(Bloomberg) -- Unionized workers at General Motors' Equinox assembly plant in Ingersoll, Ontario, approved a four-year deal with the automaker that the union said will help to create "hundreds" of jobs.
The ratification assures uninterrupted production of the Equinox, one of GM's best-selling vehicles.
The agreement includes a C$3,000 ($2,910) signing bonus and annual lump sum payments of C$2,000 in 2014, 2015 and 2016, the union said. It protects current pension benefits for active workers and retirees and gives full-time jobs to hundreds of temporary workers, Unifor also said.
The plant in Ingersoll, known as CAMI, bargains separately from other GM plants represented by Unifor. Those factories reached a four-year labor agreement last year, which cut the hourly rate for new hires to C$20.40 from C$23.80. The agreement was similar to deals reached with Ford Motor Co. and Chrysler Group LLC.
GM on March 8 announced plans to invest in the Ingersoll plant to install body shop equipment and tools to permit the factory to build more types of vehicles. The factory also builds the GMC Terrain.
"We appreciate the frank and straightforward dialogue with our Unifor partners during this round of negotiations," GM said in a statement released today.
"Since 2009, GM has announced significant product allocation and investments in our Canadian manufacturing facilities demonstrating our commitment to Canada, including a $250 million investment at CAMI to install flexible body shop equipment and tooling, converting the manufacturing facility to support future vehicle production. Throughout the next four years, we will continue to work with our Unifor partners to identify opportunities to enhance the competitiveness of our Canadian operations."
Unifor was created last month by the merger of the Canadian Auto Workers and the Communications, Energy and Paperworkers union.
It represents about 2,500 employees at the CAMI facility.
U.S. Equinox sales have risen nearly 13 percent this year through August to 169,977. Only Chevy's Cruze compact car and Silverado pickup have delivered more sales for GM.
Chevy had a 41-day U.S. supply of the crossover on Sept. 1, well below the GM average of 64 days.
The Equinox is also assembled in Spring Hill, Tenn.
Automotive News staff contributed to this report.