Chrysler Seeks Funding To Expand Toledo Plant

Chrysler has ambitious plans for Toledo manufacture.

The Chrysler Group is applying for 2011 tax incentives to fund investment of around $356 million in its assembly complex at Toledo. The expanded plant would employ an additional 1,100 people over the next 2 years.

A company announcement stated that investment in the Toledo expansion project is contingent on Detroit state and Toledo city authorities approving tax incentives.  A Toledo newspaper has reported that the city supports the project.

Chrysler already has approval by the Ohio Environmental P*rotection Agency to increase annual production at the Toledo plant by 327,000 vehicles. Currently, Dodge Nitro and Jeep Liberty sport utility vehicles are produced at the plant and expansion plans are said to have been prompted by strong global demand for Jeeps.

Analysts consider that a likely scenario would be for Chrysler to manufacture Jeep products for the European market in Toledo, and to manufacture Jeeps for other global markets within the local region. Among the options mentioned by analysts is partnering with a Chinese manufacturer to produce Jeeps in China for the local market.

It is also rumored that Toledo will be used as a production plant for some Alfa Romeo vehicles for sale in the U.S.  The Fiat-Chrysler group’s strategy is said to favor a return of the Alfa Romeo brand to North America. Sergi Marchionne, Fiat CEO, is reported to be planning build fuel-efficient motor vehicles and Chrysler has applied for funding from the U.S. Department o*f Energy.
Marcy Kaptur, U.S. Rep. D-Ohio welcomes Chrysler’s Toledo expansion plans and is focused on supporting the group’s DOE loan application.