By on July 28, 2015

2015 Mitsubishi Mirage ES

I am going to make a couple assumptions about Mitsubishi, our loyal TTAC readers, and where the two intersect.

For one, I don’t think a single person who comments or reads TTAC on a regular basis owns a Mitsubishi built after 1993. Also, I am going to make an educated guess that not a single Mirage owner reads automotive websites or blogs or any information source that offers proper opinions on Mitsubishi’s smallest of offerings.

Last — but certainly not least — I am going to point out there aren’t many people who read TTAC that care about Mitsubishi in the slightest. This, my friends, isn’t just a guess.

Every morning, after sitting down with my thick-as-tar coffee and obligatory morning bagel, I check the previous day’s traffic to see what articles have done well and what ones haven’t. I was almost certain that Mitsubishi’s announcement last week would set off a shockwave of interest throughout the automotive enthusiast community, whether it be out of actual concern or pure schadenfreude.

I wasn’t the only one who thought this. Tim was certain of this, too, providing us a quick recap of Mitsubishi’s sales in the U.S. since 2002. Even Matt Hardigree at Jalopnik found the Mitsubishi situation interesting enough to spend some time behind a keyboard to smash out an excellent editorial about the state of the U.S. manufacturer-gone-importer arm of the Japanese marque. He even linked to our Mitsubishi Doomsday Clock post by the second paragraph, the good friend that he is. (It should be noted when Jalopnik posts a link in our direction, we are usually in for a fair amount of additional traffic than a typical day.)

Yet, even with those pieces in place, do you know what people found more interesting?

A crashed Mazda MX-5 Miata replaced by Mazda.

That’s right. The fact that nearly 1,200 Illinoisans will likely lose their jobs was completely supplanted in popularity by a single MX-5 being destroyed by a pickup truck.

For what it’s worth, there isn’t much to report about Mitsubishi these days other than the company has increased overall sales due in part to the Mirage, a low-margin offering built in Thailand. It’s difficult to get excited about a car that’s typically sold below MSRP since first being imported to the United States. A 20-year-old Lada would garner more intrigue from our fringe set of readers.

It’s also difficult to take Mitsubishi seriously on the surface. Its car lineup consists of the aforementioned Mirage, an eight-year-old compact Lancer (that we first saw in Tokyo as a concept 10 years ago!), a performance model based on the Lancer that’s in its last year of production, and an electric vehicle that’s been uncompetitive (and more expensive than its competitors) from day one. Even Mitsubishi’s SUV lineup has been relegated to also-ran status next to the much more modern offerings of its Japanese, Korean and American competitors.

However, if Mitsubishi played a different game, I think we would care. If Mitsubishi was more honest about the products it does offer and wasn’t hellbent on ruining the little bit of remaining goodwill it has with enthusiasts, we might actually give a shit. When a car company has virtually no exciting product in the pipeline, people don’t see the brand’s disappearance as much of a loss. Even those who’ve bought Mirages are likely not to care as there’s not a single vehicle within the Mitsubishi lineup for them up “step up” to at trade-in time once the Lancer is put out to pasture.

When Suzuki tanked, while I cared to a degree, very few other people did. Most of my positive emotion invested in Suzuki was deeply rooted in a childhood spent being driven in and learning to drive on Suzuki products. Sure, they were cheap, disposable SUVs with little to offer in the creature comfort department (our first Sidekick was completely devoid of power options, A/C and gear selection was dictated by the driver), but at least Suzuki’s offerings were unique and provided a niche choice in the market. Even toward Suzuki’s end days, the Grand Vitara was an enchanting option with rear-wheel drive and a ladder-type frame beneath its unibody coverings. Oh — and you could still get a proper manual transmission! (Let’s not talk about the Kizashi or any of the number of Korean-built Daewoo rebadges. Or the Equator.)

What does Mitsubishi have that sets it apart from any other automaker?

Unlike Suzuki, however, I think Mitsubishi will survive, whether it deserves to or not. In a marketplace where virtually anyone can get a loan, Mitsubishi will likely thrive on small vehicle sales until the financial bubble bursts. Hopefully by then, for Mitsubishi’s sake, the company will have one or two new products that elicit some amount of interest in customers besides those who’d otherwise be relegated to a “buy here, pay here” lot.

And even with all that, even if Mitsubishi survives — or even thrives — after their latest shedding of production assets and we report on a brand new Lancer or EVO-esque SUV, I don’t think a single person will care. Maybe we will have enough budget by then to crash a Miata on our own just for the page views.

What say you, B&B? Do you care about Mitsubishi in its current form? Is it even still a curiosity at this point? Or is Mitsubishi simply a lacklustre brand that’s had its clearcoat fade in the sunlight for far too long?

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133 Comments on “QOTD: Do You Care About Mitsubishi?...”


  • avatar
    anti121hero

    Well my roommate owns a Mitsubishi… So that counts for something

  • avatar
    FreedMike

    I haven’t cared much about Mitsubishi since Bush was in office…and we’re talking the older Bush.

