Pacifica's Demise Imminent

Speed and efficiency are emerging as hallmarks of Chrysler LLC's new management team with word that Chrysler Pacifica production could be permanently halted as early as November. Ward's learns the once-celebrated product, which helped define North America's cross/utility-vehicle segment, has been canceled as Chrysler moves to better leverage its strengths in an increasingly competitive marketplace.

Speed and efficiency are emerging as hallmarks of Chrysler LLC's new management team with word that Chrysler Pacifica production could be permanently halted as early as November.

Ward's learns the once-celebrated product, which helped define North America's cross/utility-vehicle segment, has been canceled as Chrysler moves to better leverage its strengths in an increasingly competitive marketplace.

Two key suppliers, Benteler Automotive Canada Corp. and Innovatech Seating Systems, a subsidiary of Magna International Inc., have no orders from Chrysler beyond Nov. 23, sources tell Ward's. Magna declines comment and Benteler, which supplies suspension components for Pacifica, offers no response.

Meanwhile, dealers confirm they have been told, during informal discussions with Chrysler, that the Pacifica's days are numbered. Chrysler also declines comment, but a product cancellation is consistent with recent media reports about the auto maker's plans to move swiftly on strategy.

Jim Press, vice chairman and president in charge of sales, marketing and product strategy, confirms to journalists recently that he is reviewing Chrysler's product plans and cuts could occur.

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