As you may know already, Suzuki announced that it will end auto sales in the United States. As a result, this will make Mitsubishi the next Suzuki, due to the fact that its sales in the United States dropped 29 percent while its market share shrank to 0.4 percent from 0.7 percent. Moreover, the i-MiEV a.k.a. its electric vehicle is a flop although it was envisioned as company’s halo car.
Despite these bad news, President Osamu Masuko isn't discouraged as he already prepared a comeback plan in the United States that aims to boost sales by 45 percent to 80,000 units in the next fiscal year. In order to do this, Mitsubishi will introduce two new vehicles in 2013 and one in 2014 and will also ramp up local production.
Mitsubishi also appointed a new boss in North America and aims to sell 100,000 vehicles in 2014. "We have no intention whatsoever of withdrawing from the U.S. market," Masuko told Automotive News. "The U.S. market is a very important market." The first step that Mitsubishi will make for boosting sales in the United States is introduce the redesigned Outlander crossover next summer and the new Mirage small car in September.
Moreover, the plug-in hybrid version of the Outlander will go on sale in January 2014. Furthermore, Mitsubishi is planning to boost production at its Normal, Ill., plant that makes about 50,000 Outlander Sport per year.
According to Masuko, the production will be increased to 70,000 units next year in order to support exports to markets such as Russia, Latin America and the Middle East. As we said, Mitsubishi sales fell 29 percent to 50,103 through October, mainly because the Japanese manufacturer discontinued four vehicles: the Eclipse coupe, Eclipse Spyder convertible, Galant sedan and Endeavor crossover.