  • avatar
    SCE to AUX

    If Ronnie ran a piece about Mitsubishi’s role in WWII, that might generate some interest.

  • avatar
    lexus94

    Having grown up abroad I’ve always had a soft spot for Mitsubishi trucks/SUVs. Pity they couldn’t bring the current-gen Pajero up to meet USDM safety regs.

    http://www.batfa.com/new_car_mitsubishi_pajero.htm

    • 0 avatar
      CoreyDL

      Are we sure it doesn’t, and that they just don’t want to bother importing it here? It’s sold in the EU, AUS, and everywhere else, it can’t be THAT far off from US regs.

      • 0 avatar
        th009

        “Everywhere else” basically uses something close to UNECE regulations, not DOT+EPA.

        • 0 avatar
          CoreyDL

          Boo. I really hate American regulations. But the 06 they sold here really isn’t that different from the Pajero they’re selling today! Maybe engine choice by now.

          • 0 avatar
            Mandalorian

            Mitsubishi could to quite well to bring over an older-design Montero and price it like a Subaru Outback. In today’s market of $60k Tahoes, it would do quite well. Sure, it was an expensive vehicle when it first came out, but now they’d be lucky to get any more money out of the old paid-for tooling.

          • 0 avatar
            CoreyDL

            Their cars look dated enough already, I don’t really think they need to re-manufacture something which died almost 10 years ago.

            You just have the worst ideas about Mitsu. $20-30K Monteros, LAWL.

          • 0 avatar
            Mandalorian

            It’s a boxy functional design. By that logic the Wrangler looks dated, the 4Runner looks dated, Uhaul trucks look dated, etc.

            From a sales perspective it’s a hit. Why buy some gutless 4-cyl crossover when you can have a bona fide V6 SUV?

          • 0 avatar
            CoreyDL

            I said their cars, not the Montero specifically. Their cars do look dated, because of their styling and trim.

            AND, you cannot bring back a Montero and have the same car and build quality, along with modern safety requirements (even if you stripped it of ALL options), and price it at 20-30. It’s really beyond me how this fact is escaping you.

            What you want is a Chinese Haval. But even that would cost more than you are thinking is reasonable.

          • 0 avatar
            bball40dtw

            The Haval H9 would be every bit of $40K+ here, and no one would buy it.

          • 0 avatar
            CoreyDL

            Maybe they could just remake a previous H9 and sell it for $15,000.

            Easy peasy.

          • 0 avatar
            bball40dtw

            I think the NHTSA will have something to say about that.

            Great Wall Haval H9: Where you are the crumple zone!

            Bring over the Coolbear, because Coolbear.

          • 0 avatar
            CoreyDL

            LOL

            The Coolbear answers the question everyone’s pondered! “What would happen if a gen1 xB mated with a gen1 QX56?”

            http://www.chinacarfans.com/wp-content/gallery/great-wall-coolbear/2_cool-bear.jpg

          • 0 avatar
            RideHeight

            OMG Coolbear! 64 inches tall and lots of glass!

            I might not even have to remove the RVM!

    • 0 avatar
      andyinatl

      The Pajero is a Toyota Land Cruiser/Nissan Patrol competitor on the global market. The only reason Toyota is still selling Land Cruiser in USA is as a halo car. They’re certainly not making a living off few measly thousands of these SUVs per year. Toyota can afford that. Mitsubishi can’t.

  • avatar
    DIYer

    This is the result of the Obama administration’s Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) trade agreement. Mitsu isn’t exiting the US market, it’s just that their vehicles won’t be made here. The 2.5% import tariff on cars and 25% tariff on trucks will go away.

  • avatar
    28-Cars-Later

    Do I care about Mitusbishi? No, no I don’t. There are too many brands on the US market, a culling is in order.

  • avatar
    Pch101

    The Mazda story had a human interest angle. The Mitsubishi stories didn’t have that.

    Mitsubishi is being bled by its US business, so it will leave eventually. It won’t fail as a company, but it will follow Suzuki, Peugeot, Citroen and the various British automakers out the door.

    • 0 avatar

      While I agree that most people read stories about people, the possible closure of the Mitsubishi plant in Normal, IL indeed has a human interest angle. At the same time, though, people losing their jobs isn’t a feel-good story like the guy getting his wrecked Miata replaced.

      • 0 avatar
        Pch101

        It could be a human interest story, but it wasn’t written as one.

        Interviewing a couple of people who are about to lose their jobs, introducing the readers to their families and asking them about their concerns would be a human interest story.

  • avatar
    Flipper35

    Even then they failed to update their product to keep up with the competition.

    (That was a reply to SCE to AUX)

  • avatar
    danio3834

    No. They make zero products of interest to me, especially with the pending exit of the Evo. No tears will be shed in this market.

