The union -- reeling from the industry's downturn -- has made job retention and creation a centerpiece of its bargaining strategy during talks with Detroit's 3 automakers.
Chrysler's UAW hourly employment has dropped from 40,000 in 2007 to 22,500 today.
At Chrysler, about 12 percent of the hourly workforce – or about 3,000 employees -- earn entry-level wages that start at $14 an hour.
Since it emerged from bankruptcy protection in 2009, Chrysler has invested about $3.2 billion in its U.S. plants. It has added at least 2,000 jobs by expanding production and adding shifts at factories in Michigan.
Still, Chrysler hasn't turned an annual profit since its 2009 bankruptcy and has pushed for a smaller signing bonus than the $5,000 payout negotiated by GM with the union.
Chrysler posted a net loss of $652 million last year. It expects to generate a profit of $200 million to $500 million this year, excluding certain expenses.
GM, in contrast, earned $6.17 billion in profits last year and $5.7 billion in profits during the first half of this year. GM is also sitting on roughly $34 billion in cash, while Chrysler has $10.2 billion in cash.
With the auto industry's recovery well underway, the union has used the 2011 negotiations to try to recoup some of the estimated $7,000 to $30,000 in concessions each worker has given up since 2005.
The union said this week the GM settlement will provide at least $12,000 in economic gains from profit-sharing, a signing bonus, and lump sum payments. The figure could climb based on GM's future profits in North America and if certain quality targets are achieved.
David Barkholz, Bloomberg and Reuters contributed to this report.