General Motors plans to build a new, $200-million parts factory that would support the assembly of the upcoming Chevrolet Silverado EV and GMC Sierra electric pickup trucks, according to Automotive News.
The new project is set to be constructed on the former Detroit Pistons Arena in Auburn Hills, Michigan, which was demolished in 2020, covering 87.3 acres.
According to documents filed with the city, the new plant will consist of 1.05 million square feet of space for EV parts assembly and distribution, plus approximately 50,000 square feet for office space. The Auburn Hills planning commission will consider the proposal this week, as per Automotive News.
The EV parts plant will create about 1,000 new jobs, with around 350 workers per shift, serving GM’s nearby Orion Assembly plant where the Chevrolet Bolt EV is currently built but is getting upgraded and modified for electric pickup assembly to begin next year when the Bolt will be retired.
"General Motors has identified the former Palace of Auburn Hills site as a potential location for a supplier park to support its Orion Assembly Plant, which will be expanded to produce electric pickup trucks," GM said in a statement. "The company is still determining the scope of work and which supplier will have operations in support of the plant."
Before going into production at the Orion plant, General Motors will begin making the Chevrolet Silverado EV and GMC Sierra EV at its Factory Zero in Detroit this year. Together, the two factories will be able to produce as many as 600,000 electric pickups per year at full speed.
Draft plans for the project were submitted to the city in July, with the Mayor of Auburn Hills, Kevin McDaniel, saying in a statement that the city has been planning and preparing for this day for the last seven years. "This would be a significant project and would represent a tremendous strategic investment in our community. It would also build on our reputation as being a 'hub' of electric vehicle development and manufacturing," he added.
Based on GM’s Ultium platform, the Chevrolet Silverado EV and GMC Sierra EV offer up to 754 horsepower and up to 785 pound-feet of torque, with a maximum estimated driving range of 400 miles. The Silverado EV RST is slated to arrive in fall 2023, while the Sierra EV will become available in “early 2024.”