Production of the 2011 Chevrolet Volt marks an important transition for General Motors. It's the first plug-in electric drive vehicle that the automaker is building for sale to anyone that wants one. No more of the limited lease-only deals that were done with the EV1 a decade ago. To demonstrate its commitment to transforming transportation, GM decided to build the Volt on its home ground right in Detroit.
Today, GM is announcing it's spending $336 million to re-tool the Detroit-Hamtramck assembly plant to build the Volt. The factory, which had been building the Cadillac DTS and Buick Lucerne, is being refurbished for the Volt. GM will start building pre-pilot Volts on its assembly iine around March of 2010 to verify the production processes. The Hamtramck plant will also build the Opel/Vauxhall Ampera beginning later in 2011 for European consumption.
The Hamtramck investment is part of $700 million being invested in Michigan facilities to produce the Volt and its components. That includes a new engine line at the Flint South engine plant and the battery pack assembly plant in Brownstown Township south of Detroit.