By on August 29, 2013

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Calling out one’s prediction for Mitsubishi’s demise is an easy activity that requires one to put little at stake. With a stale product lineup, sagging sales and nothing on the horizon save for a B-Segment hatchback, Mitsubishi’s future looks bleak. But that’s not the main reason why I am pessimistic about the brand’s future in America.

The Mitsubishi Galant was precisely nobody’s favorite mid-size sedan, but it was better than nothing. And according to Automotive News, Mitsubishi’s product plans call for bubkis in the D-Segment, which is essentially a death wish in North America, where mid-size sedans are a crucial product.

Tellingly, Mitsubishi doesn’t have one because it lacks any kind of platform architecture to even build a new D-Segment car that would be competitive, an utterly damning indication of how ill-equipped the company is to be competitive on our shores. Even Suzuki had a passable mid-size car in its dying days, one that was quite good at that. For Mitsubishi to lack even a suitable architecture for a D-Segment car is a rather damning statement regarding their readiness to duke it out in an increasingly cutthroat global vehicle market.

Mitsubishi’s product plans appear to hinge on the new Mirage subcompact, a forthcoming Mirage sedan…and that’s it. A new Montero SUV may come here, and we may  see a new Lancer within the next two years. The only bright spot is the Evo, which will continue to soldier along, praised by everyone and bought by no one.

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82 Comments on “Mitsubishi Without A Midsize Sedan For America...”


  • avatar
    HerrKaLeun

    What is Mitsubsishi? :-)

    Do they actaully really belong to the big company that makes HVAC, ships etc? I wonder how long the overlords want to put money in, i can’t imagine they make a profit since I’m not aware of one market where M is relevant.

    They either need to invest to make real good cars, or clsoe shop. They make mass-market cars, except they don’t.

    • 0 avatar
      aristurtle

      It’s part of the Mitsubishi Group, along with Mitsubishi Heavy Industries, Kirin Brewery Co., Nikon, and a couple dozen others. It’s not quite a subsidiary relationship like you see with Comcast owning NBCUniversal; it’s a weird horizontal stock cross-holding setup.

      The others in the group could keep Mitsubishi Motors propped up as long as they think it’s worthwhile to do so, sure. As I understand it, though, they’re still in the black making kei cars for Japan and China and developing markets, even if their business in the US and Europe isn’t doing well currently.

      • 0 avatar
        redav

        Don’t forget their TVs. They’ve historically made some very good ones.

        • 0 avatar
          aristurtle

          And Mitsubishi UFJ Financial, the second largest bank holding company in the world, and Nippon Oil Co., and NYK Line Shipping, and Mitsubishi Aircraft, and their nuclear power plant ventures, and so on and so forth.

          Mitsubishi is a 143-year-old conglomerate and will probably not let Motors fail just because their US and Europe business has been falling behind for a mere decade or two.

          • 0 avatar

            I think Mitsu is also building the LE-5 engine, which NASA is currently evaluating for the post-DCSS stage on top of SLS. Which is all kind of weird, considering the amount of money spent on J-2X, but apprently it’s right-sized and inexpensive. They also build small hypergolic engines which, among other things, power Orbital’s Cignus and used in other deep space stages and boosters.

          • 0 avatar
            Aleister Crowley

            As Pete would say, “We’re Mitsubishi. We can make hypergolic motors but we can’t make a decent midsize car.”
            Thanks Pete, for adding hypergolic to my vocabulary.

          • 0 avatar
            aristurtle

            I’d consider buying a midsize Mitsubishi if it had a hypergolic rocket engine bolted onto it. Sounds like it would be fun at a drag strip.

          • 0 avatar
            gottacook

            In Robert Heinlein’s 1956 novel Double Star, the narrator is on Mars for much of the story and at one point must quickly accustom himself to a Mitsubishi “Sweet Winds” oxygen supply system. So soon after the end of the war, at a time when Japanese meant junk to most Americans, Heinlein guessed that a future Japanese conglomerate nonetheless might be producing equipment on which people’s lives depended.

            (The first and later editions used the spelling “Mitsubushi”; however, it seemed clear that Mitsubishi was intended, and that’s how it appears in the Library of America’s two-volume collection of SF novels of the 1950s that came out last year.)

          • 0 avatar
            LordDetroitofLondon

            @aristurtle: Speaking of Mistu financial, they (I think) wrote the largest paper check ever for a cool $9 Billion when they bought a 21% stake in Morgan Stanley back in 2008 when the proverbial s**t was really hitting the fan.

