put on hold till 2010, when the avg raise was 2%. However in 2010 sales hit the skids… the primary focus until this point was pharmacy robotics but the ‘big’ robot wasn’t selling, the new ‘blister’ robot had sales of four units in 2010-11 instead of a projected 12, and a third robot was canceled for reasons I cannot say in a public forum.

        So what did they do? In early 2011 there was a massive politically motivated layoff (first in the divisions history), mostly people from sales/accounting/mfg but also the entire sales support group (23 jobs mostly 10+ years employees) and random firings of long term managers in software development who didn’t fit in with the new director’s grand strategy. The result was a massive exodus from software development between February and June of that year, in the end 45 experienced people left out of a department of roughly 110. The layoff was the final straw, we all knew we could make major bank anywhere else but we all liked working there and for the most part believed in the products. But when mgt pulls the ‘its just business line’ and gives you and your friends the finger, you move on. They are still trying to recover, it actually got to the point where they went to the parent company and begged for more money to stem the resignations, I have friends that got up to a 15% raise in less than six months (two separate raises) for doing absolutely nothing.

        Moral of the story? Don’t treat people like figures on a balance sheet if you want your business to run smoothly. Some staff are easily replaceable, but once the word is out you’re restructuring even long term employees update their resumes. Good employees are hard to find, its much cheaper to keep the ones you have than to replace them for the sake of a quick buck.

      • 0 avatar
        highdesertcat

        28-cars, I actually read all the comments on the topics I am interested in. There aren’t that many since I also read the WSJ, subscribe to Automotive News and Auto Digest, the DetNews, Detroit Free Press and several other blogs like autoblog, et al.

        I am often astounded at the pearls of wisdom that these and sites like ttac contain. And while no one can blame the GM fan boys for carrying the water for their object of affection, when taken in larger context, GM remains a failed automaker, living large on the taxpayer dime, without any secure future ahead for them. Insecurity is the watchword for GM.

        GM at one time was America’s auto industry. Who are GM and the UAW going to blame for frittering that away to the level of market-share where they find themselves today? The stupid Americans who chose to buy better products from other manufacturers? That’s what I see from the GM fan club who wants to convince all of us that GM is the best thing since toilet paper.

        GM needs to make some hard choices, like Oshawa and others to follow, and bring to market products at least as good as the competitors that have at least the same features as others.

        On-Star is a great feature but it was brought to market because at the time GM vehicles died on the side of the road and that was the way to get help. Now people have cellphones.

        I agree that employees should be treated like important human beings by their employers, but employees are employees — they are not shareholders nor are they entitled to anything more than a fair day’s pay for a fair day’s work. If employees want to be treated like shareholders, they should buy stock.

        Obviously, the UAW had a different view of what employees are entitled to and subsequently the UAW drove two of their employers into bankruptcy. The GM fans and the UAW dispute that, but to most Americans that is what happened.

        I try to be as clear and concise as I can in my comments and I’m not anti-GM, nor am I anti-Ford, nor anti-Chrysler. Who can dispute that Ford is one hell of an American auto company? In fact, Ford is the ONLY American car maker still left standing. Chrysler is now Italian, and GM is government-owned and government-controlled.

        To reiterate, GM’s decision to close down the Oshawa line and move production to the US is, in my view, a prudent business decision and a prudent operations decision.

        Canadian workers are getting hurt, no doubt about that. But GM knows which side their bread is buttered on, they’re moving production to the US because GM cannot close down any lines or lay off workers in the US because that would be against the interest of their government masters.

        GM will, however, in the future follow suit with many other auto manufacturers who are ramping up production in Mexico for export to Central and South America, thus creating jobs outside of America. And if it makes money for GM’s bottom line, I say bully for them!

    • 0 avatar
      sunridge place

      @ HD

      ‘OTOH, the GM plants in Mexico are humming, much to the chagrin of the UAW and the Obama administration’

      2012 Model Year GM Production #’s thru April:
      US: 1,549,757 Cars/Trucks
      Canada: 553,405 Cars/Trucks
      Mexico: 381,775 Cars/Trucks

      Mexico also includes 81,216 2012 Aveos (Sonics) that aren’t sold in the US…so its really about 300,000 units in Mexico.

      This news release is moving Canada production to the US….not Mexico.

      Don’t have time to look it up tonight but Chrysler Mexico production is way up year over year compared to GM.

      • 0 avatar
        Detroit-X

        “Facts scmacks. You can prove anything with facts.” Homer Simpson

      • 0 avatar
        highdesertcat

        sunridge, those jobs in Mexico SHOULD have been jobs in the US.

        How many jobs would have been created or saved had those 381,775 Cars/Trucks Hecho en Mexico been built in the US?

        And WHY did the auto manufacturers move production to Mexico? In the first place to get away from the UAW, and in the second place to prop up their bottom line with higher profits.

        If it had been more advantageous to produce in the US, GM may not have gone belly-up in 2009.

        Even though this Canada production is moving to the US, there will be other US production that will eventually move to Mexico. And let’s not forget Australia production that will export to the US in the future. No added jobs in the US or Canada.

