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Chrysler receives $70 million grant

by Bill Cawthon on

Reuters is reporting that Chrysler Group has been awarded a $70 million grant from the federal government as part of American Recovery and Investment Act of 2009. The money will go Chrysler’s facilities in Warren, Michigan, and St. Louis, Missouri, “to develop, validate, and deploy 220 advanced plug-in hybrid electric pickups and minivans.”

Chrysler will also benefit from a $249 million grant awarded to A123 Systems. Chrysler established a strategic partnership with A123 Systems, a manufacturer of lithium-ion batteries, to produce energy storage systems for the first-generation ENVI extended-range electric vehicles and all-electric vehicles.

The grants require matching funds from the recipients.

The awards were part of $2.4 billion in grants the Obama Administration is investing to make America more energy independent. One of the primary goals is to create a battery manufacturing base in the United States that will create “tens of thousands” of jobs, administration officials said.

“If we want to reduce our dependence on oil, put Americans back to work and reassert our manufacturing sector as one of the greatest in the world, we must produce the advanced, efficient vehicles of the future,” the President said.

Bill Cawthon grew up in the auto industry in the 1950s. His Dad worked for Chrysler and Bill spent a number of Saturdays down on the plant floor at Dodge Main in Hamtramck. Bill is also the U.S. market correspondent for, a British auto industry publication, and a member of the Texas Auto Writers Association, which has named the Jeep Grand Cherokee the “SUV of Texas” several times and named the Ram 1500 as the “Truck of Texas” two years running.

Bill has owned five Plymouths (including the only 1962 “Texan”), one Dodge and one Chrysler and is still trying to figure out how to justify a Wrangler. He also has owned at least one of every 1:87 scale model of a Chrysler product. You can reach him directly at (206) 888-7324 or by using the form.

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