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  • William Maley
    William Maley

    Production of 2019 Ram 1500 Isn't Off To A Good Start

      Not so smooth sailing

    It has been a rough start for the 2019 Ram 1500 production line. FCA CEO Sergio Marchionne said on an earnings call last week that the Sterling Heights Assembly plant, home to the 2019 model is only operating at 60 percent of where the company wants it to be. Automotive News learned from sources at the FCA and suppliers that the plant was building around 1,000 trucks per day last week.

    "That's not where we need to be. We allowed enough time in 2017 to get that installation up, but it's proven to be challenging," said Marchionne.

    Why the low production rate? A union source explained there are a few reasons. One is that suppliers are having a difficult time with providing parts for two-generations of the Ram 1500 - FCA is planning on building the last-generation model to help keep sales up while production ramps up on the next-generation 1500. The Sterling Heights' plant is also undergoing construction for the 2019 Ram 1500, which cuts the number of trucks that can be built. Also, the union source said that some workers still lack proper training on building the new model.

    Another source said that more than 2,500 2019 Ram 1500s were sitting in holding areas due to an electrical issue. Once fixed, the trucks will be shipped out to dealers.

    Getting production up and running for the 2019 Ram 1500 is important for FCA. Marchionne said it and the redesigned Jeep Wrangler need smooth launches if the company wants to achieve its financial goals for this year. To this end, the company is planning on spending more than $300 million to get the production ramp-up back on track. Automotive News also obtained a revised production calendar from March that indicates FCA will run the Sterling Heights plant every weekend and holiday through Labor Day.

    Source: Automotive News (Subscription Required)

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    So the new RAM has production issues for FCA.  I wonder if it will lead to lost sales a few months from now.  Or they get lucky and RAM buyers do not switch to Chevy/GMC or Ford during the interregnum.

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    Not sure if this is a blessing or curse. If it fixes the issues, it will help for sure....

    Might also help not to have a crazy amount of trucks when the economy starts heading south....

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    I would avoid at all cost a 2019 issue that is known to have electrical issues. WOW :o that is just sad, showing that the money they took and poured into the stupid wasted Alfa crap is coming back to haunt them.

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