Klegon: No more job cuts

Klegon: No more job cuts

Frank Klegon, Chrysler’s executive vice president for product development, says the company is not including additional workforce reductions in the viability plan to be submitted to the federal government next Tuesday.

Klegon’s comments came after the announcement of General Motors’ plan to trim an additional 10,000 people from its payroll. Klegon noted Chrysler had a major reduction in force last November when about 25 percent of its salaried employees were let go.

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Dodge debuts heavy-duty Rams

Dodge debuts heavy-duty Rams

Today in Chicago, Dodge is introducing the new Ram Heavy Duty 2500/3500 pickups, and its Class 3-5 Chassis Cabs. Continuing are the Cummins diesel (now with urea injection), the Hemi (up to 383 horsepower), and the basic chassis; new are the interior, with luxury-car options, and many suspension features. An exhaust brake is available on all models (with diesel), and a six-speed automatic is optional with the diesel;

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Treasury to help industry, dealers

Treasury to help industry, dealers

Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner declared that the U.S. would spend up to $1 trillion to boost consumer credit, including car loans and inventory financing for dealers. Geithner noted that the approach of spending money to boost banks had not had the desired effects on the greater economy. 

The new effort is similar in principal to one announced by the Bush administration in November, which was never implemented. It is titled Term Asset-Backed Securities Loan Facility,

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New Process Gear plant closing

New Process Gear plant closing

Magna is shutting down the former New Process Gear plant in Syracuse, New York, which made manual transmissions for numerous Dodge and Plymouth cars. The Canadian auto parts maker, which was a lead bidder for Chrysler Group and reportedly engineered and built the electric Ford Focus prototype, had gotten major concessions from the UAW in early 2008. Recently, Magna went back to the union with more demands, which workers rejected. 

Read the full story: New Process Gear plant closing  »


Chrysler re-shuts plants

Chrysler re-shuts plants

Automotive News reported that, faced with a 50% sales decline, Chrysler has once again shut down the Sterling Heights, Jefferson North, and Warren Truck plants, which make, respectively, the Sebring/Avenger, Grand Cherokee/Commander, and Ram and Dakota. Despite the award-winning, visually unique 2009 Dodge Ram redesign, pickup sales dropped 35% in January – which made them one of Chrysler’s bright spots, but did not justify keeping the plant open. 

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Press: Chrysler can make it without Fiat

Press: Chrysler can make it without Fiat

Chrysler Vice Chairman Jim Press says the company can survive with or without Fiat and intends to present two alternative viability plans to the federal government on February 17.

Company executives did say the alliance is the preferred route and added that discussions with other potential partners have been suspended.

The government has to approve a Chrysler plan in order for the car company to receive the remaining $3 billion from its original request for $7 billion in loans.

Read the full story: Press: Chrysler can make it without Fiat  »


U.S. auto sales dive 37 percent: lowest since 1981

U.S. auto sales dive 37 percent: lowest since 1981

Manufacturers sold 656,976 cars and light trucks in January, the lowest total since December 1981 and 387,678 fewer than January 2008. The seasonally adjusted annualized rate (SAAR) of 9.57 million units is a figure not seen since June 1982. Last January’s SAAR was 15.37 million, 5.8 million sales more.

Hampered by consumer doubts about its survival and a lack of capital to fund deals, Chrysler led the plunge,

Read the full story: U.S. auto sales dive 37 percent: lowest since 1981  »



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