General Motors announced it will invest more than $1 billion in its most strategic plant in Mexico, the Ramos Arizpe Manufacturing Complex. The auto giant is planning to inaugurate a new state-of-the-art technology Painting Plant there, which will start operations in June 2021.

Apart from the new painting unit, the automaker will use part of the investment to prepare the Complex for an expansion in the Assembly Plants and Global Propulsion Systems (GPS) to convert the Ramos Arizpe Complex into the fifth manufacturing site of GM North America in producing electric vehicles.

The construction work has already begun on its new facilities within the Complex, where GM brand electric vehicles will be produced from 2023. Meanwhile, batteries and electrical components will be produced from the second half of 2021. It will also begin the manufacturing of “Drive Units,” which is the propulsion system that powers electric vehicles.

General Motors’ investment in Ramos Arizpe will also include improvements to the Complex’s general infrastructure, such as materials, dining rooms, medical services, and recreational spaces, among others.

GM Mexico President and CEO Francisco Garza said it expects to meet the necessary economic conditions so that eventually the Complex can grow the workforce one more shift in some operations.

The new plant will join the other four electric vehicles producing plants in Spring Hill, Tennessee; Factory Zero in Detroit-HamTramck, Michigan; Orion in Michigan and CAMI in Ontario, Canada.

The Ramos Arizpe facility, which was inaugurated 40 years ago, makes the Chevrolet Blazer and Chevrolet Sonic. It has also earlier produced the Chevrolet Celebrity, Century, El Camino and Chevy, among several others. Meanwhile, GM is celebrating more than 85 years in Mexico and employs more than 21,000 people directly.

GM Ramos Arizpe will continue to produce Chevrolet Equinox, Chevrolet Blazer, as well as Engines and Transmissions. It currently has 5,600 employees directly and, in addition to production for the domestic market, exports to more than 40 countries.

In November, GM announced its plans to offer 30 all-electric models globally by mid-decade as part of its efforts to tackle climate change. It raised its financial commitment to electric vehicles or EVs and Autonomous Vehicles or AVs to $27 billion through 2025, up from the $20 billion planned before the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic. It expects 40 percent of its U.S. entries to be battery EVs by the end of 2025.

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