Sergio Marchionne, Chrysler and Fiat CEO, announced today that the company will be hiring 1,250 workers for new jobs and investing $240 million at three different Michigan plants. This will be a part of their efforts to ramp up production of its engines and pickups.
Since Chrysler hasn’t laid off any workers despite the rough economy, these will all be new jobs, which means there will be some very happy people in the state of Michigan.
The bulk of the investment, about $198 million total, will be made at the Mack I Engine Plant which as recently as last year had been temporarily idled. This same plant will also have about 250 new jobs added to help build the V6 Pentastar engine that is now an available option in the new Ram 1500 pickup.
The V6 Pentastar engine is also used in 16 other Chrysler vehicles, including the Jeep Cherokee and Chrysler 200. Currently, the Mack I plant has just 144 employees who make the 4.7L V8 engines used in the Ram 1500 pickup, so these new hires will more than double their current workforce.
Another $40 million of the investment will go to retooling the Trenton North Engine Plant which currently makes just the Pentastar engine. The retooling will allow for making both the Pentastar along with the Tigershark I-4 which is used in the Dodge Dart.
Their 74-year-old Warren plant will see most of the new jobs through the addition of a third crew to build Ram 1500 pickups. They’ve already got over 2,300 workers at this plant and expect the number of new hires to total 1,000 by March of next year.
Marchionne considers this a validation of the federal government’s decision to issue Chrysler a loan back in 2009 to help it successfully emerge from Chapter 11 bankruptcy. Their total investment in U.S. plants since then now exceeds $4.75 billion with the addition of close to 6,000 new jobs.
Nicole Wakelin fell in love with cars as a teenager when she got to go for a ride in a Ferrari. It was red and it was fast and that was all that mattered. Game over. She considers things a bit more carefully now, but still has a weakness for fast, beautiful cars. When not drooling over cars, Nicole writes for Wired’s GeekMom.