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Navistar lays off more workers at Springfield plant following reduction in trucks built there


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Springfield News-Sun  /  January 25, 2020

Navistar laid off 26 workers in Springfield on Friday as part of continuation of layoffs resulting from the company’s decision to reduce the number of trunks built there per day.

Last week, truck production on the Springfield plant’s main line, which also builds medium-duty commercial trucks for General Motors, was reduced from 97 to 70 per day. That decision led to 106 workers being laid off shortly after, not including the 26 that were laid off on Friday, said Chris Blizard, the president of UAW Local 402 .

Those affected by the most recent round of layoffs at the plant are members of UAW Local 402. That union represents assembly production workers as well as those with skilled trades at the Springfield plant.

“In order to realign production with the current demand for our products, we will be adjusting line rates at our Springfield Assembly plant. This action is normal due to the cyclical nature of our business,” said Navistar spokesperson Lyndi McMillan in an email to the News-Sun last week.

The News-Sun reported in 2019 that the number of medium and heavy-duty trucks being built have surpassed demand nationally. Some companies are beginning to adjust their production rates as a result.

A reduction from 117 trucks to 97 trucks built per day at the Springfield plant in September led to 126 workers being laid off that month, the News-Sun reported. The company announced in November that it would be further reducing truck production at the plant starting in January.

At the time, local union officials argued that reducing the line to a production rate of 70 would be in direct violation of their contract with the company. They said that agreement called for a minimum of 90 trucks to be built per day on the main line of the Springfield plant.

Another interpretation of the contract language is that Navistar is required to staff the main line with enough employees to accommodate at least 90 trucks per day and therefore the company can reduce production without violating the contract.

However, the number of workers needed at the line to support that production is still a matter of debate between union officials and Navistar, Blizard said.

Earlier this month, Navistar temporarily stopped production on line two, which makes cutaway vans for GM, at the Springfield plant due to a retooling at GM’s plant in Wentzville, Mo., that makes cabs for the GM vans assembled in Springfield.

However, production has resumed on that line, according to Blizard.

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I have seen 3-5 new GM medium duty trucks around here, that's it. I see more  and more Transit cutaway vans all the time. Navistar should offer UAW local 402 officials a free trip to Mexico to visit the Navistar plant there and on the way back stop off for a tour of the GM pickup truck plant in Mexico. If they want, I will show them the vacant site where GM built class 8 trucks in Pontiac, MI.    

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Well I was thinking along those lines about the class 4,5,6 Chevy/Binders that are built at Sp'field.  I may have seen two on the road.  I also stop in once a month and drive through an Altech facility that is one town over.  Place has always been loaded with F-450/550's awaiting installations.  About two months ago when I drove through they had two chevys.  Last week none.  Reasonable to assume if International is knocking off manpower,  as these JV trucks were additions to the plant's regular product mix, they are NOT selling as expected.

My guess is with that tilt hood, they are more expensive than Ford or Dodge.  How about it Roadway R-?  What do you say about pricing as your company has bought some.

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GM strike = no cabs built for more than a month. Concrete  subcontractor that I know just got a 2020 F-550 stake bed, 7.3 gas, said it was many $ less than a Chevy. He has always had GM trucks. He said GM dealer that he has always used is not selling medium duty trucks. He shopped around a lot. GM, Ram and Ford. A Ford dealer got him the truck he wanted, said his next new truck will be a Ford. Ford dealer had people that knew what they were doing.

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Would be less than the Chevy because the Chevy/IH is diesel only at present.  We have 2 good Chevy commercial dealers but I agree, Chevy needs more truck dealers.

I tend to think Springfield would have had to lay off more assembly workers if it wasn't for the Chevy medium/CV being in production.

 

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7 hours ago, TS7 said:

GM strike = no cabs built for more than a month. Concrete  subcontractor that I know just got a 2020 F-550 stake bed, 7.3 gas, said it was many $ less than a Chevy. He has always had GM trucks. He said GM dealer that he has always used is not selling medium duty trucks. He shopped around a lot. GM, Ram and Ford. A Ford dealer got him the truck he wanted, said his next new truck will be a Ford. Ford dealer had people that knew what they were doing.

T', Stay in tune with your friend-key questions, how is it on gas  and how is the power?  As for cost, as Roadway pointed out 7.3 gas vs a Power Stroke is I believe an $8000 savings so I'm sure that diesel premium is pretty common across the board.  Big thing is at this point GM does not offer a gas option in their new class 4,5 and 6's so Ford is holding the cards!

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Redhorse this person has ordered a 2020 F-650 diesel to pull Cat skid loaders, it will replace a 2009 GMC 6500 diesel that had become nightmare to keep running. Truck had less than 100,000 mi. GMC dealer does not have anyone to work on commercial trucks any more. He wanted a gas engine for his other new truck, F-550, trucks run 5000 - 7000 miles a year. His trucks go to 1 -3 jobs a day and are parked a lot. Diesels cost to much for that kind of miles, not needed.  He has one CDL driver to move trailers and equipment,  all he can find. Ford dealer understood what he wanted and what he needed. Ford dealer also has a service dept. with bays and people who work just on commercial trucks. As for towing trailers with a loaded 250 - 550 size truck and loaded trailer (skid loader), you are most likely over loaded. DOT in this area is all over that.    

