General Motors hasn't had much good news for its Michigan workers this year. So there were some smiles around the state last week when GM announced plans to shell out $545 million for future projects at five Michigan plants.
The big winner was the truck assembly plant in Pontiac. It gets $163 million to prepare to build next-generation Chevrolet and GMC full-sized pickups, starting late this year. The plant expects to add about 280 jobs.
GM also will spend: $152 million on a plant in Ypsilanti to increase production of six-speed transmissions for rear-wheel-drive vehicles. $138 million on the Grand River assembly plant in Lansing to expand the body shop. The plant is preparing for the next generation of Cadillac CTS, which goes into production in fall 2007. $60 million on upgrades at an engine plant in Romulus. $32 million on sheet hydroforming equipment at the stamping plant in Pontiac. Sheet hydroforming uses water pressure to mold pieces of steel around dies to form structural components. GM uses the parts on the Pontiac Solstice and Saturn Sky roadsters.