General Motors on Thursday said it would spend US$117m to prepare its Oshawa assembly plant in Ontario, Canada, to build the new Cadillac XTS, creating or retaining 400 jobs on the ‘flex line’ there.

“Kevin Williams, president and managing director of General Motors of Canada said: “Adding the Cadillac XTS affirms GM’s commitment to a strong manufacturing base in Canada, ensuring Oshawa will have a critical role in the ongoing transformation of Cadillac.

Oshawa has undergone major changes in the last year having added the Chevrolet Equinox and Camaro Convertible and the Buick Regal [the latter a essentially a rebadged Insignia transferred from an Opel plant in Germany]. These expansions resulted in the addition of two new shifts and 1,300 employees. Oshawa also builds the Chevrolet Camaro and Impala, and employs over 4,500 people combined.

“Having added three new products, two new shifts, and hundreds of new employees this past year, Oshawa has undergone tremendous changes,” sais plant manager Dan Hermer.

XTS is being designed to compete against top luxury cars. “It takes a new, modern approach to the large luxury sedan, combining high-tech electronics and engaging driving dynamics in a car that is also elegant and spacious,” GM said.

XTS Platinum concept last year, the final production version will be revealed within months. Production is planned to start in the first half of 2012.