Chrysler Starts to Build Its New Plant

By: Evander Klum

The Chrysler Group has started construction of its new $700 million axle plant in the north of Detroit, as its officials spearheaded the ground breaking ceremony that was held last Monday.

The company also said that it will inform the press on the more plant investments in the coming weeks. This, according to Chrysler officials, is part of the $3 billion that will be used this year to spend for factories that make engines, axles, transmissions and other power train parts.

The announcement of the building of a new plant in St. Clair Township, which is about 50 miles northeast of Detroit, and a new engine plant in the Detroit edge of Trenton was done last April.

DaimlerChrysler AG, the German company from where Chrysler's came, made the announcements. The company said last week that for a $7.4 billion deal, it would sell Chrysler to private-equity firm Cerberus and the deal is expected to close sometime from July to September.

David Elshoff, the Chrysler spokesman, said that last Monday's ground breaking ceremonies proved that Cerberus is committed to the restructuring plan of
Chrysler. The plan involves cutting 13,000 jobs but more investments in its facilities.

He further said that their company's recovery and transformation plan reflects their map of moving forward. In the coming week, the public will be informed of the company's other plant investments.

Last month, Chrysler, which is also maker of quality , told the press that it will be spending $1.78 billion on transmission and engine facilities. This would include the St. Clair Township and Trenton plants, a $50 million investment in its Warren stamping and assembly complex, and a new $300 million paint shop at its assembly plant in Sterling Heights.

The Detroit axle plant that was built in 1917 and now employs more than 1,600 workers will be replaced with a new one. And the current engine plant in Trenton, that also employs as estimated 1,600 people will be replaced by the new one in the Detroit edge of Trenton.

The company stated that the new St. Clair Township plant will get about 900 workers, while the new engine plant would get about 485 workers. The company has a net job loss of about 1,465. This is because over 350 workers at the current Trenton and Detroit axle plants are expected to take buyouts or early retirement offers under the recovery and transformation plan.

Front- and rear-drive axles for many Chrysler truck products, trailing axles for Dodge and Chrysler mini-vans, and power train parts for the Chrysler 300, Dodge Magnum and Dodge Charger cars are being manufactured in the Detroit axle plant.

The new -generation Chrysler V-6 engine will be manufactured in the Treton plant.

About Chrysler Group

Soon to be Chrysler Corporation LLC, the Chrysler Group is an independent an American automobile manufacturer that has been manufacturing vehicles since 1925.

DaimlerChrysler AG, the parent company of Chrysler, announced on May 14, 2007 the sale of 80.1 percent of Chrysler to Cerberus Capital Management, L.P. an American equity firm. When the transaction is completed, Chrysler Corporation LLC will be the new name of Chrysler.

In 1998, after a deal known as "Merger of Equals", Chrysler and its subsidiaries were part of the DaimlerChrysler AG that is based in Germany. The operations in the US are now referred to as the "Chrysler Group".

"Mopar", the name for its parts operation, is another popular term for the entire line up of Chrysler cars.

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