RANTOUL, ILL. — In addition to growth in Westland, Mich., Textron Automotive Co. Inc. is expanding its Rantoul facility to handle a new minivan contract. The Rantoul facility, launched by the former American Motors Corp. in 1984, is at the former Chanute Air Force Base.
The three-plant facility now covers more than 500,000 square feet. One plant is a converted warehouse, and another is a redesigned hangar.
But with the large contract to supply interior parts, more space is needed, said Eric White, Textron senior vice president for trim division operations. Textron is adding 55,000 square feet to the hangar plant. Total investment was not available.
The expansion will include 12 automated injection molding machines from Van Dorn Demag, with clamping forces of 1,100-1,700 tons, and secondary welding and heat-staking equipment, White said.
The presses will be installed by the end of the first quarter next year, he added.
"We're at capacity now," White said. "Two carmakers [DaimlerChrysler Corp. and Mitsubishi Motors Corp.] have plants about 40 miles away. It's a growing facility."