    • 0 avatar
      IndianaDriver

      Mitsubishi Motors is actually expecting about $1 billion worldwide profit this year. I believe they will come back with SUVs and small cars – not midsize cars. Why should they jump in the midsize rat race when they can focus on small cars and SUVs. Does everyone on this forum realize that there are only 3 small SUVs that earned the IIHS Top Safety Pick + honor and 2 of them are from Mitsubishi (Outlander & Outlander Sport). They may never be a big player in the automotive world, but they stand by their vehicles with a 10 year/100,000 mile warranty. The car world is better with Mitsubishi around than without them.

      • 0 avatar

        I think it’s cute when people believe that warranties are “included” at no cost and are some sort of “stand behind our product” statement. It’s just a built in profit. Not that it’s bad for the consumer, but I’d much rather being able to buy a new car “as is” and then option to pay for bumper to bumper coverage for the length of time I want.

      • 0 avatar
        watermeloncup

        The fact that the Outlanders get IIHS Top Safety Pick+ is actually quite impressive. If you look at the IIHS ratings for the Midsize Luxury segment, for instance, you will find only three cars get that. The BMW 3 Series, Mercedes C Class, Audi A4, and Lexus IS are not among them because they are rated anywhere from Marginal(!) to Poor(!!) on the new small overlap offset test.

        Mitsubishi must have pretty good engineering for their small, cheap SUV to do better in this test than $40k+ luxury cars.

        Here are the ratings:
        http://www.iihs.org/ratings/summary.aspx?class=15

      • 0 avatar
        jpolicke

        That being the case, they definitely didn’t make much if any of that profit here. If the US is the only place where they would market a midsize car then it makes no sense to develop one. If I were running Mitsu Motors I would pull out of the US, we won’t miss them any more than they’d miss our business.

    • 0 avatar
      jpolicke

      I love their split AC systems, installed one in my home and the performance is phenomenal. Maybe they should get all those pesky cars out of the showrooms and sell A/Cs and televisions.

  • avatar
    kkop

    The weird thing is that here in the ATL burbs, a Mitsubishi dealer opened a brand spanking new dealership on auto-row just last year and seems to be doing brisk business.

    • 0 avatar
      lzaffuto

      I suspect that is because they are back to their 0 down for no credit, bad credit and bankruptcies ways that got them in trouble not long ago.

      Mitsubishi biggest problem IMO is not that they don’t have competitive product, it’s that the product they do have that isn’t competitive is also priced stupidly high. People don’t care if you have an inferior product as much if the price is right. But buying a lancer for the same or more than a Mazda3, Focus, Civic, etc… well it takes a special kind of customer for that.

  • avatar
    gtemnykh

    I would sell everything I own and buy a diesel montero (currently 4th gen) if they brought it over here. Saw one in Muncie last year rolling around with Mexican plates. Very much a traditional, capable 4×4.

    • 0 avatar
      CoreyDL

      They will never bring that back here – it wouldn’t even make sense to do a high-dollar 4×4 when they don’t have a full car range yet.

      I’m a fan of the 02-06 ones! Limited 40th Anniversary!

      • 0 avatar
        gtemnykh

        I’ve test driven a few of the 01-06 gen trucks, they drive well on pavement, courtesy of rack and pinion steering and the IRS. Fantastic visibility. But they all have oil leaks and vibrations in the transmission (they are very picky with their ATF and t-case fluids). My 96 4runner feels much more solidly put together despite being older. The 2nd gen Monteros are cream of the crop IMO.

        • 0 avatar
          CoreyDL

          They do seem to hold up well, and I like the exterior styling. I feel like they’ve aged really well, in an era of SUV’s looking outdated quickly. The interiors hold up too, even though that compass screen looks goofy and there was no sat nav option.

          They were also a bit overpriced for a Mitsubishi, but at least it’s built in Japan. I keep trying to tell my dad his rule “never buy anything Mitsu” shouldn’t apply to the large Montero. He doesn’t believe!

          Would only consider an 03+ when they got the revised look and the stability system. They’re too tippy otherwise.

  • avatar
    cwallace

    It would make some limited sense to maintain a presence in our market while some ultra-competitive architecture was being developed, even if it was still a couple years out. (To be called the Mitsubishi Godot platform?) But, if even that isn’t on the horizon, there isn’t much purpose. It’s not like having an also-ran car brand creates a lot of pull-through for Mr. Slim air conditioner units.

