Workers from the Belvidere Assembly Plant experienced the Camp Jeep track at the Chicago Auto Show. 

Manufacturing | February 17 2017

Riding, Rolling, Reaching: Belvidere Assembly Prepares to Welcome Camp Jeep®

What does it take to be Trail Rated®? The 4,600 employees at the FCA US Belvidere Assembly Plant will soon find out.

Later this spring, Camp Jeep®, the Company’s ultimate off-road driving course, will be staged outside of the Belvidere Assembly Plant. Located about 72 miles northwest of Chicago, this is the first time the course will be constructed at the plant – or any FCA US facility – in preparation for a vehicle launch. In this case, the launch of the Jeep Cherokee.

Comprised of several obstacles that simulate the extreme Trail Rated testing that Jeep vehicles endure, Camp Jeep will connect employees with the vehicle that they will pour their hearts into building every day.

To get a sneak peek of Camp Jeep, more than a dozen of the plant’s employees volunteered their time to experience the obstacle course at the Chicago Auto Show on Feb. 10.

“We look forward to seeing Camp Jeep in Belvidere,” said Bob Allen, Facility Engineering Manager – Belvidere Assembly Plant. “We haven’t done anything like this before. The course will help employees fully understand the capabilities of the Jeep Cherokee.”

Announced in July 2016, Belvidere Assembly Plant will be opening its doors to the Jeep Cherokee, which is relocating from its current home in Toledo, Ohio, later this year. This move is the first phase of the Company’s larger strategy to make more of the trucks and SUVs you want. Yes, we heard you!

The plan to make that happen is truly an industry first. We’re talking about an investment of nearly $3.5 billion, across four Midwest cities, to relocate production of three existing nameplates and to introduce three new ones over the next three years.

The first move in the manufacturing chess game is happening now in Belvidere, Illinois. By the close of 2016, employees said goodbye to their old production plans and are now eagerly awaiting the arrival of the Jeep Cherokee. The plant is currently undergoing major construction to accommodate all of the equipment necessary to build the segment-leading, mid-size SUV, the Jeep Cherokee.

Get Trail Rated and experience the ride in this Camp Jeep video.

Be sure to come back and visit for more stories on the big changes ahead in manufacturing and your future product portfolio.