General Motors is under fire after a tweet by a key United Auto Workers official, who knocked the company for showing off two “foreign-made” in a high-profile Super Bowl ad.
Cindy Estrada, UAW vice president in charge of the union’s GM department, tweeted, ”Can’t believe GM would feature foreign-made vehicles on all-American Super Bowl.”
Estrada’s tweet came after Buick aired a Super Bowl ad starring NFL MVP Cam Newton and supermodel Miranda Kerr. The spot invites fans to “Experience the New Buick” by resetting expectations about the brand’s modern vehicles.
The commercial shows the positive reactions to the beauty and sophistication of Buick vehicles such as the Encore SUV, which is made in South Korea, and Cascada convertible, which is made in Poland, and provokes viewers with its “That’s a Buick?” theme.
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“Buick is experiencing unprecedented sales success and consumer awareness backed by remarkable third-party quality and reliability validation,” said Duncan Aldred, vice president of Global Buick Sales, Service and Marketing. “Our latest vehicles like the Encore and Cascada belong in the spotlight on a global stage only the Super Bowl can offer.”
The ad, “Pee Wee,” takes place at a Pee Wee football game where two dads are in the stands watching their kids play. As a Buick pulls into the parking lot, one of the men says, “Check out that Buick!” with delight. The other dad says, “If that’s a Buick, then my kid is Cam Newton.
The Buick Super Bowl spot and Estrada’s tweet come at a time when GM is being pressured by the Trump administration to create more manufacturing jobs in the U.S.
The UAW has long been critical of American trade policy but the skepticism about U.S. trade policy has been a major issue for new Trump administration, which has vowed to alter U.S. trade with Mexico, China and Western Europe.
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GM CEO Mary Barra, in the wake of President Donald Trump’s tweets about slapping a border tax on vehicles built in Mexico, has moved to engage the administration in discussions on economic policy.
“I’m pleased to have been part of a very constructive discussion on how we can all work together on policies that support a strong and competitive U.S. economy, create jobs and address safety and environmental issues,” Barra said in a statement after a meeting Friday of President Trump’s Strategic Policy Forum, which is supposed offer the administration advice on the economy.
“As we have stated, a vibrant U.S. economy that is competitive globally and that grows jobs is what we all want,” she said.
General Motors also announced Friday it will invest $47 million in its manufacturing facilities in Spring Hill, Tennessee, and Bay City, Michigan, to prepare for future product programs. The combined investments will result in 230 retained jobs in the U.S.
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This is part of a $1 billion investment in U.S. manufacturing operations announced by the company in January. GM has invested more than $21 billion in U.S. operations since 2009.