On this day in auto history – February 18th

Thu 18th Feb 2021

It was on this day in 2009 that it became clear that US giant General Motors - then the world’s biggest car maker - was facing financial failure when it submitted an unlikely rescue plan to the US Treasury Department.

As part of an ambitious restructure plan, GM announced it was hoping to slash 47,000 jobs and close five US factories as long as it could receive a further $16 billion in government loans on top of the $14 billion it had already received.

The company - which had led global car sales for 77 years straight up until 2007 - eventually filed for bankruptcy protection four months later, citing debts of over $173 billion.

As part of a government-backed restructure package, a new entity emerged 40 days later and GM was resurrected as a solvent business. It has posted annual profits since 2010.