General Motors and Hyundai today separately announced plans to invest billions in their assembly plants in the United States.
The news comes just days before President-elect Donald Trump is sworn into office. Trump has not been shy about encouraging—even bullying—companies to boost employment in the U.S.
GM says it will add about 450 jobs as part of a $1 billion investment in a plant in Michigan to assemble axles for pickup trucks. Earlier this month, Trump called out GM for not having made major investment announcements like Ford and Fiat Chrysler Automobiles had.
The automaker also indicated that it will add about 5,000 salaried positions, many of which will be in the Detroit area not far from its headquarters.
GM's announcement highlights a broader move by the automaker to begin assembling more vehicle components in-house rather than relying on outside suppliers. The automaker says it is attempting to build "supplier parks" near some of its major American assembly plants, which will be a combination of outside parties and components put together directly by GM.
2017 Hyundai Sonata Hybrid
2017 Hyundai Sonata HybridEnlarge Photo
Hyundai, on the other hand, says it plans to pump $3.1 billion into its Alabama and Georgia assembly plants as well as increasing its research and development activities in the U.S. by 2021. That's about 50 percent more than the automaker invested between 2012 and 2016.
The Korean automaker's president, Chung Jin Haeng, said that the automaker is also exploring an additional assembly plant for its Hyundai and Kia-branded vehicles in the U.S.
Both Hyundai and GM—like most major automakers—assemble some cars in Mexico, where wages are considerably lower than in the U.S. Trump has taken particular aim at vehicle assembly plants south of the border and several brands have made major investment announcements in the U.S. recently.