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GM Signals Shift To Smaller Cars, Mulls Putting Hummer On The Block

aveo.jpgGeneral Motors’ Chairman and Chief Executive G. Richard Wagoner Jr. announced the company’s plans to undergo some structural changes, BusinessWeek reports.

Wagoner said the changes include shutting four truck plants, eliminating 10,000 jobs, plans to introduce a new line of compacts for North America and increasing the production of cars like the electric Chevy Volt that the company will begin marketing in 2010. Wagoner also said GM is considering everything from repositioning or selling the Hummer brand.

The company, according to BusinessWeek, is also keeping the consumer trend toward more fuel efficient vehicles in mind:

GM plans to introduce a new compact car that will be better equipped than today’s compacts, with more amenities and also a 9-mpg boost over today’s 27-mpg Chevrolet Cobalt. An all-new version of GM’s Korean-made Chevy Aveo subcompact is coming, Wagoner said. GM will also build an all-new 1.4-liter turbo engine for its new compact cars.

At the Beijing Auto Show in May, GM displayed a hybrid version of its Buick LaCrosse sedan, which it is assembling in China and launching there this summer. GM is running “down to the wire” as it readies its plug-in hybrid Chevrolet Volt for a planned launch in 2010, GM CEO Rick Wagoner told reporters at the Auto Show.

GM is not the only automaker seeing a change in the market. Nissan’s Chief Executive said that company company expects to sell a broad range of electric vehicles globally by 2012.

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