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No summer shutdown at most GM plants

By Chavon Sutton, staff reporter

NEW YORK (CNNMoney.com) -- General Motors said Thursday it will not shut down most of its assembly plants this summer, as it usually does, due to sizzling demand.

GM, the largest U.S. automaker, said that 9 of its 11 assembly plants will continue to operate from June 28 and July 9, a move that is expected to generate up to 56,000 additional vehicles.

"Our manufacturing teams are taking creative approaches to increase production and reduce the wait times for our dealers and customers," said Mark Reuss, president of GM North America, in a prepared statement.

Plants have traditionally closed for a short period during the summer to facilitate annual model changeover, maintenance and to manage employee vacation schedules.

The assembly plants that will stay open are located in Arlington, Texas; Bowling Green, Ky.; Detroit Hamtramck, Mich.; Fairfax, Kan.; Flint, Mich.; Fort Wayne, Ind.; Delta Township, Mich.; Lansing, Mich.; and Wentzville, Mo.

The company said that temporary workers are expected to be used to fill in for full-time employees during the period.

The only plants to take part in a summer shutdown will be the Lordstown, Ohio, and Shreveport, La., plants.

In February, GM announced that it would add 1,200 jobs to its Lordstown plant in order to ramp up production of its new Chevy Cruze model.

In 2009, GM filed for bankruptcy protection and received about $50 billion in bailout money from the government. In recent months, it has resurfaced with fewer brands -- Buick, Chevrolet, GMC and Cadillac -- and sales have rebounded sharply. Year-to-date sales are up 31% from the same period in 2009, according to Tom Henderson, a GM spokesman.

Combined year-to-date sales for several of its newest vehicles, including the Chevrolet Equinox, Buick LaCrosse and GMC Terrain, have more than quadrupled from the same period last year.

"Our products are doing well in the marketplace," said Henderson.  To top of page

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