GM invests $760 million in Toledo plant to produce electric vehicle drive units

The powertrain units that will be used in GM electric trucks, the automaker said, include the GMC Hummer EV, currently in production, and the upcoming Chevrolet Silverado EV and GMC Sierra EV. This will be GM’s first engine or transmission plant in the US to be adapted for electric vehicle production.

Electric drive units consist of an electric motor, single-speed transmission and power electronics that carry power to and from the motor. (Unlike the scooter, the electric vehicle doesn’t require a transmission with more than one speed.) GM wouldn’t say whether the engine itself will be built at the Toledo, Ohio plant or elsewhere.

For now, at least, the plant will continue to build transmissions for front- and rear-wheel drive vehicles along with electric transmissions, GM spokesman Dan Flores said.

“This investment helps build job security for our Toledo team for years to come and is the next step in our journey to an all-electric future,” said Gerald Johnson, executive vice president. GM for Global Production and Sustainability, said in a statement.

GM said it plans to produce only light trucks and zero-emission passenger vehicles by 2035. The Detroit-based automaker currently makes electric Cadillac Lyriq, GMC Hummer EV and Chevrolet Bolt. Several other electric models, including Chevrolet Equinox EVplanned for the next few years.

The Toledo Propulsion System plant currently employs about 1,500 people. The company did not say if it plans to hire more.

GM has invested in a number of final assembly plants – full-fledged vehicle factories – to prepare for electric vehicle construction. For example, GM has invested $2.2 billion into Detroit-Hamtramck factory, turning it into “Factory Zero” where Hummer EVs are now built. GM also invested $2 billion in the Spring Hill, Tennessee, plant, currently building the Cadillac Lyriq electric SUV along with gasoline-powered models.

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