WINDSOR, Ont.—The next generation of minivan has officially begun rolling off the line in Windsor, Ont.
The head of Fiat Chrysler Automobiles, Sergio Marchionne, was on-hand late last week as the facility launched its newly-redesigned 2017 Chrysler Pacifica into production.
“Today is the right moment to ask ourselves what’s next, what we want this plant to become two years from now,” Marchionne, the company’s chairman and CEO, said. “My vision is clear and it is based on what you have demonstrated so far: your dedication, your passion and your openness to new ideas, in order to put out the highest quality products possible.”
Through 33 years of production, more than 10 million minivans have now trundled off the line in Windsor. The latest redesign required a more than $1 billion investment in new technology at the plant and will keep 6,000 workers—1,200 of them new hires—busy assembling vehicles for the North American market.
FCA hopes the newly-redesigned Pacifica will kick the “uncool” stigma minivans have acquired in recent years, and aims to appeal to customers who have been abandoning the segment for SUVs.
The new vehicle is expected in showrooms this spring and in dealerships by the fall.