The Jeep JK Wrangler chassis supplier will end production this April in Ohio.
The assembly line for the Jeep JK Wrangler at Fiat Chrysler Automobiles' Toledo, Ohio, location will come to a halt on April 7.
According to Automotive News, Hyundai Mobis North America, the auto supplier responsible for building the chassis for the Jeep JK Wrangler, just filed a WARN (Worker Adjustment and Retraining Notification) notice with the State of Ohio. This will end production of the current Jeep Wrangler, putting it on a limited timeline at the plant.
Why the sudden move? FCA is gearing up to launch production of the Wrangler-based Jeep pickup talked about in recent months and will need to refurbish the plant to do so.
At this point, 570 people are employed by Hyundai Mobis and are responsible for working on the current JK chassis. The retooling of the plant will go through April of next year, a one-year project to get things back up and running again.
This isn't the first time FCA has changed production at the Toledo Assembly Complex where the Jeep JK Wrangler is partially built. Last year, the next-generation Wrangler, known by the two-letter JL code, started being built there in November. The reason behind the move, according to FCA CEO Sergio Marchionne, was to prep for higher demand in the coming years. FCA hopes to pump out 300,000 Wranglers per year.
The outlook for the upcoming Wrangler pickup is partly sunny at the moment. An estimated 100,000 units will be put into production a year following the re-opening of the plant in April of 2019.
There is no word yet if the other local Ohio supplier Kuka plans to file the same WARN Act notice to halt production on the JK Wrangler at that location.
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