        Whatever Chrysler was, reincarnated as a subdivision of Fiat, Chrysler is a winner, even if it means producing in Mexico for higher profit margins.

        Unless GM finds more real-world buyers, we’ll see more adjustments in Canada, and moving of those jobs to the US.

        GM isn’t going to cut US jobs! That would really outrage the US tax payers even more than they already are. And I don’t see GM cutting back production in Mexico, either.

    • 0 avatar
      tresmonos

      Coming from someone that was cut in 2008, I hope your friends back at the plant land on their feet.

      Your cross town rival went through a lot of capacity adjustments in a shorter time span. Now that plants are humming along at 2+ shifts, it’s great to feel somewhat ‘safe.’ Flexible body and final areas have really made facilities efficient. The next step will be the proliferation of these abroad.

    • 0 avatar
      geozinger

      @Mikey: Sorry to hear about this development. I know this will come as a blow to your local economy, hopefully the area will recover.

      We lost our stamping plant in the reorg after BK, but we managed to keep the Delphi (now GM Powertrain) plant running in Grand Rapids. It’s a shame to see the stamping plant site, as it’s been leveled.

      There’s some ill-defined (IMO) plan to put in some industrial park. Someday. Soon. Or so we’re told.

    • 0 avatar
      sunridge place

      I don’t even know why I try…but…why not.

      When you state stuff like:

      ‘GM is just not competitive against any of its rivals anywhere on the planet.’

      then stuff like

      ‘Toyota did that with the 2007 Tundra, putting in all the best features of their competitors while adding a few zingers of their own, like that magnificent 5.7-liter V8 domesticated brute and that ultra-smooth six-speed automatic with paddles.’

      And sales of the GM Trucks are 5 or 6 times higher than the Tundra…you just look like a fool.

      Is GM best in class in all segments….no…neither is anyone else.

      Is GM competitive in some segments…yes. Best in class in some segments…debatable. Are the best in SALES in some segments….yes they are…in multiple segments.

      GM builds the following vehicles in Mexico:

      Aveo(Sonic) for non-US Sales
      Captiva for non-US sales and fleet only US Sales
      Avalanche (being discontinued after 2013MY)
      Escalade EXT (being discontinued after 2013MY)
      SRX
      Some Siverado/Sierra Crew Cabs

      Are they just supposed to mothball those 3 plants they already have in Mexico?

      GM has 12 assembly plants in the US as a comparison.
      GM also has 7 stamping plants in the US.
      GM also has 14 powertrain plants in the US.
      GM also has 20 parts distribution plants in the US.

      YTD thru April 2012 production mix for Chrysler:
      57.5% US Production
      24.2% Canadian Production
      18.3% Mexico Production

      TYD thru May 2012 production mix for GM:
      64% US Production
      21% Canadian Production
      15% Mexico Production

      I’m sure Chrysler is adding some US jobs…good for them. But to state that GM has factories ‘humming’ in Mexico while Chrysler is adding the jobs in the US is half the story.

      Gm is also adding jobs in the US..and, it kind of looks like Chrylser is humming a bit more in Mexico than GM.

      • 0 avatar
        highdesertcat

        sunridge, I don’t mind looking like a fool to you, because it takes one to know one.

        I actually read your opinionations and they are one-sided in GM’s favor. I’m cool with that. Opinions are like @ssholes, everybody’s got one. You’re entitled to yours. I’m entitled to mine.

        The problem with your view of the world comes in when it comes to sales and the realities of the real world.

        You poke fun at the Tundra because it doesn’t sell as many as the Silverado does. No big deal. The Tundra is an OPTION for those who do not want an F150, a Silverado, a RAM or a Titan. The Titan is another OPTION. People buy what they like best.

        And the 2011 Tundra I own is without a doubt the best truck I have ever owned, better than my Silverado, better than my F150 and better than any other used truck I have ever owned in my 66 years on this planet. That’s where I put my money where my mouth is — on the best vehicle of my choice.

        I also own a 2012 Jeep Grand Cherokee and a 2008 Highlander because they were the best vehicles at that time in my opinion. And my opinion is the only one that counts when it comes to my money. Most buyers see it that way.

        Only the GM fans see it your way and there weren’t enough of them to keep GM alive in the past, in the present and in the future unless GM changes things.

        It’s all about choice. The reason that more F150 trucks are sold is because people choose to buy them instead of a Silverado, probably because the current F150 is lightyears ahead of the Silverado.

        GM can cure that. I have offered suggestions, my own and those of other people whose opinions I have read elsewhere.

        You are misinterpreting GM’s current production in Mexico which will be increasing in the future at the expense of Canadian jobs. GM cannot cut back on production in the US because the Obama administration and the UAW would never accept that. Obama will be re-elected and he will shepherd GM for the next four years.

        So, in the future GM will expand production in Mexico for sale in Central and South America. That would also be a prudent operations move but would not make the UAW very happy.

