Building too many unpopular vehicles is a recipe for losing money. Building an insufficient number of popular vehicles is a recipe for leaving money on the table. Thankfully, GM's latest announcement is to address the latter, not the former.
GM on Thursday announced that it will spend $24 million on its Fort Wayne Assembly facility in Indiana. This money will go toward upgrades that should improve the plant's throughput -- specifically, the investment will be directed toward improving conveyors and other tools. GM expects the work to complete this summer.
The goal is to increase production of the Chevrolet Silverado 1500 and GMC Sierra 1500, both of which were recently redesigned. These two new light-duty pickups are apparently quite a hit with buyers, and instead of leaving money on the table, GM's investing a bit to (hopefully) pull an even bigger profit in a segment that is thick with profit margins as it is.
According to GM's data, combined Sierra and Silverado crew-cab sales were up some 20% in the first quarter of 2019 compared to a year prior, and the automaker believes demand will continue to rise in the second quarter. The crew-cab variants are apparently the most popular.
Since 2015, GM has invested more than $1.2 billion in its Fort Wayne Assembly plant.