GM To Discontinue Certain Models, Slash Workforce

Published on November 26, 2018 12:04 PM in Driver Tech, Auto Performance
GM To Discontinue Certain Models, Slash Workforce

In its biggest restructuring since emerging from bankruptcy a decade ago, General Motors announced plans to slash its workforce and discontinue several underperforming models.

These cuts are a necessary adjustment to shifting tastes and climates in the auto industry, according to General Motors CEO Mary Barra. 

"We are right sizing capacity for the realities of the marketplace," Barra said. 

The Detroit auto manufacturer made the announcement amid plans to pivot toward electric and autonomous driving vehicles. 

GM expects this transition to be time-consuming and expensive, and centers much of its future business model around self-driving and electric vehicles. The company's future plans also account for a significant portion of their vehicles to be shared, rather than individually owned.

Monday's annoucement means the end is near for three GM vehicles, the Cadillac CT6, the Chevrolet Cruze and the Buick LaCrosse. Next year the company will halt production on the affected models at plants in Lordstown, Ohio, Hamtramck, Michigan, and Oshawa, Ontario.

The nation's largest automaker isn't the only American vehicle manufacturer to scale back its domestic operations. In April, Ford announced plans to stop building nearly all cars in North America.

The shift comes as buyers have moved away from sedans and embraced crossovers and SUVs. Sedans made up more than half of all U.S. new vehicle sales in 2012. But through the first nine months of 2018, the market share of sedans has slipped to a little more than 31 percent. 

Sales of passengers cars are down 13.2 percent from this time last year, while pickup and SUV sales are up 8.3 percent.