Chrysler Lays Off Employees at Toledo Before Starting Shipping the Jeep Cherokee image

Chrysler has temporary laid off 500 workers at its Toledo plant even if it has not even started delivering the all-new Jeep Cherokee SUV.

Chrysler previously said that the Jeep Cherokee will hit the market by the end of August, but the production issues made the automaker give up its target.

“We have been producing vehicles since the end of June and have now built the critical number of vehicles we need to stock dealerships once containment is released, ” Chrysler spokeswoman Jodi Tinson said in a statement.

The US automaker said it will suspend the second shift at the Toledo North assembly plant to avoid putting ” additional strain on our logistics partners to get these vehicles into the hands of customers as quickly and efficiently as possible upon release.” The new Cherokee replaces the Jeep Liberty which went out of production.

Chrysler plans to manufacture 280, 000 Cherokee vehicles per year and introduce the SUV in 150 markets. Two months ago the automaker said it will delay shipments of the Jeep due to an issue with the all-new, nine-speed transmission.

“We continue to do some quality verification. We will release the Cherokees at a time we are satisfied with their quality and not a day before,” said Tinson.