Listen, the automotive industry landscape hasn’t seen a lot of great news lately. It seems like every week we’re talking about another manufacturing plant closing, or a new wave of layoffs. Sales are down, prices are up, nobody can pay their car notes, etc.
When there is a small amount of good news, it feels extra good. You know? That’s why I’m stoked that Chevrolet is hiring an additional 400 workers to the Corvette production line ahead of the tool up for the C8 generation. That rules.
GM announced today that the Bowling Green, Kentucky plant would be adding a second shift of production. The company is anticipating the new mid-engine Corvette to be a sales success, and you know what? I hope they’re right.
“The Corvette’s iconic status owes so much to the men and women of Bowling Green, where it has been built exclusively for almost 40 years,” said GM CEO Mary Barra. “This is the workforce that can deliver a next-generation Corvette worthy of both its historic past and an equally exciting future, and today’s announcement gets us one step closer to its reveal on July 18.”
GM announced an investment of several hundred million dollars to retool the Corvette production plant in 2016, and the entire factory was closed down for a few months to implement some new changes in 2017. Further, the ever popular guided tours of the factory have been cancelled until much later this year.
The new Corvette production line has been slowed to provide workers more time to spend on each process in a bid to bolster quality control. If General Motors wants to continue punching above the Corvette’s MSRP class, potentially wooing customers from Porsche or other sports car makers, quality will need to be a number one priority.
The base engine for the next gen Corvette, expected to be an updated version of the current LT1 6.2-liter V8, is currently assembled in GM’s Spring Hill, Tennessee plant. GM Authority has reported some rumors that the C8 base model engine production will move in-house to Bowling Green, which will account for at least some of those new hires as well.
Chevrolet has said it will show off a production-ready C8 Corvette on July 18th.