        You don’t have to try to win me over to your interpretations of the facts. Facts are facts. Ultimately what matters is sales. You can’t make money if you don’t sell enough. GM is not selling enough and has to cut back somewhere. Oshawa comes to mind.

        But when it expands production of its future winning entries, watch a lot of those jobs go to Mexico. GM has to do that. Their competitors are doing that, and their competitors are eating GM’s lunch.

    • 0 avatar
      sunridge place

      Actually, the problem is that you don’t know the difference between opinion and fact.

      When you’re challenged, you just say its your opinion even when it appears to be a fact based statement.

      My post on production #’s and sales were facts…not opinion. Trust me, I’m no GM fan boy.

      I didn’t ‘poke fun’ at the Tundra anymore than you ‘poked fun’ at the GM lineup. I stated facts.

      Your inconsistency is mind-numbing as always:

      ‘The reason that more F150 trucks are sold is because people choose to buy them instead of a Silverado, probably because the current F150 is lightyears ahead of the Silverado’

      Follow your own thought process very carefully and apply that same thought process to the difference in the Tundra and the Silverado…then follow that thought process to your statement about me ‘poking fun’ at the Tundra.

      Then you say…

      ‘GM can cure that. I have offered suggestions, my own and those of other people whose opinions I have read elsewhere.’

      You act like GM is just going to get hit on the head with an apple under a tree tomorrow and realize the Silverado/Sierra needs to be updated. Its on the way…the truck wars go back and forth…you don’t remember reading that from your 1980′s magazine subscriptions?

      How in the world am I ‘misinterpreting GM’s production in Mexico?’

      I stated facts. Yes, they have plants down there….yes, those plants need to be utilized…yes, they have discontinued several vehicles that used to be built there…yes they will probably build future models there….so what???

      Then, you add:

      ‘So, in the future GM will expand production in Mexico for sale in Central and South America. That would also be a prudent operations move but would not make the UAW very happy.’

      I’m not a UAW member…don’t even know anyone who is…but…huh??

      The UAW will not be happy because GM builds more vehicles in Mexico for sale in Central and South America?? Huh??

      Historically, which vehicles have been built in the US for sale in Mexico or south that are any scale to matter to the UAW?

      Oops…that must have been your opinion…and I answered it with a fact…my bad.

      • 0 avatar
        highdesertcat

        sunridge, you can’t please all of the people all of the time. If my comments don’t mesh with your facts and thinking, feel free to omit them from your reading list. I won’t be offended.

        I do read ALL the comments on those topics I am interested in, including your comments. My impression is that your comments are more in line with those of bean counters and accountants, not with those of management, sales and inventory-control staff, at any organizational level. I’m fine with that too, since even GM is driven by financial restrictions.

        And so it is with Oshawa. Financial limitations and restrictions! And those same financial limitations and restrictions will force GM to build more vehicles in Mexico in the future, just like other auto makers. What little jobs GM does create in the US will pale by comparison to the jobs GM will create elsewhere around the globe and in Mexico. The future in not the North American market. The future is Asia, Central and South America.

        If you don’t agree with that premise, I have no problem with that either. There were a lot of people who loudly complained about all the forecasters who predicted that GM would have to eventually declare bankruptcy, years before it actually happened. And ultimately they were proven right. I believe I will be proven right as well. Time will tell.

        Happy fact finding. Keep in mind that the same facts can be interpreted differently by different people at different levels of an organization. But financial limitations and restrictions can only be interpreted in one way, by everyone.

    • 0 avatar
      sunridge place

      ooookay…now you’re moving global from your spot in the desert southwest….fine…i can follow you.

      Hard to keep up with you between your ‘aww shucks, that’s just what i see in my local paper and what i know locally’ and your global thoughts in this last post…but i’m no bean counter…so i’ll bite.

      i’ll repost your statement a bit…

      ‘What little jobs GM/Ford/Chrylser/Toyota/Honda/Hyundai etc do create in the US will pale by comparison to the jobs GM/Ford/Chrylser/Toyota/Honda/Hyundai etc will create elsewhere around the globe and in Mexico. The future in not the North American market. The future is Asia, Central and South America.’

      Glad you’re thinking beyond the El Paso Times now. Really hard to keep up with you.

      So, how is GM failing in Asia/Central/South America? Your geographic statements (esp Central America) not mine.

  • avatar
    Zoom

    What makes this decision “corporate politics”?

  • avatar
    Pch101

    “caught in the midst of corporate politics”

    Why are you assuming that?

    I would bet that there are, based upon today’s exchange rate, about 103 reasons for this: http://finance.yahoo.com/q?s=USDCAD=X

  • avatar
    Maymar

    It’s sort of a shame GM couldn’t produce all North American Zetas in Oshawa, as opposed to just the Camaro, and shipping the Caprice/SS from halfway around the world.

    • 0 avatar
      rpol35

      Zeta II is coming to North America in 2014 as Australian production has the currency conversion issue (among other things). The question is whether it ends up in the U.S. or Canada. I don’t believe that has been announced but I imagine it is known by GM.

