GM announced that the company will add a second shift and 1,200 jobs at its Detroit-Hamtramck assembly plant. GM builds 5 models on a single assembly line at Detroit-Hamtramck including the plug-in hybrids Chevrolet Volt and Cadillac ELR. The company says that the second shift is needed to meet forecasted market demand for the five models. The workforce at the plant will nearly double to 2,800 once the hiring is completed and the shift begin operations in early 2016.
GM started the production of the 2016 version of the Volt, which now has a range of 53 miles on its new battery pack – a 39% increase versus the previous generation. The 2016 Volt is limited only to CARB states and Canada, but the model will be short-lived and the 2017 will come sooner than anticipated to be available nationwide.
GM spokesman Mike Albano said the 2017 Volt should arrive “early this spring”. He confirmed the 2017 will include several new features and declined to revealed any, but he said they are unrelated to the car’s drivetrain.
The company seems to think that the strategy should be enough to increase demand for their flagship plug-in hybrid hence the second shift at the assembly plant.
Detroit-Hamtramck Assembly is a 4.1 million sq-ft plant built in 1985.
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Features. Yeah, we just need more features. That’ll make our dowdy looking kluges just fly off the showroom floor.
How about a strategy that can respond to a seismic event that has BEV adoption rates of 10% per year? In 10 years time ICE vehicles will be unsellable. Right now the BEV market is supply constrained. With a few major players (say Fiat, Nissan/Renault and the freshly converted VW) filling up the supply channels supplying the demand created by Tesla and Apple anyone not part of the future will be part of the past. GM blew their BEV lead once already. They could do it again, except they’ll never have it to blow.
Hint: The best technology in the smartest design. Tail fins not required.