GM Europe's van producing plant at Luton, UK, is to halt production for one day later this month in response to falling European demand.

The three-shift operation plant (producer of Opel/Vauxhall Vivaro, Renault Trafic and Nissan Primastar vans) will drop three shifts on Friday 26th September.

In a statement GM Europe said:

"General Motors Europe is carefully watching the development of the various car and van markets in Europe so that we can react quickly and efficiently to changes in demand. This way, we can increase production in times of rising demand, as we did this year when we added extra shifts to accommodate markets in Eastern Europe and also here at the Luton plant. It follows, then, that in markets in which demand is reducing, in this case due to the current European economic situation, we must also adjust production. This flexibility is a strategy that shows GM Europe has learned from the past and will not simply keep building cars or vans for stock in changing markets."

Industry observers expect more down-days to follow, but a GM spokesman told just-auto that any further down-days at the plant have 'yet to be confirmed'.

Workers will be paid for the lost shifts on the 26th, but further discussions are expected to take place to determine payment arrangements on any additional down-days.

The GM Luton plant produced 95,030 vans in 2007 and has 1,500 employees.

GME slows Ellesmere Port output