  • avatar
    Deaks2

    Maybe we’ll finally start getting something more upscale instead of Impala’s as government cars now! It’s embarrassing when a cabinet minister shows up to a meeting in a chauffeured Impala… Of course Chrysler 300′s have terrible rear head room, I think we’re going to have cranky cabinet ministers.

    The billions of dollars the Canadian tax payer wasted on subsidizing these old economy jobs could have make a difference in new economy jobs, technologies and education programs. Instead they pandered to the blue collar masses who vote Conservative.

    • 0 avatar
      28-cars-later

      Odd the blue collar evidently votes Conservative in Canada where the blue collar here in the US does just the opposite. Maybe we can work out a ‘blue collar’ citizen exchange, we’ll give you three of ours for every one of yours.

      I am very curious though, what sort of ‘new economy’ jobs do you imagine?

      • 0 avatar
        Deaks2

        Theoretical and applied sciences, eco sciences (esp. important for the oil sands), IT, and other “thinking” jobs. Now we’ve wasted 3 years thinking that a one-tiem subsidy was going to save Southern Ontario’s manufacturing sector.

      • 0 avatar
        Sinistermisterman

        Eco science jobs for the Oil Sands? Biggest laugh I’ve had all morning!
        I somewhat agree however that subsidy money shouldn’t just be dumped into one economic sector, but I wouldn’t call manufacturing “old economy jobs”.
        I come from a nation where “old economy jobs” have practically been wiped out over the past 30 odd years (Britain), due in part to a strong pound and government policy which regarded anyone which didn’t work in banking or the service sector as working in an antiquated job who needed retraining. Now the UK is struggling with a generation of people who can type 50 words a minute, but can barely change a lightbulb. And look how that’s working out for them.
        A strong economy that can survive the ups and downs of economic booms and busts is a mixed economy. A nation of IT technicians and *cough* “Eco-scientists” is not a useful and robust workforce.
        Also, for what it’s worth, I’d rather MP’s were carted around in an Impala. Considering quite how much of our tax money they spunk on other nonsensical crap, it’s nice to see a relatively low price cars being used by the government.

      • 0 avatar
        Deaks2

        If you don’t think that we need to preserve the planet that we live on then I am quite sad for you. Thanks to eco sciences we have had development of in situ extraction in the oil sands, which is much better from an eco perspective than the outright rape of our boreal forests and poisoning of our water tables.

        I don’t consider all of manufacturing as being old economy, Bombardier seems to do quite well building jets and turbo props in modern plants using modern assembly techiques and technologies. I don’t see why public money was wasted on old plants that were never going to survive a prolonged period of dollar parity.

      • 0 avatar
        Sinistermisterman

        I wasn’t laughing at trying to ‘protect the planet’, I was laughing at the contradiction that is using the word ‘eco’ and ‘oil sands’ in the same sentence!
        True, in situ is less damaging, but it still requires vast amounts of resources (natural gas and water) to extract the oil. I don’t necessarily disagree with oil sands extraction from an economic view, however there is nothing ecologically sound about the oil sands, no matter how it is dressed up.
        Prefixing anyone’s job title who works on the oil sands, from scientist to rig worker with ‘eco’ is pure greenwash.

      • 0 avatar
        Athos Nobile

        “I come from a nation where “old economy jobs” have practically been wiped out over the past 30 odd years (Britain), due in part to a strong pound and government policy which regarded anyone which didn’t work in banking or the service sector as working in an antiquated job who needed retraining. Now the UK is struggling with a generation of people who can type 50 words a minute, but can barely change a lightbulb. And look how that’s working out for them.”

        ^^THIS!

        And it seems like Anglo Saxon countries are hell bent on following the UK example. The bad one :(

        “Theoretical and applied sciences, eco sciences (esp. important for the oil sands), IT, and other “thinking” jobs.”

        Not everyone can or wants to be retrained for performing “thinking jobs”. Good luck with those “applied sciences” where there are no industries to apply the development made. Unless your solution for everyone else implies Centrelink/the dole/whatever, but in that case I think our taxes could be used more productively. Again, look at the island across the Atlantic to see how that is going.

        And there’s nothing eco about oil, oil sands, heavy oil extraction, processing, etc. Cleaner maybe. Thanks for the laugh.

      • 0 avatar
        28-cars-later

        While I think Deaks may have a point about investing in an educated scientific workforce -if only to benefit an energy industry which will grow each year- but I have to agree more with Sinistermisterman. I’ve never been to the UK but I have followed their news and politics for years. An economy of office workers, financial, and IT people is not much of an economy… and I work in IT!

        Much of the real power in the world right now is in the hands of the BRICS nations precisely because they control the manufacturing and to a lesser extent natural resource/energy industries. The West only leads in a few areas, one of the bigger ones being finance (which is working out so well isn’t it) aerospace, defense industries, energy (refining, coal etc), and information (or control their-of). Britain’s primary industry from what I have read is government, something like 50% of their economy (please correct me if I’m wrong). In the case of Ontario was it wrong to sink money into manufacturing? Perhaps, I can’t really argue the point because I don’t know much about Ontario’s economy, but I do know blowing money on academic or socialist fairy-tales isn’t the best move either unless the investment can benefit other areas of the economy. A butterfly effect as it were, invest in a university and build a lab, one student at that lab one day invents some kind of groundbreaking chemical (the new post it glue for example), he patents it, he profits, gov’t collects taxes, and the circle of life continues.