  • avatar
    GermanReliabilityMyth

    The first Mitsubishi I ever owned was a 2004 Lancer Sportwagon LS. I loved that car because it was my first real car out of college. I got it for a song (being a dealer demo with 8K miles on it) and drove it without a single issue until it hit 62K on the odometer. Having always been a bit of a Volvo enthusiast, even if not owning one, I loved how the rear of that wagon cribbed Volvo’s tall tail lights. Really, it was an honest car, getting decent mileage for what it was, offering an acceptable level of comfort and a huge amount of utility. The only hiccup was a HVAC adjuster cable replaced under warranty, free of charge.

    Once it came time for the first major service, I decided to let it go. My total bill would’ve been roughly $1,200 for the timing belt, water pump, coolant, spark plugs and coils. In retrospect, I should’ve kept it and done he service, but it always stuck in my craw that Mitsu used interference engines with timing belts. I probably could’ve had the shop do the belt and water pump and done the plugs and coils myself, knowing what I do now. So it goes. Anyway, my wife and I then traded it in a 2007 SX4 AWD with a manual. Great little car, but it never felt quite as solid as the Mitsu, though I’m sure you can see a pattern developing here.

    I’ve always rooted for Mitsubishi as the US underdog, seeing them as near-Toyota value for much less than Toyota money. Maybe I was taken in as a kid by their commercial in the with 90s with a calligrapher painting the red diamonds as their then-alluring wares flashed by. I’m not sure, really. My wife and I had even considered trading the SX4, when the time came, in on a new Gallant in 2010, which was discounted greatly, but we just didn’t have confidence in Mitsubishi’s staying power in the US. It didn’t help that we both knew it was an aging platform as well, at least in terms of the drivetrain.

    These days, we’re pretty ambivalent about Mitsubishi. I love their DLP TVs, though. I’ve got a 72″ in my basement that’s been as reliable as my wagon was. It’s just hard to get excited about them, their product line and their prospects when there are obviously zero fucks given. Maybe if they bring the Montero back, I might give them a second look. For now, though, I regard them fondly as a “could-have-been” but find it hard to shed a tear.

    • 0 avatar
      KalapanaBlack

      Timing belts are stupid, no doubt about it. But Mitsubishi was not alone in using belts on interference engines (interference engines combust more efficiently, belts are quieter and cheaper than chains, two engineering positives that unfortunately intersect at a negative, I.e. expensive replacements or catastrophic failure). Know who else combined them? Volvo, Toyota, Honda, Chrysler, Hyundai, Kia, Ford, GM, and most likely a few others. Hell Honda still uses them.

    • 0 avatar
      threeer

      Currently drive a 2004 Sportback Ralliart (yeah, the name implies much more than the drivetrain delivers). My only real complaint has been that they only made it with the automatic transmission. I bought it used nearly six years ago for a song, as it sat forlornly amongst a sea of SUVs and nobody wanted a small wagon at the time (still don’t actually). I get more than my share of folks who ask about my “Volvo,” and a fair number of younger folks who get excited about it being a “Ralliart.” It has 162k on it and, with the exception of the A/C currently in-op (more due to an accidental off-road incident pushing a brace and shorting a wire than anything else), the car has been bone-stock reliable. I’ll likely drive it one more year to get through the cooler months where A/C isn’t an issue. My first car ever was a 1978 Plymouth Arrow GT that was nothing more than a rebadged Mitsubishi Celeste, but I absolutely loved that car!

      As for current offerings, nothing that Mitsu has even remotely gets me to glance their way. If they disappeared from the American landscape, I don’t think many folks would notice…or care.

      • 0 avatar
        GermanReliabilityMyth

        Agreed on all counts.

        I think the Ralliart had a more open exhaust that granted an additional 2 horsepower, bringing the total to a whopping 162 (and matching torque value I believe). It also had a sportier interior appointment, whereas my LS had piano black inserts, which I didn’t mind. The microfiber-esque seat fabric was easy to clean too!

        As you can see by my username, it’s not hard to believe it’s finally been replaced with a Jetta Sportwagen SE 2.5…which is as close as I can get to a replacement in today’s market. Frankly, the VW is miles better in terms of comfort and refinement, but dollar for dollar I’d be hard pressed to ever beat that Mitsu. And I think that’s always been their position in the US, whether deliberate or not, as the “budget Japanese” marque. Although with $21K Honda Accords these days, that arguement may not be quite as compelling as it was years ago.

  • avatar
    chiefmonkey

    I like the Outlander Sport, and I seem to be noticing a lot more of them. Although I’ve never driven one, if I was in the market for such a vehicle I would certainly consider it over a CR-V or something simply because I can’t get over how cheap and terrible the CR=V looks, I mean it’s almost as if Honda couldn’t care less…

    • 0 avatar
      chiefmonkey

      So yeah I do care about Mitsubishi or at least I am intrigued by Mitsubishi…

      • 0 avatar
        CoreyDL

        The problem is pricing, and reputation. We both know which brand and name has a better reputation, and it’s a big difference there.

