Supplier bankruptcy casts shadow over Chrysler

The immediate future of Chrysler’s operations in Indiana is open to question now that a supplier to the Detroit automaker has sought bankruptcy protection.

Friday’s Chapter 11 filing by Plastech Engineered Products Inc. suddenly cut off a stream of plastic parts to Chrysler’s 14 assembly plants, according to the trade publication Automotive News.

All 14 plants are at risk of at least temporary closure, the bankruptcy filing said.

For now, Chrysler has closed assembly plants in Belvidere, Ill.; Newark, Del.; Sterling Heights, Mich.; and Toledo, Ohio. A fifth plant, also in Toledo, has cut a shift.

The four plants produce the Dodge Avenger, Caliber, Durango and Nitro, as well as the Chrysler Aspen and Sebring, and the Jeep Compass, Liberty and Wrangler.

Chrysler employs several thousand workers in Indiana, mainly at its transmission plants in Kokomo.

Plastech is headquartered in Dearborn, Mich.

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