Big win for Oshawa as GM brings truck line to idled plant
General Motors Co. Chief Executive Mary Barra said Thursday the automaker will boost capital spending over the next three years to speed development of electric vehicles, funded by expanded production of high-profit pickup trucks in North America.
Barra said GM was talking with automakers about partnerships to develop more vehicles using GM’s battery technology.
GM plans EVs “across our brands… into affordable high volume segments,” she said.
The automaker’s EV push is being funded by robust profit from sales of pickup trucks and sport utility vehicles in North America, which drove a stronger-than-expected third quarter profit. GM said it will invest $1 billion to overhaul an idle plant in Oshawa, Ontario, to expand pickup production, under a tentative agreement with its Canadian union.
“We’re going to go hard at EVs… and the North America performance allows us to do that,” she told analysts on a call.
The Detroit company, whose shares were up about two per cent in midday trading, also said it would generate cash flow of $7 billion to $9 billion during the second half of the year, as sales in its two largest markets recovered more quickly than anticipated during the global coronavirus pandemic.
Acting Chief Financial Officer John Stapleton said GM will boost annual capital spending through at least 2023 to above the $7 billion rate previously outlined to fund its accelerated EV plans.