Mitsubishi Motors Corp. will continue to supply two models produced at its Illinois plant to Chrysler Corp. until 2005, the companies announced Thursday.Mitsubishi has been supplying vehicles to Chrysler since 1982. Under the current agreement, which is due to expire in 1999, Mitsubishi supplies the Avenger and Sebring, two coupe models produced by Mitsubishi Motor Manufacturing of America Inc. to Chrysler. The companies signed a new agreement on Wednesday to extend the cooperative relationship for five more years until 2005, they said.MMMA currently produces about 185,000 vehicles annually, including 65,000 for Chrysler. After 2000, the total will depend upon market demand, the two companies said. MMMA, which was jointly established by Mitsubishi and Chrysler in 1985, became a subsidiary of Mitsubishi when the firm bought all of Chrysler’s shares in 1991.Meanwhile, executives of Mazda Motor Corp. said the firm will halve the production of pickup trucks in its new plant in Thailand from an initial plan, due to the economic turmoil in Southeast Asia.Mazda’s new plant at Auto Alliance Thailand Co., which was jointly established with its affiliate Ford Motor Co. of the United States, is due to begin operations in the middle of the year. Its annual production capacity is 135,000 units and about half of the products will be allocated for Mazda, according to the company.But due to the sluggish market in Thailand, the company plans to reduce its operating hours, which will halve production volume, they said. “We don’t expect anything but continued decline,” and the market is unlikely to recover for another two years, Mazda President James Miller said, commenting on the prospects for the Southeast Asian market.

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