  • avatar
    Pch101

    The midsize sedan market has become increasingly competitive, just as it’s beginning to decline in importance.

    So far this year, the overall market has grown by 8.4%. The midsize sedan market has grown at only half of that rate, which is to say that it lost market share compared to last year.

    And the fleet market, particularly rental, maintains a disproportionately share of demand for midsizers. So if you were to measure the retail performance of the class, I think that you would find that it lagged even more than those numbers suggested.

    Light trucks (including crossovers, minivans and SUVs) destroyed the large family sedan. The same process is beginning to occur within the midsize class. It’s not obvious yet, but this shift is occuring quickly — give it 10-15 years and we’ll be scratching our heads, wondering what happened to what once was a ubiquitous segment.

    If I was leading Mitsubishi, I would scrap the US car lineup entirely, and focus strictly on crossovers. Build a niche around them, similarly to what Subaru did with AWD. That approach might not work, but it would make more sense than it would to be to rely on a uncompetitive, low margin subcompact.

  • avatar
    CoreyDL

    “Tellingly, Mitsubishi doesn’t have one because it lacks any kind of platform architecture to even build a new D-Segment car that would be competitive…”

    Don’t they have a lot of products in Japan which aren’t brought over here (like every other JDM auto maker) which could be candidates?

    • 0 avatar
      CoreyDL

      Doing my own research to reply to myself, lol.

      They don’t. No passenger cars other than what they’ve got here, and some SUV’s which they don’t got here. Pathetic.

  • avatar
    npaladin2000

    The one thing you can say about Mitsubishi is that the Lancer is better than the 2014 Corolla.

    Besides that, though…

  • avatar
    Jeff S

    I am going to disagree with Mitsubishi’s problems stem from the lack of a midsize car. There are too many midsize cars competing for market share that is not really growing. The midsize cars that are the leaders such as Camry, Accord, Fusion, Sonota, and even Malibu are much better than the Galant and Mitsubishi would have to spend a lot of money to develop something that would compete headon with those cars with a small market share. The Endeavor, EVO, and possibly the Montero should be kept. The Lancer needs to be dropped and the Mirage should be where they concentrate their efforts of making a low price high quality car. Price the Mirage below anything else in its field (less than the Versa) and keep the exterior color choice to 5 colors and the interior to one choice (gray or beige). Let’s say price a base model Mirage at $8,999 with electric windows, air, cruise, AM/FM with MP3 plug (no CD player), power steering, power brakes, power locks, cloth interior, carpet, rear window defrost, and a 5 speed manual. Only have two trim levels, like an L and LX, with the only option being an automatic transmission. Do not add sunroofs, navigation, blue tooth, or anything else that would drive up the retail price and make the vehicle too complex and more expensive to produce. Have front disc brakes and rear drums to keep the cost down. Keep the Mirage simple where there is very little variation and can be produced in large quantities. Compete with the subcompact cars, the crossovers, and SUVs.

    • 0 avatar
      mnm4ever

      Totally agree with @Jeff here. It is hard enough for GM to compete with Toyota and Honda in the midsize car wars, Mitsu doesn’t have a chance. 90% of the market is going to buy a Camry, Accord, Fusion, or Malibu. Why compete for the 10% that’s left.

      If they would go the other way completely, offer a truly competent small no-frills car, they would take over where Hyundai/Kia used be for the bargain shoppers. The Evo is nice but way too expensive, they need an Evo lite, like the WRX is to the STI, that enthusiasts can truly be proud to own when they can’t afford the top dog Evo. And the Mitsu SUVs used to be world class, and still are in the rest of the world. Give us back a real BOF SUV, since no one else does it. Bring back the real Eclipse. If they stop trying to compete head on and instead offer product that the others don’t offer, but with Japanese quality behind it, I think they could recover.

      • 0 avatar
        bomberpete

        I worked at their PR firm for several years and you’ve got the problem pinned down exactly. The 1999-2003 Galant was a competitive car. It even beat Accord in a C&D comparo and similar tests. It was getting 60K-plus sales annually. Then the new platform bombed. They just let it die. Say goodbye, US mid-size car segment.

