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General Motors

said it will eschew a traditional summer shut-down at nine of its 11 assembly plants.

The decision is expected to result in production of 56,000 additional vehicles as the nine plants continue to operate from June 28 to July 9, when they would normally close. Most of GM's U.S. stamping and powertrain plants will also work to support assembly operations.

"This move will help buyers waiting for high-demand products such as the Buick LaCrosse, Chevrolet Traverse, and GMC Acadia," said Mark Reuss, president of GM North America, in a prepared statement.

Historically, automakers used the summer shutdown to complete annual model changeovers. Over the past two decades, the break has enabled time for maintenance and vacation usage that would not interfere with overall productivity.

Plants that will stay open during the two-week period are located in Arlington, Texas; Bowling Green, Ky.; Fort Wayne, Ind.; Hamtramck, Mich.; Kansas City, Kan.; Wentzville, Mo., and Flint, Delta Township, and Lansing, Mich. Plants that will close are in Lordstown, Ohio and Shreveport, La.


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production is also up. The company said recently that it will produce 570,000 vehicles in the third quarter, up 16% from the same quarter a year earlier. In the current quarter, Ford's production schedule calls for 640,000 vehicles, up 15,000 vehicles from the prior forecast.

-- Written by Ted Reed in Charlotte, N.C.