        Here’s the pricing issue:

        Outlander: 19,500 – 33,000

        CRV: 23-445 – 33,775

        So the Outlander makes sense only in lower trims. Once you add a couple options, you may as well get a CRV.

        • 0 avatar
          28-Cars-Later

          Resale.

          The top trim CR-V goes for 6-8K MORE vs the top trim Outlander SE in two model years. Unless there is a 6-8K initial pricing gap between them in these trims, no reason to buy the Outlander at all. Honda’s LX vs Mitsu’s ES shows a 5-6K resale difference in the same period. Now TrueCar says 23,3 is the avg paid for an MY15 (on an msrp of 24,3) so the MY13 was probably down 500-1000 vs today due to inflation, so the resale is percentage wise roughly in line with the CR-V *but* you are driving a third tier brand so why do it?

          MY13 Mitsubishi Outlander ES I4 FWD

          07/09/15 CARIB Lease $15,400 3,242 Above BROWM 4G A Yes
          07/09/15 CARIB Lease $14,600 5,280 Avg GRAY 4G A Yes
          07/02/15 CARIB Lease $15,000 20,156 Avg WINE 4G A Yes
          07/14/15 ATLANTA Lease $12,950 21,045 Avg SILVER 4G P Yes
          06/23/15 OHIO Regular $12,900 24,152 Avg SILVER 4G A Yes
          06/17/15 CALIFORN Lease $11,500 58,178 Below SILVER 4G A Yes

          MY13 Honda CR-V EX-L I4 FWD

          07/16/15 TAMPA Regular $23,000 11,927 Above GRAY 4G A Yes
          07/14/15 NYMETSKY Regular $20,800 16,821 Avg GREY 4G Yes
          07/02/15 TAMPA Regular $21,000 18,647 Avg GREY – A Yes
          07/02/15 ORLANDO Regular $21,500 19,419 Avg MAROON 4G A Yes
          07/09/15 PALM BCH Regular $21,000 19,545 Avg White 4CY A Yes
          07/23/15 PHOENIX Regular $22,300 20,093 Above GRAY 4G A Yes
          07/07/15 GEORGIA Regular $21,000 21,887 Avg GREY 4G A Yes
          07/16/15 PALM BCH Regular $21,500 23,286 Avg BLACK 4G A Yes
          07/07/15 ORLANDO Regular $22,400 26,621 Above TEAL 4G A Yes
          07/08/15 STATESVL Regular $20,800 27,062 Avg BLACK 4G A Yes
          07/14/15 ORLANDO Regular $21,500 28,004 Avg SILVER 4G A Yes
          07/09/15 TAMPA Regular $21,700 28,250 Avg SILVER 4G A Yes
          07/02/15 TAMPA Regular $20,400 28,516 Avg SILVER 4G A Yes
          07/08/15 SAN ANTO Regular $20,000 29,608 Avg BLACK 4G A Yes
          07/21/15 ORLANDO Regular $21,800 29,695 Avg SILVER 4G A Yes
          07/23/15 ATLANTA Regular $20,600 31,584 Avg BLACK 4G A Yes
          07/07/15 ORLANDO Regular $20,500 33,220 Avg GRAY 4G O Yes
          07/24/15 FT LAUD Regular $21,800 33,293 Avg BLUE 4G A Yes
          07/27/15 NC Regular $20,500 33,486 Avg BLACK 4G A Yes
          07/16/15 DFW Regular $21,500 34,081 Avg WHITE 4G A Yes
          07/22/15 DALLAS Regular $20,200 34,323 Avg WHITE 4G A Yes
          06/30/15 ORLANDO Regular $21,800 37,264 Avg GRAY 4G A Yes
          07/23/15 ATLANTA Regular $20,300 38,650 Avg GREY 4G A Yes
          07/21/15 ORLANDO Regular $19,500 38,753 Below BLUE 4G A Yes
          07/02/15 SO CAL Regular $18,000 39,207 Below SILVER 4G A No
          07/02/15 PHOENIX Regular $20,000 41,978 Avg BLUE 4G A Yes
          07/21/15 RIVRSIDE Regular $19,250 46,365 Below WHITE 4G A Yes
          06/29/15 ORLANDO Regular $19,500 48,060 Below SILVER 4G A Yes
          07/09/15 PALM BCH Regular $19,400 51,360 Below WHITE 4G A Yes
          06/30/15 ORLANDO Regular $18,400 56,601 Below MAROON 4G O Yes

          MY13 Mitsubishi Outlander SE I4 FWD

          07/21/15 ORLANDO Lease $13,600 12,487 Avg BROWN 4G A Yes
          06/24/15 CALIFORN Regular $13,800 25,256 Avg BROWN 4G A Yes
          06/25/15 CARIB Lease $16,500 29,714 Above BROWN 4G A No
          06/30/15 ORLANDO Regular $14,600 30,242 Above WHITE 4G A Yes
          06/17/15 SAN ANTO Lease $13,300 55,841 Avg BLACK 4G A Yes
          06/17/15 SAN ANTO Lease $11,600 63,565 Below GRAY 4G A Yes

