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US: GM to invest $1.3bn for five US plant upgrades

By Dave Leggett | 17 December 2013

General Motors has said it will invest nearly $1.3bn in five manufacturing sites in Michigan, Ohio and Indiana to produce new fuel-efficient engines and transmissions (including a new 10-speed transmission), boost vehicle quality and streamline logistics. The company says the investments will create or retain some 1,000 jobs.

The investments will support production of a new V6 engine, new 10-speed transmission and an existing 6-speed transmission. They will also fund assembly plant upgrades, including a new paint shop and logistics optimisation centre.

"GM is committed to a strong American manufacturing base and creating jobs in dozens of communities throughout the country. Today's announced plant upgrades continue the momentum of a resurgent auto industry," said GM Executive Vice President and North America President Mark Reuss. "More importantly, these investments add up to higher quality and more fuel-efficient vehicles for our customers."

The UAW also strongly supported GM's investment strategy. UAW Vice President Joe Ashton, who directs the union's GM Department, said: "Today's announcement is a win for American workers. The UAW is proud to be a part of this successful collaboration with GM that has helped rebuild the nation's economy, created good paying, union jobs in communities across the country, and brought manufacturing that was moved overseas back to the US. This is further proof that collective bargaining works."

GM's nearly $1.3 billion investment includes:

The 10-speed automatic transmission will contribute to improved fuel economy and performance. Details about this program and the new V6 engine will be announced later, the company added.