General Motors Co. announced February 28 that it would hire a combined 1,200 more people at its factories in Lansing, Michigan. Lansing Delta Township assembly will add a third shift of 800 workers to speed production of mid-size SUVs like the Chevrolet Traverse and Buick Enclave, while Lansing Grand River assembly will hire 400 people at a second shift making Cadillacs.
The new jobs at GM’s two newest factories are set to shore up production of popular mid-size SUVs. Sales for the Traverse rose last year even despite the 40-day United Auto Worker strike that bruised supply lines, and a spokesman for GM told Bloomberg News the third shift at Lansing Delta Township was to fill demand. In 2019, GM pledged to invest $7.7 billion in U.S. operations as a part of its agreement with the UAW. The new jobs at the Delta Township assembly plant were not included in that deal. In a statement, UAW VP Terry Dittes said UAW members “look forward to many more years of success in Lansing.”
According to GM, the latest announcement brings GM’s total investment in the Lansing plants to more than a billion dollars since 2015, including combined investments in 2018 of $211 million to modernize Lansing Grand River’s stamping equipment and produce mid-sized SUVs.
According to recent research by the Center for Automotive Research, GM is one of the largest investors in U.S. car manufacturing, investing $44.3 billion in the industry since 2000. GM is also the second-largest vehicle producer in the United States behind Ford, producing 1.7 million light vehicles last year to Ford’s 2.2, and the third-largest domestic engine producer, according to the CAR report.
The newly announced shifts for the Lansing plants are expected to be operational by the second quarter of 2020, according to GM.