Chrysler Group will invest $240 million to increase engine capacity and add about 1,250 new jobs at several Michigan facilities to boost output of 2013 Rams and fuel-efficient Pentastar V-6 engines.
In March, a third shift will be added to its Warren Truck plant in suburban Detroit, which started producing the 2013 Ram in September. According to a Nov. 15 press release, Chrysler CEO Sergio Marchionne confirmed that the company would also make investments and add jobs to the Mack I Engine Plant and the Trenton North Engine Plant in southeast Michigan.
“Today is another important milestone in living up to the commitment we made more than three and a half years ago to our employees, this city, this region and our country to transform this company,” said Marchionne at a celebratory event with Detroit Mayor David Bing at the Mack I Engine Plant. “All of these investments are the direct result of a lot of people who have battled courageously to bring Chrysler back to a state of growth.”
The engine production will increase the company’s supply of 3.6L V-6 engines that power most of Chrysler’s large sedans, pickups and SUVS. The $40 million investment at Trenton North for installation of a flexible production line will give Chrysler the ability to adjust capacity of either the Pentastar or the Tigershark engine, currently built at the Dundee Engine Plant, to meet market demand, the release stated.
Chrysler experienced a 20% increase in Ram sales compared to 2011. The re-engineered 2013 Ram pickup, which has a 6L V6 engine, eight-speed automatic transmission and fuel economy of up to 18 mpg, began arriving at dealerships in late October with an enhanced variety of customization options. Mopar, Chrysler’s service, parts and customer-car brand, is offering more than 300 parts and accessories for the new Ramp pickup.
Mopar enhancement options for the pickup include: an electronic vehicle tracking system, offroad camper trailers, technology that allows drivers to turn the truck into a Wi-Fi hot spot, drop-in bedliners, fiberglass tonneaus, wheel-to-wheel stainless steel tubular side steps and more, according to a Mopar press release.