GM Plans Permanent Product Cut at Small-Car Plant in Ohio

April 16, 2018 at 12:00 AM

General Motors Co. says it will eliminate one of two production shifts at its small-car factory in Lordstown, Ohio, on June 18.

Nearly 1,500 staffers, most of them hourly workers, could be affected. GM is offering buyouts worth as much as $60,000 per employee.

The move aims to match output with slumping demand for the Chevrolet Cruze sedans made at Lordstown. GM cites “historic changes” in the market as consumer preferences continue to shift from cars to light trucks, a category that comprises pickups, SUV/crossovers and minivans.

Cars currently account for a record-low 33% of the U.S. passenger vehicle market, down from 53% a decade ago, according to Autodata Corp. Cruze sales, which shrank 2% last year, plunged 26% in the first quarter of 2018.