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Diamond Star plant to see life again?

by David Zatz on

In 1988, Chrysler and Mitsubishi built a jointly owned plant in Normal, Illinois to build coupe variants of the Mitsubishi Galant. “Diamond Star Motors” was run by Mitsubishi, building Mitsubishi-engineered cars, and eventually Chrysler withdrew from it, still selling Mitsubishi-made Dodges, Eagles, and Plymouths for some time.

Diamond Star Chrysler Sebring

Diamond Star Chrysler Sebring

Sales eventually slowed to a trickle, and Mitsubishi left in May. The last car was the Mitsubishi Outlander Sport, also loosely based on the Galant.

Now, it appears that industry newcomer Rivian Automotive may buy the plant in early January, making a $175 investment in it over the next ten years, depending on state incentives. The Illinois Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity claimed Rivian will create around 1,000 jobs there — about the same number as Mitsubishi employed at the start of this year.

Rivian, created in 2009, has posted $1 million to show interest and prevent the building from being razed, as had been planned. Rivian currently has around fifty employees; its chief engineer, Lawrence Achram, was at Chrysler Corp. and Chrysler Group from 1984 to 2008, leaving as chief engineer of that company.  Achram claims direct responsibility “in part or in full” for the Jeep Cherokee ZJ, Chrysler 300, and Dodge Charger.  See more at the source — Automotive News

David Zatz founded Allpar in 1998 (based on a site he had begun in 1993-94), after years of writing reviews for retail trades. He has been quoted by the New York Times, the Daily Telegraph, the Detroit News, and USA Today. Before making Allpar a full-time career, he was a consultant in organizational psychology. You can reach him by using our contact form (much preferred) or by calling (313) 766-2304

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