FCA Repurposes Factories for Face Mask Production
Fiat Chrysler Automobiles (FCA) is converting 44 production lines and retraining 600 employees to manufacture an initial daily target of 27 million face masks.
The personal protective equipment (PPE) will be made available initially to FCA employees, with the the Civil Protection Authority in nearby Turin also expected to become a key buyer as the Italian government implements measures to combat the spread of Covid-19 under new measures announced by Special Commissioner, Domenico Arcuri.
Four mask-making machines have already arrived at the company's Mirafiori complex and will be integrated into production lines occupying an area of approximately 7,000 square metres. A total of 25 lines are being built in the Turin plant, with FCA setting up a further 19 production lines at the Pratola Serra plant near Naples where work has also begun to convert a floor area of 9,000 square metre to mask production.
Production is scheduled to commence in late August or September 2020. Once all production lines are fully operational, the plant are expected to reach the daily figure of around 27 million masks quickly.
Pietro Gorlier, Chief Operating Officer EMEA at FCA, comments: "This Italian initiative is part of a wider action that we have launched around the world.
The aim is to support local communities where our plants are located, and in particular our employees.
"Especially in Italy, we have made our industrial expertise available to the authorities since the start of the pandemic. All our companies support Italian and international health organisations with many concrete initiatives in various areas. We are proud to be part of this project together with other major national and international companies."
The plants in the Mirafiori/Grugliasco complex in Turin, which are now part of FCA, have been making history in the automotive industry for 81
years. The Fiat plant in Turin, which opened in 1939, marked a milestone in modern industrial production at the time and is today one of the longest active automobile plants in Europe.
Today, FCA employs around 20,000 people in production and related areas of technology and design, sales, financial services and spare parts. The Mirafiori/Grugliasco complex is the largest factory unit in the world of FCA. The vehicles produced here include the Maserati Levante, Ghibli and Quattroporte models, as well as the new Fiat 500 with electric drive, which is scheduled to be launched in autumn 2020.
Since opening in 1994, the Pratola Serra plant has become a global competence center for diesel engines for FCA. The factory covers an area of about 300,000 square meters. Around 1,800 employees produce around 250,000 engines here every year.