Originally created 04/27/04

Chief executive of Mitsubishi Motors resigns



TOKYO -- Rolf Eckrodt resigned Monday as chief executive and president of Mitsubishi Motors Corp. after DaimlerChrysler AG announced last week it will not offer more money to finance the struggling Japanese partner's turnaround.

Mitsubishi Motors said in a statement that a replacement will be chosen soon, but Keiichiro Hashimoto, its chief financial officer, will be acting president until then.

The Tokyo-based automaker is burdened with a multibillion-dollar debt, plunging car sales and a spate of recalls. But the announcement last Thursday by DaimlerChrysler of Germany dealt a serious blow and squelched speculation about a revival plan to inject hundreds of billions of dollars.

Eckrodt was sent in by DaimlerChrysler in 2001 to lead a planned turnaround at Mitsubishi Motors. He had recently hinted he will step down.