One door closes, another one opens. Just as Chrysler is working to extricate itself from its deal with Getrag, the Pentastar people are about to announce a deal with ZF Friedrichshafen AG. Chrysler is erecting a plant in Marysville, Michigan that will build axles and employ 900 workers, but word is that the deal will involve ZF signing a long-term commitment to operate the plant.

As far back as September, the UAW said that Chrysler and ZF were getting together. The Detroit News reported on the talks at the time, but they were described as a "non-binding discussion" and "a possibility." The Marysville factory, planned to open in 2010, would replace the Detroit Axle plant that currently employs 1,430 workers. Letting ZF run the Marysville location would allow Chrysler to put more focus on getting its survival in order. The announcement will be made at 9 AM EST tomorrow.

[Source: Automotive News, sub req'd]