USA: As a result of a $400m investment, GM's Tonawanda engine plant will produce four versions of the Gen 5 Small Block – a 4.3L V-6, 5.3L V-8 and two variants of a 6.2L V-8.
At full production, the plant will produce more than 1,000 engines a day. The new engine family will power nine GM models by 2015, starting with the all-new 2014 Chevrolet Silverado and GMC Sierra pickups, and the all-new 2014 Chevrolet Corvette Stingray.
Steve Finch, plant manager said: “We have invested 40,000 hours and $1.8m in training the workforce to build these engines with uncompromising quality, and we’ve added some of the most flexible equipment ever used in the industry to make sure we can meet market demand.”
This equipment includes: new coordinate measuring machines; a track and trace system that collects all machining and assembly data for each engine; a smart automated cylinder head assembly system that can assemble 48 parts in 40 seconds; a fuel system connection inspection that uses helium to detect leaks; and three synchronistic robots that are able to perform inspections and checks simultaneously for any engine.