Fiat Chrysler will build a new multimillion-dollar test track as part of its $1.5 billion investment in its Sterling Heights, Michigan plant. The major investment, which will support the production of the next-generation Ram 1500 pickup, was first announced it July of this year.
According to The Detroit News, FCA outlined specific details of the $5.8 million test track ahead of a Sterling Heights City Council public hearing on Tuesday night. Attendees are expected to vote on whether or not to pass a $23.3 million, 12-year property tax abatement for FCA’s Sterling Heights facility.
The renovations to the plant are expected to be complete by August 31st, 2018. They include a $41.8 million paint shop overhaul, $8.1 million in upgrades to the Trim Chassis Final area, a $6.4 million addition to the frame unloading area, $5.7 million for truck docks, $2.6 million in upgrades to the body shop and $2 million for drum storage and trestle upgrades.
FCA CEO Sergio Marchionne revealed earlier this year the next-generation Ram 1500 would enter production on January 28th, 2018 and go on sale in the first quarter of that year. The revised pickup is expected to be lighter than the current truck and will offer a turbocharged version of FCA’s 3.6-liter Pentastar V6, among other powertrain options.