Oshawa is the city where GM Canada’s headquarters are and where its most important factory in the country was from 1907 to 2019
The plant was closed in late 2019, but the high demand for pickup trucks caused GM to reopen it
The facility will only build Chevrolet Silverado models, which should reach dealers in December.
The high demand for pickup trucks in the United States and Canada means that General Motors can’t build enough of them. In order to increase its production, the company has reopened its historic Oshawa assembly plant in Ontario.
The City of Oshawa played a huge part of General Motors’ history in Canada since its headquarters are there and the founder of the Canadian branch of the company, Colonel Samuel McLaughlin, established its first factory there in 1907.
This very factory, extensively modernised over the decades of course, is the one that was just reopened to increase the company’s truck building capacity.
Over the years, a multitude of models from each of General Motors divisions was produced in Oshawa and the plant regularly won awards for the best initial quality of any North American factories.
In 2009, the truck assembly plant, adjacent to the main factory, was shuttered due to the economic crisis and high gas prices which made the demand for full size pickups drop like a rock.
In 2018, GM announced it would close the main factory, which happened in December of 2019, putting an end to more than 111 years of auto manufacturing in the city.
The plant didn’t completely close however, since some stamping operations remained and the facility got awarded a contract to build COVID facre masks for the government.
The recent surge in demand for pickup trucks left GM in a position where its production capacity is not sufficient to cope. This is what prompted the company to announce a reopening of the Oshawa plant, after an extensive retooling, back in 2020.
Production of the Chevrolet Silverado pickup (but not the related GMC Sierra) was supposed to begin in January of 2022, but the company is ahead of schedule, since it built its first truck on Wednesday.
This special liveried Silverado 2500 HD will be raffled to dealers in Canada with the proceeds going towards a children’s charity.