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Discussion Starter #61 (Edited)
FCA to Invest $400 Million to Convert Idled Indiana Transmission Plant to Build Engines; Nearly 200 New Jobs to be Added to Support Production

    • FCA North America COO makes announcement joined by Indiana Governor
    • Indiana Transmission Plant II in Kokomo to be transformed into engine plant
    • Revamped facility to retain about 1,000 jobs and add nearly 200 more, bringing total FCA employment in Indiana to more than 8,300
    • GMET4, part of FCA’s Global Medium Engine family, provides outstanding fuel economy and low emissions
    • Engine to play important role in electric engine offerings
    • U.S. production of the GMET4 relocated from Italy
    • Facility to be renamed Kokomo Engine Plant; production to start in Q2 2021
    • FCA has invested more than $2 billion in Indiana and more than $14 billion in the U.S., while adding more than 30,000 new jobs, since 2009

March 5, 2020 , Kokomo, Ind. - FCA announced today that it will invest $400 million to repurpose an idled transmission plant in Kokomo, Ind., to build the GMET4 engine – the Company’s 2.0-liter Global Medium Engine inline four-cylinder turbo that is currently offered on the Jeep® Wrangler and Jeep Cherokee. With this investment, 1,000 Indiana jobs will be retained with nearly 200 new jobs added to support production, bringing total employment in the state to more than 8,300.

FCA North America Chief Operating Officer Mark Stewart, along with Indiana Governor Eric Holcomb, Kokomo Mayor Tyler Moore, UAW Vice President and Director of the FCA Department Cindy Estrada and UAW Region 2B Director Rich Rankin, joined other local officials and guests to celebrate the news at an event at the plant, which will be renamed Kokomo Engine Plant.

In his remarks, Stewart talked about the importance of this engine to the Company’s future powertrain strategy.

“The GMET4 will be a very important engine for us as we look to deliver on the promises we made as part of our five-year plan in 2018,” Stewart said. “While the 2.0-liter is a current engine option on the Jeep Wrangler and Cherokee models, a significant number of new technologies can be applied to this engine, making it relevant for the future. It will play an important role in our plans to offer electric engine options across 30 nameplates that FCA will bring to markets around the world by 2022.”

The new facility will be the source of all U.S. production for the engine currently built in Termoli, Italy. Production is expected to begin in Q2 2021.

Stewart acknowledged the support of the State of Indiana, the City of Kokomo and the UAW for working with the Company to finalize its investment plans.

“I’d like to add my appreciation to both Governor Holcomb and Mayor Moore for seeing the opportunities that exist with this investment and helping give this facility new life,” Stewart said. “I also want to thank Cindy Estrada and Rich Rankin, as well as the rest of the UAW leadership, for working with us to preserve and add jobs. Their support will be critical to building a quality engine for our customers.”

For more than eight decades, FCA has built transmissions in Indiana, more than 90 million since record keeping began in 1974. Since 2009, the Company has invested nearly $2 billion in its four area plants to produce the eight- and nine-speed transmissions, some of the most fuel-efficient transmissions on the market. When production of the GMET4 launches, it will mark the first time in the Company’s history that it has built engines in the state.

But, according to Stewart, the decision to invest in Indiana and transform the plant into the Kokomo Engine Plant came down to the level of commitment shown by the women and men who work in the region.

“As engine technology continues to change, our focus must continue to be on our most valuable asset – our people,” Stewart said. “This engine program will bring new job opportunities for our current workforce, as well as the manufacturing workforce of the future. Our employees – some of whom are second-, third- or even fourth-generation FCA employees – have always demonstrated a passion to help deliver great products for our customers.”

In total, FCA has committed to invest more than $14 billion in its U.S. manufacturing operations, creating nearly 30,000 new jobs since June 2009.

GMET4 Engine
The 2.0-liter turbocharged I-4 engine is part of FCA’s Global Medium Engine family. Identified as the GMET4, this high-tech, direct-injection engine uses a twin-scroll, low-inertia turbocharger mounted directly to the cylinder head, along with a dedicated cooling circuit for the turbocharger, intake air and throttle body for exceptional responsiveness, performance and fuel efficiency. The engine is fitted with double overhead camshafts, dual independent camshaft timing and cooled exhaust gas recirculation. Direct injection delivers fuel into the cylinder and, coupled with turbocharging, enables more efficient combustion, reduced emissions and increased performance. The foundation of the engine is a low-pressure sand cast-aluminum block with cast-in iron cylinder liners and a cast aluminum alloy cylinder head.

