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GM to Invest $200 Million to Expand Michigan Complex

Jan. 30 (Bloomberg) -- General Motors Co., planning to invest $1.5 billion in North America this year, today said it would spend $200 million to expand a Michigan powertrain complex.

The project includes construction of a new test wing at the global engineering headquarters in Pontiac, GM said in a statement today. The Detroit-based automaker is introducing about 20 new vehicles in the U.S. this year to freshen its product lineup, which has grown stale following the company’s 2009 bankruptcy reorganization.

Mark Reuss, president of GM North America, earlier this month provided the $1.5 billion figure for the company’s 2013 North American investment plans. GM has announced more than $10.2 billion since July 2009, Reuss said at the Automotive News World Congress in Detroit.

The 138,000-square-foot (13,000-square-meter) wing is scheduled to be completed in the second half of 2014. Engineering work from leased offices in Wixom, Michigan; Castleton, Indiana; and Torrance, California, will move to Pontiac as part of the expansion plan, GM said.

“These moves will help our entire powertrain team work more effectively across the organization,” Sam Winegarden, vice president of global engine engineering, said in a statement. GM will consolidate about 400 jobs in Pontiac.

GM also plans to relocate its propulsion systems research lab in Warren, Michigan, to Pontiac, the company said. GM had previously announced plans to bring hydrogen fuel cell work to Pontiac this year from Honeoye Falls, New York.

GM announced Jan. 28 it plans to spend $600 million to expand its Fairfax Assembly Plant in Kansas City, Kansas, which employs about 3,900 people and builds the Chevrolet Malibu and Buick LaCrosse sedans.

GM fell 1.8 percent to $27.94 at the close in New York. The shares have declined 3.1 percent this year.

To contact the reporter on this story: Tim Higgins in Pontiac, Michigan at thiggins21@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Jamie Butters at jbutters@bloomberg.net

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