The decision to expand at Shreveport comes as GM, the world’s largest automobile producer, continues to struggle to maintain market share and profitability in the US. However by extending at Shreveport GM will increase production of some of its most successful and profitable recent models.
The H3, the new mid-size Hummer, continues to drive record sales for GM. Hummer sales in October were up 129% compared to year-ago levels. Meanwhile, Chevy Colorado sales were up 17.6% on a calendar year-to-date basis (January October) compared to the period last year, while GMC Canyon sales have increased 42.6%.
In the last five years, GM has invested more than $20 billion in its US operations. GM’s total recent investment in Shreveport for production of the Hummer H3, Chevy Colorado and GMC Canyon now tops more than $1 billion.
To prepare for the increased output, the Shreveport plant will add a third production shift to its paint department during the first quarter of 2006.