Cleveland, Ohio – The last of Detroit’s automakers has reached a tentative deal with the United Auto Workers, setting up votes at Fiat Chrysler Automobiles (FCA) plants in the coming weeks to ratify the contract.
The union shared few details, but the top-line numbers matched GM and Ford contracts – trading plant investment guarantees and wage increases for labor peace.
Union negotiators will meet with the leaders of local unions on Wednesday to explain contract terms. If the local presidents accept the contract, voting could begin at local halls throughout the country on Friday.
In recent months, FCA officials have announced $4.5 billion of investments in plants to build future products. The tentative deal brings the investment figure to $9 billion and plans to hire 7,900 new people by 2023.
“Our UAW Bargaining Committee worked diligently, over many months, during the General Motors strike and Ford negotiations to maintain productive negotiations with FCA,” said UAW Vice President Cindy Estrada, director of the UAW-FCA Department. “The pattern bargaining strategy has been a very effective approach for the UAW and its members to negotiate economic gains around salary, benefits, and job security.”
With Ford and FCA, contract talks took longer than the sides predicted, but negotiations went smoothly. GM, the first automaker to agree to a contract this year, came to terms only after a 6-week strike by the company.
Details on which FCA plants will get the investments are in the fine print in the contract, so those likely won’t be available until late this week. Contracts for Ford and GM workers called for big investments in electric vehicles (EVs) in addition to ones with conventional powertrains.
About the author: Robert Schoenberger is the editor of Today's Motor Vehicles and a contributor to Today's Medical Developments and Aerospace Manufacturing and Design. He has written about the automotive industry for more than 19 years at The Plain Dealer in Cleveland, Ohio; The Courier-Journal in Louisville, Kentucky; and The Clarion-Ledger in Jackson, Mississippi.