BOWLING GREEN, Ky. – General Motors will relocate its Performance Build Center, which allows engine aficionados to build their own specialty engines, from Michigan to the Bowling Green Assembly Plant, home of the Chevrolet Corvette.
The move, backed by a $3.5 million investment and slated for the first quarter of 2014, was part of a consolidation of GM Powertrain engineering sites.
The Performance Build Center has been the source for the 6.2L LS3 V8 engine, which powers the Corvette Grand Sport Coupe manual version; the 7.0L LS7 V8 engine for the Corvette Z06 and the 6.2L Supercharged LS9 engine for the Corvette ZR1.
The move will eventually allow Corvette customers to combine the experience of watching their Corvette being assembled with participating in the build of their vehicle’s high-performance engine. Details on which engines would be available for customer assembly will be announced in the future.
“This is exciting news for the Corvette Assembly Plant and the community of Bowling Green,” said plant manager Dave Tatman. “We host thousands of guests each year, many of whom are here to see their Corvette being built. Bringing the Performance Build Center here simply adds to the thrill of purchasing a Corvette and increases satisfaction for our customers and employees."
In 2011, GM announced a $131 million investment for Bowling Green Assembly, including construction of a new body shop and renovations and upgrades throughout the facility. The improvements support production of the next-generation Corvette, which Chevrolet unveiled on Jan. 13, just before the opening of the North American International Auto Show in Detroit.
“The fine work by the dedicated members of UAW Local 2164 has been proven in building these sports cars. We are pleased with the investment and the resulting transformation of our plant,” stated Joey Cato, UAW Local 2164 shop chairman.
The final economic impact for the Bowling Green community is yet to be determined but will include approximately 20 created or retained jobs, specifically for the Performance Build Center. In the past year, more than 150 jobs have been added to Bowling Green Assembly and more growth is expected as production of the 2014 Corvette begins.
“General Motors is an important key to the continued economic growth of South Central Kentucky,” said Kentucky Gov. Steve Beshear. “This latest investment into the Bowling Green Corvette Assembly plant will not only enhance GM’s commitment to the region but will provide added appeal to the many visitors they host each year. It is beneficial to the local community, the state of Kentucky and all involved.”
General Motors Co. (NYSE:GM, TSX: GMM) and its partners produce vehicles in 30 countries, and the company has leadership positions in the world's largest and fastest-growing automotive markets. GM’s brands include Chevrolet and Cadillac, as well as Baojun, Buick, GMC, Holden, Isuzu, Jiefang, Opel, Vauxhall and Wuling. More information on the company and its subsidiaries, including OnStar, a global leader in vehicle safety, security and information services, can be found at http://www.gm.com.