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Archive for the ‘GM’ Category

Ford Negotiating Deal to Revive Long-Time Symbol of Detroit Decay

Automaker reportedly looking to purchase long-abandoned Michigan Central train station.

by on Mar.20, 2018

The 18-story Michigan Central Station was once the world's tallest railroad depot.

Ford Motor Co. is negotiating the purchase of the old Michigan Central train station a mile from the city’s downtown, according to numerous sources.

The 500,000 square-foot tower, once the world’s tallest railroad depot, has served as a symbol of the Motor City’s decay since closing three decades ago. But if the deal comes together, insiders suggest, it could serve as a sign that Detroit’s nascent renaissance is truly taking hold.

Industry News!

It would also bring Ford back in a big way to the city where it was born. The automaker was incorporated along the Detroit riverfront and founder Henry Ford’s earliest factories were just miles away from the Michigan Central Station. But for most of the last century, Ford has centered its operations in Dearborn, a suburb to the west of Detroit that largely escaped the economic collapse of Motown.


GM Investing $100M in Tooling for Cruise AV, Autonomous Roof Racks

by on Mar.15, 2018

The Cruise AV will be built at the Orion Township, Michigan plant were GM builds the Chevy Bolt EV.

General Motors continues to put its money where its mouth is when it comes to autonomous vehicles, this time to the tune of $100 million.

The company is investing that cash in two Michigan facilities that will build its Cruise AV driverless car as well as the roof modules that contain all of the equipment needed to make the vehicle drive on its own, such as radar, LiDAR, cameras, etc.

Automotive Insight!

The new Cruise autonomous vehicles will be built at GM’s Orion Township assembly plant, north of Detroit. This makes sense as another self-driving vehicle produced by GM, the Bolt EV, is also built at the plant. (more…)

GM’s Use of Wind Power Continues to Grow

Company's goal is to use 100% renewable energy by 2050.

by on Mar.13, 2018

General Motors' Orion, Michigan plant is one of several of the company's facilities employing renewable energy.

General Motors continues to expand its use of alternative energy to power up its factories in the U.S and abroad.

In the last move, GM confirmed that its working with Consumers Energy, a utility company based in Jackson, Michigan, moving from what is described as “brown” energy to renewable energy, specifically electricity generated by a new wind farm to power two factories key factories in Flint, Michigan.

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The utility said GM and Switch are the first participants in a new Consumers Energy program to help large businesses use large renewable energy sources. Both companies are now matching 100% of their electric use at key operations in Michigan with wind-generated power. (more…)

Ford, GM Sales in China Move in Opposite Directions

New product key to strong sales.

by on Mar.12, 2018

Jim Hackett, Ford president and CEO, discusses the plans to expand sales in China.

Ford Motor Co. suffered another sharp reversal of fortune in China during February where it reported vehicle sales dropped 30% from a year earlier while General Motors continues to roll up sales.

The sales drop by Ford appeared to reflect a dearth of new products as the company continued to struggle in the world’s largest auto market.

Global News!

Ford’s sales dropped 18% in January and in February totaled just 47,483 vehicles, accounting for the 30% drop mentioned earlier. (more…)

GM Boosting Bolt EV Production as Demand Surges

CEO Barra asking Congress to expand electric-car tax credits.

by on Mar.08, 2018

There's significant room to expand Chevy Bolt EV production at GM's Orion Assembly Plant.

General Motors plans to expand production of its first long-range battery-car, the Chevrolet Bolt EV, CEO Mary Barra said during an energy conference in Houston.

The Bolt has experienced stronger than expected demand in recent months, some analysts suggesting that is the result of the slow ramp-up of production for Tesla’s own mainstream EV, the Model 3.

Plug In Now!

Demand has also been buoyed by $7,500 federal tax credits that bring the base price of the Bolt down below $30,000. But under the current rules, GM is expected to soon see the credits phase out, something that could cut into demand, leading Barra to say that, “We feel tax credits should be expanded so our customers continue to receive the benefits going forward.”


Cadillac Puts Wahl Up as New Marketing Chief

New CMO building on predecessor's efforts.

by on Mar.07, 2018

Cadillac named Deborah Wahl, former marketing chief at McDonalds, to be CMO. She's held several posts within the auto industry.

