Earlier this week President-elect Donald Trump took to Twitter (as he often does) to attack General Motors for allegedly moving Chevrolet Cruze production to Mexico. While the automaker quickly issued a statement clarifying the matter, their statement was apparently false. It appears GM doesn’t know where it builds the Chevrolet Cruze.
GM’s statement regarding the matter was fairly brief, but explicit, as seen below:
General Motors manufactures the Chevrolet Cruze sedan in Lordstown, Ohio. All Chevrolet Cruze sedans sold in the U.S. are built in GM’s assembly plant in Lordstown, Ohio. GM builds the Chevrolet Cruze hatchback for global markets in Mexico, with a small number sold in the U.S.
The company unequivocally stated that all Cruze sedans sold in the U.S. are built at the company’s Lordstown, Ohio assembly plant. A year ago, that statement was true. However, the company apparently forgot that they ramped up production at their Ramos Arzipe, Mexico plant to supplement Ohio production when the all-new 2016 model was launching.
Insiders have told AutoVerdict that the Lordstown plant had multiple struggles launching the new Cruze, including significant unplanned downtime. It is assumed that the company decided to start sourcing U.S. Cruze sedans from Mexico during the fiascos taking place in Lordstown.
Regardless, The Truth About Cars did some fine investigative reporting and found that GM is actually still sourcing Cruze sedans from the Mexico plant. In fact, they’ve found 2017 model sedans on dealership lots in the U.S. that were produced in Mexico.
The irony here is not in the fact that the company’s official statement is apparently a lie, but also that they’re using the Mexican plant while reducing Lordstown from three to two shifts to align supply and demand of the car. Lordstown is losing 1,200 hourly and 43 salary jobs because of the reduction, according to GM.
So in what appears to be a major stroke of luck on the part of the President-elect, one could argue he is correct. GM appears to be shifting at least some Cruze production to Mexico beyond the hatchback model.
Honest mistake, or shady as hell?