General Motors officials announced on Friday that the company will reduce production at the Orion Assembly, followed by a cut off in staff.
The decision is due to decreasing sales and shift of consumer interest to other models than those on the assembly line at the suburban Detroit Orion Assembly.
The vehicles that are targeted in the decision are Chevrolet Sonics and Buick Veranos. Production will be cut off by 21 percent with only 26 models produced hourly as to the current 33 models per hour.
The past year has seen several cut offs in both vehicle production and employee numbers as the gasoline price has maintained a constant low and consumers shifted to both trucks and crossovers in the detriment of small-town cars.
Since January, General Motors counted three weeks of downtime in January, March and April. The fourth week is planned around July 4th, resulting in assembly line workers’ being laid off and a smaller production rate for the Chevrolet Sonics and Buick Veranos at the Orion car-plant.
Compared to the same period in 2014, Chevrolet Sonic registered a 28.5 percent decrease in sales from January to May. In the same timespan, Buick Verano sales decreased by 15.6 percent.
Christopher Bonelli, spokesman for General Motors declared that the move is indented to align market demand and production capacity at the Orion assembly line.
When production of the two vehicle models began in 2011, General Motors modernized the Orion car-plant, investing 545 million dollars in assembly line.
The current announcement falls in line with General Motors lessons learned approach. In 2009, vehicle production well above market demand nearly prompted the automaker in declaring bankruptcy. A cleverly designed strategy included restructuring to save General Motors.
The cuts in production and staffing in the Orion Assembly greatly aided General Motors to reduce the inventories of the two models at car dealers. In February, the Sonic nearly five year-old model counted a 216 day supply at dealers. As of June 1, the same mode counted a 67-day supply, while the Verano model counted a 51-day supply.
The Orion car-plant counts 180 salaried positions, as well as a variable 1,580 hourly workers. A total of 260 will be laid off by the end of the year according to official accounts.
Following the small restructuring, General Motors will accomplish a new modernizing of the Orion assembly line with an investment of 160 million dollars.
The newly re-equipped car-plant will start producing Chevy Bolt in 2017. Chevy Bolt is announced to be General Motor’s electric vehicle boasting 200 miles of driving with one charge.
Image Source: detnews.com