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TEXT OF STORY
Bill Radke: Later this morning, workers at a Chrysler assembly plant in Belvidere, Ill. will be back on the job. Like all Chrysler factories, the plant has been shut down since the automaker went bankrupt in April. But it’s re-opening earlier than expected as Chrysler races to get back on its feet. We get more now from Marketplace’s Jeremy Hobson.
Jeremy Hobson: Thank the government’s auto task force. Thank Fiat. Jesse Toprak at Edmunds.com says it doesn’t matter who you thank — just under a month after emerging from bankruptcy, Chrysler is moving faster than many thought possible.
Jesse Toprak: I think that they’ve emerged with minimal damage, and we’ve also interestingly seen that the idea that people will not buy from a bankrupt company is simply not accurate. We’ve actually seen that bankruptcy was probably one of the best promotions that Chrysler could have come up with. In fact their sales went up.
Those sales and a complete factory shutdown means dealerships are running out of cars.
Joe Phillippi says that’s one reason factories are re-opening so soon. He’s president of AutoTrends Consulting.
Joe Phillippi: Dealers are running out of inventory of certain products that are doing well in the marketplace.
Analysts say keeping sales up during the reorganization is going to be key. Chrysler needs the cash to keep the engine running until it can start selling Fiat’s cars in the United States.
I’m Jeremy Hobson for Marketplace.