          MY13 Honda CR-V LX I4 FWD

          07/07/15 ORLANDO Regular $17,800 10,926 Above GRAY 4G A Yes
          07/07/15 ORLANDO Regular $18,100 20,156 Above SILVER 4G A Yes
          07/09/15 EL PASO Regular $16,000 20,759 Avg SILVER 4G A Yes
          07/07/15 STATESVL Regular $17,800 21,868 Above BLUE 4G A Yes
          07/10/15 FT LAUD Regular $17,500 23,091 Avg Brown 4G A Yes
          07/22/15 CALIFORN Regular $16,000 23,622 Avg GRAY 4G A Yes
          07/09/15 PALM BCH Regular $16,700 23,662 Avg BLACK 4G A Yes
          06/30/15 GEORGIA Regular $18,100 24,703 Above BLACK 4G A Yes
          06/30/15 ORLANDO Regular $17,300 25,415 Avg BLUE 4G A Yes
          07/08/15 DALLAS Lease $18,000 26,216 Above WHITE 4G A Yes
          07/02/15 TAMPA Regular $17,200 28,265 Avg GREY 4G A Yes
          07/16/15 PALM BCH Regular $16,400 29,743 Avg BLACK 4G A Yes
          07/23/15 CHICAGO Lease $16,100 31,199 Avg MAROON 4G A Yes
          07/21/15 ORLANDO Regular $16,300 31,331 Avg GRAY 4G A Yes
          07/17/15 NEVADA Regular $16,500 33,088 Avg BLACK 4G A Yes
          07/17/15 DALLAS Regular $16,400 33,278 Avg BLACK 4G A Yes
          07/22/15 DALLAS Regular $17,600 33,329 Above BLACK 4G A Yes
          07/17/15 FT LAUD Regular $17,200 34,417 Avg GRAY 4G A Yes
          07/23/15 CEN FLA Regular $17,000 34,581 Avg BLACK 4G A Yes
          07/08/15 SF BAY Regular $17,100 35,397 Avg WHITE 4G A Yes
          07/09/15 PALM BCH Regular $16,000 39,390 Avg GRAY 4G O Yes
          07/16/15 PALM BCH Regular $15,700 40,842 Below WHITE 4G A Yes
          07/02/15 SO CAL Lease $15,700 42,198 Below GRAY 4G A Yes
          07/07/15 ORLANDO Regular $17,100 44,542 Avg GRAY 4G A Yes
          07/16/15 TAMPA Regular $15,000 44,947 Below GREY 4G A Yes
          07/22/15 SF BAY Regular $15,600 50,633 Below BLACK 4G A Yes
          07/09/15 PALM BCH Regular $13,300 63,758 Below WHITE 4G A No
          07/15/15 DALLAS Regular $16,250 63,761 Avg WHITE 4G A Yes

          edit: my dyslexia struck again on SE vs ES pricing in the results, I have corrected it.

          • 0 avatar

            But, isn’t the Mitsubishi Outlander Sport a closer competitor to the Honda CR-V? You could be comparing the Outlander to the Pilot.

          • 0 avatar
            CoreyDL

            That might be another problem. There is intense price overlap between the Outlander and Outlander Sport.

          • 0 avatar
            28-Cars-Later

            You are correct, I missed the “sport” in MMR. However it is worth noting both the Outlander and RVR (Outlander Sport) are built on the same GS platform. The RVR holds better value in the Caribbean but in the US it does 10-12 pretty quickly. TrueCar estimates 18,7 with an avg paid of 19,7 for MY15. Assuming TrueCar’s math is correct you’re now in a 6-7K depreciation period at best, closer to 8 at worst – on a base model ES no less.

