Fiat-Chrysler will invest $1 billion in a Jeep expansion initiative that will lead to the production of three new vehicles, including a pickup truck and two larger SUVs, FCA announced ahead of the Detroit auto show.
FCA is retooling plants in Michigan and Ohio, and will add 2,000 jobs as it increases production to produce a Jeep pickup truck, Wagoneer and Grand Wagoneer. Jeep previously produced vehicles using the Wagoneer and Grand Wagoneer for variously sized SUVs. The Grand Wagoneer was produced a limited edition Grand Wagoneer in 1993 that was a special luxury version of the Grand Cherokee with simulated wood grain body cladding.
FCA is modernizing its Warren Truck Assembly Plant in Michigan to produce the Wagoneer and Grand Wagoneer. The pickup truck will be built in the updated south plant of the Toledo Assembly Complex. Work should be completed by 2020.
"The conversion of our industrial footprint completes this stage of our transformation as we respond to the shift in consumer tastes to trucks and SUVs, and as we continue to reinforce the U.S. as a global manufacturing hub for those vehicles at the heart of the SUV and truck market," said Sergio Marchionne, FCA's CEO.
The investment will give FCA the flexibility to move production of the Ram 2500 and 3500 pickups to Warren, said Jodi Tinson, an FCA spokesperson. The trucks are now being produced at Saltillo Truck Assembly in Saltillo, Coahuila, Mexico.
In July of 2016, FCA announced it would invest another $1 billion to expand Jeep production at its Illinois and Ohio plants, as well as $1.5 billion in its Sterling Heights Assembly Plant in Michigan to build the next-generation Ram 1500.
FCA introduced the 2017 Jeep Compass compact SUV at the Los Angeles Auto Show in November that will replace the Compass and Patriot.
Originally posted on Automotive Fleet