July 28, 2008 / 11:55 AM / 9 years ago

GM to add two models to new Oshawa car plant: report

TORONTO (Reuters) - General Motors of Canada is expected to announce on Monday that it will add two more vehicle models to its new Oshawa car plant and extend pay packages for senior workers as part of a union settlement tied to the closure of its truck plant, a national newspaper said.

<p>GM employees assemble Chevrolet Impalas after Ontario Premier Dalton McGuinty announced the creation of a C$650 million ($611 million) automotive green fund to encourage investment in environmentally friendly technology at the GM Oshawa Assembly Plant, June 19, 2007. REUTERS/J.P. Moczulski</p>

The Globe and Mail daily, citing sources familiar with the deal, said on Monday the Detroit-based automaker will earmark the new car models for the new flexible car plant set to open later this year, bringing the number of vehicles to be assembled at the plant to four.

The paper, citing U.S.-based sources, said the plant will eventually assemble the rear-wheel-drive Camaro, a front-wheel drive version of the Chevrolet Impala, a Buick model and one other vehicle.

The move could open up some car-plant jobs for 2,600 employees who will be thrown out of work when GM Canada, as announced in June, shuts its nearby truck plant in the third-quarter of 2009 amid slumping demand for larger trucks .

The paper, citing sources, said the ailing automaker will pay workers with at least 26 years seniority about 65 percent of their wages for four years so that they reach the 30-year level, while those with 27 to 30 years would get proportionately less.

This helps the senior employees qualify for a special retirement incentive applicable to those with 30 years experience.

The full package will be revealed to union members in Oshawa later on Monday, the report said.

($1=$1.02 Canadian)

Reporting by Scott Anderson; Editing by Bernadette Baum

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