Daimler Trucks North America (DTNA) to ramp up production of Western Star brand trucks
Second shift to be added to Portland truck manufacturing plant
Workforce at Western Star to be increased by almost 50 percent
New hiring to begin in November 2011
Stuttgart/Portland, Oregon – Daimler Trucks North America plans to ramp up production of Western Star heavy-duty trucks at its plant in Portland, Oregon, for which it will add a second shift. This will create approximately 350 new jobs at the facility by the end of 2012. About 330 of these jobs will be for shop employees.
The new hiring will increase the number of production workers for Western Star trucks by almost 50 percent. Hiring of new employees will begin in November, and the new shift is slated to be at full capacity by February 2012. In July DTNA had announced that it would increase the workforce at the truck production plants in the U.S. and Mexico by around 2,700 employees. This figure will now be further increased by the new jobs at Western Star.
The increase in production capacity and hiring comes in response to a strong rise in sales of DTNA’s commercial vehicles. In August, for example, the U.S. subsidiary of Daimler Trucks achieved its best sales result since March 2007. Sales of DTNA vehicles in the U.S. and Canada rose more than 50 percent through August 2011, compared to the same period last year. Incoming orders are also developing positively.
Andreas Renschler, Daimler Board of Management Member responsible for Daimler Trucks and Daimler Buses, says that the success of Western Star’s products is testimony to the brand’s clear focus on customer specifications. “Our Western Star heavy-duty trucks provide our customers with tailored solutions for specific uses in the vocational segment,” he explains. “Vocational trucks are a very attractive and profitable growth segment which is affected very little by cyclical factors. In the U.S. this segment accounts for about one fourth of the sales of Class 6 to 8 trucks. This is reflected in the increase of our orders, and we expect continued growth next year.”
Western Star trucks are primarily used for specialized applications such as logging, mining, and oil production. The brand’s approximately 750 employees mainly produce vehicles for markets in North and South America, Australia, South Africa, and Indonesia.