General Motors has announced the Corvette Assembly Plant in Bowling Green, Kentucky will undergo another shutdown in January and will layoff 110 workers as the company slashes production of the iconic sports car amid lower sales. Production is expected to be cut as well from 15 Corvettes an hour to 11.
The assembly plant is slated to be shutdown during the first week of December and it was just announced the plant will now be idled the week of January 5th and the week of January 12th.
In addition to idling the plants, cuts in production have brought the number of Corvettes completed per hour down from 18.5 to 15. New production targets in January will lower that figure to 11 Corvettes completed each hour.
The production cuts will also force GM to layoff 110 workers in January. 70 workers were laid off after the first production cut and another 30 will be temporarily laid off as GM shuts down production of the Cadillac XLR for the month of December. The plant employs 800 workers.
â€œMost of our employees knew that more changes would be made to our production schedule, based upon more recent sales figures,â€ said Andrea Hales, communication director for the Bowling Green plant. â€œI just donâ€™t know if they expected it to be as big of an impact as what we announced this morning. At this time, nothing is certain and we really just take it in stride and watch our sales figures, our sales results and the overall market.â€
Corvette sales took a dive last month, dropping 53 percent compared with sales from October 2007.
â€œCorvette sales, they were doing fairly well until the last few months,â€ said Tom Wilkinson, spokesperson for General Motors. â€œA lot of luxury segments have been pretty heavily impacted. The people who have the money are not spending it,â€ he said. â€œAnd the people who donâ€™t have the money are having trouble getting credit. Production cuts are difficult, but we need to keep the company viable,â€ he said. â€œAnd we think the Corvette will definitely take off again.”