DETROIT Oct 8 Chrysler Group LLC will expand
its plant in Mexico to build more of the "Tigershark" engines
that will go into many of its passenger cars, sources with
knowledge of the issue said on Tuesday.
Chrysler is to spend $164 million to expand the plant, and
about 500 jobs will be added, the sources said.
On Thursday, Chrysler Chief Executive Sergio Marchionne and
Mexican President Enrique Pena will be at the Saltillo Engine
Plant in Ramos Arizpe in the Mexican state of Coahuila to
formally announce the investment and new jobs, a Chrysler
The 2-liter and 2.4-liter Tigershark engines are now only in
two vehicles, the Dodge Dart and the Jeep Cherokee, but will be
in future products as they are launched.
There are more than 10,000 Cherokee vehicles that have been
produced but have not yet shipped to dealers from Chrysler's
Jeep plant in Toledo, Ohio. Chrysler has said it is fixing
issues related to the rollout of the nine-speed automatic
It is the first time a nine-speed transmission is being used
in a vehicle.
The Saltillo Engine Plant now makes the 5.7-liter and the
6.4-liter HEMI engines for larger Chrysler products including
the Ram 1500 pickup truck, the Chrysler 300, the Dodge Charger,
Dodge Challenger and Jeep Grand Cherokee.
There are about 1,030 hourly and 174 salaried workers at the
plant, Chrysler said.
Near Ramos Arizpe, in Saltillo, are three more plants,
including one engine plant, a stamping plant and an assembly
plant, which makes Ram pickup trucks.
Total Chrysler employment at all four of the plants in or
near Saltillo is about 5,000.
Bloomberg News reported the expansion of the Saltillo Engine
Plant earlier on Tuesday.
(Reporting by Bernie Woodall)