Stellantis Points Blame at California for Layoff Announcement

Chris Teague
by Chris Teague

When all else fails, blame the government. Stellantis, whose brands include Jeep, Dodge, Chrysler, and Fiat, recently announced layoffs that it blamed on the selective application of California Air Resource Board (CARB) rules. The move could impact thousands of jobs at the company’s Jeep factories in Detroit and Ohio, where it builds the Grand Cherokee, Wrangler, and Gladiator.

The announcement comes after a long drama between the automaker and the state of California. The company decided to limit allocations of its electrified vehicles to states complying with CARB regulations, which meant that non-CARB states got few if any, hybrids from the automaker. Stellantis’ issue is that the state worked with BMW, Ford, Honda, and Volkswagen in 2020 to agree to a different playbook.

That agreement judges emissions compliance across all 50 states, not just those complying with CARB standards. Stellantis believes its absence from that agreement puts it at a significant disadvantage, but it didn’t get left out unknowingly. The automaker applied to join the group but was denied over what it said was retaliation for criticizing CARB’s authority to create emissions rules. Stellantis has filed a complaint with the state over what it called an “underground regulatory scheme.”

We can debate whether or not California overstepped, but it doesn’t change the fact that Stellantis has been slower to move on EVs than other automakers despite the success of Jeep’s 4xe vehicles. The layoffs could also just as easily be related to losses from the recent UAW strikes, as other automakers – some included in the CARB agreement – have announced layoffs.

[Image: Stellantis/Jeep]

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Chris Teague
Chris Teague

Chris grew up in, under, and around cars, but took the long way around to becoming an automotive writer. After a career in technology consulting and a trip through business school, Chris began writing about the automotive industry as a way to reconnect with his passion and get behind the wheel of a new car every week. He focuses on taking complex industry stories and making them digestible by any reader. Just don’t expect him to stay away from high-mileage Porsches.

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  • NJRide NJRide on Dec 11, 2023

    Stellantis deathwatch, down to 8.5% market share in US in November. That is lower than after both bankruptcies of Chrysler.

  • Carson D Carson D on Dec 13, 2023

    There are so many cheerleaders here for authoritarians who apply laws to parties based on the acquiescence that those parties exhibit. They'll come for you soon enough.

  • Wjtinfwb Funny. When EV's were bursting onto the scene; Tesla's, Volt's, Leaf's pure EV was all the rage and Hybrids were derided because they still used a gas engine to make them, ahem; usable. Even Volt's were later derided when it was revealed that the Volt's gas engine was actually connected to the wheels, not just a generator. Now, Hybrids are warmly welcomed into the Electric fraternity by virtue of being "electrified". If a change in definition is what it takes, I'm all for it. Hybrid's make so much sense in most American's usage patterns and if needed you can drive one cross-country essentially non-stop. Glad to see Hybrid's getting the love.
  • 3-On-The-Tree We also had a 1973 IH Scout that we rebuilt the engine in and it had dual glass packs, real loud. I miss those days.
  • 3-On-The-Tree Jeff thanks. Back in 1990 we had a 1964 Dodge D100 with a slant six with a 3 on the tree. I taught myself how to drive a standard in that truck. It was my one of many journeys into Mopar land. Had a 1973 Plymouth duster with a slant six and a 1974 Dodge Dart Custom with 318 V8. Great cars and easy to work on.
  • Akear What is GM good at?You led Mary............................................What a disgrace!
  • Randy in rocklin I have a 87 bot new with 200k miles and 3 head gasket jobs and bot another 87 turbo 5 speed with 70k miles and new head gaskets. They cost around 4k to do these days.