By on April 1, 2014

Mitsubishi_L300_front_20081009

In a push to expand Southeast Asia sales, Mitsubishi has purchased a Ford assembly plant in Laguna, Philippines for an undisclosed amount.

Automotive News reports the plant, which last saw production in 2012, will start back up in 2015 with an initial capacity of 50,000 units per year, expanding to 100,000 annually. The plant will produce both the Adventure and L300 vans.

The second plant in the automaker’s Philippine portfolio, Laguna is key to underpinning Mitsubishi’s strength in the Southeast Asia market, especially in the emerging local auto market where the automaker is second to Toyota in annual sales.

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33 Comments on “Mitsubishi Buys Laguna Ford Assembly Plant...”


  • avatar
    CoreyDL

    Those Mitsubishi vans are so dorky and derpy looking that I love them. Give me a pearl over bronze two-tone and a big “4-WD” sticker and I’ll drive it all over.

  • avatar
    IndianaDriver

    What is that vehicle in the picture? Mitsubishi makes like 18 vehicles for the world market and we only see a few in the U.S..

    • 0 avatar
      CoreyDL

      Chances are, since the article mentions L300 vans, and the door of the van says L300, and the front says Mitsubishi – it’s a Mitsubishi L300.

      • 0 avatar
        IndianaDriver

        I see now. Thanks. Where are these sold? They remind me of old Toyota Previa minivans that used to be sold here in the U.S.

        • 0 avatar
          Feds

          Emerging markets around the world, and Canada:

          http://bonsairides.com/car-listing/1989-usa-bound-diesel-4×4-l300-delica-time-capsule/

        • 0 avatar
          raresleeper

          This really reminds me of the Toyota “Van” (North American market name? SOO creative!) from the 80’s.

          Suppose one of those awkward looking vans outfitted in a very posh Japanese version of our conversion vans of yore might be tolerable.

          I do believe the Toyota “Van” suffered from engine fires, if I recall correctly.

          Once that problem was addressed, those bastards just kept on going… and going…

          Energizer Bunny style.

          IIRC, the Delica 4×4 is a big deal in Canada. They continued to receive them after North America’s shipments were discontinued.

          • 0 avatar
            CoreyDL

            It was just the Van, while other markets knew it as the Space Cruiser. Though I feel some of them may have made it into the US labeled as Space Cruiser, cause I think I’ve seen them.

            You can bring a Delica from CAN into the US, without too much trouble, right? I know their resale value is quite high from the ones I’ve seen on offer.

          • 0 avatar
            raincoaster

            Most delicas in Canada are imported from japan using the 15 year old exemption. My girlfriend has a 96 L400 with only 67k kms.
            It’s basically a minivan on a truck driveline, proper 4wd with lo range. It gets many jealous looks from dads in grand caravans.

          • 0 avatar
            Scoutdude

            It was the Nissan van that had engines that caught fire and the ultimate fix was the crusher, literally. Nissan had a buy back plan and the ones they did buy back went straight to the crusher.

        • 0 avatar
          cpthaddock

          Saw a lot on the roads in Australia in the early 90’s. I last saw them on the roads of NZ in 2012 where they are popular as RV rentals.

          Given the fact that cars in NZ are uncommonly costly and stay on the road a heck of a lot longer than I’m accustomed to from Europe or the US, I don’t know if the design has remained largely static for decades or of this is an older picture.

          I did always have a soft spot for the funky design of the L300 though – I imagine an Anime A-Team might have used one …

          • 0 avatar
            raresleeper

            @scoutdude- Yes, you are correct, Sir.

            The “red hot” Nissan Vanette (Sunny).

            Customers were “all fired up” about the Vanette.

  • avatar
    raresleeper

    Wow.

    Look at this bute.

  • avatar
    28-Cars-Later

    So is this where the North American product development budget went?

  • avatar
    Pebble

    Oh, give me the van in the photo! Mitsubishi is the shiznit as far as Japanese cars go. They’ve won my respect, and that’s saying a lot coming from a confirmed non-fan of Japanese makes.

  • avatar
    vent-L-8

    I would buy that van if it was available in the US, just sayin’

    • 0 avatar
      gtrslngr

      You might . All bets are though … no one else would . And I do mean other than Pebble … no one !

      So lets see . Two US sales for the L300 .

      Nope … no plausible business model for that I’m afraid .

      So ” No Mitsubishi for you ” I’m afraid . No ” Soup ” either most likely . But thats another story for another time

      • 0 avatar
        vent-L-8

        that and by the time it became compliant with safety regulations the doors would be 8 inches thick and the windows turned into6 inch tall WW2 gun turret slits.

  • avatar
    gtrslngr

    In light of Mitsubishis rapidly diminishing Worldwide sales … shouldn’t they be considering selling off assets rather than buying the likes of Fords left over no longer loved manufacturing plants ?

    My bet ? By 2016 … at the latest . Mitsubishi either goes bust or is purchased outright by someone else . Best guess being the Chinese .

    Because in all honesty .. Mitsubishi is and has been for well over five years ” Dead Man Walking ” but too confused to realize it . Fact is … thinking on it … Mitsubishis been ” Dead Man Walking ” since they dropped their WRC program

    • 0 avatar
      CoreyDL

      can you go.. back to commenting . on MSN Auto or wherever – .. you came from?,,,..

      Mitsubishi does well all over the world, in both autos and consumer electronics and heavy equipment. Their North American auto operation is a very small percentage of their overall business, and is not that important in the big picture. They are not failing.

      TL:DR, … , . . -Zaibatsu.

    • 0 avatar
      IndianaDriver

      Why all the Mitsubishi hate? I was just reading on Automotive News earlier this afternoon that their U.S. sales were up 70% last month – granted that only equates to a few thousand units, but it is an increase. Out of curiosity, I just Googled their worldwide sales figures and their fiscal year sales are up 12.5%.

  • avatar
    50mission

    I wish they could sell simple and presumably cheap rides like this here in the US… steel wheels, crank windows, manual…. basic transportation.

  • avatar
    LALoser

    Wow! Gone part of the day and look what happens! This plant is about an hour away from our place. Nice technology park.

  • avatar
    FormerFF

    Back in the early 80’s, I worked for a Mazda agency. One of their home market products was an appealing looking van called the Bongo. We kept agitating with the distributor to start importing it. They refused, said it wasn’t suitable for the US market.

    A couple of years later Chrysler came out with Caravan/Voyager, and the rest is history.

  • avatar
    Conslaw

    I remember seeing third generation Mitsubishi Delicas filled to the gills with people and things hightailing it up Andes mountains outside Lima Peru in the early 90s. Here’s a van with a 1.6 liter engine (maybe smaller) carrying nine people up a steep mountain. It made me think that Americans are such p***ies when it comes to engine size.

  • avatar
    niky

    To be strictly accurate, that isn’t the current L300 van. That’s the facelift. The one they’re producing now is based heavily on the pre-facelift design, which makes it cheaper to stamp out body panels and install lights:
    http://gomotors.net/photos/35/96/2011-mitsubishi-l300-versa-van-mt-diesel-euro-2-version-price-915000_79223.jpg?i

    The plant was reportedly purchased for around 10-15 billion yen, so Automotive News’ sources are pretty woeful. The plant is pretty state of the art, costing around $250m when it was built, and when Ford ran it, cylinder heads were CNC-machined on the spot for cars being exported to other markets.

    I doubt Mitsubishi’s operation will be half as sophisticated, but I don’t doubt their output will be much, much higher and more profitable.


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