When equipped with the GMET4, the Jeep Cherokee can deliver over 30 mpg highway and provide outstanding off-road performance, while the Jeep Wrangler can deliver a rating of 24 mpg highway.

FCA in Indiana
Construction of Indiana Transmission Plant II (ITPII), which will be renamed Kokomo Engine Plant, began in 2002 and launched production of five-speed transmissions in November 2003. The plant also produced components for eight-speed transmissions. ITPII built its last five-speed transmission in August 2018 and was idled in the fall of 2019.

FCA currently operates three transmission plants and one casting plant in Indiana. The portfolio of transmissions includes four-, six-, eight- and nine-speed transmissions, as well as the SiEVT transmission for the Chrysler Pacifica plug-in hybrid electric minivan, built at the Windsor Assembly Plant in Ontario, Canada. The casting plant produces aluminum parts for automotive components, transmission and transaxle cases, and engine block castings.
 

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Discussion Starter #62
FCA Kokomo Engine Plant Announcement


Mar 6, 2020
 

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Discussion Starter #63
Worker at Indiana FCA Plant Tests Positive for Coronavirus

Mar 13, 2020


A worker at the Fiat-Chrysler plant in Kokomo, Indiana, has tested positive for COVID-19. According to a spokesperson for Fiat-Chrysler, those who may have come into contact with the worker have been put in home quarantine.

In the meantime, according to the spokesperson, the worker’s station has been disinfected and the entire plant will be sanitized. Production at the factory is ongoing, but FCA says it is adjusting spacing of workers and break times in order to reduce the likelihood of more infection. Fiat has temporarily closed plants in Northern Italy, where the rate of infection is very high.

UAW Vice President Cindy Estrada released a statement expressing the union’s support for the sickened worker in Kokomo. “Our thoughts and support are with our UAW member and their family, friends and community in Kokomo, Indiana,” she said. She also encouraged UAW members and others to wash their hands and avoiding contact with other people.

According to Bloomberg News, a spokesperson for Fiat-Chrysler said that more than 14,000 employees who work in offices have been told to work from home.

On March 9, Boeing made a similar announcement about an employee at their Everett, Washington facility who tested positive for the virus. Boeing reported that the employee in question was in quarantine and receiving treatment and asked coworkers to self-quarantine at home. The Chicago, Illinois-based company had more than 65,000 employees in Washington as of 2017. The West-Coast state is the worst-hit state in the United States with more than 370 cases at press time according to Johns Hopkins University.

SOURCE
 

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Discussion Starter #64
FCA Statement on Shift Pattern Changes at U.S. Manufacturing Facilities Related to COVID-19


March 17, 2020 , Auburn Hills, Mich. - Following several days of proactive discussions with our UAW partners focused on providing a safe environment for our employees, we have agreed that in addition to our extensive current protocols to protect our employees, FCA will implement a series of shift pattern and production changes across our manufacturing plants in the United States. These changes, which include rotating shifts to allow for greater separation of employees and further enhancing our new sanitation protocols, are focused on providing a safe environment and peace of mind to our employees at their place of work. Despite the continuing economic turmoil caused by the COVID-19 outbreak, FCA continues to work on fulfilling a strong North American order book from both fleet and dealer partners.

Following his visits today to multiple company facilities across southeast Michigan, FCA CEO Mike Manley commented: “I spent time today with a number of our employees in our assembly and stamping plants. I wanted to see for myself how we are implementing our new cleaning and workplace protocols, and be assured that we are putting their welfare first as we continue to support the effort to arrest the spread of this virus. Ultimately this will pass, and when it does, it is important to me that we can say we worked hard with our UAW partners to provide the safest work environment for our people."
 

