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Mitsubishi roots go back as far as 1870, but the 1917 was the year Mitsubishi started to develop the Model-A passenger car, three years after the three-diamond logo was originally registered. In 1970 Chrysler purchased a 15% share in Mitsubishi Motors Corporation. The American automaker began selling rebadged Galants as Dodge Colts, introducing Mitsubishi cars to the North American marketplace. Similar deals have also been made with Hyundai, Volvo and PSA Peugot Citrëon.
Since the 1980s, draconian federal importation laws have meant enthusiasts in the United States must wait a full 25 years before some of their favorite brand’s models are legal on these shores. And every year, groups of enthusiasts take to the internet to contemplate what cars will be available for importation with the turn of the new year. The arrival of each new calendar year then becomes a celebration of the past, a revisit of forsaken models, a festival of other-market obscurity.
The Land of the Rising Sun is becoming more than just a source for tuners looking for their next drift car. That’s right, Japanese cars are now collectible.
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Mitsubishi has officially tied the knot with its savior, making Renault-Nissan chairman Carlos Ghosn the only automotive executive in the world (and possibly the galaxy) to head three companies.
The $2.29 billion deal gives Ghosn’s Renault-Nissan alliance a 34 percent controlling stake in Mitsubishi — a financial lifeline for the struggling, scandal-plagued automaker. Already, the company’s new chairman (and demoted former chair) have big, big plans for the Mirage maker.
Nissan-sized plans. Read More >
Small pickups sold pretty well in the United States during the Malaise Era, and Ford and GM cashed in by importing and rebadging Mazda and Isuzu trucks, respectively. Chrysler, late to the party, turned to longtime partner Mitsubishi and began bringing in first-generation Forte pickups, starting in the 1979 model year.
Here’s a Dodge-badged version I found last week in a Denver self-service yard. Read More >
Mitsubishi Motors has flicked the light switch on a new concept vehicle that hints at its next-generation large SUV.
Unveiled in advance of the Paris Motor Show, the Mitsubishi GT-PHEV Concept’s dimensions and design elements could find their way into the next Outlander, as the automaker seeks a larger stake in the utility vehicle market.
And yikes, what a face. But that isn’t the whole package. Read More >
The calendar says it’s closer to 2017 than 2015, but last year’s Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution Final Edition hasn’t finished bleeding media ink.
The last Evo FE to roll off the assembly line is currently up on eBay, placed there by its parent company. A southern California food bank stands to benefit from the online auction, while a deep-pocketed Evo fanboy will gain untouchable bragging rights. Read More >
What a difference seven decades make. In the early 1940s, Mitsubishi Zeroes of the Imperial Japanese Navy tangled with U.S. Grumman Wildcats and Hellcats in the skies over the west Pacific. Now, the aircraft’s builder wants the U.S. Marines to sign up for its amphibious assault vehicle.
Japan is getting into the arms export game after scrapping a law forbidding it, with Mitsubishi Heavy Industries now in talks with a U.S. company to partner on the vehicle, Reuters reports. Read More >
I’m sitting on the pit lane of my local track — Atlantic Motorsports Park in Shubenacadie, Nova Scotia — surveying the empty course. My helmet is on the seat beside me, my hands are gripping the leather-wrapped wheel, and I can hear the low growl of three-cylinders idling as they wait for me.
But before I get to that, a bit about what I’m driving.
This is the Mitsubishi Mirage G4. It’s what happens when the oft-cheapest new hatchback in Canada (depending on who is offering what cash on the hood that month) grows a trunk. Under the hood: a 1.2-liter three-cylinder engine that has 78 horses in there somewhere. Connected to that is a continuously variable transmission, the only transmission available on this SEL trim tester.
I do a quick check of the course to make sure it’s still empty. My foot hits the floor.
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There’s a sea change underway in America — the once-unstoppable passenger car now has a minority market share compared to SUVs and crossovers, according to July sales figures.
Mitsubishi, the troubled but earnest automaker desperately looking to boost its U.S. comeback, has plans to take a bigger slice of the crossover pie. A third utility vehicle is on the way, and it just stepped out from behind the curtain. Read More >
The long-anticipated Mitsubishi Outlander plug-in hybrid, expected later this year, has once again been postponed for the U.S. and Canada.
This is at least the fifth time it’s been delayed in North America since its 2013 Japan-market launch. Mitsubishi’s U.S. market public relations manager, Alex Fedorak, confirmed the latest delay.
“Following a thorough evaluation process, we have determined that, in order to meet a level of competitiveness that will exceed customer expectations in the United States, the launch of the Outlander PHEV will be delayed until the summer of 2017,” said Fedorak.
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A top Nissan executive is packing his bags and getting ready to take on Mitsubishi’s shadowy and scandal-prone technology arm.
Yesterday’s reports proved true, with Mitsuhiko Yamashita, Nissan’s chief technology adviser, announced today as Mitsubishi’s new head of research and development. He will take on the position starting June 24.
There’s a tough job waiting for Yamashita. Read More >