Next-Gen Chevrolet Aveo to Be Built in the US

GM plans to build a subcompact called the Chevrolet Sonic when its Orion Township plant starts production on August 1, 2011. The Sonic will replace the Chevrolet Aveo and will have a different name than the current model due to confusion on how to pronounce "Aveo".

The Sonic nameplate hasn't been confirmed yet by the manufacturer, but GM insiders have indicated the name is correct, according to reports by the GM Inside News blog. GM has already trademarked the name "Chevrolet Sonic" on October 5.

The new model will have hatchback and sedan versions and will join the 2011 Chevrolet Cruze and the forthcoming Chevrolet Spark in Chevy's small-car US line-up. GM is expected to display the upcoming model in the 2011 auto show circuit, possibly in Detroit in January. At this year's North American International Auto Show GM presented a sporty concept version of the car.

GM had originally planned to import the car, probably from its South Korean plant that produces the current generation Aveo. The Orion plant was to close until GM granted it production of the subcompact in exchange for UAW concessions ahead of the company's bankruptcy in 2009.

UAW and GM leaders have agreed that 60% of the blue-collar workers in the plant will make the UAW's full, $28 hourly wage, while the rest will make about half that amount, in order to make the car profitably.

General Motors Orion Assembly is currently in the process of retooling the plant for the new Chevrolet small car and Buick Verano. Orion township and the State of Michigan offered competitive tax breaks to keep the plant open and to build the new subcompact. Orion's bid was selected over other bids from plants in Wisconsin and Tennessee.
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