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1 hour ago, TS7 said:

Redhorse this person has ordered a 2020 F-650 diesel to pull Cat skid loaders, it will replace a 2009 GMC 6500 diesel that had become nightmare to keep running. Truck had less than 100,000 mi. GMC dealer does not have anyone to work on commercial trucks any more. He wanted a gas engine for his other new truck, F-550, trucks run 5000 - 7000 miles a year. His trucks go to 1 -3 jobs a day and are parked a lot. Diesels cost to much for that kind of miles, not needed.  He has one CDL driver to move trailers and equipment,  all he can find. Ford dealer understood what he wanted and what he needed. Ford dealer also has a service dept. with bays and people who work just on commercial trucks. As for towing trailers with a loaded 250 - 550 size truck and loaded trailer (skid loader), you are most likely over loaded. DOT in this area is all over that.    

T,

 

1 hour ago, TS7 said:

Redhorse this person has ordered a 2020 F-650 diesel to pull Cat skid loaders, it will replace a 2009 GMC 6500 diesel that had become nightmare to keep running. Truck had less than 100,000 mi. GMC dealer does not have anyone to work on commercial trucks any more. He wanted a gas engine for his other new truck, F-550, trucks run 5000 - 7000 miles a year. His trucks go to 1 -3 jobs a day and are parked a lot. Diesels cost to much for that kind of miles, not needed.  He has one CDL driver to move trailers and equipment,  all he can find. Ford dealer understood what he wanted and what he needed. Ford dealer also has a service dept. with bays and people who work just on commercial trucks. As for towing trailers with a loaded 250 - 550 size truck and loaded trailer (skid loader), you are most likely over loaded. DOT in this area is all over that.    

T', Your friend understands the economics. His 5-7000 miles  a year figure makes the 7.3 the right choice for him.  And I have to believe it would have worked even in the 650 -unless he has high mileage.  Would it pull that Cat skid steer as well as a 6.7? No but again, unless he has high annual mileage with that, he would IMO be better off listening to his driver bitch about "not enough power" and enjoying the extra cash he has in the bank.

And by the way, think of the old days.  25 years ago Ford built F-700's with 429 V-8's that at max were rated at like 238 HP and could be rated at 37,000 GVW/60,000 GCW!  The 7.3 dwarfs that 429  in terms of HP/Torque , exceeds the 401 Super Duty Specs, and I think comes very close to beating the 477 Super Duty specs.

And PC 68- your friend has a 7.3 and he regrets not  getting the 6.7?  This in a 550?  How big a plow is he pushing?  

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9 1/2 foot v blade, Sorry didn’t mean to step on anyone’s toes just mine and several people I know opinions. By the way my F 550s carry 15 yards of debris all day long, I currently run 16 diesel’s and 2 gas trucks I love my power strokes!

Edited by PC68
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Redhorse have a friend with a 1997 FT-800, could be FT-900 not sure, tandem 14" dump with a 429 V-8. Not easy on gas, but gets job done, short hauls or on site work. 2000 or so miles a year now, uses it 6 months a year maybe. Auto trans., on site this how new guys learn how to drive dump trucks, that is how I learned how to drive a truck. By the way it was built at KTP, one of the last of the F-Series tandems. You are right about the old gas engine Ford trucks, a 2020 F-650 7.3 gas would have done what he wanted. But he wanted that truck to be on the road more moving equipment and materials, a 6.7 might be better for that job. 

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The problem we face is a fully loaded truck with a trailer and machine even the 6.7 is working hard on hills and stop & go traffic. We are still running 20 year old power stroke diesels with over a hundred thousand miles when are gas engine’s died years ago.

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I like to read the first hand stories from everyone about all trucks, old and new. I know that 20 years ago I would not have even looked at a gas F-450 or F-650, but what they cost today, you have to think hard how you are going to use the truck. PC68 you run some very clean trucks. Fords are like Mack's, take care of them, they will run forever.

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EPA regs and the higher price of diesel fuel are killing diesels in the market. There isn't a single 2020 model year diesel car available in the U.S. and even the light trucks offerings are getting slim- Ford isn't offering the 3 liter diesel in the F150 and while they announced a 2 liter diesel to replace the 3.2 liter In the Transit, it doesn't look like they've actually built any. Looking at it from the consumer side though, this looks like 1986 when the bottom dropped out of the diesel market and my family stocked up on diesels at a discount- I bought my 2nd VW diesel, mom & dad bought a power stroke powered E350, and the grandparents got one of the last of the Olds diesels. Prices on the leftover 2019 and earlier new diesels seems to be falling, so I may pick up another bargain...

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That’s a good question, I’m now teaching my son how to shift my Mack RD with the 18 speed transmission. He’s still a couple of years from getting his license but very old school like us  and really appreciates the older equipment. 

Edited by PC68
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