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General Motors has announced job cuts at its manufacturing facility in Lordstown, Ohio, with as many of 1500 workers being laid off.
The Lordstown factory is a main producer of the Chevrolet Cruze, which posted a sales decline of over 30 per cent between 2014 and 2017.
Additionally, sales of the Cruze have already dropped another 26 per cent over the first three months of this year, prompting the company to cut shifts at the Lordstown factory from around the clock to just a single shift a day.
The Ohio facility only produces the Cruze sedan – the hatchback, meanwhile, is built at a plant in Mexico. CNN reports the hatch version only accounts for less than 20 per cent of the Cruze’s US sales volume.
GM’s announcement will eliminate half of the current jobs at the Lordstown plant, with senior workers reportedly to be offered a buyout package to reduce the need for involuntary redundancies.
CNN’s report adds that some of the affected employees will likely be able to fill job openings at other GM manufacturing facilities.
“As we look at the market for compact cars in 2018 and beyond, we believe a more stable operating approach to match market demand is a one-shift schedule,” GM said in a statement.
The Chevrolet Cruze sedan is sold locally as the rebadged Holden Astra sedan, though the Australian version is sourced from Korea.
While a sales split between the Euro-sourced hatch/wagon and Korean-sourced sedan is unknown, the Astra nameplate shifted 2727 units for the month of March, up 78 per cent on the same period last year.
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