            https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mitsubishi_RVR

            MY13 Mitusbishi Outlander Sport ES (Mitsu RVR) I4 FWD

            07/09/15 CARIB Lease $12,300 19,299 Avg GRAY 4G 5 Yes
            07/23/15 CARIB Regular $13,900 21,453 Above SILVER 4G 5 Yes
            07/16/15 CARIB Lease $13,600 23,984 Above AQUA 4G A Yes
            07/23/15 CARIB Lease $14,800 25,777 Above GRAY 4G A No
            07/01/15 SAN ANTO Regular $12,200 27,939 Avg SILVER 4G A Yes
            07/03/15 FT LAUD Regular $10,000 29,554 Below BLACK 4G A Yes
            06/30/15 GEORGIA Lease $12,300 29,999 Avg BLACK 4G A Yes
            07/16/15 MISS Lease $12,000 30,824 Avg GREY 4G A Yes
            07/02/15 CHICAGO Lease $11,600 31,701 Avg GREY 4G 5 Yes
            07/21/15 RIVRSIDE Regular $11,000 31,793 Avg BLUE 4G A Yes
            07/08/15 SAN ANTO Lease $11,800 32,242 Avg RED 4G A Yes
            07/27/15 ORLANDO Lease $10,450 33,240 Avg RED 4G A Yes
            06/29/15 ORLANDO Lease $12,450 34,054 Avg GREY 4G A Yes
            07/23/15 TX HOBBY Lease $10,800 41,665 Avg GRAY 4G A Yes
            07/22/15 CEN FLA Regular $11,300 41,736 Avg BLACK 4G A Yes
            07/15/15 HRSNBURG Lease $11,000 46,139 Avg RED 4G A Yes
            07/09/15 CARIB Lease $9,900 46,280 Below WINE 4G A Yes
            07/02/15 TX HOBBY Regular $11,200 47,471 Avg GREY 4G A Yes
            07/01/15 SAN ANTO Lease $11,000 47,939 Avg SILVER 4G A Yes

        • 0 avatar
          chiefmonkey

          Indeed, this is true…

        • 0 avatar
          chiefmonkey

          The Outlander Sport ES with the newly added 2.4 engine stickers at $21,295. So you don’t have power seats, but it seems like reasonable price for the volume trim actually.

    • 0 avatar
      friedclams

      The Outlander Sport is available with a manual also, which is rare for CUVs.

    • 0 avatar
      gtemnykh

      The Outlander Sport is a smaller CUV, think more Trax or Patriot competitor. The regular Outlander is more in line with a Rav4 or CRV, interior room wise. Although it does have a third row option (which is a miserable place to be I’m sure) much like the Rogue’s third row or the previous generation Rav4’s tiny third row.

  • avatar
    CoreyDL

    In current form, no I don’t care about Mitsubishi. They last had a full lineup around 2005, and even then it had cobwebs on it.

    I cared about them from about 94-04. There are a couple good things they made which are suitable for purchase today.

  • avatar
    CoreyDL

    “I check the previous day’s traffic to see what articles have done well and what ones haven’t.”

    Article request: Inside TTAC’s workings. I want to see what your reports console looks like, and how the day-to-day works around here! It would be interesting, and has not been covered.

  • avatar
    slavuta

    5-6 years ago, I though, Mitsu only need to add a good family sedan with sporty twist instead of that whale – Galant. And modern large SUV. The Lancer was Ok, the Outlander was a good car besides it had really cheap interior.
    Instead, I really starting to forget names of their cars. 3000GT was pretty cool. I remember, Galants were everywhere…

  • avatar
    PrincipalDan

    Mitsubishi has turned into a big ball of “meh” with the announcement of cancelling the EVO and currently without a family sedan with Galant production ending in 2012, heck even without a large three-row crossover since 2011 when Endeavor production ended.

    The company has 0 product I’m interested in. I cared more about Suzuki because at least Suzuki seemed to be trying right up until the moment they left the market. I saw a Suzuki Kizashi in the mall parking lot a few weeks ago, the shape was still pleasing. The SX4 hatchback was on my short list when I thought I might be posted to a position that might require me to have a significant commute regardless of the weather.

    Suzuki – was sad to see you go (I still love your motorcycles).

    Mitsubishi – it is too bad about Normal, IL but build something I might want to buy.

  • avatar
    davefromcalgary

    Sadly no, beautiful amount of windows on their current CUV’s notwithstanding.

  • avatar
    darex

    Suzuki makes some of the most reliable cars around. Their loss is very saddening, but they will continue on in other markets, where they’re appreciated. The rebadged Daewoo fiasco doesn’t count.

    Mitsubishi, on the other hand, used to make solid cars. Not sure what happened. [Scratches head]

  • avatar
    friedclams

    Mitsubishi used to make really solid basic transportation, maybe they still do. Problem is, you can’t make money on that without being a volume player.

  • avatar
    Zackman

    No, I don’t care a lick about Mitsubishi. Our son’s girlfriend still has a 2004 red Eclipse, and he owned a 2000 white Eclipse GT until 2 years ago.

    To Mitsubishi’s credit, his was a very good car. He bought it in 2004. His girlfriend’s? I suppose it’s been pretty good, too, or she wouldn’t still have it, I’m sure.

    Me? Nope. Nothing to attract me to them, although I was interested in the Galant in 2004, which I found to be an attractive car, but for lack of any flash, it was too boring for me. Mitsubishi cars are becoming rather invisible on the roads nowadays because apparently few others wants them.

  • avatar
    mleitman

    I actually really like my 2015 Outlander GT. I traded in a Volvo XC90 for it as I wanted something smaller and more fuel efficient (not terribly more efficient, it turns out). I really enjoy it.

  • avatar
    NoGoYo

    I think I stopped caring about Mitsubishi when the Eclipse became a fat ugly thing in…2005? 2006?

