AUBURN HILLS, MI
– The Chrysler Group has launched production of the all-new 2007 Dodge Ram 3500 Chassis Cab at its Saltillo Assembly Plant in Coahuila, Mexico. The Saltillo Plant, which currently produces the Dodge Ram Mega Cab, Dodge Ram Power Wagon, and Dodge Ram Heavy Duty 2500 and 3500 models, takes on production of the Ram 3500 Chassis Cab as part of DaimlerChrysler’s Flexible Manufacturing Strategy (FMS).DaimlerChrysler recently invested an additional $48 million into the plant, allowing for production of the Dodge Ram 3500 Chassis Cab and expanding the plant facility by 120,000 square feet. This expansion allows the plant to produce commercial vehicles and will accommodate new frame configurations. This follows a $210 million investment into the plant for production of the all-new 2006 Dodge Ram Mega Cab in 2005. The expansion increases production capacity and enables the plant to manage the greater complexity, including all-new, commercial-grade chassis and suspensions, including two cab-axle lengths, regular, and Quad Cab versions, 4x2 and 4x4 variants, and single- and dual-rear-wheel models.The Saltillo Assembly Plant has 2,100 employees working on two shifts and is one of five Chrysler Group production facilities in Mexico.Chrysler Group’s FMS allows the company to produce a higher quality product, faster, for lower cost. FMS is also a key enabler in the company’s plan to launch 10 all-new vehicles in 2006, the most in Chrysler Group’s history. In order to balance production with demand, the FMS approach allows the company to efficiently build lower-volume vehicles that take advantage of market niche, and to quickly shift production volumes between different models within a single plant or among multiple plants.New investment is introducing technology to Chrysler Group plants, enabling the company to produce more than one vehicle on a production line, and conduct rolling launches of new models. Additionally, Chrysler Group’s workforce is becoming more flexible with the implementation of team concepts and an increased emphasis on supporting assembly line operators.The all-new 2007 Dodge Ram 3500 Chassis Cab enters the commercial chassis cab segment with the Class 3 segment’s highest single-rear-wheel gross vehicle weight rating (GVWR) of 10,200 lbs., class-leading rear frame steel strength (50,000 psi), largest standard fuel tank (52 gallons), best-in-class standard V-8 power (HEMI with 330 horsepower), and best-in-class interior cab room of 121.6 cubic feet for Quad Cab models.