        The Japanese management is arrogant and out of touch. They looked the other way and hoodwinked when COO Pierre Gagnon and his sales Mini Me types faked those revenue boosts with lousy 0-0-0 credit risks. When you-know-what hit the fan, they ran like hell and still wouldn’t listen to anyone who understood the US market. And I think they’re stuck with the notion that MMSA should be a “full-line” manufacturer in the US. Meanwhile, the Normal IL plant is mostly idle.

        They do have the money to improve things. Niches like subcompacts are a great idea, but they lack the werewithal to admit mistakes. They won’t commitment to try something new out of fear and management paralysis.

        I know I sound bitter, but this was a terrific little car company with great prospects to turn things around once, and they blew it completely.

    • 0 avatar
      SCE to AUX (formerly gslippy)

      @Jeff S – Agreed on your excellent point.

      Mitsubishi needs to cede the battles they’ve been fighting in the US, and offer something unique here instead.

      Many mfrs do this. You don’t see Jaguar offering trucks, for instance. All Mitsubishi needs to do is be more different, not more the same.

  • avatar
    MWebbRambler

    I sold Mitsubishis in the 1990s. At that time they were close to being what KIA is today and the Galant, Eclipse, and Montero were all competitive vehicles. Now only the Galant continues to stumble along as the worst new car you can buy.

  • avatar
    Cubista

    I know the prior generation Lancers were proper compacts, but I don’t think it’s too great a stretch to think of the current Lancer/Evo X as a midsize sedan; those are not small cars.

    Either way, they’ve not made any significant changes to those cars since their introduction for the 2008 MY, meaning the X generation has been stagnant for longer than the lives of the VIII and IX generation cars combined; there hasn’t even been an Evo XI prototype in that time despite hints of hybrid technology being used to power it. They are definitely tango uniform, doomed to go the way of the Isuzu within two years.

  • avatar
    segfault

    I remember when the last-gen Galant was introduced, and they had a bunch of advertising showcasing its performance–how it stopped quicker than an Accord, and how a Camry wallowed in turns (but the Galant didn’t). I never drove one, but it’s a shame they let it rot on the vine. The ex-rental ones seem to sell very cheaply.

  • avatar
    tced2

    The reason they are not doing well in this segment is that their offering is lackluster. As mentioned above, the competition is very severe in this segment.
    Isn’t the highly loved Chrysler 200 / Dodge Avenger built on a closely related platform? And they aren’t class leaders.

    • 0 avatar
      Kyree S. Williams

      It seems to me that they could have at least salvaged the Galant like Chrysler did the 200/Sebring and Avenger. The 200 and Avenger may be subprime fodder, but they still provide reliable and competent transportation to plenty of people, and they aren’t exactly ugly either…

    • 0 avatar
      bomberpete

      It is similar. Chrysler has better dealers, better deals and of course the all-important fleet relationships.

  • avatar
    geozinger

    I rather liked the cars from Mitsubishi, they’ve always seemed more innovative or at least more daring to take chances than other Japanese makes. I find it hard to believe they don’t have a D segment car in their overseas portfolio that they couldn’t re-aim for use in North America.

    I guess it’s up to their keiretsu to decide how many resources they want to devote to North America. I’m sure they probably want to devote more to India and China, rapidly growing markets, rather than the more mature North American market.

    Most of the current cars are pretty average, nothing like the ones they were pedaling 20-30 years ago. I happen to like the Galant, even though it’s very plain. The Outlanders are pretty cool, too. But the Evo is not my cup of tea, or is the iMiev. But I give them credit for jumping into the electric market where other bigger companies have not entered.

    More choices are always better. It would be sad to see Mitsubishi leave.

  • avatar
    Magnusmaster

    Looks to me that Mitsubishi is focusing on Asia and just exporting some of their cars to North America and Europe just in case there are people willing to buy their cars.

  • avatar

    I’m still puzzled why Mitsubishi dropped the Eclipse. It had a huge cult following among the wings-n-neon underbody lighting crowd and not a whole lot of competition. Besides, it would probably be pretty popular among the bad-credit crowd that seems to make up the bulk of Mitsubishi buyers of late.

    • 0 avatar
      MWebbRambler

      The last two generations of Eclipse were barges, but the 1st & 2nd gen GSX was a blast to drive. I sometimes wish I could find a clean one that didn’t look like a Bondo and primer wannabe street racer, driven by the fry cook at a burger joint.

