GM Cuts Truck Production, Big Style
The Detroit News reports that GM will be cutting one shift from its Flint, Pontiac, Oshawa, Ontario, and Janesville, WI factories by July 14. The slashing eliminates some 3,500 jobs from GM's North American workforce. The move eliminates produciton of some 50k body-on-frame vehicles– which have already fallen 100k due to the ongoing American Axle strike. Analyst Joe Phillippi of AutoTrends Consulting says this is gonna leave a mark. "These are the most profitable things they make, and losing those profits is going to hurt for the next three quarters." Still, there's no point in building 'em if nobody wants to buy them; GM has seen a 17 percent decline in pickup sales and a 29 percent drop in large SUVs in the first quarter of this year. Sure, cutting makes the powerless feel like they're in control, but until GM goes "down the road, not across the street," expect the misery and moodiness to continue.
Yes the unions have made it good for their members but that good has percolated down through the economy. Have any of you union haters looked down the road at what happens to the economy when all the high paying union jobs go overseas. Some people say who gives a sh*t if the manufacturing sector has to take drastic pay cuts, my job isn't tied to manufacturing so I'm safe. Without this money local, state/provincial, and federal governments lose tax revenue so they cut services. Educational institutions lose enrollment because students can't get loans from the gov't and their parents don't make enough to pay their tuition. You get the idea. Maybe you need to stop bashing the unions and ask why we allow anyone to ship product to our country without barriers but we can't ship to them.
I still think it would be a smart move, if technically feasible, to install the Atlas inline-6 into their trucks and maybe spare some of the bloodletting. It has substantially more horsepower (285 vs 195) and more torque (276 vs 260) than the Vortec V6, with roughly the same mileage. Maybe returning to an inline-6 would salvage some sales at the bottom (more frugal) end. Regardless, there will be bloodletting aplenty, and I wished I could say that was the end of it. Not a chance....just watched a show about the housing bust in Phoenix and the factors that led to it. Factors that are common in many places. The day of reckoning is not quite here yet, I fear.
The announcement that GM would start the demise of the shift at there factories in July this year, in the local press here in Ontario it states the layoff will be Sept 8th 2008, who is right?