ArvinMeritor Inc. wants to apply its passenger car exhaust expertise to the commercial vehicle market, where stricter emissions regulations will force new-generation diesels to be cleaner-burning. Exhaust after-treatment is minimal on existing heavy-duty Class 8 diesels, but soon they will need catalysts to treat carbon monoxide, hydrocarbons and oxides of nitrogen, as well as particulate filters.

The company has secured one exhaust contract for an '02 light commercial vehicle in Europe with annual volumes of 30,000-35,000 vehicles. ArvinMeritor will build complete exhaust systems with the ability to later plug in advanced emission control equipment. Also, ArvinMeritor and its German joint venture partner Zeuna Starker GmbH & Co. have won the exhaust contract for the next-generation Mercedes M-Class, along with the Jeep Grand Cherokee. The current exhaust supplier is a joint venture between Calsonic North America and Germany's Eberspacher Group.

Meanwhile, ArvinMeritor Vice Chairman and President Bill Hunt resigns to form a venture capital company. Larry Yost, chairman and chief executive, assumes Mr. Hunt's operating duties. Initially, Mr. Hunt was to succeed Mr. Yost by 2003. Mr. Hunt, 56, raked in $10 million in 2000, most of it in stock options.