    • 0 avatar
      chicagoland

      The ‘cult following’ was buying used “DSMs” as they were called. [They preferred only 1st and 2nd generations.] In 1989, there was a healthy market for brand new coupes, and the DSM’s sold well. But the having an SUV became more popular for ‘expressive’ car buyers.

      The later versions were not as sporty, I agree, but coupes were fading by year 2000. The “DSM” crowd moved on to used EVO’s or WRX’s.

  • avatar
    Jeff S

    Having owned a Mitsubishi Mighty Max pickup I am very familiar with Mitsubishi Motors. My Mighty Max was a good and reliable truck, but the availability of parts is not so good. Mitsubishi parts are much harder to get, much more expensive than Toyota or Honda, longer waiting periods for part orders, and few dealerships. Mitsubishi needs to either leave the US market or put more effort into parts and service. It is a mistake for Mitsubishi to compete in all segments of the car and truck market. Instead of having a me-to compact and midsize car they need to carve out a niche with fewer products that are more affordable and better. That is why I suggested that since they are coming out with a new Mirage then they would be better to pack it with the standard features that most cars have but with a lower price and a simplified and less complicated vehicle. There is a demand for an economical and affordable subcompact car. Basically Mitsubishi needs to start over and get products that will sell well in certain segments and then if they succeed then compete in other market segments. Trying to compete in market segments that are all ready crowded will just doom them to further failure.

    • 0 avatar
      CoreyDL

      Ah yes. You owned one pickup truck last sold in the US in 1986. You’re very familiar with Mitsubishi and their inner-workings. Perhaps parts are harder to come by because it’s been out of production for 20+ years, and was not especially popular in the first place.

      You also suggest they pack the Mirage with features, but a “simplified and less complicated vehicle” which is the opposite of packing it with features.

    • 0 avatar
      April

      I owned a Dodge D50 pickup (clone of the Mitsubishi Mighty Max). Good truck until the thermostat stuck closed. Blown head gasket. They could not find a replacement 2.6 engine anywhere (even salvage yards). Luckily it was a mom and pop dealer that stood behind their work (when I had the truck serviced the week before their mechanic failed to replace the thermostat I had requested). The bought the truck from me a a fair price.

  • avatar
    pharmer

    I know precisely one person who owns a Mitsubishi – my neighbor across the alley. It’s a 2007 Galant in a very nice shade of metallic dark red with a dark gray leather interior. He bought the car brand new, and aside from the Webasto sunroof that was sloppily installed by the dealer it seems like a a pretty decent little car.

    He uses it to haul around his 3 kids and commute to work. It sits in an uncovered parking lot all day and is exposed to all types of weather, bumps, dings, and scrapes. Basically, the car is rode hard and put away wet every day, and it seems to be holding up well. I assume he’ll pass it along to his daughter when she turns 16 next year.

    Funny thing – this guy LOVES Mitsubishis. He talks a lot about how this Galant and the Endeavor that his wife used to drive are the “two best cars I’ve ever owned in every way possible.” He’s probably the last real fan Mitsubishi has!

    • 0 avatar
      PrincipalDan

      Occasionally on the local Craigslist I’ll come across a Mitsubishi Gallant that a private owner is selling. One thing I’ve noticed is that the original owners of the high end models (leather, V6, most if not all the options) tend to either take good care of them or the cars wear very well. I saw one a few days ago in a granite metallic with the 3.8V6 and dark leather. Although it was several years old and around 80,000 miles the leather was still looking good. Mitsubishi’s assembly quality must be pretty good has been my general conclusion.

      I would consider one as a value used car buy – they don’t hold resale very well. But then I would be fearful of repair costs when something cropped up just because Mitsubishi always seems to have one foot out the door in North America. (I never worry about resale value, I always drive cars until they are used up.)

      • 0 avatar
        pharmer

        “Made in Illinois” as the sticker on the back window proudly proclaims. Yes, they do appear to screwed together well. I guess they have been making basically the same car for so long that all the kinks and problems have been eliminated.

        I see them on CL a lot too…usually advertised by the low rent private lots as fodder for the subprime, buy here/pay here folks. Based on what I’ve seen they could certainly do worse than an older Galant.

        Remember the cool VR4 version they used to sell way back when? It used to be a cool little sedan.

      • 0 avatar
        billfrombuckhead

        Mitsubishi Galant built by the UAW in Normal Illinois. I sold a bunch of late model used ones mostly to immigrants and college students from the middle east.

