A new all-electric Chevrolet vehicle model will be built at the same Orion Township factory in Michigan that already produces the Bolt EV, according to a General Motors announcement today.
GM officials had previously said just over a year ago that two new EV models would be introduced within 18 months that would be based on the Bolt EV’s technology and platform. The statement today confirmed the new vehicle “will be designed and engineered off an advanced version” of the Bolt architecture but said further product information would be released at a later time closer to production.
The decision will bring 400 new jobs to the factory and represents an investment of $300 million dollars, according to the company.
The new Chevrolet EV will be in addition to the recent announcement that Cadillac will get the first model to use a future “BEV3” platform being developed for vehicles introduced several years from now. GM has said is will have 20 electric models globally in that timeframe.
According to GM, this new Orion-built EV was originally planned for assembly outside the US but the company ultimate moved its production to Michigan to take advantage of a provision in the recently updated successor to the NAFTA trade agreement with Canada and Mexico.
The same factory also currently builds the Chevrolet Sonic and specialized versions of the Bolt used by its Cruise subsidiary for developing and testing fully automated driving.
GM also noted that it has 2,700 job openings at factories that remain open after its recent restructuring announcement that closed or “unallocated” five factories in the US and Canada resulting in a loss of 2,800 jobs. It said over 1,100 employees from closing plants had already been reassigned with several hundred others in the process of being placed in new jobs.
The company said a further $1.5 billion in investments elsewhere will add 700 more jobs in US manufacturing locations.
Today’s announcement comes after President Donald Trump’s recent twitter attacks on General Motors for closing an assembly plant in Ohio.