General Motors has just announced that it will increase engine production at the GM Joinville plant in Brazil, the company’s main powertrain facility in South America that is considered one of the most modern and sustainable in the world.
GM’s Brazilian subsidiary confirmed that the Joinville plant will add a third production shift as of November 1st, allowing more than 130 new hires and a significant increase in the plant’s production capacity. This increased production at Joinville, which exclusively builds eighth-generation Ecotec small engines, will support unit exports and the arrival of the upcoming next-generation Chevy Montana.
“The return of the third shift in Joinville has a very relevant meaning for GM in South America,” said President and CEO of GM South America, Santiago Chamorro, in an official press release. “With the increase in production capacity in Joinville, we will export engines and support the launch of the new Montana in 2023, which will be assembled at our factory in São Caetano do Sul,” he added.
In particular, the addition of the third shift at the Joinville plant will translate into a 30 percent increase in its production capacity from the current 312,000 units per year to some 410,000 units starting next month. This will see the powertrain complex operating at near full capacity for the first time, which may cap out at 417,000 units per year thanks to the substantial expansion of the plant inaugurated at the end of 2019.
The Joinville plant currently manufactures three state-of-the-art engines that power Chevrolet’s best-selling models in Brazil and throughout the region. These are the 82-horsepower naturally aspirated 1.0L I-3 for the base variants of the Chevy Onix, the 116-horsepower turbocharged 1.0L I-3 shared by the Onix and Chevy Tracker, plus the 133-horsepower turbo 1.2L I-3 that the crossover will share with the upcoming Chevy Montana.
Since its inauguration in early 2013, the Joinville plant has become one of GM’s most strategic facilities in South America and continues to manufacture engines, heads and blocks. In addition to manufacturing all the engines in the history of the Onix – the best-selling vehicle in South America – the Joinville factory expanded to also make the blocks for the Tracker and the new Montana that seek to dominate their respective segments in the region.