General Motors Corporation has just announced details of its accelerated plan to shed unused capacity as its market share continues to drop. The latest manufacturing plan reduces GM’s total number of assembly, powertrain and stamping facilities in the U.S. from 47 in 2008 to 34 by the end of 2010 and 33 by 2012.
GM says that under this plan, the “New GM” will achieve full capacity utilization of its assembly operations in 2011, two years ahead of what was scheduled in its Feb. 17 viability plan that was rejected by the Obama administration.
The latest moves, along with today’s bankruptcy filing will result in lower fixed costs per vehicle sold, and more efficient capital investment, the company claims.
The New GM, under agreement with the U.S. Treasury, will consist of GM’s strongest operations and brands from around the world, resulting in substantially less debt and lower operating costs than GM historically has carried. Whether it can turn around decade’s worth of share loss remains to be seen.
“Our manufacturing operations, which already are among the most productive in the industry, will emerge even leaner, stronger and more flexible, as part of the New GM,” said Gary Cowger Group Vice President of GM Global Manufacturing and Labor Relations. “Flexible manufacturing enables us to quickly respond to consumer preferences and changing market conditions.” (more…)