LORDSTOWN, Ohio (WOIO) - Vice President Mike Pence visited the Youngstown area on Thursday to attend the unveiling of Lordstown Motors’ new Endurance electric pickup truck.
Pence, now on the campaign trail with November quickly approaching, delivered remarks, and afterward, met with law enforcement and community leaders.
“When you think about the storied history of this community and even this facility, Endurance isn’t just the name of the pickup truck, endurance describes the character of the people of the Mahoning Valley,” Pence said.
He announced that approximately 14,000 preorders for the Endurance truck have already been made, mostly by company’s using the vehicle as part of their fleet of work trucks.
“The dream is so big that a lot of people wanted to join that dream,” said company CEO Steve Burns, who took the stage prior to Pence.
With sales taking off, more production is ultimately expected, leading to estimates of hundreds of new jobs returning to the facility.
“[It’s] part of the great American comeback,” Pence added. “The best days for Lordstown and Ohio and America are yet to come.”
The closing of the longstanding GM plant, and its 1,400-plus layoffs, drew ire from both sides of the aisle with President Donald Trump and Sen. Sherrod Brown (D-OH) each criticizing the closure and calling for new jobs in the small Ohio auto town.
The vehicle, of which many mechanical specifics have yet to be announced, has the ability to last on the road for the equivalent of 75 miles per gallon, according to Burns.
U.S. Secretary of Energy Dan Brouillette and other government officials were also in attendance at Thursday event.
Gov. Mike DeWine and Lt. Gov. Jon Husted toured the plant on Wednesday.
Businesses in Westlake and Cleveland have pledged to buy more than 1,200 Endurance trucks, which cost $52,000 apiece.