MARTINSVILLE-Arrington Performance will be closing its doors in Martinsville and moving to Michigan under new ownership, according to Arrington Performance CEO Tim Krauskopf.
Located at 67 Motorsports Drive in Martinsville, Arrington Performance builds hemispherical combustion chamber (HEMI) engines and custom high-performance parts for late model Chrysler vehicles.
Krauskopf said that Arrington employs 22 people. The new Michigan-based owner of Arrington has made offers to retain current employees, he said, “but a lot of employees are very tied to the Martinsville area.”
It is unclear at this point how many employees will choose to relocate to Michigan, Krauskopf said, as those discussions are still underway.
“We’re doing everything we can to make sure every employee has the best opportunity for whatever they want to do next,” he said. “We’ve got a great employee base here, and that has been the most difficult thing about the transition. We’re actually excited about the possibilities for the business in Michigan, but the most difficult part of the process is how it affects the employees. We’re trying to help in every way we can. We hope everybody gets a really good spot after this. I think they’ve gotten some good experience here, and I hope that helps them as they move forward.”
Krauskopf said that one of the major factors in the sale was the challenge Arrington has faced since Chrysler left NASCAR at the conclusion of the 2012 racing season.
“It’s changed our business,” he said. “We used to make hundreds of NASCAR engines per year. We tried to make the business work here for a long time after Chrysler left NASCAR. That was the original Arrington Engines business, making NASCAR engines. We even have a truck series championship to show for it.”
Since Chrysler left NASCAR, Arrington Performance has focused on building its aftermarket business, he said.
Locally, Arrington Performance will be closing within “the next few weeks,” Krauskopf said. The new owners in Michigan will be issuing a press release next week regarding the purchase of the company, he added and didn't want to be named until then.
Krauskopf declined to comment on the new owners, as he said he would prefer for the new owners to comment themselves when they formally announce the purchase, but he did say that “they have experience in the car industry that I think will help the company going forward.”
In 2013, Patrick Henry Community College (PHCC) purchased the Arrington buildings to expand its motorsports facility and house other workforce development programs, according to previous Martinsville Bulletin reports. The PHCC motorsports program has been housed in the building since 2005.
Patrick Henry Community College Vice-President Jack Hanbury said that the college did not have a comment on Arrington sale, but did say that the sale would not have an impact on the college’s motorsports program.