FCA idles Ontario assembly plant for a week to reduce inventory
Nearly 6,000 workers will get an unexpected break with FCA Canada announcing the Windsor Assembly Plant will shut down next week to adjust inventories.
“The afternoon shift ends today (Friday),” said LouAnn Gosselin, head of communications for FCA Canada. “The midnight shift will resume on November 5.”
It’s the second time this year the plant has been idled for a week to reduce inventories. The previous shutdown was in January.
Local 444 president David Cassidy said the union was notified Thursday afternoon of the shutdown. “Inventory adjustment is nothing new in our industry,” Cassidy said.
“In our industry, we often see this in the fall and at Christmas or just after. Sales can be up and down at those times of year.”
However, this won’t just affect Windsor Assembly. All the feeder plants will be impacted as well.
According to Automotive News’ tracking of automaker inventories, FCA had a 71-day supply of Pacificas and a 21-day supply of Caravans in the U.S. as of October 1. Canadian inventory figures were not available.
Sales slowed across the board for virtually every automaker in September in North America. One of the few to buck that trend was FCA US, which was up 15 per cent overall for the month.
U.S. sales of the Pacifica were down two per cent last month (10,629 vehicles) while the Caravan soared 344 per cent to 13,829 vehicles.
However, sales of the Windsor-built Pacifica and Caravan were down sharply in Canada.
FCA sold only 191 Pacificas in September, down 57 per cent over Sept. 2017. There were 2,533 Caravans sold last month, which is a decrease of 35 per cent.