        We in the West have to wake up and realize DEBT is not an industry otherwise we’ll wake up one day speaking Chinese.

    • 0 avatar
      RoadBuilder

      Problem with “new economy” jobs is there are a lot few opportunities to be successful. Working in a “new economy” industry, efficiency is the name of the game. There isn’t the need to hire the same amount of people that would work in an “old economy” job. In Canada, the next labour shortage will be for blue collar type jobs, we already see that quite heavily in Alberta.

      Personally I think there are becoming too many educated people, which dilutes the value of a degree. Yes I am a bit biased as I do have a professional degree, however there is only so much space in the workforce for people with advanced degrees.

      • 0 avatar
        28-cars-later

        I agree, the whole purpose of education was to better yourself vs the masses in terms of career prospects. So what happens when everyone has a bachelor’s degree? Oh I’ll get a masters? What happens when they are a dime a dozen? Phd?

  • avatar
    Potemkin

    This is a terrible blow not just to the auto workers but to those who depend on them for their livelyhood. To highdesertcat, unlike the US workers there is no other GM plant to go to. What should we have expected? If the Canadian dollar is high and you aren’t building cars people want to buy you will go down. Sure GM changed the CEO and Chairman but what of the people who actually run the business. Not much has changed. New models lack that “gotta own one” appeal. Interiors are still lacking. It takes 6 years to get a new model to market and by then some other manufacturer has eaten their lunch. The organization is full of people who have great credentials but no real talent for anything other than going to school.

  • avatar
    seanx37

    Hmmm..as someone who lives in Warren, and has GM employee friends and family…this a good thing for us. More jobs at Detroit/Hamtramck Assembly. Thumbs up. Especially since the US government still owns a chunk of GM.

    • 0 avatar
      28-cars-later

      Its good for Hamtramck to have jobs no doubt, but these came because overall GM sales aren’t keeping up with plant capacity. What happens if that trend continues?

      • 0 avatar
        tiredoldmechanic

        And the trend will continue. GM cars are still a long way from the best in class they need to be to even sustain the market share they have now, let alone increase it. I don’t wish anyone in Hamtramck any bad luck, but if whatever product GM puts in there isn’t a home run they’ll be next out the door.

      • 0 avatar
        28-cars-later

        Sadly, I do agree, I am also curious if this plant being chosen vs something stateside has anything to do with the upcoming US election?

  • avatar
    AoLetsGo

    It is a shame for those workers who will lose there jobs. Others have mentioned the most obvious reasons, but I will add one more. I have heard from many people that it is hard to run a competitive business in such a socialistic country.

    • 0 avatar
      tiredoldmechanic

      Lots of people run competitive business’s here. Sure it’s hard, it is everywhere. But socialism, while responsible for many bad things, is not the reason for this closure. Tired plant, tired product and a rising dollar did Oshawa in. Combine that with the willingness of a UAW local in a plant elsewhere to make concessions in order to get the work and it was a done deal.
      It sure sucks for the workers in Oshawa.

    • 0 avatar
      Lemmy-powered

      Such a “socialistic” country? Compared to what?

      Germany is far more “socialistic” and they have built quite the industrial juggernaut.

      And as I always like to point out, a little country with a centrally planned economy infused with free market encouragements has been whupping the West’s butt for a couple of decades now. Hint — they eat with chop sticks.

      • 0 avatar
        nickoo

        “Central planning” took a backwater agrarian society to a industrialized world super power in less than a generation in Soviet Russia, laid the framework for the United States to grow into it’s post WWII role, and took China from nobody to where they are today.

        To not acknowledge and embrace the critical role that government must play to keep a country competitive in today’s world economy, is to create the stagnation that we’ve seen in the United States for the last 32 years.

      • 0 avatar
        28-cars-later

        I have to disagree, Stalin was literally destroying his own country throughout the 1930s and this destruction is precisely why the Germans attacked when they did, and if they had taken Moscow in the winter of 1941 there would be no Soviet Union/Russia to speak of today. The only reason they achieved superpower status was at the spoils of World War II, the Soviet Union left alone from 1941-45 would have remained a third world country while the Germans would have ascended to global power. The centrally planned economy of Brezhnev created massive stagflation and it combined with the ill-fated Afghanistan offensive literally took down the Soviet empire.

        Mao’s centrally planned economy put the Chinese into decades of isolation and it was only upon his death that Deng Xiaoping was able to slowly effect market reforms and put to better use the billion laborers of their empire, who are now of course as you put it “whupping the West’s butt”.

        Cuba and North Korea both still function by a centrally planned economy, how is it working out for them? Heck Cuba is starting to relax their communist non-sense and allow some forms of market economy… its either that or instant revolution after the death of Fidel.

