GM Preps Third U.S. Plant to Make EVs
Spring Hill plant will continue to make piston-powered vehicles.
General Motors says it will spend $2 billion to enable its assembly plant in Spring Hill, Tenn., to make electric vehicles.
It’s GM’s third U.S. factory has targeted for EV retooling since early last year.
Spring Hill assembly plant (Image: GM)
$4.5 Billion Commitment
The company is investing $2.2 billion to transform its 35-year-old Detroit-Hamtramck plant—now known as Factory Zero— into an EV-only facility for electric SUVs, pickup trucks and driverless shuttles.
GM also is spending $300 million to add production of a new Chevrolet EV at its Orion Township assembly operation in Michigan. The Orion plant already makes the electric Chevy Bolt five-door hatchback.
The projects bring GM’s spending on U.S. EV production capacity to $4.5 billion in 19 months.
First Up: Cadillac Lyriq
The 7.9 million-sq-ft Spring Hill complex, which opened in 1990 to make Saturn sedans, is GM’s largest factory in North America. Its first EV will be the Cadillac Lyriq, which is expected in 2022.
GM’s $2 billion investment there will involve expanding the factory’s paint and body shops and making extensive upgrades to general assembly operations.
The 3,800 workers at Spring Hill will continue to build piston-powered Caddy XT5 and XT6 crossover vehicles. But GM is spending $100 million to move production of the next-generation GMC Acadia crossover vehicle from Spring Hill to the company’s Delta Township complex outside Lansing, Mich.
Making improvements to existing engines, as well as working toward something entirely different.
The Mazda CX-5 first appeared on the scene in 2012, and for 2017, the vehicle has undergone some major transformations, to enhance what was already a notable small crossover.
Lithium-ion batteries have become the technology of choice for EVs, and falling costs and rising energy levels could keep them on top for nearly two decades.