Inside Flint Engine Operations. Photo: GM
GM announced Friday that it would spend $854 million to make its sixth-generation small-block V8 and $64 million to support its EV efforts, in news that sounds like belonging they go to another year, but they are not. The news also confirms that a sixth-generation small-block V8 is coming, which GM says it plans to use to “bolster its industry-leading full-size truck and SUV business.”
The fifth-generation V8 is currently used in a variety of cars, trucks, and SUVs in a variety of configurations, from the base C8 Corvettes to some versions of the Sierra. The news that there will be a sixth generation comes as little surprise, as GM expects to sell plenty of gas trucks and SUVs for years to come, probably in part because EV range still sucks.
In any case, GM has detailed the new investments as follows:
- Flint Engine Operations of Michigan – GM will invest $579 million to prepare the plant to assemble GM’s sixth generation small block V-8 gas engines along with associated block, crank and head machining. Work on the plant will start immediately. Flint will continue to build the 3.0-liter turbodiesel during the facility’s refurbishment. GM’s 3.0-liter diesel is used in a variety of light-duty truck applications.
- Bay City GPS, Michigan – GM will invest $216 million to prepare the camshaft, connecting rod and block/head machining facility that will support future V-8 production at Flint Engine Operations.
- Defiance Operations in Ohio – GM will invest $55 million in the Defiance facility. $47 million will be invested to prepare the facility to build a variety of ingot castings to support future V-8 engine programs. In addition, the investment includes $8 million to build a casting development cell to support future EV strategies.
- Rochester Operations in New York – GM will invest a total of US$68 million in the Rochester facility. $12 million will be invested to prepare the facility to build intake manifolds and fuel rails for future V-8 production at Flint Engine Operations. In addition, the investment includes $56 million for the production of cooling lines for battery packs used in electric vehicle production.
I’m sure GM will find a way to make the sixth-gen V8 a little more efficient than the fifth-gen, even though Chevy’s small block V8 is used in so many different vehicles it’s hard to picture it as one thing . What that’s really saying is that GM knows the electric future is a long-term business, and it’s going to need a lot more V8s in the short term.
I’m also happy for the workers, who are likely to spend some time worrying about job security.
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“Our union celebrates the announcement of these new investments in our GM facilities, which our members at Locals 659 (Flint, Michigan), 362 (Bay City, Michigan), 211 (Defiance, Ohio) and 1097 (Rochester, New York) will benefit )” UAW President Ray Curry said in the press release. “The skills and dedication of UAW members are integral to GM’s success, and this investment recognizes that our members will remain an important part of GM’s future.”