Something's Brewing at GM's Orion Assembly

Steph Willems
by Steph Willems

In the same week Ford Motor Company announced a battery-electric product surge bound for a Michigan assembly plant, General Motors looks ready to announce the same. Coincidence?

Media reports suggest we’ll have an announcement from GM on its Orion Assembly facility by the end of the day.

According to sources who spoke to Reuters, the automaker plans to invest $300 million into the suburban Detroit plant, which currently houses Chevrolet Bolt and Sonic production, as well as GM’s Cruise autonomous driving unit.

By all accounts, the investment isn’t a boring mobility play. It’s said the cash will prepare the factory for the arrival of new electric model. Is this the hazy electric Buick we’ve heard about forever, or perhaps the upcoming Cadillac EV crossover GM teased in Detroit in January?

The automaker itself teased the announcement on Thursday, mentioning that UAW officials and various politicos will be in tow. Sources claim the model is one originally slated for Chinese production, and the move would surely lead to the creation of hundreds of jobs in Michigan.

One thing’s for sure: the Chevrolet Sonic, now discontinued in Canada, doesn’t look long for this world. GM Authority reports major discounts on the subcompact model in March. How does 19 percent below MSRP sound? As the model’s sales fall in the U.S. and export markets dwindle, it’s looking increasingly likely that GM envisions a better use of the Sonic’s factory space.

Surely, a domestic plant investment would help remove some of the heat President Donald Trump dished out at the automaker this week.

[Image: General Motors]

Steph Willems
Steph Willems

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  • Detroit-X Detroit-X on Mar 22, 2019

    Compare that to a few days ago: "GM to invest $2.7 billion in Sao Paulo, Brazil factories"

  • Akear Akear on Mar 22, 2019

    What happens when the customers don't show up to buy these EV vehicles. Do you know the Impala currently outsells GM's entire current EV lineup.

    • Jatz Jatz on Mar 22, 2019

      "What happens when the customers don’t show up to buy these EV vehicles. " GM breathes a sigh of relief?