$4.5B Fiat Chrysler plan to add 6,500 jobs in Detroit area

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DETROIT (AP) -- Fiat Chrysler says it plans to roughly double its hourly workforce in Detroit as part of a $4.5 billion investment that will add about 6,500 jobs in the city and surrounding suburbs to build all-new or next-generation SUVs.

The company said Tuesday it will reopen a shuttered engine plant in the city and convert another in the same complex into a future assembly plant for the Jeep Grand Cherokee and a new, three-row, full-size Jeep SUV and plug-in hybrid models.

That complex is expected to add 3,850 jobs. Another 1,100 new jobs are expected to be added at FCA's Jefferson North Assembly, and roughly 1,500 new jobs at facilities in the neighboring suburb of Warren.

Fiat Chrysler says it's working with city and state officials on tax incentive packages.

Gov. Gretchen Whitmer is applauded the announcement.

“This is incredible news for Michigan’s economy, our families, and the future of our state. Today’s announcement signals the strong bet FCA is making on our talent and manufacturing heritage that will continue to cement Michigan’s status as the home of automotive innovation for generations to come,” Whitmer said. “We need to keep our foot on the gas as we work to build a Michigan where businesses can find the resources and talent to thrive in the state. Nearly 6,500 jobs, $4.5 billion in investment in Michigan and the first new automobile assembly plant in Detroit in 30 years provides a compelling testament that we are on the right path forward.”

FCA plans to convert its Mack Avenue Engine Complex into the future assembly site for the next-generation Jeep® Grand Cherokee and an all-new three-row full-size Jeep SUV, a project that will generate a total investment of $1.6 billion and create 3,850 new jobs in the city of Detroit. The new facility will be the first new assembly plant to be built within city limits in nearly three decades.

FCA will also invest $900 million in its Jefferson North plant, also in Detroit, to retool and modernize it for continued production of the Dodge Durango and next generation Jeep Grand Cherokee, creating an additional 1,100 new jobs in the city.

“FCA appreciates Governor Whitmer’s and the Michigan Economic Development Corporation’s support in bringing forth investments that will create more than 6,500 new jobs statewide,” said Mark Stewart, Chief Operating Officer, North America, Fiat Chrysler Automobiles N.V. “An all-new state-of-the-art assembly plant combined with investments at five other Michigan facilities represent the single-largest investment we’ve made in our U.S. operations since 2009. These plant actions represent the next step in helping us further expand production capacity of our core brands and strengthen our U.S. manufacturing footprint to satisfy the global demand for Jeep vehicles.”

In addition, FCA plans to invest an additional $1.5 billion at its Warren Truck facility for production of the all-new Jeep Wagoneer and Grand Wagoneer, creating 1,400 new jobs at that facility. The company will also invest an additional $519 million to retool existing plants in Warren, Sterling Heights and Dundee.

Michigan Economic Development Corporation CEO Jeff Mason said the company’s decision to expand in Michigan will have a transformative impact on the entire state. Estimates from the Center for Automotive Research show every job in an automotive assembly plant has a multiplier of eight (8) jobs throughout the supply chain.

“Today’s news represents a generational investment in our state and further solidifies Michigan’s position as the undisputed leader of automotive innovation,” Mason said. “This is a project that will have a positive impact on the state and region for years to come. We applaud this world-class company for its tremendous investment and look forward to working with FCA as it expands and adds jobs in Michigan.”

As the single largest FCA investment in the United States since the recession, today’s announcement also secures Michigan’s leadership when it comes to new automotive technology, including electrification. All three assembly sites announced today will also produce plug-in hybrid versions of their respective Jeep models with flexibility to build fully battery electric models in the future.

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