Many industry experts point to a stagnation in the gas-powered market as more drivers shift to autonomous and electric vehicles.
GM announced it would cut six gas-powered auto models as part of a plan to close factories and cut costs so it can spend more on electric and autonomous vehicle development. -Canada border, and from its main North American unions.
This story has been corrected to show that up to 14,000 workers could lose jobs, not 14,700.
"We are right-sizing capacity for the realities of the marketplace", Chief Executive Mary Barra said, adding that the cuts were prompted by auto industry changes. "The executives at General Motors owe Maryland answers and I plan on getting them".
GM doesn't foresee an economic downturn and is making the cuts "to get in front of it while the company is strong and while the economy is strong", CEO Mary Barra told reporters. "This industry is changing very rapidly. We think it's appropriate to do it while company is strong and the economy is strong".
GM, which employs around 180,000 staff, yesterday said it would slash 8,000 salaried jobs and another 6,000 part-time ones.
Could Korean production be under threat?
GM's Cruise LLC unit is developing the company's self-driving technology and plans to have a model ready to operate as a ride-hailing business starting late next year.
"These actions are expected to increase annual adjusted automotive free cash flow by $6 billion by year-end 2020 on a run-rate basis", the statement said. It will also stop building several models now assembled at those plants, including the Chevrolet Cruze, the Chevrolet Volt hybrid, the Cadillac CT6 and the Buick LaCrosse.
It also exited the European market in 2017 by selling its Opel-Vauxhall division to Peugeot; ceased manufacturing of vehicles in Australia; and has been aggressively investing in autonomous vehicles through its Cruise division - through which it intends to launch 20 new electrified vehicles by 2023.
Bobbi Marsh, who has worked assembling the Chevrolet Cruze compact auto at the OH plant since 2008, said she can't understand why the factory might close given the strong economy. "That's a real mismatch in a market where 40 per cent of the vehicles sold are crossover utilities".
GM electric vehicles are eligible for a $7,500 tax credit under federal law, but it is not clear how the administration could restrict those credits, which are available to all automakers, from GM alone - or whether he had some other undefined subsidies in mind.
GM said numerous USA employees impacted by the plan announced Monday will have the opportunity to shift to other plants where the company will need more workers to support growth in trucks, crossovers and SUVs. The totals are imprecise in part because there may be some double-counting with employees who are taking the October buyout offer.
The second-largest domestic automaker had already scrubbed plans for a second assembly line in Mexico past year due to declining passenger vehicle sales. The Baltimore Operations plant will stop building transmissions, and likewise the Warren Transmission Operations site in MI. Two as-yet unspecified sites outside of North America are also facing the end of the line. Those locations have yet to be announced, but its Korean operation has been under pressure for some time now.