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Donnelly Corporation Technology Drives Latest GM Innovation

20 July 1999

Donnelly Corporation Technology Drives Latest GM Innovation
    HOLLAND, Mich., July 20 -- With the announcement of a new
technology that will automatically open a trunk lid to free people who may be
trapped inside, General Motors earned broad, favorable reactions from
consumers and automotive safety experts alike.  What most people don't know is
that the technology used to power that feature was designed -- and will be
produced -- by Holland-based Donnelly Corporation .
    Donnelly's SmartRelease(TM) trunk release system uses advanced electronic
sensors to detect heat and motion, and automatically open the trunk if it
senses a person trapped inside.  The SmartRelease(TM) will debut on the mid-
year 2000 Chevrolet Impala.
    This technology marks an evolution in the auto industry's efforts to make
vehicles a safer environment.  The SmartRelease(TM) system is more
sophisticated than the manual emergency trunk release handles that Donnelly
developed and currently supplies to automakers.  The electronic sensors
require very little movement on the part of a person trapped in a trunk to
    "We take great pride in introducing this kind of safety product to the
market," said Dwane Baumgardner, chairman and chief executive officer.
"Donnelly is one of the auto industry's pioneers in introducing safety
features, with a history dating back to the introduction of dimmable rearview
mirrors.  Our technologies build value for our company, for our customers and
for the families that will ultimately use these products."
    Donnelly has developed various advanced electronic sensing technologies
for detecting a person's presence in a vehicle.  Donnelly Electronics, a joint
venture, has fine-tuned the design for use in the SmartRelease(TM) system.
    Donnelly's production of the SmartRelease(TM) is scheduled to begin in
January, with the first sensor-equipped vehicles expected to be available
early to mid-year 2000.  Donnelly, a four-time GM Supplier of the Year, also
manufactures the manual trunk release handle available at GM dealerships.
    Donnelly Corporation is an international automotive supplier dedicated to
serving customers around the globe with industry-leading components and
systems in automotive mirrors, windows and door handles.  Through its various
product lines, Donnelly is a supplier to every major automotive manufacturer
in the world.  The company has been based in Holland, Michigan, since 1905,
and today has approximately 5,500 employees in 12 countries worldwide.  In
addition, Donnelly is nationally recognized as a leader in the application of
participative management principles and systems.