GM plans to cut more than 14,000 jobs, close factories as downturn looms

First came the voluntary buyouts. Now, GM is ramping up its belt-tightening measures with cuts to factory and white-collar workers, plant closures in North America and the elimination of several car models as it tries to transform into a nimble company focused on high-margin SUVs, crossovers and trucks and investments in future products like electric and autonomous vehicles.

The actions, which are meant to safeguard the automaker from an expected downturn in the U.S. market, will increase GM’s annual free cash flow by about $6 billion, including cost reductions of $4.5 billion and lower capital expenditure annualrun rate of almost $1.5 billion by 2020. Ford took similar cost-cutting measuresearlier this year.