General Motors is planning to invest $7 billion into four Michigan manufacturing sites in what the company bills as the largest single investment announcement in GM history.
This $7 billion windfall will create 4,000 new jobs for the state, ensure that another 1,000 jobs stay in Michigan and is intended to significantly boost battery cell and electric truck manufacturing capacity.
It's a massive investment not just in Michigan, but in the ability for the U.S. to compete with China and guarantee a domestic production base for electric vehicles and the batteries that will power them.
Among the buildout GM is planning are massive new factories for lithium ion batteries, a conversion of an existing assembly plant for the upcoming Chevrolet Silverado EV and the electric GMC Sierra, which would be the second plant GM has on the roster to build full-size electric pickups.
"Today we are taking the next step in our continuous work to establish GM's EV leadership by making investments in our vertically integrated battery production in the U.S., and our North American EV production capacity," said Mary Barra, GM Chair and CEO, in a statement. "We are building on the positive consumer response and reservations for our recent EV launches and debuts, including GMC HUMMER EV, Cadillac LYRIQ, Chevrolet Equinox EV and Chevrolet Silverado EV. Our plan creates the broadest EV portfolio of any automaker and further solidifies our path toward U.S. EV leadership by mid-decade."
GM's announcement follow a few months of setbacks after the company was forced to put production of its Bolt model on hold and halt retail sales of the electric vehicle.
The company has also had to contend with the surging popularity of Ford's electric vehicle offerings, with both the Mustang EV and the highly anticipated electric F-150 that's soon to roll off assembly lines receiving raves and inking solid sales numbers.
GM has set its sights on becoming the leading electric vehicle automaker in North America by 2025.
With the new Orion and Ultium Cells investments, the company will be able to produce 600,000 trucks by the time both factories reach full capacity.
These long term investments are complimented by nearer term moves to boost capacity at two Lansing, Mich.-area vehicle assembly plants for what the company called "product enhancements".
The Orion Assembly site will involve a $4 billion investment to convert the facility to EV production using the company's skateboard platform for EVs. The company said that this new upgrade would bring in 2,350 new jobs and keep 1,000 current jobs when the plant is operational.
The LG Energy and GM joint venture, Ultium Cells, will require another $2.6 billion for a battery cell manufacturing plant that will add another 1,700 jobs.
This push to boost electric vehicle manufacturing promises to be a boon to under-resourced communities in Tennessee and Michigan along with investments in Mexico and Canada.
GM estimates that by the end of 2025 it will have more than 1 million unites of electric vehicle capacity.
"These important investments would not have been possible without the strong support from the Governor, the Michigan Legislature, Orion Township, the City of Lansing, Delta Township as well as our collaboration with the UAW and LG Energy Solution," Barra said in a statement. "These investments also create opportunities in Michigan for us to bring our employees along on our transition to an all-electric future."