Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Chrysler Group LLC says it's ready to invest $72 million in its Toledo Machining Plant in Perrysburg, Ohio, to produce new generation front-wheel and rear-wheel drive torque converters and steering columns. The final decision, which will protect 640 jobs,  depends on the completion of incentive negotiations and agreements with the State of Ohio. Chrysler also is expected to soon announce a larger investment at Jeep assembly complex in Toledo.
“We welcome this investment in Toledo Machining as it is an acknowledgement of the high quality components that have been produced by our skilled workforce for many years,” said Scott Garberding, Senior Vice President and Head of Manufacturing, Chrysler Group LLC. “Being able to bring new technology to this facility secures its long-term future.”
“We are also appreciative of the support we have received from the State of Ohio in providing the incentives necessary to make this investment possible,” said Garberding. Ohio governor John Kasich visited Auburn Hills to discuss the project with officials both from Chrysler and the United Auto Workers.  The new torque converters will be paired with the next generation eight-speed rear-wheel drive transmission being built at Chrysler’s Kokomo (Ind.) Transmission Plant and the all-new nine-speed front-wheel drive transmission to be produced at the company’s Indiana (Kokomo, Ind.) Transmission Plant I. The new transmissions and torque converters are a critical part of Chrysler’s strategy to meet fuel economy requirements over the next several years.
 The investment would fund the installation of new equipment and special tooling to modernize and enhance the plant’s capability. Work on the plant is expected to begin late third quarter 2011 and be completed in the first quarter of 2013.
“We’re very pleased that Chrysler is making the decision to invest in the Toledo Machining Plant and the skilled workforce there,” said General Holiefield, Vice President and Director, UAW Chrysler Department. “This will help preserve and enhance jobs in the area and give a greater measure of security to our members and their families well into the future.”
Toledo Machining currently produces steering columns for several  plants in Michigan Ohio but also for plants in Windsor,Ont., Toluca and Saltillo, Mex.and Carabobo,Venezuela.
  The plant also produces torque converters, a component that allows the transmission to shift gears in an automatic transmission in Indiana and Michigan as well as Mexico and Great Britain. Since June 2009, Chrysler Group has invested nearly $3.2 billion in its U.S.plants. By Joseph  Szczesny


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