It was confirmed by Panasonic today via phone, that the unit was discontinued as the 2000 model year product was introduced, approximately a year ago.
Playing the devil's advocate, why would Panasonic would keep it in their product line, as it requires a IEEE1394 compatible ATSC DTV decoder, which they also discontinued and no one else has ever made?
And as far as what a local store will tell you, be very cautious what you believe. When they told you it "This unit just came in a week or two ago", the question is from where? Their local warehouse? Returned from an unhappy customer who didn't know what they were buying? It almost certainly did not come from Panasonic unless by chance it was some "B" stock clear out.
"better living thru modern expensive electronics"
'Better Living Through Modern, Expensive, Electronic Devices'