Chrysler UAW Contract Ratified by Rank and File

AutoInformed.com

When President Obama took office, the U.S. auto industry was on the brink of collapse. Things are better now.

Chrysler Group and the UAW confirmed today that a new Chrysler UAW national labor agreement, covering 26,000 employees, has been ratified by the UAW-represented workforce in the U.S.  A slight majority of Chrysler UAW workers voted to approve a new four-year contract, with more than 45% voting against it.

The tentative agreement includes $4.5 billion to produce new and upgraded vehicles and components by 2015 and Chrysler Group “may add up” to 2,100 new jobs.

As was the case with newly ratified UAW contracts at GM and Ford, a large part of the Chrysler UAW deal – in this case, $3.4 billion of  claimed new investment of $4.5 billion – was part of previously announced business plans after Chrysler emerged from a controversial taxpayer-supported bankruptcy and reorganization in 2009.

“It’s not everything our members deserve, but we did the best we could in these uncertain times and negotiated an agreement that will ensure Chrysler’s viability so that we can share in its economic success once it has regained financial stability,” said UAW Vice President General Holiefield.

This is a major victory for Sergio Marchionne, CEO of the Italian-controlled company, who was determined to hold the line on costs, which because of the U.S. government forced bankruptcy in 2009 are at $49 an hour – competitive with non-union auto plants.

Investment and product guarantees in the tentative agreement include:

  • Belvidere, Ill., – New compact vehicle, estimated plant investment of $600 million
  • Sterling Heights, Mich., – New compact vehicle, estimated plant investment of $850 million
  • Kokomo, Ind., – New Front Wheel Drive 9 Speed – 946 TE transmission and new Rear Wheel Drive 8 Speed – 845RE transmission, estimated plant investment of $1.3 million
  • Toledo, Ohio, – Next generation steering columns, FRW and RWD Torque Converters, estimated plant investment of $100 million
  • Trenton, Mich., – Reutilize portion of the Trenton North Engine Plant to produce an incremental volume (150,000 units) of 3.8L V-6, estimated plant investment of $100 million

The UAW reached a tentative agreement with General Motors on 16 September, and it was ratified by UAW members on the 28th. The UAW reached a tentative agreement with Ford Motor on $ October, and the agreement was ratified on the 19th.The tentative agreement with Chrysler was reached on 12 October.

Here are the details of the agreement and a complete list of plant investment.

The UAW represents 26,000 employees at Chrysler, including 3,000 salaried employees, at 48 Chrysler facilities in the United States, making vehicles and components with the Chrysler, Jeep, Dodge, Mopar and Ram Truck brands.

About Kenneth Zino

Ken Zino is an auto industry veteran with global experience in print, broadcast and electronic media. He has auto testing, marketing, public relations and communications expertise garnered while working in Asia, Europe and the U.S.
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