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post #1 of 8 (permalink) Old 01-25-2008, 11:27 PM Thread Starter
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GM Lordstown Assembly Plant

Hello All,

Does anyone know if the GM Lordstown Assembly Plant, where our Balts were built, offer any type tours to the public? I would really like to take a Road Trip with my 11 y.o boy to see them built from start to finish. He and I would really get a kick out of it. It would be an awesome trip to spend father/son.

Thanks guys (and gals!)
GTO 1


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post #2 of 8 (permalink) Old 01-27-2008, 10:14 PM
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I'm sure they would, the NUMMI plant in Fremont, CA makes Toyota Corollas, Pontiac Vibes, and Toyota Tacomas and offers a pretty cool tour. You should go soon though if you want to see the Cobalts being made since the Cobalt production is moving to Mexico after the 2009 refresh. Lordstown will still be there but they're going to be making Buicks or something like that.
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post #3 of 8 (permalink) Old 02-04-2008, 04:54 PM Thread Starter
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Lordstown Tour...

I was very quickly told... "NO WAY... Not Since 9-11!!" Thanks OSAMA..


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post #4 of 8 (permalink) Old 02-05-2008, 07:20 AM
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When I first asked about NUMMI, they said "no" back in the early days just when GM handed it to Toyota. NUMMI was only making cars like Nova and FX-16. Many years later, I decided look for a job and went to their website, and there's the tour. Went on it twice. It's a popular thing with the schools and the officials consider it as educational (true) and public relations thing.

If you want to make change, get the schools involved. Dept of Education can open doors. How could GM tell the kids "no." I really don't see anything worth a secret in building a Cobalt, that the Japanese, Korean, Chinese or Mexicans don't already know. I love my Cobalt, but I don't think BMW will copy the manufacture process.

I don't buy that 911 answer. It think GM just don't want to assume the liability. GM pays enough on legacy insurance, and don't need to worry about another insurance bill.

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post #5 of 8 (permalink) Old 02-05-2008, 07:50 PM
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NUMMI isn't GM or Toyota owned, it's like an independent manufacturer. They build GM models and Toyotas also but I think it's privately owned by different people than the auto industry giants.

My fiancees dad owns a plastics company and he took his employees to NUMMI so see how lean mfg works. Problem is almost everything at NUMMI is robotic and smaller mfg shops in the area with less than 100 employees still do much without completely automated systems. Hell, even MASS precision, probably the largest sheetmetal and machine company in the valley has 400 employees and they're still following somewhat primitive mfg processes.
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post #6 of 8 (permalink) Old 02-06-2008, 06:42 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BlackBalt View Post
NUMMI isn't GM or Toyota owned, it's like an independent manufacturer. They build GM models and Toyotas also but I think it's privately owned by different people than the auto industry giants.
I know. NUMMI is an independent corp joinly owned by Toyota and GM. And I'm sure there are other stock holders too. But one can't erase the fact that the NUMMI factory was a "closed plant" that used to build GM X-Cars + Toyota provided the robots = NUMMI.

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post #7 of 8 (permalink) Old 02-06-2008, 10:27 PM
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Yeah I guess it is, I heard somewhere it wasn't a while back.

Anyways, what I don't understand is why that is a Toyota/GM plant but all the workers are UAW like the average GM plant at say Lordstown but none of Toyotas are Union anywhere else except NUMMI.
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post #8 of 8 (permalink) Old 02-07-2008, 06:46 AM
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Long before Japanese car makers decided to build cars in the U.S. None of them were sure. Remember when UAW bashed a Toyota as a public display with hammers in the late 70s? There were a lot of anti-Japanese feeling about cars. So Toyota was careful and did not want to build a mega plant and hang those big red letters - to have wackos set it on fire.

The solution was NUMMI. It was a "joint venture" with GM, and as a new name. It's "NOT" Toyota or GM. It's NUMMI. An "American company" owned by Toyota, GM, etc, etc. It's not "Japanese."

Also, GM had given up on building small cars. They just needed Toyota's help in manufacturing, and those Just-In-Time processes that Dr. Demming (an American) taught the Japanese how to build cars. Notice how NUMMI is located near hwy 880, 101, and not far from hwy 5 and railroad tracks. Tacoma beds are (were) stamped in Long Beach and truck up hwy 5. Not sure if they still do that today.

Back to the question. Toyota did not know how the American labor unions work. So NUMMI was also a chance for Toyota to understand it. Again, both sides provided their expertise. GM had more experience with unions. During the "anti Japanese cars" phase, how can NUMMI choose not to be union.

I guess Toyotas conclusion was "No thanks" to unions for their own plants.

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