US – The money will be spent on repurposing flexible machining and assembly equipment to build Small Block 6.2-litre V8 engines for the first time at the Tennessee plant. The engines will meet high demand in the truck and SUV market.
“The flexibility of Spring Hill’s engine machining and assembly equipment is allowing GM to respond deftly when additional engine-variant capacity is needed,” commented Arvin Jones, GM North America manufacturing manager. A new engine line typically takes several years to install, but the immediate repurposing of Spring Hill’s flexible equipment will enable V8 production to begin in the fourth quarter of 2016.
The 6.2-litre truck engine is fitted to the Chevrolet Silverado Crew Cab, GMC Sierra Crew Cab, Yukon Denali and Yukon XL Denali, plus the Cadillac Escalade and Escalade ESV. The aluminium engine boasts a number of features to improve efficiency and performance, including active fuel management (cylinder deactivation), direct injection and continuously variable valve timing. The other GM factories building the 6.2-litre V8 are Tonawanda, New York, and St Catherines in Ontario, Canada.
The new investment at Spring Hill, which will safeguard 200 jobs, is part of the $709.4m in total that GM has announced since ratifying a deal with the United Auto Workers union last year. Since 2010, the vehicle-maker has pledged more than $1.35 billion for the operation in Tennessee.