DaimlerChrysler announced this week that the all-new 2008 Dodge Challenger will be built at its Brampton Assembly Plant near Toronto. “It’s good news that the Dodge Challenger will be added to the Canadian production line-up,” said Reid Bigland, President and CEO – DaimlerChrysler Canada. “Quickly bringing desirable new products such as the Dodge Challenger to market is critical to keeping our plants humming and our dealerships busy.” The Brampton plant also produces Chrysler 300, Dodge Charger and Dodge Magnum and works on three shifts. The Windsor (Ontario) Assembly Plant also works on three shifts and produces Dodge Grand Caravan and Chrysler Town & Country minivans, as well as Chrysler Pacifica. Production of the Dodge Challenger will begin next year and preparations to ready the plant are already underway. The decision to locate this important product in Ontario was partially the result of the Ontario government’s strong support for the Brampton Assembly Plant through its contribution to the plant-wide third shift training program, which was essential to the successful launch of the Chrysler 300, Dodge Charger and Dodge Magnum, and now the successful launch of the Dodge Challenger. This announcement only slightly preceeded another from the company that announced a three-year recovery and transformation plan. The plan will result in an employee reduction of 13,000 people from 2007 to 2009. Chrysler Group President and CEO Tom LaSorda outlined the plan at the DaimlerChrysler AG Annual Press Conference, held in Auburn Hills, Michigan. Overall, the plan is aimed at a return to profitability with a primary focus on costs. According to the company, Chrysler Group will reduce the number of employees by 13,000, or approximately 16 percent. Hourly employment will be reduced by 11,000 over three years, with 9,000 in the U.S. and 2,000 in Canada (4,700 in the U.S. and 1,100 Canada in 2007 alone).