Wed. Sep 20th, 2023
    Canada’s EV Strategy Pays Off as General Motors Expands Operations

    Industry Minister François-Philippe Champagne’s commitment to building an electric vehicle (EV) ecosystem in Canada is paying off as General Motors (GM) expands its operations in Ingersoll, Ontario. Following significant investments from the federal and provincial governments, GM is now taking the near-shoring approach to an extreme level by building EVs in former farmlands.

    GM’s plans to invest $1 billion in building electric delivery trucks at its CAMI plant in Ingersoll were met with enthusiasm. However, the plant faced a temporary shutdown in July due to a lack of batteries, which revealed vulnerabilities in the global supply chain. Teething problems at a plant in Ohio, a joint venture between GM and LG Chem, caused the bottleneck.

    To overcome these supply chain issues, GM made two significant announcements. First, the BrightDrop factory at the Ingersoll plant will be idled in October and vehicle production is expected to resume in spring 2024. This move highlights the need to address supply chain challenges. Second, GM will build a new battery factory in Ontario, allowing batteries to be produced locally and reducing transportation time.

    The new battery facility will assemble small battery cells into modules, which will then be incorporated into the BrightDrop assembly lines. The plant is set to open in the spring and will create 300 new jobs in Ingersoll. GM Canada’s president, Marissa West, stated that the CAMI plant is playing a critical role in accelerating GM’s all-electric future.

    This expansion of GM’s operations showcases the success of the Canadian government’s support for the EV industry. Although substantial amounts of taxpayer money have been invested in EV projects, such as Volkswagen’s battery plant in St. Thomas and Stellantis NV and LG joint venture in Windsor, GM’s experience in Ingersoll demonstrates that automakers are committed to delivering on their EV strategies when given government support.

    Overall, Canada’s EV strategy is yielding positive results, with the automotive industry responding to the incentives and investments provided by the government.

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