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Will there be enough Pentastars?

by David Zatz on

Trenton Engine plant

The Pentastar V6 engine is being aggressively spread across the Chrysler lineup, playing a role in mid-size cars, the Grand Cherokee, Durango, and the hot-selling minivans, which are the #1 and #2 minivans in world sales. One question is whether Chrysler can keep up with demand; while minivans are to reach 1,500 units per day, all driven by the advanced V6, the Trenton Engine plant is reportedly struggling to build the scheduled 1,272 engines each day. Issues include both internal problems and supplier problems; two shifts are currently working 11 hours per day, each, and Sundays are to be added to the schedule.

Rigorous quality standards are reportedly being maintained, so the problem is productivity rather than reliability.

The second plant, in Saltillo, Mexico, has reportedly been hit with construction issues. A once-planned third plant was never started.

Update: A retired Trenton Engine worker wrote that similar issues were experienced in the past. “When old Trenton Engine started making 2.2 turbos at the rate of 200 per day, one of the bosses told us we might be making 500 someday. We ended up making 1,500 per day.”

David Zatz founded Allpar in 1998 (based on a site he had begun in 1993-94), after years of writing reviews for retail trades. He has been quoted by the New York Times, the Daily Telegraph, the Detroit News, and USA Today. Before making Allpar a full-time career, he was a consultant in organizational psychology. You can reach him by using our contact form (much preferred) or by calling (313) 766-2304

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