  • avatar
    TonyJZX

    They dont make cars that interest me.

    I do kind of like the Mitsubishi Challenger/Triton fully framed SUV/light truck but that’s simply because its a well priced SUV etc.

  • avatar
    bumpy ii

    The Mirage is the sort of car I’d be interested in if I had to replace my daily. Unfortunately for Mitsu, I’m not willing to pay for a new one (but that also applies to everyone else’s cars too).

    The miev was kinda interesting back when it was one of the first full electrics widely available from an OEM, but that ship has sailed and little-known incremental improvements won’t do anything for its future prospects.

  • avatar
    brettc

    When I saw the article last week it was a “meh” situation for me. The thing I’m really wondering about is what will happen to the Mitsubishi dealership down the road from my house.

    It’s owned by the same parent company so the parking lots are linked up to what was formerly a Hummer dealership, which became a Subaru dealership when Hummer was eliminated. So I’m wondering if it’ll turn into a Hyundai-Subaru dealership. That’s my level of interest in what happens to Mitsubishi.

  • avatar
    28-Cars-Later

    Actually Mitsu could really shake things up by reintroducing Mighty Max.

    • 0 avatar
      Fred

      I had a 1988 Mighty Max, and it was a nice little truck. Unfortunately the days of small pickups is long gone.

      • 0 avatar
        28-Cars-Later

        Mitsu could bring it back and have a monopoly. They won’t but it wouldn’t be a horrible move if it could be done profitably.

        • 0 avatar
          matador

          The Toyota Tacoma has bloated, but for most people, that size is now the compact. I think that a really small, Ranger-sized pickup could be a niche market, but I don’t think Mitsubishi is in the spot to make a gamble like that….

  • avatar
    cbrworm

    We bought new, a first, second and third gen Montero. They each had their ups and downs. The first was the most reliable (and agricultural), the last was the nicest – wood steering wheel and all. After our experience with the third gen, which we kept until only about 65K miles, Mitsu dropped of our radar. It should be noted that during the 80’s and 90’s we bought Mitsubishi TV’s and A/V equipment as much as possible as well, they are also no longer wanted.

    So no, at this point we don’t care about Mitsubishi.

  • avatar
    PriusV16

    Earlier this year, I got a ride in a 2013 Mitsubishi Lancer hatchback. Although I only sat on the passenger seat, I was actually surprised about the car.

    I had expected sort of a penalty box, with a cheap interior, rattling noises and not much room.

    Just the opposite was true, however. Lots of room to move (I’m 6 ft. 2 in.), comfortable seats, and the interior actually looked fine and seemed to be solid and of high quality.

    I kid you not when I’m saying that I sat in recent BMWs and Audis that actually looked a tad *cheaper* on the inside than this Lancer. The interior was all plastic, obviously, but it sure didn’t look cheap or ugly.

    Ride comfort was perfectly decent, and the car was quiet inside even at 130 km/h.

    There was, of course, nothing exotic and emotional about it, though. A Japanese Golf, and a good one at that.

  • avatar
    ahintofpepperjack

    I own a Mirage. Honestly it’s a great car. It’s a modern day Geo Metro, but improved in every way. There is no other car on the market that sells for under $14k, gets 45+ MPG, has a simple and proven 10 year old engine, has modern safety features and technology including 7 airbags, bluetooth, keyless ignition, power windows, climate control, A/C all standard. It has room for 4 real humans. The car also has great headlights at night, and comfortable seats. Mine has been more reliable than any Metro would be at this point (16,000 miles with 0 issues).

    I’ve owned all sorts of cars. From Firebirds to 540i’s. Jeep wranglers to Grand Cherokees. This mirage may be my favorite of all of them.

    • 0 avatar
      PriusV16

      That’s pretty much in line with what I’ve heard and read from other Mirage owners.

      If you want honest-to-god, basic transportation without punishing yourself, and if you don’t care about badge snobism, the Mirage is a perfect little car.

      Actually, it’s a bit weird that it doesn’t get more attention on sites like TTAC for what it is.

    • 0 avatar

      I haven’t cared about Mitsubishi, ever. But I guess I could care a little, given what ahintofpepperjack says about the Mirage.

      In 1990, I had a girlfriend who owned a Colt, which was a nice car to drive.

  • avatar
    paxman356

    I have owned two Mitsubishi products. Both were rebadged as Chrysler products. I had a 1983 Plymouth Sapporo Technica, and a 1994 Dodge Colt. Both were a hoot to drive, both took a beating from me and didn’t break down. I drove a Lancer not too long ago as a rental, and it wasn’t the same. Would I miss Mitsu? Probably not.

  • avatar
    RideHeight

    “automotive websites or blogs or any information source that offers proper opinions”

    Are you here all week?