    • 0 avatar
      nickoo

      >socialistic country

      Ridiculous, socialism is an economic system where the means of production are publicly (government) owned. Not your favorite boogeyman for a country that does things differently than the United States. What really killed Canada’s manufacturing is the same thing that is killing it here and in Japan, the high cost of the local currencies. The Euro is what saved Germany’s economy and now they refuse to pay the price for getting into the common currency game with Greece and Italy. Even China is getting undercut by the southeast Asian countries now. Government sponsored healthcare actually makes cost of living cheaper, employment cheaper, results in better coverage, and gives the workers and businesses a competitive advantage that we sorely lack here in the United States.

  • avatar
    28-cars-later

    First St. Thomas, and now Oshawa.

    There may be a number of legitimate reasons for this as stated above, the biggest I believe being the currency exchange rates, but IMO this is just stupid, stupid, stupid. I don’t care how much Juan and Pablo have learned about building cars, I personally don’t want automobiles from Mexico, Brazil, China, or wherever the cheap labor du jour is period. Not a fan of unions but I very much prefer an automobile built by Americans and if that’s not in the cards, than by our brothers in the Great White North… who have proven themselves expert manufacturers for at least the last fifty years.

    I’ve had two GM products built at Oshawa a 93 Lumina and my current 08 Grand Prix, and both were stellar, reliable, and well assembled. My sincere thanks and thoughts to those employees affected by this closure.

  • avatar

    I think this a nice car. OTOH, the GM plants in Mexico are humming, much to the chagrin of the UAW and the Obama administration. But such are the unintended consequences of NAFTA. I wanna buy this.
    auto transport quotes

  • avatar
    wmba

    Well, this news kind of cheeses me off. Canada and the province of Ontario put in almost 11,000 million bucks (11 billion) into the GM bailout, 20% of the total.

    By way of thanks, GM is now starting to shutter their Canadian holdings. Well, they’re in 3rd place behind Chrysler and Ford in sales here.

    As for the comment about “such a socialistic country”, I’m afraid that is a rather typical stunted viewpoint of Canada, put about by Americans who haven’t got a real clue about this country, but are pompous enough to think they do. Happens over and over again. Socialism is a free and easy word to bandy about when you play fast and easy with the facts, and always implies, US great, everywhere else bad, ’cause they’re socialist, y’know. Hogwash.

    • 0 avatar
      200k-min

      ” I’m afraid that is a rather typical stunted viewpoint of Canada…”

      I agree that the word socialist is bandied about all too freely by people that don’t know any better, but labor is much more, shall I say, “European” in Canada. I work with colleagues north of the 49th every day and I am well aware of the much different labor rules on the Canadian side. For starters, Canadians enjoy more national and provincial holidays than your average non-gov’t American ever sees. Canadians get more vacation time, must more generous parental leave, etc. Not saying any of that is wrong, but it does ultimately go into the cost of labor.

      • 0 avatar
        sunridge place

        Compare the cost of a few extra paid holidays in Canada and some odd work rules vs the cost of a company having to provide and bear a big part of the cost of health care for their employees in the US.

        This change in production was primarily driven by:

        An old plant in Canada vs a newer (and un-utilized) plant in Spring Hill. Tooling needed to be upgraded for the Impala and Spring Hill is empty and better set up for flex production.

        My guess is that currency had very little to do with it in this case.

  • avatar
    caboaz

    I’ve had four Suburban’s since ’95, always looking for a U.S. built unit. Fourth time around there wasn’t one to be had anywhere near me, which is ironic with the Arlington plant practically down the street. Bought a Mexico built truck and… It’s been far, far more reliable than the first three with much higher quality and significantly fewer issues. Juan has caught and passed Joe Six Pack.

    And for those of you that missed it, the U.S. has been one of the most socialist countries in the world since the 1930′s.

  • avatar
    chicagoland

    How long did people think the 1988 W body and 1979 Panther would last?

    • 0 avatar
      28-cars-later

      W may be dead (and should have died sooner) but the Panther could have lived on as fleet only for at least a few more years. But of course all good things must come to an end, and in the end it was ancient platforms like Panther, Ranger, and Econoline who kept raking in profit to finance all of the mistakes of the Nasser, Bill Ford, and to a lesser extent, Mullaly era. These platforms die because no money was ever spent on improving them due to bad decisions of past executives plain and simple.

  • avatar
    LXbuilder

    GM don’t give a hoot about the great quality that has rolled out of this plant year after year. Its all about money and screw the workers and the customers, and it will never change..

  • avatar
    garr05

    Hold on 2012 is GM/CAW contract year.Apparently GM has fired the first shot.It’ll be interesting to see how this finally plays out. Will it be new product/retooling,more buyout packages.Just the other day I read an article about GM could be opening up shuttered plants in Canada and the USA because of increased sales. Another piece to the puzzle our esteemed premier Dalton McGinty has said that he’ll always find monies to keep the auto industry strong in Ontario.