      • 0 avatar
        CoreyDL

        Wonder how much difference in price between the loaded Galant V6 and the loaded Diamante – since nobody remembers those. Can’t imagine they were even on different platforms.

    • 0 avatar
      IndianaDriver

      They are very tough and reliable cars and the people who own Mitsubishis generally like them a lot. Mitsubishi hardly advertises though, so people don’t really know about them. Their quality, warranty and car package features are kind of a well kept secret.

      • 0 avatar

        I have to disagree, my 5G was junk, and it was made in Japan! I cannot say anything bad about the engine. Despite using an obsolete mechanical ignition distributor in 1996, it worked without a hitch. But the rest of the car was highly dubious. At 68k, a ring washer snapped in the transmission, allowing gears to grind and fill solenoid block with shavings: $3k rebuild. It lost a wheel when one-time nut snapped (Who comes up with such designs anyway? The whole weight of a car on one nut, a plastic self-lock nut at that?!). Fortunately, it was in a parking lot, not on a freeway. A/C compressor died once, and it was something like $500 because to reach it one has to disassemble half of the front end. Rear left main bearing. Half-axles and uprights. What killed the whole project, however, was a persistent leak in the transmission after 100k miles. I threw close to $800 over several trips to take it all apart and put it back together, but no dice. Eventually, I managed to claim $850 in tax advantage from that car. As the owner of J&M Transmissions summed it up: “Mitsubishi may be Japanese, but they are built kind of cheap”.

        • 0 avatar
          PrincipalDan

          It was a 96, I’m talking about the recent ones. My 1982 Chevy Celebrity was crap but you don’t here me talking about how no GM product is worth spit. Things happen in 20 or 30 years, companies change.

  • avatar
    08Suzuki

    They can’t somehow spin a new Galant off the unibody of the new Outlander?

  • avatar
    Jeff S

    CoreyDL–Yes I owned a 85 Mighty Max which in 87 was hard to get parts for. I have not owned that truck in years. When the truck was 6 years old I had to replace a catalytic converter which was not available through the auto parts store or even through Midas, had to order it through Mitsubishi for $600 and had to wait almost a month for it. Since you are so knowledgeable about Mitsubishi, tell us your stories. You are wrong it was not 1986 when the last Mitsubishi Max was sold, more like 1994.

    In today’s auto market even a stripped Chevy Cruze comes with electric windows and locks, air, power brakes, and power steering. It is not much more to produce a vehicle with those items included. There was an article about the Mirage on this site a few month back saying that the Mirage was going to be priced at the lower end and include air, electric windows and locks, power steering, and power brakes. When was the last time you looked at new cars? If you have looked in this century you would know that today’s stripper was yesterday’s optioned vehicle. You need to get in the 21st Century.

    • 0 avatar
      CoreyDL

      You can use the reply button to create a nested response, which is better than posting it at the end of the comments list, just fyi.

      It was called something else after 86, I don’t care to know what. But since you haven’t owned that truck in years, it lends to your credibility about being very familiar with Mitsubishi.

      • 0 avatar
        Jeff S

        It was called a Mighty Max. Yes it is true that I have not owned it since 2001, but the few individuals I know personally have the same issues. I did not say that I hated my Mitsubishi, I said that the availabilty of parts is a problem. If it were not the experience I had with getting parts for a Mitsubishi, I would consider one. Availabilty of parts should not be an issue on a newer vehicle. If one keeps a vehicle for over 10 years then parts will be harder to find. I will say that it is much easier to get parts for a 14 year old Chevy, Ford, Toyota, or Honda than a 2 year old Mitsubishi. Maybe things have changed in 2013 for Mitsubishi but in 2010 they were about the same.

        My neighbors directly across the street have a 2001 Galant with about 40k miles. They are an older couple both retired and they will be giving the Galant to their granddaughter. They also have a 2008 Chrysler Pacifica. The Galants were good cars but they competed in a crowded field of much more competent cars. Mitsubishi makes good vehicles but good is not enough in today’s highly competitive market.

        • 0 avatar
          mnm4ever

          I don’t know @Jeff, not saying that parts are as easy to find as for a Chevy or Toyota, but these days it isn’t too hard to find parts for anything. Back in 87 or even 91 the internet was almost nonexistent. Today you can find parts for a 10yo Daewoo so I cannot imagine a recent production Mitsubishi would be harder than that.

