By on February 1, 2017

2016 Chevrolet Cruze Front 3/4

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]

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16 Comments on “Chevrolet Cruze Given More Vacation Time as GM Drains Product Glut...”

  • avatar

    The only way that sedans have a chance of surviving is to make them more sporty…I have a feeling that they will become a niche player in the years to come.

    And/or make them all wagons.

  • avatar

    When is the diesel going to be released?

    I’m hearing that it will be available with automatic and manual trans as well as throwing in two years of satellite radio and OnStar for free. That might actually make it an interesting buy for anyone with a long commute.

  • avatar
    SCE to AUX

    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.

  • avatar
    Kyree S. Williams

    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.

  • avatar
    Dave M.

    Yet TrueCar only shows roughly $4-500 off msrp at transaction time, so that there may be your problem…

    • 0 avatar

      Did you try “CarGurus”? It seems to be easier to find desperate dealers on there as of late.

      I’m seeing some LS models in my area knocked down from $20K to a little over $16K.

      • 0 avatar

        CarGurus is where dealerships put their imaginary, impossibly low priced cars to bring the sheep to slaughter. So’s

        They then give you the:

        “Is it only the blue automatic 2017 Cruze LS you’re interested in– or would you be interested in similar vehicles, at an even greater savings?!”

        I know this dance quite well.

  • avatar

    Perhaps if they hadn’t styled it to look like a cheap Kia Forte knockoff, and overpriced it, it would do better…

    • 0 avatar

      Yep, the stylists missed the boat. You want to keep those high transaction prices, you have to use traditional luxury cues. Put a Rolls Royce grille on it, with a vertical rear window and opera lights, and maybe a spare tire bulge in the trunk lid, and wire wheel hubcaps. While they’re at it, put some bulging fake chrome on those body color bumper clips so it looks like they’re real bumpers, with chrome side spears, and chrome top lines on the fenders – and where’s the hood ornament? Don’t forget the instrument panel, that needs chrome, and fake ivory knobs, and round chrome rimmed gauges. Do all that and they’ll sell like hotcakes.

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