General Motors and Chrysler representatives have just gone through two weeks with President Obama's newly-formed automotive task force, and now it's time for the political types to gain some insight into automotive production. The task force is headed to Detroit this morning to get a crash course on the intricacies that go into making a car or truck, including meetings with automakers and the United Auto Workers. The meetings carry a lot of weight considering the fact that GM and Chrysler have stated that they will need more federal loans by the end of the month to keep out of bankruptcy. During their tour of the city, task force members will get a test drive in a Chevrolet Volt prototype and tour the Dodge Ram truck plant.

The task force's job is to study the automaker's plans and determine if additional funds will lead to future viability or if the government is simply throwing good money after bad. Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner said that he's looking to see if the restructuring efforts show that the automakers are "on a path to long-term viability without government support." GM, which has already received $13.4 billion in loans, is seeking up to an additional $16.6 billion and Chrysler is looking for an additional $5 billion in addition to the $4 billion it has already received.

[Source: Automotive News subs req'd; Associated Press | Image: Bill Pugliano/Getty]

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