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Governor Jay Nixon was joined by officials from General Motors and the United Autoworkers at the annual St. Louis Auto Show to celebrate the GMC Canyon and the Chevrolet Colorado pickup trucks being manufactured at the GM Wentzville Plant. (L - R) Chris Adelmann, EVP, St. Louis Auto Dealers Association, Mike Bullock, Chairman, UAW Local 2250 - GM Wentzville, Governor Jay Nixon, Anita Burke, GM Vehicle Chief Engineer, Midsize Truck, and Rick Murphy, Program Launch Manager, General Motors Wentzville.
GM's Next Generation of Mid-Sized Pickup Trucks Highlighted at St. Louis Auto Show
"It's no accident that these next-generation pickups are being built in the Show-Me State," Governor Jay Nixon stated during the GM event at the 2014 St. Louis Auto Show.
Anita Burke, Vehicle Chief Engineer for the GMC Canyon and the Chevrolet Colorado, said it's been a very exciting time for them developing the trucks.
by Betty Moore, firstname.lastname@example.org
ST. LOUIS, (SLFP.com), January 23, 2014 - The St. Louis Auto show is a annual event that draws hundreds of families, friends, and car and truck enthusiasts, even when temperatures are in the single digits.
On opening day, more than 500 new cars, trucks, SUVs and luxury vehicles from over 25 manufacturers were on display at the America's Center and Edward Jones Dome in downtown St. Louis. As the crowds poured in to inspect, touch and even drive their dream car and truck, dealers and sales representatives geared up for questions and possible sales.
In the GMC area, Gov. Jay Nixon was joined by officials from General Motors and the United Autoworkers to celebrate two new vehicles being manufactured at the GM Wentzville Plant. Both the GMC Canyon and the Chevrolet Colorado pickup trucks are being highlighted at the auto show.
"It's no accident that these next-generation pickups are being built in the Show-Me State," Gov. Nixon said in his remarks during a special presentation.
"We have low taxes, a AAA credit rating, and an outstanding quality of life. But the real difference-maker for Missouri is our workforce. When it comes down to it, we make the best trucks in the world, because we have the best workers in the world."
The Governor commented that he was at the North American Auto Show in Detroit last week for the unveiling of the Canyon. He said the new truck had caught the eye of the automotive world.
"This truck was one of the true rock stars of the auto show - just as it will be when it hits the dealer showrooms and the open highway," Gov. Nixon said. "I am proud that the Canyon, and the Chevy Colorado, are being built right here in Missouri, by Missouri workers. This is proof that the future of the American automotive industry is taking shape right here in the Show Me State."
In an interview following the GM event, Anita Burke, Vehicle Chief Engineer for the GMC Canyon and the Chevrolet Colorado, proudly noted that it's been a very exciting time for them developing the trucks.
Burke's work on the North American version of the Canyon began during an assignment in Brazil, where she served from 2008 until 2011, when she led the program's transition from GM's South America Engineering Center to the North America Engineering Center.
"We've really reinvented this segment for our customers. They've lacked choice. They haven't had something that really gave them all the capability, styling and size that this mid-sized truck is going to deliver," said Burke, pointing to the Chevrolet Colorado.
Burke, a member of the Society of Automotive Engineers, also assists the Visitation Scholarship Program in Chicago, Ill., which provides a quality high school education for at-risk students.
When asked about the mentoring program for students, Burke responded enthusiastically about the future of automotive design. "I really hoped that with Mary Barra as our new CEO, and those of us who are also in positions, that we can lead and develop. I think it's really going to open up the door for kids to be excited about math, engineering and science. These are exciting fields that can show them what opportunities are available. The world is at their feet. They can do what they want," she smiled.
As the St. Louis Auto Show closes on Sunday, local GM dealers hope that the excitement continues to bring in new customers to showrooms and brisk sales when the sporty 2015 Chevrolet Colorado and GMC Canyon launch late this year. It will also be a dream fulfilled for the $380 million investment and creation of 450 jobs at the new plant in Wentzville.
See archived story: GM's $380 Million Expansion in Wentzville Is Rebirth of American Automotive Industry in Missouri
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