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Discussion Starter #65
FCA Statement Regarding Suspension of Production Operations at North American Manufacturing Facilities


March 18, 2020 , Auburn Hills, Mich. - Working with the UAW and listening to the concerns of our people, we have agreed to cease production at our plants across North America, starting progressively from today through the end of March. While production is paused, the Company will put actions into place to facilitate the steps agreed to through the joint task-force set up between the UAW and the automakers. Through this period, which we will re-evaluate at the end of this month, FCA will work to enhance its manufacturing operations to facilitate the changes agreed with the UAW including shift timings, structures and enhanced cleaning protocols.

Commenting on this action, FCA CEO, Mike Manley said: “Working with the UAW, and having visited many of our plants yesterday, we need to ensure employees feel safe at work and that we are taking every step possible to protect them. We will continue to do what is right for our people through this period of uncertainty.”

With our priority towards the health and safety of our workforce we are also evaluating the impact of all steps being taken inside the company related to the Coronavirus emergency on our current financial guidance. We will provide an update on our financial guidance when that evaluation is complete and we have sufficient visibility on market conditions.
 

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Discussion Starter #66
Fiat Chrysler sends more Auburn Hills workers home after COVID-19 death

March 22, 2020


Fiat Chrysler Automobiles NV is letting more employees at its Auburn Hills headquarters stay home, the automaker said Sunday. The decision followed the death of a worker there after the individual tested positive for COVID-19, according to two sources familiar with the situation who were not authorized to speak publicly.

The company has allowed thousands of white-collar employees globally to work remotely if they are able to do so. It also is shutting down manufacturing plants around the world, including in North America following outcries from the rank-and-file and pressure from labor unions.

Now, it has agreed that employees at its technology center — most of whom are salaried workers represented by the United Auto Workers — can stay home, too. The Detroit Free Press first reported the news.

"In combination with increased remote working, we have made the decision to postpone work associated with the test laboratories and pilot plant from Monday, March 23," the company said in a statement. "This postponement will be reviewed on a regular basis and employees will be advised when we intend to resume operations."


When asked about the case at the technology center, the automaker said: "We have cases of COVID-19 in our business enterprise, however out of respect for employee privacy, we will not provide additional comment."

The company has said it has implemented new cleaning programs and social distancing protocols at all of its facilities in response to recommendations by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.


Cindy Estrada, UAW vice president and director of the FCA Department, said the union has worked around the clock with the automaker to ensure their well-being.

"Today's decision by FCA is another important step in following CDC guidelines and helping to flatten the growth of this pandemic and protect the health and safety of our members," Estrada wrote.

Meanwhile, General Motors Co. on Sunday evening stopped production “out of an abundance of caution” at its Arlington, Texas, assembly plant where it builds full-size SUVs. The automaker learned there was a probable coronavirus case at the plant, GM spokesman David Barnas said. Production already was likely going to halt on Monday because of the agreement made between the UAW and Detroit's three automakers to suspend production until March 30.

Fiat Chrysler previously had confirmed cases at its Sterling Heights Assembly Plant, at its Kokomo Transmission Plant in Indiana and potentially in a subcontractor at the construction site of its new assembly plant in Detroit. General Motors Co. has had positive cases at its Flint Truck Plant as well as its technology center in Warren. Ford Motor Co. confirmed a case at its product development campus in Dearborn.

SOURCE
 

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Discussion Starter #67
FCA: Belvidere Chrysler plant to remain closed until May 4





By WIFR Newsroom |

Posted: Mon 2:48 PM, Apr 06, 2020



BELVIDERE, Ill. (WIFR) -- FCA announced Monday that they plan to restart its U.S. and Canadian manufacturing facilities beginning May 4.

FCA says they're working with government officials and their unions to implement new procedures to certify the daily wellness of the workforce while also redesigning work stations to maintain proper social distancing and expanding the already extensive cleaning protocols at all locations.

Officials say will only restart operations with safe, secure and sanitized workplaces to protect all of their employees.

 

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Discussion Starter #68
Canada, US plants on 4 May

Published date: 06 April 2020



US automaker Fiat-Chrysler Automobiles (FCA) is planning to begin restarting its auto manufacturing plants in Canada and the US beginning on 4 May.

The automaker — one of the US-based "Big 3" along with Ford and General Motors (GM) — has had its North American plants shut down since mid-March.
 
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