Magna Seating plans $100 million plant to serve GM in suburban Detroit
The Canadian company, which has a large presence in metro Detroit, will operate the plant as the “exclusive supplier” to “all the electric SUVs and trucks” produced at Orion Assembly, the project description said.
The GM assembly plant is undergoing a $4 billion electric conversion, and the automaker said last year it expected to churn out Chevrolet Silverado EVs and electric GMC Sierra pickups starting in 2024.
Construction of Magna’s seating plant is expected to begin in July and be complete by November 2024.
The GM seating contract marks a big win for Magna. Southfield-based competitor Lear Corp. has been the seating supplier on GM’s Silverado and GMC Sierra programs and announced a year ago that it won the contract for the 2024 Silverado EV being built at Factory Zero.
GM declined to say how it decided upon its seating suppliers.
“For competitive reasons, we do not publicly discuss details related to supplier agreements,” GM spokesman Dan Flores told Crain’s.
The development on the former site of Oakland County Animal Control is being led by General Development Co., which along with Friedman Real Estate bought the property in 2021 for $3.7 million.
Once constructed, the building will be leased to Magna, though the lease has not yet been finalized, Fuerst said.
“The city council has had a long-standing strategic goal to prepare underutilized properties for redevelopment,” according to the planning document. “The work involved with preparing this property is a prime example of the City Council’s vision being implemented.”
The planning document said the Magna plant will operate with three shifts — the first consisting of 250-300 employees — and operate five days a week, with work on the weekends based on GM’s needs.
The amount of local and state incentives being sought for the project were not disclosed. The Michigan Economic Development Corp. declined comment.
“It would be premature to discuss details of any potential project that may or may not go before the Michigan Strategic Fund board,” spokesman Otie McKinley said in an email.
The proposed plant is scheduled to go before the planning commission board Wednesday for approval of the site plan and a tree removal permit.
According to the plan, about 165,000 square feet of the plant would be shop space, 85,000 square feet would be warehouse and the remaining 30,000 square feet would be for office.
Magna has been on an electric spending spree in Michigan recently. The company announced in October it would invest $530 million in new and existing plants in Highland Park, Shelby Township and St. Clair while creating 1,569 jobs to support new business from automakers.
Meanwhile, Lear announced in December that it would invest $112.5 million and create up to 500 new jobs in Michigan, including an $80 million EV battery parts plant in Independence Township.
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