GM Cuts Production at Orion Assembly to Combat Sagging Small Car Sales
To combat sagging sales, General Motors is primed to cut production on the Chevrolet Sonic and Buick Verano by more than 20% and lay off upwards of 100 employees at the Orion Assembly plant in Detroit. The move is yet another precipitated by decreasing demand for small cars in the United States.
Orion Assembly currently supports 1,581 hourly and 183 salaries employees, all of whom work on the production of the Sonic and Verano. With consumer demand increasingly turning to pickups, crossovers, and SUVs, small car sales have dropped precipitously. Sales of the Verano are down 15.6% through May, and sales of the Sonic are down 28.5%. As such, Automotive News says that plant officials will respond by cutting production from 33 cars per hour to 26 cars per hour.
GM is investing $160 million into Orion Assembly in order to prepare for production of the Chevy Bolt. Production on the 200-mile EV is slated to open in 2017, which leaves the possibility of added jobs over time. In the meantime, however, as many as 100 layoffs will result from the downturn in production, adding to additional weeks of downtime for the plant’s employees.
News Source: Automotive News (subscription required)