FCA Investing $4.5 Billion on New Factory for Electrified Jeeps
【Summary】In a market that’s going all-in on crossovers and SUVs, Jeep has become one of the most popular brands on the market, and FCA wants to capitalize on that with a new factory for electric offerings from the brand.
As a whole, automotive sales aren't doing to well in the U.S. But one American brand is doing extremely well: Jeep. It shouldn't come as a surprise, as the automaker offers nothing but SUVs and crossovers, though a new Gladiator pickup just arrived. In an effort to keep up with other brands and tightening regulations, Jeep has announced a massive, $4.5 billion investment into a new assembly plant in southeast Michigan that will see the automaker manufacture electric powertrains there.
Keep The Boom Going
According to The Detroit Free Press, FCA's Chief Executive Officer, Mike Manley, said that the investment would help the automaker "grow core brands" and help Jeep introduce electrified options. While the introduction of electric powertrains is the most exciting tidbit, the investment will also help FCA come out with a three-row SUV for the Jeep lineup.
"Economic indicators, as we see them, are strong," stated Manley, providing a little more insight into the American automaker's plans to diversify its portfolio to reach out to new customers.
A breakdown of the investment, includes $1.6 billion going into the conversion of the Mack Avenue Engine Complex to be the site for the future manufacturing area for the next-gen Jeep Grand Cherokee and an upcoming three-row Jeep. Retooling and modernizing the Jefferson North Assembly Plant costs $900 million, and will help Jeep with the next-gen Grand Cherokee and Dodge with the Durango. Another $1.5 billion is going toward FCA's Warren Truck facility to aid in the production of the Jeep Wagoneer and Grand Wagoneer.
Electrified Models Are Coming
After looking at how FCA plans to allocate its funds, it sounds like the Grand Cherokee will be the first vehicle from Jeep to have an electric powertrain. "As the market develops … we will be prepared," said Manley. The Grand Cherokee is a popular vehicle for Jeep, and with a new generation on the horizon, it makes plenty of sense.
Jeep won't be content with just one electrified offering, though. Manley stated that the investment will allow for "new electrified Jeep products, including at least four plug-in hybrid vehicles and the flexibility to produce fully battery electric vehicles."
While other automakers are still playing catch up to appeal to the masses with new, exciting SUVs and crossovers, Jeep is in an excellent position, as it already has nothing but high-riding vehicles. With the implementation of electrified powertrains, Jeep really could be a force to be reckoned with in the U.S.
Vineeth Joel Patel
Joel Patel has been covering all aspects of the automotive industry for four years as an editor and freelance writer for various websites. When it comes to cars, he enjoys covering the merger between technology and cars. In his spare time, Joel likes to watch baseball, work on his car, and try new foods
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