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Chrysler adding jobs at Jefferson North

by Bill Cawthon on

Chrysler will add a third crew and 1,100 new jobs at the Jefferson North Assembly Plant. The new jobs will help Chrysler expand the Jeep Grand Cherokee lineup by adding a diesel engine for the North American market. In addition, 150 jobs will be added when the company reopens the Conner Avenue to build the SRT Viper.

The company says that adding the 1,250 new jobs demonstrates Chrysler’s commitment to Detroit and the belief workers int he Motor City can produce “…luxurious, high-quality, state-of-the art vehicles that are true to a shared heritage and aspire to create a better and sustainable future.”

“Our future, like the history of our brands, is interwoven with the City of Detroit,” said Chrysler CEO Sergio Marchionne. “Detroit long has been home to renowned innovators and craftsmen. So it is in the Motor City, home of our industrial heritage and a resilient people, that we are entrusting the manufacture not only of the ultimate American sports car, the SRT Viper, and the Jeep Grand Cherokee – the most awarded SUV ever – but also a diesel version of the Jeep Grand Cherokee for North American markets.

“We believe that investing in Detroit is not only the right thing to do, but it is a smart thing to do as we work to write the next chapter in our shared history,” Marchionne said.

The new Jefferson North crew will work Chrysler’s 3-2-120 schedule that allows for an extra 20 hours of production each week without the use of overtime. The controversial schedule, which employees have faulted for creating stress and health issues, was one of the topics covered during last fall’s labor negotiations.

Even with the schedule, the UAW is happy about the new jobs.

“We are pleased to have Chrysler Group acknowledge the contributions of the UAW here in the Motor City by relying on our workforce to produce two of its most acclaimed vehicles,” said General Holiefield, UAW Vice President-Chrysler Department. “Our workers nationwide have had a rough couple of years along with the American auto industry and we are proud to be partners in building a future of success starting right here in Detroit.”

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 just-auto.com, 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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