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Bay City included in GM's Ecotec plans

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Bay City included in GM's Ecotec plans

Robert Snell / The Detroit News

General Motors Co. is investing more than $494 million and recalling about 550 jobs in Bay City, Defiance, Ohio, and a plant in New York that will support two next-generation, fuel-efficient engines.

The investment in Ecotec engines will slash fuel consumption and emissions, the automaker said today.

GM, which emerged from bankruptcy court last summer with about $50 billion in federal aid, is holding events in Bay City and Tonawanda, N.Y., today hailing the investment.

"We were right to rescue GM, and today shows that proof positive," U.S. Sen. Charles Schumer, D-N.Y., said during an announcement in Tonawanda. "Those naysayers: Take a hike."

GM is spending the money renovating plants, and installing new machinery, equipment and special tooling at the three plants. GM would not discuss which vehicles will use the new engines.

"GM is transforming its product portfolio to reduce fuel consumption and emissions, and the next generation Ecotec engine is an integral part of that transformation," said Denise Johnson, GM's vice president of labor relations. "The investment in state-of-the-art, four-cylinder engines is another example of GM's commitment to replace larger-displacement engines with more compact, advanced four-cylinder engines that optimize fuel savings and performance. We look forward to working with our union partners at these three plants to make this investment a success."

The Tonawanda plant will receive the bulk of the investment, $425 million, and result in about 470 workers being recalled.

In Bay City, GM is spending $10.5 million and recalling about 15 people. The plant will produce the Ecotec connecting rod.

And in Defiance, GM will invest $59 million supporting precision sand cast blocks and recall about 80 people.

Cal Rapson, vice president and director of the United Auto Workers, New York Gov. David Paterson and members of the state's congressional delegation are expected at the Tonawanda plant, which has about 800 employees.

GM's current 2.4-liter Ecotec engine is used in the Buick LaCrosse, Chevrolet Equinox and GMC Terrain.

The Associated Press contributed.

From The Detroit News: http://detnews.com/article/20100218/AUTO01/2180452/1148/auto01/Bay-City-included-in-GM-s-Ecotec-plans#ixzz0fzZ0599h

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