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Chevrolet to Increase Volt Production Capacity by 50 Percent

As President Barack Obama toured the General Motors' Detroit-Hamtramck facility on July 30, the company announced that strong public interest in the Chevrolet Volt - the extended-range electric vehicle - has prompted it to increase its U.S. production capacity of the groundbreaking new car by 50 percent, from 30,000 units to 45,000 units, in 2012.

The Volt offers a total driving range of about 340 miles and is powered by electricity at all times. For up to the first 40 miles, the vehicle drives gas- and tailpipe-emissions-free using electricity stored in its 16-kWh lithium-ion battery. When the Volt's battery runs low, a gas-powered, engine/generator seamlessly operates to extend the driving range another 300 miles on a full tank.

The Detroit-Hamtramck plant received $336 million in new investment to prepare for production of the Volt, part of more than $700 million GM has invested in eight Michigan facilities to support Volt production since 2008. This includes a 33,000 square-foot battery systems lab in Warren; a battery assembly facility in Brownstown Township; and supporting engine and stamping operations in Grand Blanc, Bay City, and three plants in Flint.

Additionally, in early July, battery cell supplier LG Chem/Compact Power Inc. broke ground on a $300 million, 650,000-square-foot plant in Holland, Mich., to support Volt production, creating 400 jobs. Since the Volt's debut in January 2007, other automakers have announced 30 plug-in hybrid or electric vehicles.

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