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GM may reopen some factories to meet higher demand

GM may reopen some factories to meet higher demand                         
 By TOM KRISHER                                                            
 AP Auto Writer                                                        
 DETROIT (AP) — General Motors Co. may reopen some shuttered factories    
 because it can’t produce certain vehicles fast enough, its North American 
 president said Monday.                                                    
 Mark Reuss told reporters at the North American International Auto Show in
 Detroit that plants building the Chevrolet Equinox, GMC Terrain and       
 Cadillac SRX crossover vehicles and the Buick LaCrosse sedan are at       
 capacity and can’t satisfy demand.                                        
 Reuss mentioned an idled factory in Spring Hill, Tenn., but stopped short 
 of saying any plants would be reopened.                                   
 He said if he does his job right and restores faith in the GM brands, the 
 company could hire workers again. In the short term, he said the company  
 will try to raise output at existing plants.                              
 The Terrain and Equinox are made at a factory in Ingersoll, Ontario, while
 the LaCrosse is built in Kansas City, Kan. The SRX is made in Ramos       
 Arizpe, Mexico.                                                           
 Reuss said he will meet with GM’s manufacturing and sales executives next 
 week to see if they can figure out how to squeeze more vehicles out of the
 existing plants for the short term.                                       
 For the long term, he said he doesn’t like GM to have factories idled. The
 company has closed 14 factories in the past year as it struggled through  
 bankruptcy protection, and it has placed the idled Spring Hill and        
 Janesville, Wis., plants on standby in case they are needed.              
 "We’ve got some plants that I’d like to allocate product to," Reuss said, 
 adding that Spring Hill was a very good factory that is versatile enough  
 to build several models.                                                  
 Reuss also said GM has finished tweaking the Chevrolet Cruze compact car  
 and is ready to begin producing it at the factory in Lordstown, Ohio. Last
 month he said the production schedule had been stopped while engineers    
 worked out transmission shifting and other driving dynamics issues with   
 the car.                                                                  
 The Cruze, due out later this year, is a key product for GM as it tries to
 re-enter the growing small car market with a more competitive product.    
 © 2010 The Associated Press. All rights reserved.                         

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