Cadillac ATS Ready For Dealerships

By: Shannon Kantner Email
By: Shannon Kantner Email

It's red, shiny, and the latest chapter in Lansing's GM history: the brand new Cadillac ATS.

"This means we're back," said Local UAW 652 President Mike Green. "What this does is rejuvenate Lansing, rejuvenate the UAW. It tells us that GM believes in Lansing, if you want a job done bring it to Lansing, and we're proud of that."

Proud is how hundreds of workers felt who applauded as the ATS came off the line Thursday morning. Lance Werth, a worker who put the doors on the new vehicle, said he's happy to be a part of this launch.

"All the hard work pays off," Werth said.

The Lansing Grand River Assembly Plant got a nearly $200 million upgrade for ATS production. It also added a second shift, which is about 600 jobs.

"It proves that there is no better investment than the American worker," Green said. "It's about the effort and dedication that goes into this car every day. Day in and day out."

GM said the ATS doesn't just put Lansing back on top, but on top of the world. The company wants the ATS to compete globally, and it will make it's world debut at the Olympics opening ceremonies Friday.

"I've driven a lot of cars in Europe, I've driven the competition, and I'll tell you, it handles great," said Lansing Regional Plant Manager Tony Francavilla. "It's like you're on a bobsled. You just touch the steering wheel and it goes where you want it to go. It's nimble, it's light."

Francavilla said employees were able to sample test models of the ATS, and they're already asking when they can get one. Another big fan of the car is Lansing Mayor Virg Bernero's 87-year-old father, a retired GM worker, who attended the reveal.

"We have the most productive workers in the world, there's no question about it," said Mayor Bernero. "It's not about what you made yesterday or even today. You have to be nimble, you've got to stay with it. So we have to continue to invest in our workers, And when we do that, we get great results like this."

Those results can go from 0-60 m.p.h. in under six seconds and will cost about $38,000. They're expected to be in dealerships next month.


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