Sometimes when you hear hoofbeats it really is zebras.
I was in Bowling Green earlier this week, visiting the NCM Motorsports Park and watching Danger Girl grind through a five-day SCCA license school. On the second day of this odyssey, I saw a final-form Saab 9-5 parked up front, all slab-sided purity and mascara-black facial menace. There’s something profoundly depressing for me about those cars; whenever I see them I think of the narrator of Susan Minot’s “Lust” who, in a moment of shellshocked profundity, says, “I could have loved that one.” (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.
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.
After the Mitsubishi fuel economy scandal triggered a Japan-wide investigation into fuel economy claims, Suzuki is now in a similar situation as its diamond-starred competitor.
But the reasoning behind Suzuki’s misdeed is different: the automaker, it claims, was destitute.
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…)
The Hyundai Excel had a Mitsubishi engine, and so some obscure tenet of badge engineering mandated a Mitsubishi-branded Excel so it might drive on the same roads as Plymouth-branded Mitsubishis.
This was the Mitsubishi Precis, a car that was so stunningly bad and such a poor seller that this one is the first and only example I have ever seen in all my years of crawling through wrecking yards.
That makes it one of the rarest cars … in the world. (Read More…)
In this play, Nissan is President Jimmy Carter and Mitsubishi is a bankrupt New York City.
Now that it has control of Mitsubishi, Nissan wants the scandal-plagued automaker to “heal thyself,” but it’s sending a guy over to make sure it happens, sources tell Reuters. (Read More…)
He’s been with the company since the Plymouth Sapporo/Dodge Challenger era, but Mitsubishi president Tetsuro Aikawa’s tenure comes to an abrupt end in June.
Aikawa stepped down today after less than two years at the helm, the victim of his company’s ongoing fuel economy scandal, according to an announcement from the automaker. Ryugo Nakao, the company’s executive vice-president in charge of quality, is also out the door. (Read More…)
Yesterday’s news that Nissan will buy a 34-percent controlling stake in Mitsubishi for $2.2 billion was the latest win for Carlos Ghosn, the man behind the Renault-Nissan Alliance of 1999 and possessor of many fingers in many pies.
Ghosn, CEO of both Nissan and Renault, inked the agreement with Mitsubishi as the other automaker battles a misleading gas-mileage scandal. At a price of 468.52 yen/share, Ghosn’s purchase of new shares was a smoking deal. Mitsubishi shares traded for 1,100 yen just last December.
What becomes of the two companies now? And how will Ghosn’s world-straddling empire benefit by snapping up beleaguered Mitsubishi? (Read More…)
Nissan Motor Company wants to buy a controlling stake in Mitsubishi Motors, according to a report by the Japanese broadcaster NHK.
The deal would see Nissan invest 200 billion yen ($1.84 billion) into the scandal-plagued automaker, giving Nissan control, Bloomberg reports. (Read More…)
Chrysler imported and rebadged quite an assortment of Mitsubishis during the gloomy years of the Malaise Era, and we have seen a good sampling of those cars in this series so far. There was the Mitsubishi Colt Galant aka Dodge Colt, the Mitsubishi Galant Lambda aka Plymouth Sapporo/Dodge Challenger, and the Mitsubishi Mirage aka Plymouth Champ, among others.
The Mitsubishi Lancer Celeste aka Plymouth Arrow was never a big seller, but this one managed to outlive nearly all of its brethren, only washing up at this Northern California self-service yard after 36 years. (Read More…)
After admitting it fudged fuel economy data for the past 25 years in Japan, Mitsubishi Motors wants the Environmental Protection Agency to know that its U.S. vehicles are A-OK.
The automaker claims it conducted an internal audit on vehicles from model year 2013 to present and contrasted that data with figures it had previously submitted to the EPA. The conclusion? The information’s fine. (Read More…)