General Motors Adding More Workers To Volt Plant

Aaron Cole
by Aaron Cole

General Motors announced Thursday that it would add a second shift to a flexible Detroit plant to prepare for upcoming demand for its cars.

GM will add roughly 1,200 jobs to Detroit-Hamtramck this year to help it build new models, the automaker said in a statement. The plant builds the Chevrolet Volt, Impala and Malibu and the Cadillac ELR there on a single production line. Production of the Cadillac CT6 will start there in early 2016.

According to Automotive News, the plant has three separate lines that can produce a varying number of cars from the Volt to the upcoming redesigned Buick LaCrosse, if production of that car shifts from Kansas City.

The report also says that while the automaker has invested about $1 billion into the 4.1-million square-foot facility over the last five years, the plant has been largely under-utilized. Only 48,400 vehicles have been produced at Hamtramck so far this year. GM’s similarly sized Fairfax plant in Kansas has made around 140,000 this year.

Hamtramck also makes limited quantities of the Malibu and Impala in addition to the Fairfax and Oshawa plants that normally produce those cars. While demand for the Malibu is spiking — especially in Korea — the Impala faces a more uncertain future.

GM CEO Mary Barra recently said that the automaker would consider all models’ performances and futures, and considering Impala’s doesn’t look particularly bright at the moment, the added shift could be particularly unsettling for GM’s Oshawa plant. Sales of the Impala have drifted since their peak in 2007, when Chevrolet sold more than 311,000 models in the U.S. In 2014, Chevrolet sold less than half: 140,280, according to our own Tim Cain.

Automotive News reported that Hamtramck produced about 27,000 Impalas at Hamtramck, compared to 76,000 in Oshawa.

A GM spokeswoman said the added workers at Hamtramck would build all models at the plant — including Impala.

Join the conversation
3 of 15 comments
  • Shaker Shaker on Oct 23, 2015

    Despite its flaws, the Equinox has served Chevy very well in its present form; but it needs to morph into something lighter and more fuel efficient.

    • RideHeight RideHeight on Oct 23, 2015

      This. I think the 'Nox is a miserably unsung homerun for Chevy. August 2015 YTD for the gold-standard CR-V was 229,574 sold. Same for the 'Nox was 192, 505. How many other domestic products can run with the Japanese? Only Ford's CUVs, to my knowledge.

  • Sgeffe Sgeffe on Oct 25, 2015

    Good God, just as long as they don't ever shutter that plant! I can still remember the hoo-hah surrounding that -- an entire Polish enclave of Hamtramck known as "Poletown" was razed to build that thing, back in 1981. Until I just looked at the Wikipedia article, I had forgotten about the sit-in at one of the Catholic churches in the affected area, the Michigan Supreme Court ruling in GM's favor, and Hizzoner Himself, Mayor Coleman Young (who always spoke "city of Detroit" as "citi-a'Troit," being behind it; I do remember the proceedings making national headlines. The site included a former Chrysler plant, and a Jewish cemetery sits under one of the parking lots; Mr. Schreiber, can you provide more detail on that?

  • Chuck Norton And guys are having wide spread issues with the 10 speed transmission with the HP numbers out of the factory......
  • Zerofoo "Hyundais just got better and better during the 1990s, though, and memories of those shoddy Excels faded."Never. A friend had an early 90s Hyundai Excel as his college beater. One day he decided that the last tank of gas he bought was worth more than the car. He drove it to empty and then he and his fraternity brothers pushed it into the woods and left it there.
  • Kwik_Shift There are no new Renegades for sale within my geographic circle of up to 85 kms. Looks like the artificial shortage game. They bring one in, 10 buyers line up for it, $10,000 over MSRP. Yeah. Like with a lot of new cars.
  • Ribbedroof In Oklahoma, no less!
  • Ribbedroof Have one in the shop for minor front collision repairs right now,I've seen more of these in the comments than in the 30 years I've been in collision repair.