Move to bring production in line with market demand Company to explore options to expand car production.
DETROIT - GM announced Monday, 4/28/08 that it is eliminating one shift of production at its full-size pickup truck assembly plants in Pontiac, Mich.; Flint, Mich.; and Oshawa, Ontario; and its full-size SUV assembly plant in Janesville, Wis. The decisions were made to bring production capacity more in line with market demand.
Under this plan, approximately 88,000 units of full-size pickup and 50,000 units of full-size SUV production will be removed from GM's North American production capacity for the remainder of the 2008 calendar year.
Based on current plans, the shift reductions will be effective on the following dates:
* Flint Assembly (Heavy Duty Chevrolet Silverado and GMC Sierra) - July 14
* Janesville (Chevrolet Tahoe and Suburban, GMC Yukon, Yukon XL) - July 14
* Pontiac Assembly (Chevrolet Silverado, GMC Sierra) - July 14
* Oshawa Truck (Chevrolet Silverado and GMC Sierra) - September 8
The full-size pickup truck and full-size SUV segments have softened for the entire industry - down 15 and 26 percent, respectively, through the first quarter of 2008. Nonetheless, GM remains the segment leader in both instances, with nearly 40 percent share of full-size trucks and more than 63 percent share in the full-size SUV market.
"With rising fuel prices, a softening economy, and a downward trend on current and future market demand for full-size trucks, a significant adjustment was needed to align our production with market realities," said Troy Clarke, president GM North America. "This is a difficult move, but we remain committed to retaining and growing our leadership position in the full-size truck market."
Clarke noted that with the market shifting toward cars and crossovers, GM is seeing strong sales of the new Chevrolet Malibu, Cadillac CTS, Chevrolet Cobalt, Pontiac G6, Chevrolet Impala, Buick Enclave and GMC Acadia. He added that the company is continuing to explore options to increase car and crossover production, but there are no changes to car production at this time.
The full-size truck production cuts will result in lower staffing requirements at all four plants, and those details will be worked out over the next several weeks with the UAW and CAW.
Our Take: If you've been in the market for a used truck or SUV, expect to find a lot more of them on lots now.