The company will reopen this factory as part of its new union deals.
The vice president of the UAW announced that the first model built there will be a midsize pickup.
This model should feature both gasoline and electric powertrain options.
In a surprise announcement made on YouTube, Rich Boyer, Vice President of the United Auto Workers (UAW), said that Stellantis will soon manufacture a new midsize pickup in the United States.
While this has yet to be confirmed by the automaker, it goes along with rumours that claimed such a product was coming in the near future.
Amid the wave of strikes and contract negotiations in Detroit over the last few weeks, Stellantis recently announced it would re-open a factory in Belvidere, Illinois, which had been idled earlier in the year.
After the production of the Jeep Cherokee had ended there back in February, there had been talks of repurposing the facility, perhaps into some sort of parts depot, but nothing happened in the months since.
According to Rich Boyer, the factory will soon return to production, with two shifts employed to manufacture the upcoming midsize pickup. With the addition of a new battery plant on-site, 1,000 workers are expected to join the existing 1,200 workers who had been laid off.
While few details about this future product have been revealed, many believe it to be the RAM Rampage, which has recently gone on sale in Brazil.
Indeed, this small pickup has been spotted a number of times driving around U.S. roads wearing heavy camouflage and one of its powertrain options is the Hurricane 2.0L turbo four-cylinder that already powers many of Stellantis’ models in North America. In addition, the company’s Brazilian arm has made no secret the fact that the American division’s engineering arm was involved in the development of the Rampage.
This might not be the case, however, since the UAW Vice President talks about a midsize model while the Rampage is a compact pickup, more in line with the Ford Maverick.
This means that Stellantis could be working on an entirely new model that has yet to be seen and which would fill the gap that was left open in the RAM lineup since the Dakota retired all the way back in 2011.
Since a battery plant will be added in Belvidere, is it very likely that this upcoming model will be offered with either a hybrid or a fully electric drivetrain, in addition to a gasoline option.