Chrysler to Expand Mexico Engine Plant
Chrysler to add 500 jobs to expand Mexico engine plant
October 8, 2013
Chrysler Group will add about 500 workers at a Mexican engine plant, two people with direct knowledge of the matter said Tuesday.
CEO Sergio Marchionne will provide details later this week when he visits the Saltillo area, where Chrysler has four plants, with Mexican President Enrique Pena Nieto, said the people, who asked not to be identified speaking ahead of the announcement.
Chrysler’s investment will total $164 million to expand production at the engine factory in Ramos Arizpe, one of the people said. Shawn Morgan, a Chrysler spokeswoman, declined to comment.
Automakers are expanding production in Mexico to capitalize on lower labor costs that bolster the profitability of vehicles sold in the U.S. market.
Chrysler began building the ProMaster, a Ram version of the Fiat Ducato light-commercial vehicle, at a nearby facility in July. Marchionne said last week the van assembled in Mexico uses some parts from Fiat’s Ducato facility in Italy.
“Mexico is quite competitive in the automobile industry and we’re going to see more investments like this,” Armando Soto, president of Kaso y Asociados, a Mexico City-based auto industry consulting firm, said in a telephone interview. “This kind of investment helps consolidate a region as an automotive cluster.”
Volkswagen’s Audi brand is investing $1.3 billion in a new plant in San Jose Chiapa with a capacity of 150,000 cars a year.
General Motors has budgeted $691 million to expand three existing Mexican factories. Fiat also builds the North American version of the 500 subcompact at a plant in Toluca.
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