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General Motors Adding 4,000 Jobs, Spending $6.5 Billion on EV Factories

by Victoria Santiago
(Photo by Bill Pugliano/Getty Images)

General Motors is planning on spending $6.5 billion on two EV plants in Michigan. The investment will create up to 4,000 new jobs. Based on a meeting agenda posted online, the state’s economic development board will approve an incentive package next week.

A breakdown of GM’s spending plan is as follows: $2.5 billion to build a new factory for electric-vehicle batteries in Lansing and $4 billion to change an Orion Township factory in an electric-vehicle factory. The new factory in Lansing will add an estimated 1,700 jobs, while the Orion Township factory will add 2,300 new jobs. Currently, the Orion Township plant employs around 1,100 people. The plant was making Chevrolet Bolt electric hatchbacks. However, Bolt production has recently stopped due to a recall.

“GM appreciates the support it has received from the Governor, the State Legislature, Orion Township, the City of Lansing, and Delta Township related to two prospective projects that GM is considering in Orion Township and Lansing,” Dan Flores said. Flores is a spokesperson for the automaker. “Until these projects receive final approval, we have no comment on potential announcement timing.”

This General Motors investment will be a big financial success for MI. The state has missed out on other automaker factories in the past, according to CNBC. In fact, the state was passed up four times by Ford for battery factories and an electric vehicle factory.

If it seems like a lot of automakers have been focusing their efforts on EVs, that’s because they are. Electric vehicle sales are expected to skyrocket within the next decade or so. As of right now, EVs make up about 3% of all car purchases in the US. Experts predict that EV sales will hit 1.2 million by 2023. By 2033, EVs could make up 44% of new vehicle sales.

General Motors Halts Production of Chevy Bolt Amidst Battery Issues

GM has been having issues with the Chevy Bolt for a few months now. Back in July 2021, the automaker first recalled almost 70,000 Chevrolet Bolts for battery problems. Not long after that, GM extended the recall to Bolts made from 2019 to 2022. Bolts included in the recall could have two serious battery defects: a torn anode table and folded separator. Batteries with these defects are more likely to catch on fire. GM has promised to replace the batteries with new ones that are defect-free. The estimated cost to replace all of the defective batteries is $1 billion.

“Our focus on safety and doing the right thing for our customers guides every decision we make at GM,” Doug Parks, GM Executive Vice President said. “GM customers can be confident in our commitment to taking steps to ensure the safety of these vehicles.”