Stellantis Laying Off 150 Jeep Employees in Illinois

Matt Posky
by Matt Posky

Jeep is laying off 150 workers that would have otherwise been employed at its Belvidere Assembly Plant, which actually produces the Jeep Cherokee instead of the long defunct, full-size Plymouth. Based on the timing, this decision appears to have something to do with the FCA-PSA Group merger that formed Stellantis.

We’re only able to guess the core reasoning. With FCA having abandoned monthly reporting for quarterly, allegedly as a way to promote transparency, we don’t actually know how the Cherokee is performing on the market. It’s something the Detroit Free Press also noted when it broke the story.

While last year’s domestic volume of 135,855 represents a sizable decline from 2019, it wasn’t a typical year where you could say that was indicative of anything more than there being a pandemic that forced a lot of dealerships to close shop or operate under heavy restrictions.

“The Stellantis plant in Belvidere, Illinois, is rebalancing its staffing levels as it realigns production to meet global demand for the Jeep Cherokee. Following a review of its operations, 150 people will be indefinitely laid off, starting Feb. 20, 2021. The company will make every effort to place indefinitely laid off hourly employees in open full-time positions as they become available based on seniority,” according to a company statement issued by spokeswoman Jodi Tinson.

By contrast, we’ve heard nothing to suggest there will be any layoffs in Detroit related to the Grand Cherokee. But it didn’t have quite the sales slip that its little brother endured. Stellantis may simply have seen the Cherokee falling a little harder than the rest of the Jeep family while going over the books, and decided it wasn’t worth paying every single one of Belvidere’s 3,374 hourly and 206 salaried employees.

[Image :Stellantis/FCA]

Matt Posky
Matt Posky

A staunch consumer advocate tracking industry trends and regulation. Before joining TTAC, Matt spent a decade working for marketing and research firms based in NYC. Clients included several of the world’s largest automakers, global tire brands, and aftermarket part suppliers. Dissatisfied with the corporate world and resentful of having to wear suits everyday, he pivoted to writing about cars. Since then, that man has become an ardent supporter of the right-to-repair movement, been interviewed on the auto industry by national radio broadcasts, driven more rental cars than anyone ever should, participated in amateur rallying events, and received the requisite minimum training as sanctioned by the SCCA. Handy with a wrench, Matt grew up surrounded by Detroit auto workers and managed to get a pizza delivery job before he was legally eligible. He later found himself driving box trucks through Manhattan, guaranteeing future sympathy for actual truckers. He continues to conduct research pertaining to the automotive sector as an independent contractor and has since moved back to his native Michigan, closer to where the cars are born. A contrarian, Matt claims to prefer understeer — stating that front and all-wheel drive vehicles cater best to his driving style.

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  • Dartdude Dartdude on Feb 27, 2021

    The problem Jeep has it it a off road brand. To make it viable they need to be strong and heavy. Jeep should drop the Compass and Renegade models as they are based on front wheel. Jeep models should be Rwd/4wd only. They could make a mini Wrangler model.

  • Redgolf Redgolf on Mar 09, 2021

    I rented one for a weekend trip (red) I parked it at our hotel way up on the top away from any other door dingers, when I went to get it on our last day someone had pulled in too close to it and rubbed the paint and wheel on the front drivers side, I couldn't believe it. I rubbed off the black tire mark with compound and bought a small red paint touch up pen and was able to restore it! When I handed it in, they did a brief walk around and never said anything. ;-)

  • Jeff Self driving cars are not ready for prime time.
  • Lichtronamo Watch as the non-us based automakers shift more production to Mexico in the future.
  • 28-Cars-Later " Electrek recently dug around in Tesla’s online parts catalog and found that the windshield costs a whopping $1,900 to replace.To be fair, that’s around what a Mercedes S-Class or Rivian windshield costs, but the Tesla’s glass is unique because of its shape. It’s also worth noting that most insurance plans have glass replacement options that can make the repair a low- or zero-cost issue. "Now I understand why my insurance is so high despite no claims for years and about 7,500 annual miles between three cars.
  • AMcA My theory is that that when the Big 3 gave away the store to the UAW in the last contract, there was a side deal in which the UAW promised to go after the non-organized transplant plants. Even the UAW understands that if the wage differential gets too high it's gonna kill the golden goose.
  • MKizzy Why else does range matter? Because in the EV advocate's dream scenario of a post-ICE future, the average multi-car household will find itself with more EVs in their garages and driveways than places to plug them in or the capacity to charge then all at once without significant electrical upgrades. Unless each vehicle has enough range to allow for multiple days without plugging in, fighting over charging access in multi-EV households will be right up there with finances for causes of domestic strife.
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