Freightliner to lay off 1,528 workers in North Carolina

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Freightliner said Monday, May 14, that it would lay off up to 1,528 workers at its assembly plant north of Charlotte, N.C., in July. In a statement to The Charlotte Observer, the Portland, Ore.-based company said “continued depressed market conditions” have forced it to reduce the size of the work force at the Cleveland plant as of July 10.

Freightliner already laid off nearly 1,200 people at the Cleveland plant this spring, at the time blaming the cuts on new federal diesel emissions standards that have forced the company to add expensive technology to the trucks. Company officials said the regulations forced it to add expensive technology to the trucks, causing sticker shock for buyers of 18-wheelers and a dramatic drop in orders earlier this year.

The layoffs were announced the same day Freightliner’s parent company, DaimlerChrysler AG, said it was selling a controlling stake in its U.S. car company, Chrysler, to private equity firm Cerberus Capital Management LP for $7.4 billion.