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 |  Jul 26 2011, 5:00 PM
GM may decide to expand its compact car segment with a coupe version of the 2012 Verano sedan that will launch this fall.
The Verano coupe has not been given the green light, though it would be an Opel Astra GTC with Buick style accents. Issues regarding the Verano coupe include how to insert a Buick-style waterfall grille in the place of the GTC’s vertically short grille. Buick would have to build the vehicle at the Orion Township plant, to make it profitable in the long term.

There may also be plans to build a Cruze coupe in 2013, and it would compete against the Honda Civic, Kia Forte Koup and Scion tC. The Chevrolet Cruze hatchback was unveiled at the Geneva auto show last March and will arrive stateside soon. The current model will not  be sold in the U.S, but the Cruze hatch will arrive with the next-gen Cruze.  GM has also officially announced the sale of a diesel-powered Cruze in the U.S in the 2013.

[Source: Motor Trend]

 |  Jun 24 2011, 12:07 PM

Nothing has been officially released but General Motors is not denying that the American automaker may introduce a two-door version of the Chevrolet Cruze. One source has suggested that the compact coupe maybe built in the Detroit suburb of Orion Township. The plant is getting ready to build the Chevrolet Sonic, a smaller car in the third quarter.

General Motors currently produces the four-door Cruze exclusively at the assembly plant in Lordstown, Ohio but the car’s success has the plant operating at full capacity, even with overtime. The Cruse was America’s best-selling compact nameplate in May.

The Orion plant would fit well to manufacture the coupe as it is equipped to build multiple models and its innovative labour contract makes it more appealing to build a lower-volume niche model.

The Cruze model has been built in Europe as a race car giving the car a sportier image in North America. Whether or not the image campaign ultimately pays off is anyone’s guess but adding a sporty coupe to the lineup probably wouldn’t hurt.

[Source: The Detroit Bureau]

 |  Jun 23 2011, 4:08 PM

The long-anticipated replacement for the Aveo, the Chevrolet Sonic, is set to drop in August. But a strike at the Sonic’s plant could delay this—thanks to a pay discrepancy among assembly workers.

The Sonic is being built by workers at the Orion assembly plant in Michigan, under the supervision of supplier LINC Logistics Co. Workers here make $10 per hour as opposed to the $14 to $28 they would make if they were UAW members at a GM plant. And today, workers at the Orion plant voted in overwhelming favor to authorize a strike, with 98% of workers voting yes.

Negotiations for a pay increase are set to increase soon, and with this authorization, union leaders could call for a work stoppage anytime. Despite this, GM spokespeople believe that the Sonic will still be released on time, as scheduled. Good luck, folks.

[Source: Autoblog]

 |  Nov 27 2009, 11:44 AM

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Earlier this week General Motors produced its last Pontiac for the U.S. market, ending the brand’s 82 year run. The final vehicle to roll off the assembly line at 12:45 p.m. on Wednesday, November 25th at the Orion Township plant was a rather unspectacular white G6 sedan which is scheduled to be sold to a fleet. It’s hardly the sort of send-off one might expect for a brand that has produced such memorable legends as the GTO and Firebird.

There was no pomp and circumstance as the last 100 vehicles rolled off the line and no GM executive was on hand.

The Pontiac brand was highlighted for elimination on April 27, as a part of General Motors’ viability plan. GM agreed to kill-off Pontiac and try and find buyers for Saab, Saturn and Hummer in exchange for a bailout by the U.S. and Canadian governments. To date, both the Saab and Saturn deals have fallen through, leading to the scheduled elimination of Saturn with the same fate likely for Saab. The sale of Hummer to Chinese heavy machinery company Sichuan Tengzhon is still pending.

Watching the Pontiac brand come to an end isn’t an unfamiliar event for may of the plant workers, as many of them were building Oldsmobiles when GM decided to retire than brand in 2000. For workers there is a glimmer of hope as GM has announced that in 18 months it will begin producing a new small car at the same facility.

In the mean time, the plant will stay open as it wraps up final production of the Pontiac G3 Wave, which is sold in Canada.

Since the brand’s inception in 1926 it is estimated to have sold as many as 41 million cars.

[Source: TheDetroitNews]