          • 0 avatar
            Jeff S

            The internet would make it easier but it is still a challenge. Mitsubishi has cut their products lineup in America over what it was, but that is not necessarily a bad thing. If they are to continue in America, a more streamlined offering would give them a better chance. Maybe the Endeavor, Mirage, a newer Eclipse, and continue to offer their electric car. Even if they rebadge a compact or intermediate it will not help them because those segments are too competitive. Hyundai and Kia have taken their place and offer a much better product. I don’t even think that they should market another pickup even though they have the Triton in Asia and it is a good truck. They need to offer quality and value and a good subcompact is a good product for them to hit the restart button with. If they price the Mirage too much above 10k and offer too many expensive options it will be dead in the water. The Mirage should not compete against the Mini Cooper, new VW Bug, or the Fiat 500. They also should not compete against Corolla, Sentra, Cruze, Focus, Fiesta, Dart, Elantra, or Forte. The price point of the Mirage should be well below those offerings otherwise why buy a Mirage. Carve out a niche then if successful rebuild the product line.

  • avatar
    readallover

    Cut a deal with Suzuki and badge engineer the Kizashi as the new Galant.

  • avatar
    MRF 95 T-Bird

    There is a Mitsubishi dealer near me in Queens across the street from GM dealers, Chevy, Caddy etc. and right next door to a Saab dealer/repair shop that used to exist with those GM dealers but moved to the smaller location after Saab went bust; well at least for now.

    In the 80s and 90s they had a full range of vehicles, remember the Sigma? Hyundai and Kia have been eating their lunch probably picking up some of their former buyers. Mitsubishi ought to concentrate on sub compacts and compacts offer electrics and hybrids, the I Mev doesn’t quit cut it.. An Eclipse replacement would be swell. There is a drawing of one on their site that looks like a cross between the last Eclipse, an Audi TT with the front of an Outlander Sport.

  • avatar
    LALoser

    I just traded my ’11 Ralliart for a ’13. Love it! Next car will be an Evo if available in 2 years…or sooner. Have a Mitsubishi Adventure at our second home in PI.
    Never worry about what others think of your love, car or dog or credit score. The Ralliart is a blast for the money; and BTW, I am a business owner in the nation’s most boring city,(hat tip to the Frank and Mike show, early 80′s KGO). I will say, after I smoked my friends Camaro with it, he calls it a RalliTard! LOL! Good times!

  • avatar
    chicagoland

    Main reason Galant is dead is Mitsubishi shared R&D costs with Chrysler for CD size platform. The original DSM coupes were based on 1989 Galant, and Mopar helped. The Diamond-Star Motors plant was joint venture between Mitsu [Diamond] and ChryCo [Star]. Then was all Mitsu [MMC] owned after 1995 or so.

    The ‘beloved’ Avenger/200 has Mitsu R&D in it, but ties were cut when Daimler unloaded Mopar to Cerberus. Fiat has no plans to rejoin them.

  • avatar
    SCE to AUX (formerly gslippy)

    These Mitsubishi stories are going to generate as many clicks as the ones about Suzuki, but I think the Saab dialogue takes the cake.

  • avatar
    Jeff S

    When Chrysler cut their ties with Mitsubishi that was when Mitsubishi really declined. The local Dodge dealer where I live in the late 80′s and early 90′s advertised the Mitsubishi made vehicles for Dodge heavily. Mitsubishi Motors got their start in the US with the Dodge D-50 trucks, Dodge Colts, and Plymouth Arrows. The same was true with Isuzu as well and Mazda is not doing as well either, but Mazda is at least viable. Mitsubishi might not survive in the US market place regardless of what they do. Hyundai and Kia have taken their place and are knocking on Toyota and Honda’s door.

  • avatar
    PaulBAZ

    Why would anybody want to buy such a poorly engineered car from Mitsubishi? They deliberately design in the need for special tools to remove components. Things like heater cores removal require the entire interior (2000 Galant) to be removed to get the part out. The dash board falls apart and then the dealer wants $1000 for the part. To get both these components replaced was $2300 from the dealer. Point is – When a Mitsubishi product has a KBB value of $4000 or less and needs this type of part replacement, the vehicle is beyond economical repair. Maybe most people have already figured this out and that is why Mitsubishi sales are in the toilet. Don’t buy any Mitsubishi product until they improve their engineering practices. The last person to leave please remember to turn out the lights. RIP Mitsubishi


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