TEXT OF STORY
Scott Jagow: Auto sales come out today. And my friend, they won’t be pretty. Probably double-digit declines for Detroit’s big three. GM just said this morning it’s closing four truck and SUV plants. Two of them in the U.S. — in Moraine, Ohio and Janesville, Wis. The reason is obvious: People don’t want to buy trucks and SUVS. More now from Nancy Marshall Genzer.
Nancy Marshall Genzer: GM CEO Rick Wagoner announced the bad news before the company’s annual meeting in Delaware. Wagoner said GM had to act quickly in response to slumping sales of pick-ups and SUVs.
Rick Wagoner: Consumers are absorbing the expensive gas prices and acting pretty suddenly.
GM may even discontinue it Hummer brand.
About 2,500 workers at the four closing facilities will be affected. Some of them might be offered jobs at other GM plants. They may be making hybrids or electric cars. Wagoner also announced this morning that GM is reviving its electric car, the Volt.
Global Insight auto industry analyst Rachel Lindland says GM is regrouping the researchers who first made the car.
Rachel Lindland: GM had experience with them back in 90’s, when they had an electric car, so they actually brought a lot of those people back.
Wagoner says the Volt will be in showrooms by the end of 2010.
In Washington, I’m Nancy Marshall Genzer for Marketplace.