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GM plans to spend more than $900 million upgrading internal combustion engine production

Steve Carmody
Michigan Radio
“We are committed to an EV future," said Gerald Johnson, GM’s executive Vice President of Global Manufacturing and Sustainability, "But we are equally committed to internal combustion engines."

General Motors plans to spend hundreds of millions of dollars bolstering internal combustion engine production in Michigan.

The automaker announced plans on Friday to spend $918 million on four plants, including two in Michigan.

Gerald Johnson is GM’s executive vice president of Global Manufacturing and Sustainability. He said GM’s Flint Engine plant is getting $579 million to enable it to produce the next generation of the small block V-8 engine.

“We are committed to an EV future. You guys know that story,” Johnson told Flint Engine plant workers gathered for the announcement. “But we are equally committed to internal combustion engines and all the customers that we know still want those and will continue to want those into the future.”

GM’s Bay City plant is getting $216 million so it can support the work at Flint Engine.

GM facilities in Defiance, Ohio and Rochester, New York are also receiving large investments.

It may seem odd for General Motors to be making such a sizable investment in internal combustion engine production at a time it and other auto companies are focusing so much of their future on electric vehicles.

But Ray Curry, United Auto Workers president, insists there is and will continue to be a market for vehicles with internal combustion engines, or ICEs.

“We see it as a long-term investment,” said Curry. “There is going to be a core group of customer base that insists on ICE production.”

Steve Carmody has been a reporter for Michigan Radio since 2005. Steve previously worked at public radio and television stations in Florida, Oklahoma and Kentucky, and also has extensive experience in commercial broadcasting.