Chrysler Will Invest $843 Million in Kokomo Facilities
The news of increased spending comes as US president Obama and vice president Biden are touring the Kokomo factory. It is also hoped that the plant will generate new jobs in Indiana. With this announcement, Chrysler’s total investment in US facilities would climb to almost $3 billion (EUR2.2 billion) since June 2009. By far the largest part has been diverted to Kokomo facilities, with this most recent sum bringing the total to $1.1 billion (EUR821 million).
The investment would fund the installation of equipment and special tooling to modernize the Indiana transmission plants and the Kokomo casting plant. The project would extend the life of these manufacturing facilities and help retain nearly 2,250 jobs.
”For years, Kokomo has been at the center of our powertrain strategy and the potential of an additional investment reaffirms that position. When introduced, this new front-wheel drive transmission, along with the previously announced eight-speed transmission we will also produce in Kokomo, will transform our future products and position them as leaders,” said Sergio Marchionne, CEO of Chrysler Group.
The Indiana plant currently produces the 45 RFERWD transmission for Jeep Grand Cherokee and Liberty, as well as Dodge Dakota and Ram Trucks. The second Indiana Transmission Plant produces the W5A580 five-speed transmission for the Chrysler 300, Jeep Grand Cherokee, Dodge Nitro and Charger.
“With the promise of investing more than $1 billion into our Kokomo facilities within the last six months, we are demonstrating our commitment to this community and our dedicated workforce,” Marchionne said.
The company announced earlier this year that it will spend spend $343 million (EUR252 million) in Kokomo, $43 million (EUR32 million) of which will be used to increase capacity at the casting and transmission plants.