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The five week-old strike at American Axle is finally starting to wear on GM, and the General has decided to move a small but crucial parts contract over to rival supplier Dana to help get its truck plants moving again. The 30,000-unit prop shaft contract for light pickups is considered a small deal, but the fact that GM is beginning to move on shows that the strike, which began on February 26, is beginning to take its toll on the giant automaker. The move is going to anger the striking workers, but it will also likely help get American Axle management back at the bargaining table.
Recent events show that still more GM plants are being hurt by the strike, as the plant that builds the Buick Lucerne and Cadillac DTS was shut down last Friday, and Automotive News reports the Chevy Cobalt plant could idle this week. Perhaps the biggest news of all is that GM is running out of rear suspension knuckles for the hot-selling Chevy Malibu. Since the General is in the middle of a mega-million dollar ad push for the North American Car of the Year, we're guessing a work stoppage at the Orion, MI plant won't be taken lightly. This ever-lengthening strike may have started out as a non-story, but lost production on a grand scale of some of GM's most profitable products will hurt GM, American Axle, and its 3,600 workers in the long run.

[Source: Automotive News - subs. req'd]


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  • 12 Comments
      • 7 Years Ago
      They could probably get a Chinese supplier to get this part done quickly and cheaply.
        • 7 Years Ago
        probably, but quality control would not be there.

        not to say it couldnt eventually be sourced foreign but I dont see that as an option for right now.

      • 7 Years Ago
      This is good news for DANA. They need all the work they can get right now. They have taken some big hits in the last few years. It may be a small order now, but it could turn into more orders in the future.

      I am wonder why Dodge has not been effected though. The RAM 2500 and 3500 both use AAM axles.
      • 7 Years Ago
      I wonder how long before they put protesters in front of DANA offices?

      I wonder if they will use actual union members or instead hire low wage no benefit bums to hold signs like the unions do down here?

      • 7 Years Ago
      If one place can't supply it, go somewhere else. That's the way business works. They shouldn't be in it to make buddies, they should be in it to satisfy demand from their customers. If you can't get what you want from AA, go somewhere else... maybe a non-union shop... that'd be funny... then maybe the stupid union will get the hint.
      • 7 Years Ago
      Don't expect AA management to come to the table, expect AA management to shift more work to their Mexico plant.
      • 7 Years Ago
      market forces are as real as the laws of physics. Businesses are pressured to make money. Employees are pressured to make money. And discerning consumers want to get what they pay for.

      Seeing how these jobs do not require a lot of education, there are plenty of people in other parts of the world who are willing to work harder for less pay. There is no way around it.

      In this economy, you better specialize, or your job will get shipped elsewhere. It even applies in medicine, which is the field I am going into. Radiology is a specialty that is arleady seeing jobs being outsourced. Since looking at X-Rays and CT images doesn't require you to be actually in the US, there are some hospitals that use indian doctors to look at X-rays for them.
      • 7 Years Ago
      Good for GM.

      Union thuggery only works when they control all of the output. Let's hope Dana can get the parts to GM quickly and that American Axle can hire some people who actually want to work.
        • 6 Years Ago
        the workers on strike at american axel WANT to work. they dont want to take a stiff pay cut. they are asking to keep their wages the same... whats wrong with that? why take money from hard working people? why give the work to someone who will only hurt the economy? by hiring scabs, they will be able to make even higher profits while paying their workers less and less... wheres the money to stimulate the economy? oh yeah! its in GMs pockets!
      • 7 Years Ago
      My 20 years as a reluctant member of IAM showed me what unions are best at------killing companies & supporting deadbeats.
      • 7 Years Ago
      What exactly is the point of a 5+ week strike where they aren't even willing to sit down at the bargaining table? Does the UAW think that walking out on the job and crippling an already weak supplier industry will suddenly force their superiors to concede bushels of cash without any kind of negotiations? I thought striking was about walking off the job to get TO the bargaining table, not away from it--and for over a month at that. Keep it up for another month and they'll get what they bargained for: nothing. No job to go back to, no pay, and no company. Sounds like a great plan.