Stellantis Gears Up to Build Electric Vehicles like the 2024 Ram 1500 and 2021 Jeep Wrangler 4xe
Stellantis is spending $229 million in three Kokomo, Indiana plants to speed up its conversion to more electric vehicles like the 2024 Electric Ram 1500, as well as vehicles like the 2021 Jeep Wrangler 4xe and the 2022 Jeep Grand Cherokee 4xe.
The $229 million will retool the three plants to build electrified, next-generation, eight-speed transmissions that can be paired with gasoline, mild hybrid or plug-in hybrid powertrains. The new transmission is expected to improve fuel economy and also provide pure-electric range.
“This investment and this transmission represent an important stepping stone in getting us to 2030 and further expanding our battery electric offerings,” said Stellantis Head of Powertrain Operations Brad Clark. “This new eight-speed is the ‘multi-tool’ of transmissions. It is a versatile transmission that can be adapted for a variety of applications, allowing us the flexibility to adjust our production as consumer demand for electrified vehicles grows over the next decade. It also offers consumers the opportunity to get familiar with this technology and explore all of the benefits that can come from electrification.”
Fourth Generation of Popular 8-Speed Transmission
Stellantis says the new transmission will help it meet its goal of selling 40 percent low-emission vehicles in the U.S. by 2030. This new transmission will have the flexibility to be paired with internal combustion engines, as well as mild hybrid and plug-in hybrid propulsion systems, for vehicles across the Jeep, Ram, Chrysler and Dodge brands. Dodge is expected to produce an all-electric muscle car in 2024. Ram is supposed to have a pure electric 2024 Ram 1500. The electrified transmission will deliver improved fuel economy, provide pure-electric range and help vehicles meet future emission regulations.
Transmission Update Follows Engine Plant Investment
Stellantis announced, in March of 2020, that it was investing $400 million in a Kokomo plant to produce the company’s 2.0-liter inline four-cylinder turbo engine. That is the same engine used in the 2021 Jeep Wrangler 4xe and the 2022 Jeep Grand Cherokee 4xe. Production of that engine in Kokomo is expected to start any day now. Stellantis says converting the three facilities will keep 662 jobs in the plants.
“As our industry continues to change, our focus must continue to be on our most valuable asset – our people,” said Clark. “This transmission program will bring new opportunities for our current workforce, as well as the manufacturing workforce of the future.”
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