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A day after announcing that it would invest $246 million to start building electric motors in-house, General Motors made a second announcement about the issue: Baltimore would be home to that production. The Baltimore transmission plant, which is actually located in nearby White Marsh, MD, has been building the two-mode hybrid transmissions used in GM's full-size pickup trucks and SUVs since 2007.

Over the past century, two of the primary ways that carmakers have been able to distinguish their products is styling and powertrains. While styling has often been outsourced to various design studios, typically only the smallest automakers outsource powertrains. As the industry heads into the era of increasing electrification, the whole concept of the powertrain is evolving.