  • avatar
    Freddie

    Canada’s share of North American auto production has long been out of proportion to its population. I believe this is a legacy of the 1965 US-Canadian Auto Pact which was a one-sided deal: The US could export to Canada no more than it imported, but Canadian exports were unlimited. In other words, Canada was guaranteed an automotive trade surplus or, at minimum, break even. NAFTA superseded the Auto Pact and now there is less justification for all those Canadian plants.

  • avatar
    Omnifan

    The larger question is: How many $40K cars and trucks can you sell to folks making $10/hour? That’s the future. Middle class workers (20K+ folks at Oshawa) are now out of the market. The auto companies answer is more sub-prime loans. That is loans to people who really can’t afford them. Shades of 2007 all over again.

    When will we return to manufacturing real things again instead of focusing on the low paid service economy?

    • 0 avatar
      nickoo

      The structural flaws of our “new” economy that price as much as 50% of consumers out of the game can only be mitigated by structural changes such as increasing the minimum wage and heavily subsidizing education. Australia did it, and it has worked spectacularly. They have a minimum wage of over $15 per hour, less than 5% unemployment. Minimum wage increases always result in more consumer spending leading to more consumer demand leading to an increased need for hiring, that’s how economies grow, from the bottom up. This recession has shown once again that a business will not hire because the business is flush with cash when there is no consumer demand.

      • 0 avatar
        shaker

        nickoo: AMEN

      • 0 avatar
        28-cars-later

        While I agree a large percentage of the population is more or less excluded from purchasing luxury or near luxury products for economic reasons, I don’t have figures but I suspect this has always been true simply because that’s capitalism and that’s life. This ‘have nots’ figure may have decreased in American society from the postwar until recently, but it was only because of American superpower status as de-facto leader of the free world and leader in global industries. Now you are more than likely merely seeing an adjustment back to prewar levels of poverty.

        Australia is a country of roughly 22 million people concentrated in New South Wales, Perth, and Darwin areas of Western and Northern territories, respectively. Success here is akin to declaring socialism a success because it supposedly worked in Sweden, a country of 9.3 million mostly concentrated on the southern half of the country. The United States is a nation of 311 million divided into several varied populous regions far more complicated than Australia or Sweden, I doubt any such minimum wage policy would have such a drastic effect in this country. You also neglect to mention the huge mining boom due to global minerals demand currently occurring in Western Australia where miners are in some cases annually being paid between 100K-200K AU dollars. Such economic success sustains so much more than mining as these nouveau riche will be spending their wealth (wealth driven by exports) on consumer goods and services which in turn will propel the economy and create jobs. This is most likely your reason for low Australian unemployment not some sort of overpaid underclass.

        Finally both local, state, and the Federal government have been over-funding our educational system for at least the last thirty years and as a result America’s students have simply become less educated and able to complete globally as the decades have progressed. While the reasons for this relate to a lack of parent’s concern and guidance for their children’s education as well as a failure in the school system, continuing to fund the current system is madness. Albert Einstein defined insanity as doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results, and insane is precisely what it is to subsidize education any further. Schools (and universities) who can make it work will succeed and those who cannot will fail and rightly so. Subsidizing and protecting failing schools or universities only prolongs the inevitable, has created a massive bubble in student loan debt, and wastes billions of public money in the process, money which could be spent on building real industry.

    • 0 avatar
      28-cars-later

      Agreed, the path forward is to ditch the service economy and get serious, if that’s even still possible.

  • avatar
    carbiz

    So they close a factory and put up a Costco… that says it all. Welcome to the Wal-Mart economy. Where’s Joni Mitchell when you need her?
    Tell me something: with a current account deficit of $55B, is CHOICE really that important? (Or how about the U.S. with its $800B current account deficit?) Would it not make more sense to pay 25% more for a vehicle/refrigerator/toaster oven made in North America, then pay for the increases in alcoholism, domestic abuse, welfare, employment insurance, etc. that go with the rise in unemployment?
    The Auto Pact helped to level the playing field between a juggernaut of 200M people and its tiny neighbor with 24M people. Canada may have benefited from the Auto Pact, but America wins with NAFTA: in an all out crisis Canada is required to maintain its oil shipments to the U.S., even if there are shortages at home.
    But Japan Inc, as usual, has gotten a free ride through all of this. Not only did they get 60 years of marketing knowledge, real estate and know-how for free when they started washing up on these shores in the early ’70s, they got to ride in on NAFTA after the heavy lifting was done by Detroit.
    And they’ve gotten a free-ride from the obedient media ever since. Nobody builds a car that looks better on paper than Honda.
    Like Mikey, I got out at the end of 2008. When people were buying an Accord even though they admitted the Malibu was the better vehicle, I knew I’d have enough of the car ‘biz. GM’s implosion soon after was no surprise: self-fulfilling prophecy and 30 years of piling could not have any other result.
    The biggest Cadillac dealership in Canada is now a 40 storey condo in Toronto: paid for by Russian money, built by Poles and lived in by Asians. THAT is the new Toronto. Jobs? Who needs those as long as the ponzi scheme of ‘new’ money is brought in from ‘new Canadians.’ Until the music stops, that is.
    And the fat cats that bought resorts, hotels, import dealerships with GM money, who built most of eastern Toronto with their dealership being the launch pad for 50 years of success, how are they doing? Fine, thanks: with their new digs in their multiple import stores.
    Thanks, GM. Too bad you didn’t see the writing on the wall and been a bit more forceful with your dealer body 40 years ago when it counted.

