Chrysler Labor Talks

Chrysler Labor Talks

Is our new category @ We will be posting information about the Labor Talks between DCX and the UAW as the talks progress. So check there daily for updates and tidbits of information on this subject, which will be posted in Text, Audio, and Video formats.


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Chrysler Group Launches Production of All-new 2007 Jeep® Patriot at Belvidere Assembly Plant

• Flexible manufacturing cuts production costs by 85 percent
• Robotics, lean dies and material flow improve quality, productivity and worker ergonomics
• Third vehicle introduced at Belvidere Assembly Plant


Auburn Hills, Mich., Dec 20, 2006 –

Chrysler Group’s Belvidere (Ill.) Assembly Plant launched production of the Company’s tenth all-new vehicle this year, as the first 2007 Jeep Patriot came off the assembly line today. The plant which was extensively retooled in 2005, has become a flagship for Chrysler Group’s adoption of flexible manufacturing. Production of the all-new 2007 Dodge Caliber began in January 2006 and was followed in May by the all-new 2007 Jeep Compass.

Flexible manufacturing is allowing Chrysler Group to bring its new vehicles to market more quickly and the Belvidere Assembly Plant to manufacture multiple products on one assembly line. Additionally, flexible manufacturing has positively impacted production costs by a savings of up to 85 percent in some instances. The Chrysler Group continues to implement its flexible manufacturing processes plant-by-plant.

“We are now seeing the results of our flexible manufacturing strategy that leads to a competitive advantage for the Chrysler Group,” said Frank Ewasyshyn, Executive Vice President – Manufacturing. “Thanks to Belvidere’s ability to build multiple models off one assembly line, we expect the production of three all-new models to cost significantly less than the initial investment we made in the plant to build one product.”
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Judicial Hellhole vs. Magic Jurisdiction

The following is a statement from Steven B. Hantler, Assistant General Counsel, DaimlerChrysler Corporation.

As every trial lawyer knows, one man’s “judicial hellhole” is another “magic jurisdiction.” It all depends on which side of the courtroom you occupy.

“Judicial Hellhole” status is assigned every year by the American Tort Reform Foundation (ATRF), and has become the most reliable measure of litigation abuse in America. Today the group published its fifth annual list of “hellholes” – defined by ATRF as jurisdictions in which “judges systematically apply laws and court procedures in an unfair and unbalanced manner, generally against defendants in civil lawsuits.”


I want to alert you to this important report, and encourage you to understand its significance to our nation and to American industry. (The report and more information are available at the ATRF web site at

“Magic jurisdiction” is the coinage of famed trial lawyer Dickie Scruggs – who, in his own way, is also a reliable authority on the subject. In an unguarded moment not long ago, Scruggs described the ease with which the “magic” can be worked in these jurisdictions. “It’s almost impossible to get a fair trial if you’re a defendant,” he said. “Any lawyer fresh out of law school can walk in [and] win the case.” And, if you’re a plaintiff’s lawyer, don’t sweat the details too much because “it doesn’t matter what the law or evidence is.”

Oh, sure, there is still the formality of a trial in these jurisdictions. To hear Scruggs describe the process, though, they might as well dispense with that, too. According to ATRF, there are six of these “Judicial Hellholes” where awards are won by just showing up.
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Dodge Magnum Earns’s Ninth Annual Editors’ Most Wanted Award

Los Angeles, Calif., Dec 1, 2006 –, the premier online resource for automotive information, named the 2007 Dodge Magnum as Editors’ Most Wanted Wagon Under $30,000.

“The Editors’ Most Wanted winners provide class-leading performance, quality, style and value,” said Karl Brauer, Editor-in-Chief at “These are the vehicles that our editorial team would chose to have in our own driveways.”


In selecting the 2007 Dodge Magnum,’s editorial staff proclaimed that “the Magnum can’t be beat for a combination of pleasure and practicality.” This is the third time the Dodge Magnum has received this accolade from
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Global Development

Clear definitions for complex requirement profiles

Stuttgart, Nov 30, 2006
Vehicle electrical and electronic systems are not only becoming more comprehensive; they’re also growing increasingly complex, especially in terms of their functions. This development is being driven by automakers’ ability to precisely define which requirements a certain component must meet in order to ensure that it can subsequently be integrated as desired into the overall system. For a component or system to even be suitable for cross-platform applications, a very sophisticated approach is needed — a new culture of vehicle development that demands more than simply specifying technical processes.


Anyone who thinks a blinker is only a simple light, or says that a tachometer can hardly be considered a complex instrument, can expect a vociferous rebuttal from Frank Houdek. The DaimlerChrysler researcher needs only a few minutes to convince even the most uninformed lay person that such notions are all wrong. “I myself am time and again amazed by how complex the definitions of requirements have to be, even for components I had thought were very simple,” he reassures his novice visitor.
Houdek works in the Software Process Design department led by Bärbel Hörger in Ulm. The sign on his office door says “Requirement Engineering Processes,” because there’s no succinct German translation for this area of research. The focuses of the work performed by Hörger’s department include a process central to the overall task of vehicle development — specification. To the experts, the term means precisely describing all the requirements that must be fulfilled by simple components like LEDs, by more complex systems such as the vehicle dynamics system ESP, or even by the entire vehicle with all of its various functions.
And in this field, “precise” means “unambiguous.” In practice, “unambiguous” in turn means that “Anton,” a development engineer responsible for a control unit, is able to understand a requirement definition in exactly the same way as does his colleague “Boris,” whose tire pressure sensor sends a signal to Anton’s component. And the two of them must understand the specification document in exactly the same way as “Claude,” an engineer working for a supplier who is responsible for developing the tire pressure display for the instrument cluster of the planned model.
Clarity also means that development engineers “Osamu” at Fuso in Tokyo, “Beth” at Freightliner in Portland and “Kurt” at Mercedes-Benz in Stuttgart all have exactly the same understanding of a jointly formulated requirement definition — for a new multifunctional display that is to be installed in the respective instrument clusters of the heavy-duty trucks from these three brands, for example.
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Short Circuits Cut Down on Friction

Stuttgart, Nov 30, 2006
The introduction of electric arc wire spraying in engine production has made it possible to build very low-friction cylinder running surfaces in aluminum engines.

The new 6.3-liter V8 engine developed by engineers at DaimlerChrysler’s AMG subsidiary is the world’s most powerful eight-cylindery naturally aspirated engine. It delivers an output of 386 kW (525 hp), and 630 Nm of torque at the crankshaft, and is now being used in various AMG models, most recently the Mercedes-Benz CL 63 AMG high-tech coupe. The fully aluminum engine has 32 valves, a cylinder bore of 102.2 millimeters, and a stroke of 94.6 millimeters. It achieves its impressive power not only from its large displacement and favorably streamed intake and exhaust system, but also by means of a unique innovation deep in its interior: The running surfaces of the light-metal cylinders consist of an “EAS coating” that ensures extremely low-friction operation.
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