GM investing $109M in MI to boost 1.4L Ecotec production

General Motors has announced that it is investing $109 million to support production of its 1.4-liter Ecotec engine in Michigan. This will create (or protect) 96 jobs at The General's manufacturing facilities in the cities of Flint and Bay City.

In Flint, $84 million will be used to increase production capacity of the engine, while in Bay City, the remaining $25 million will go towards increasing production of the connecting rods and camshafts used in the 1.4-liter mill.

Currently, GM uses the 1.4-liter engine in both the Cruze and Volt, the former of which adds a turbocharger. Later this year, the 1.4 will find its way under the hood of the new Aveo Sonic subcompact. Follow the jump for GM's official release.
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GM Investing $109 Million to Keep or Add 96 Michigan Jobs

- Flint and Bay City, Mich., get second expansion in six months
- Part of $2 billion GM will spend at 17 U.S. plants in eight states
- Supports More 1.4L Ecotec Engine Production for Chevrolet Volt, Cruze and Sonic

DETROIT – General Motors will invest $109 million in its operations in Flint and Bay City, Mich., to support engine production for current and future fuel-efficient small cars produced for the U.S. market. The investment will protect or add 96 jobs at the two sites.

"This investment marks the second major increase in engine and engine component output in less than six months - a sign that GM is moving quickly to meet growing demand for more fuel-efficient cars," said Terri Burden, Flint Engine Operations plant manager.

In November 2010, GM announced plans to invest $151 million and protect 143 jobs at the Flint and Bay City plants. The latest investment is part of a $2 billion investment to create or retain more than 4,000 hourly and salaried jobs at 17 facilities in eight states.

"This additional GM investment in the Ecotec engine is a testament to all the UAW Local 599 members who have worked so hard to make the 1.4-liter engine America's first choice," said Terry Everman, chairman of UAW Local 599 at Flint Engine Operations.

Of the $109 million, $84 million will be used at Flint to increase 1.4-liter engine capacity. Bay City's investment of $25 million is for connecting rods and camshafts used in the engine.

"I am very excited on behalf of all of our employees here at the Bay City Plant about our announcement today and very thankful for the cooperation and support from the community," said Joe Mazzeo, Bay City plant manager. "This announcement comes about in part because of our great team and the focus we place on delivering great products, an outstanding work ethic and an excellent working relationship between our union and management team."

Said Todd McDaniel, chairman of UAW Local 362 in Bay City: "Once again General Motors has recognized the hard work and dedication of our work force at Bay City. With this most recent addition to our previous announcements, we are one step closer to filling our plant with work. I feel very confident that it is just a matter of time."

The Ecotec 1.4-liter turbocharged engine for the Chevrolet Cruze Eco model helps achieve segment-leading EPA estimated 42 highway mpg. The 1.4-liter naturally aspirated engine enables range extension for the Chevrolet Volt electric car. After the battery is depleted, the on-board engine-generator creates additional electricity to power the car for hundreds of additional miles.

Later this year, the 1.4-liter engine will be installed in the Chevrolet Sonic, which will be built at GM's assembly plant in Orion Township, Mich.

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