Chevrolet Cruze Given More Vacation Time as GM Drains Product Glut
The compact Chevrolet Cruze will get more time off this year, which isn’t something the people who build it want to hear.
According to The Detroit News, General Motors is planning to add “several weeks” of downtime at its Lordstown, Ohio assembly plant as the once hot-selling passenger car market takes an ice water bath. The plant saw a third production shift cut last month, impacting 1,200 line workers.
This latest news comes at an ominous time for builders of traditional cars.
GM won’t say exactly how long the plant will be idled, only that it needs to slow production to ease overstocked inventories. The glut is being felt by almost all GM passenger cars — a situation that forced the automaker to announce the looming layoffs of several thousand workers in December.
Workers were notified this morning of the extra weeks tacked onto the Cruze’s build schedule.
In December, GM had a 121-day supply of Cruze models, which is far above the 70-day industry ideal. By the end of January, that supply was down to 100 days. Improving, but still not in the sweet spot.
“We want our members to get back to work,” Robert Morales, president of UAW Local 1714, told The Detroit News. “We’re keeping our hopes up.” Morales said 235 workers got the axe when the plant’s third shift was cut.
While fewer jobs and fewer available hours doesn’t help workers, the news out of Lordstown isn’t all bad. January Cruze sales were the highest since the model came on the market. At 19,949 units, sales of the compact sedan and hatch surpassed all but one month from last year’s sales tally.
Still, annual sales have declined every year since the model’s 2014 high water mark.
[Image: General Motors]
Meanwhile, Camaro inventory remains around 174 days. GM should stop its production completely, redesign the car, and release it as a 2019 model with more modest production numbers.
That's interesting. Typically, it's been GM's tactic to keep overproducing cars when there's a glut. It's Ford who often halts shifts or product lines altogether.
Yet TrueCar only shows roughly $4-500 off msrp at transaction time, so that there may be your problem...
Perhaps if they hadn't styled it to look like a cheap Kia Forte knockoff, and overpriced it, it would do better...