On Eve of Detroit show, FCA Announces $1B Investment

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The company says the recent tax reform plan allows it to make that investment and to pay all 60,000 hourly and salaried workers a $2,000 bonus.

As a result, the firm's Mexico plant, where the production of such vehicles now occurs, will be repurposed, instead being used to develop and produce future Fiat Chrysler commercial vehicles for global sale.

The investment announcement comes a year after Fiat Chrysler revealed initial plans to invest in Warren for the launch of the new Jeep Wagoneer and Grand Wagoneer. Fiat Chrysler also will spend more than US$1 billion and add 2,500 jobs at a factory near Detroit to produce heavy-duty Ram pickups that the company been making in Mexico.

To support the increased volume at the Warren facility, 2,500 new jobs will be created, above and beyond the jobs announced as part of the January 2017 announcement. FCA said this was on top of a large investment at the Warren factory announced past year. Other companies, including AT&T, Comcast and Bank of America have announced $1000 bonuses because of the tax cut, according to a list compiled by USA Today. FCA said it will move production of heavy-duty Ram trucks to Warren, MI, from Saltillo, Mexico, in 2020. The special bonus will be paid to all eligible employees of the FCA automotive and components operations in the U.S.

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Miguel Ceballos, FCA spokesman for Mexico, said the company in 2018 and 2019 expects more growth in Mexico, and the moment it stops producing the Ram Heavy Duty pickups it will start to produce the new commercial vehicle, "which still does not have a name", Ceballos said.

Fiat CEO Sergio Marchionne said news of the investment shows how committed the company is to investing in the United States, in a statement cited by CNBC report.

FCA CEO Sergio Marchionne says the company should adjust its manufacturing footprint to reflect "improvement in the USA business environment". "It is only proper that our employees share in the savings generated by tax reform and that we openly acknowledge the resulting improvement in the USA business environment by investing in our industrial footprint accordingly".

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