DETROIT—General Motors says it will add a third shift and 750 jobs to a Flint, Mich., factory that makes Chevrolet Silverado and GMC Sierra pickup trucks.
The automaker says it is adding the shift in response to demand for heavy-duty pickups. The shift will start in the third quarter.
GM will fill the shift by recalling laid off workers who will start arriving in the second quarter. It expects to hire no new employees.
The Flint factory currently runs two production shifts and employs about 2,100 hourly and salaried workers. It made 115,000 trucks last year.
Mark Reuss, president of GM North America, says the move “brings jobs and a needed economic boost to the Flint area.”
The automaker has also announced success overseas, selling more cars and trucks in China last year than it did in the U.S., for the first time in its 102-year history.
GM sold 2.35 million vehicles in fast-growing China, about 136,000 more than it sold in the U.S., with China sales surging 29 per cent as an expanding middle class gained wealth. Sales in the U.S., including heavy-duty vehicles, rose 6.3 per cent as GM continued to rebound from its 2009 stay in bankruptcy protection.
It reports double-digit jumps in five of its top 10 markets last year, including a 12.4 per cent sales rise in Russia and a 10.4 per cent rise in Brazil.
GM spokesman Tom Henderson said the company isn’t focusing on the race with Toyota or any other car maker.
“A financially healthy and sustainable business that benefits our customers, stakeholders and employees takes precedence over any ranking. Our motivation is to be the best global company and let the numbers speak for themselves,” he said.
2011 The Canadian Press