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WESTERN STAR TRUCKS INC..-- A producer of customized heavy-duty trucks and transit buses worldwide. Vehicles, parts and service are provided through 380 dealers and distributors internationally. DaimlerChrysler AG's (DCX) Freightliner LLC unit acquired the firm in 2000 for more than $400.0 million in cash.

Its only truck-making facility in Kelowna, B.C., permanently will close during the 2002 third quarter. Western Star truck-branded manufacturing activity will shift to a Freightliner truck assembly plant in Portland, Ore.

In a prelude to the closing of the facility, the newly created Autocar LLC commercial truck unit of privately-held Grand Vehicle Works Holdings LLC successfully has been recruiting Western Star engineers and managers.