  • avatar
    GS650G

    Other plants will see this action and realize quality counts for less than costs so why focus on awards for doing a good job? Just keep an eye on exchange rates, ROI, and area expenses instead.

  • avatar
    Nick

    Good luck to them. The Caprice my parents bought in 78 had indifferent fit and finish, but ran forever. The next Caprice they bought was made in a different plant, about two years after it was moved from Oshawa, and it was a piece of crap. So much so it drove my parent out of the GM camp after almost 3 decades of loyalty.

  • avatar
    Felix Hoenikker

    I see this plant closing as part of a larger problem for GM. Most of the profits in the 90s and early 2000s were coming from over sized and over priced $40K SUVs. Think hummer as the poseter child for this system. Now that higher gas prices and stagnating to lower wages have eaten into those sales, GM needs to sell high quality, high content, fuel efficeint $20K cars that they can make a profit on in order to survive long term.
    They haven’t done this since Sloan’s days.
    Now get to work.

  • avatar
    rpol35

    “Although TTAC often gets accused of anti-GM, anti-Union bias, its a sad day when 2,000 hard working GM employees get caught in the midst of corporate politics factors like an a favorable exchange rate (as the B&B have pointed out). ”

    Certainly agree with the sentiment, I hate to see anyone, anywhere lose their job (especially having had it happen to me twice) but it is obviously an opportunity for new workers in Detroit and Spring Hill.

  • avatar
    Amendment X

    Yeah, proofreading is for chumps.

  • avatar
    wsn

    Great news! Making those at Ottawa who supported the bailout of a foreign company look so good!

    Canada is 10% of the size of US in terms of population, and yet contributed 20% to the bailout fund, to protect Canadian jobs. Now this.

    Go NDP Go! Show us, how you are going to protect Canadian jobs?

    Re “Although TTAC often gets accused of anti-GM, anti-Union bias, its a sad day when 2,000 hard working GM employees get caught in the midst of corporate politics factors like an a favorable exchange rate (as the B&B have pointed out). ”

    As a Canadian tax payer who was forced to fund this bailout of a foreign company, this article made my day. Yay!

    • 0 avatar
      Lemmy-powered

      “Great news! Making those at Ottawa who supported the bailout of a foreign company look so good … Go NDP Go! Show us, how you are going to protect Canadian jobs?”

      Just to be clear, the 2009 bailout funds came from the Federal (Conservative Party) and Provincial (Liberal Party) governments. NDP was supportive for sure, but NOBODY is clean in this mess.

      • 0 avatar
        wsn

        The federal government was a minority government. NDP is the most supportive of them all and got the most credit in the next election.

        If Stephen Harper were a dictator, he would not have bailed out GM. But he was not, and was thus also guilty in this regard. But at least he treated this as an unfortunate thing he had to do. On the other hand, NDP has always been publicly bragging about bailing this and bailing that.

      • 0 avatar
        Lemmy-powered

        wsn, that’s all true, and I understand. But leaders have a choice — do what is convenient and be beholden to your coalition partners (which Harper was), or stand up for what you believe in. Mr. Harper CHOSE the former.

        I’ve always believed that people reveal their true selves not in what they say, but in the choices they make.

        Regardless, this whole thing is unfortunate.

    • 0 avatar
      mikey

      @WSN….I got a deal for you. Come out to the Shwa.I will cover your travel expences.You can meet lots of families loosing thier income.Comunities are seeing hockey rinks and parks closing.

      I’ll take you out to our favorite watering hole. My treat! You will have an excellent opportinity, to expand on your views ,why you hate GM so much,and are cheering a loss of 2000 jobs.

  • avatar
    Potemkin

    I was around when the Canadian UAW decided to go rogue and form the CAW. This was not a good move. When dealing with a US company in Canada it is best to be represented by the same union that represents the companys workers in the US, brotherhood and all that. A plants age matters less than hours to build a car and Oshawa was always in the lead. This is politics at the Obama, Ren Centre and union levels.

    • 0 avatar
      28-cars-later

      Agreed, I suggested in a post somewhere on TTAC Oshawa takes the fall in place of a less efficient American plant because of the election year. RenCen’s hands are also tied in the Opel mess due to agreements with their union to not close plants until 2015, despite their successes or failures. Literally its the nice (and best) guy finishes last.


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  • Brendan McAleer, Canada
  • Marcelo De Vasconcellos, Brazil
  • Vojta Dobes, Czech Republic
  • Matthias Gasnier, Australia
  • W. Christian 'Mental' Ward, Abu Dhabi
  • Mark Stevenson, Canada
  • Cameron Aubernon, United States
  • J Emerson, United States