Over 70,000 United Auto Workers (UAW) union members walked out of factories all over North America.
Ron Gettelfinger, UAW president, said he expects to return to negotiations with GM later today.
According to the BBC, talks broke down when the carmaker could not confirm that new GM models would be built in the US and an agreement could not be made over future pension and healthcare benefits.
Roy Kishor, partner at Kroll's corporate advisory and restructuring group, said: "Component manufacturers like Delphi, who are heavily exposed to GM products and are already in Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection, could be terminal and they will start to hurt in a very short space of time given their current financial situation."
In a statement GM said: "The bargaining involves complex, difficult issues that affect the job security of our US work force and the long-term viability of the company.
"We will continue focusing our efforts on reaching an agreement as soon as possible."