In a piece of extraordinarily good news for the Canadian automotive industry, General Motors yesterday announced it is investing $1 billion CAD to increase production of its full-size pickup trucks in Canada.
The announcement came courtesy GM CEO Mary Barra, and it is part of a new agreement between the automaker and Unifor, the union representing auto workers in Canada. General Motors says that strong demand for the Chevrolet Silverado and GMC Sierra is one of the catalysts for the move. Red-hot demand in the U.S. for pickups helped GM enjoy stronger-than-expected revenues in Q3 of 2020.
The Oshawa plant that will handle part of the production of the trucks has experience with the vehicle format. It did final assembly work on pickups that were partially assembled at GM’s plant in Fort Wayne, Indiana.
The automaker will also invest in its propulsion plant in Ste. Catharines and in its parts factory in Woodstock.
"We have been operating our full-size pickup plants around the clock to meet exceptionally robust demand for the Chevrolet Silverado and the GMC Sierra in the United States and Canada. The fact is we simply can't build enough. And because we expect demand to remain strong, we must increase our capacity."
- GM CEO Mary Barra
GM says it expects to start construction on the Oshawa facility’s new body shop and flexible assembly module as soon as its deal with Unifor is ratified. The Oshawa plant will restart operations in early 2022.