Cadillac needs all the help it can get from a lot of different places, and it’s getting it.

General Motors’ luxury brand announced it is bringing on Deborah Wahl, an executive with experience inside and outside the automotive industry, to serve as Global Chief Marketing Officer at a critical time in the brand’s transformation.

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Wahl’s appointment is effective March 26 and comes on the heels of Cadillac’s effort to create a splash during the annual Academy Award telecast. The show drew a disappointingly small audience. (more…)

Opinion: Mid-Engine Corvette: Too Little, Too Late?

Our veteran spy photographer says electric drive is the way to go.

by on Mar.02, 2018

Off to a rocky start? Our spy photographer thinks GM is on the wrong path with its mid-engine Vette.

Drop the mid-engine Corvette. Now.

It’s time for GM to stop its development of an icon vehicle, the 20?? mid-engine Corvette. Yes, the long, long overdeveloped car that has diverted GM’s innovational (?) attention for over 25 years. The car could be way behind what is happening in the 2-seat racing-type model of today.

Automotive Insight!

Huge changes are ongoing in the automobile business. We all see that. Car companies are formed and reformed, replaced, absorbed. New technologies are in huge development – autonomous cars and trucks are surely on the way. Electrics are moving – in some instances, shoved – on the scene, replacing the internal combustion engine.


First Look: 2019 GMC Sierra: More Than a Silverado Clone

Full-size pickup gets world’s carbon fiber bed, six-way tailgate.

by on Mar.01, 2018

The 2019 GMC Sierra loses as much as 360 pounds compared to the outgoing pickup.

It’s traditionally been easy to dismiss the GMC Sierra as little more than a glorified Chevrolet Silverado, but with today’s unveiling of the 2019 Sierra it seems the GMC truck is going to be due a lot more respect.

True, it shares the same underlying platform and basic dimensions of the more down-market Chevy, but the 2019 truck is no clone, claiming a variety of first-ever innovations that include a carbon fiber bed, a six-way tailgate, a swiveling backup-camera mirror and a large head-up display.

Keep On Trucking!

“GMC ignited the premium truck segment 17 years ago with the original launch of the Sierra Denali,” said Duncan Aldred, vice president of Global GMC. “The next generation 2019 Sierra Denali establishes a new benchmark in capability and refinement. It exemplifies precision in every detail.”


VEBA Stock Sale May Cost UAW Seat on GM’s Board

If union sells 40 million shares, it falls below threshold for board seat.

by on Feb.28, 2018

Former UAW VPsJoe Ashton resigned from the GM's Board after investigators questioned him about the FCA/UAW training funds scam.

General Motors Co. announced the United Auto Workers Retiree Medical Benefits Trust, aka the VEBA Trust, intends sell 40 million shares, or about 29% of the trust, of GM common stock in an underwritten secondary offering.

The VEBA will receive all of the proceeds from this offering, which could raise as much as $1.6 billion. No shares are being sold by GM; however, the automaker plans to buy $100 million worth of the available shares. With a stock price hovering just above $40 a share that equates to about 2.5 million shares.

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But the sale, which is covered by rules set down following GM’s 2009 bankruptcy, could end the union’s presence on the company’s board of directors. The union must retain 50% of the shares it received as part of the bankruptcy plan. (more…)

GM’s Proposed $2.8B Investment Could Head Off Showdown or Shutdown in South Korea

Automaker looking at two new models; but union warning of strike.

by on Feb.21, 2018

GM is looking to shut down its underutilized Gunsan plant in South Korea.

General Motors is offering to add two new models to its South Korean line-up as part of a $2.8-billion, 10-year investment plan that could forestall a clash with the government and its union workers.

A week ago, GM announced plans to close its underutilized Gunsan plant, one of four assembly lines in Korea, and it strongly hinted that it was considering pulling out of the country entirely if it couldn’t reverse deep, ongoing losses.

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In return, the Detroit automaker is seeking financial assistance from the South Korean government and is expected to also seek some aid from its traditionally militant unions. But, in turn, workers are warning that if GM doesn’t move quickly to assure a future for those plants they could strike. (more…)