  • avatar
    Willyam

    It’s kind of amazing how long a mediocre product can continue. My first full time job was for a Dodge dealer in the early nineties (yes, before the RAM it was as bleak as it sounds) and we all groaned when a Caravan would roll in. Does it have the Mitsu engine? Suddenly I feel a vacation coming on…

    The occasional fun or interesting vehicle did exist (the Starion, Eclipse, finally the Evo) but it was otherwise mouse-belt Colt/Mirage that floated like a hovercraft at highway speeds, or the aptly named 3000/Stealth (so invisible that no one bought one).

    The reliability is what I believe kept them from succeeding. A Sentra or Corolla may bore you to tears, but you could always count on it. Yet, somehow they made enough money to last twenty more years.

  • avatar

    Mitsu’s automotive heyday was the “zero zero zero for a year-o year-o year-o” promotion 1999-2001. They were arguably most visible during this period.

    But there were stories from buyers turning their cars in at the end of their year, along with others waking up to realize…”I have to make a payment now?!”

    Yeah, THAT ignorant.

    It’s been largely downhill from there.

  • avatar
    STRATOS

    Mitsubishi has screwed up again .They could have had the same Subaru success by not abandoning their sedans and by promoting their 4 wheel drive system.The EVO was a great car.Decades ago Mitsu was one of the worst manufactures, not due to design but due to manufacturing execution and known problems the company was hiding.They could not have been bothered to clean up the flash of metal hanging from their castings.Mercedes(part owners) gave up on them long ago.

  • avatar
    MK

    I’ve owned a 96 eclipse spyder which was a reliable and fun car until it was totaled by some kid slamming into me at a stoplight. It went out at about 90k miles with only minor repairs needed out of warranty.

    My wife still has her 2004 montero sport AWD at about 145k miles and its been solid and reliable as well. This was the final year of production and its from the old school of body on frame SUVs coupled with a long product cycle that helps for long term owners.
    Based on that experience i wish they sold the pajeros in the us, they’re pretty common in many countries where the other alternative is a Toyota.

    I think the company has little interest in the us market, but it’s a big enough company that it can afford to do that for quite a while.

  • avatar
    e30gator

    I think their cheapness and lack of numbers on roadways make them interesting cars.

    I rented a Mitsu Lancer in San Juan back in 2007 while my wife and I were on our honeymoon and really liked that car. I thought it was stylish and drove nice. Of course at that time our fleet back home consisted of a well-used ’99 Saturn SL2 and an anemic base model ’04 Civic, so anything was an improvement.

    Mitsus are everywhere in Peru too (where my wife’s family lives) and every other taxi is a beat-to-hell Mitsubishi. They hold up pretty well–a testament to either their durability or the cheap labor rates in South America–and it was in these second world locales that I developed a respect for the triple diamond.

    Also, I grew up in the 80’s and ’90’s watching people wiz by our Buick Skylark in Starions and Eclipses and though they were pretty cool.

    I would be tempted to own a Lancer if it weren’t for their terrific ability to make clients and coworkers think I have bad credit. I might be in the minority, but I would be rather sad to see them go.

  • avatar
    Dave M.

    They stopped being market competitive around 2002 and became a “price-only” consideration. Mitsubishi was always 3rd-tier Japanese reliabl, along with Suzuki and Isuzu, below Nissan/Mazda (2nd tier) and Toyota/Honda (1st tier). Anyone remember Daihatsu? Starting around 2005 Hyundai and Kia jacked up their game, and Mitsu finds itself crowded off the table.

    I took a friend to test drive the Sport – sure it’s cute and probably capable, but the interior was 2 generations behind the leaders and frankly there are many better choices out there.

    Finally, Suzuki was a mess when they pulled the plug, but I found the Kizashi a great little sedan, especially with AWD.

  • avatar
    djsyndrome

    “What does Mitsubishi have that sets it apart from any other automaker?”

    Nothing, really.

    Nissan does cheap better. The Versa/Versa Note have it all over the Mirage for about the same transaction price.

    Subaru does AWD better. Pick any Subaru and it will be vastly superior to the equivalent Mitsu offering.

    Their electric golf cart is a joke. They can’t give them away at 16k.

    The domestics all do 0% financing and low-FICO financing better.

    Everyone does performance better, because Mitsu killed the Evo. I’m guessing the Lancer Ralliart is dead too, but I’m not sure it ever really existed as I haven’t actually seen one in person.

    Mitsu should put a long, thorough drawdown plan in place instead of beating a quick exit like Suzuki did. This would be the most respectful thing for everyone affected – give dealers time to pick up new marques, Normal to find a new operator and try and retrain existing workers, and all other Mitsu NA employees time to find another job.

  • avatar
    SomeGuy

    QOTD: Do You Care About Mitsubishi?

    Nope.

    Sorry about the workers, but they should have known the writing was on the wall with the product portfolio that Mitsu US has. Good luck to them on finding another job.

  • avatar
    rpol35

    No!

  • avatar
    RideHeight

    I didn’t care till a couple weeks ago when I learned that the Outlander Sport puts up a Toyota-like number of red circles at CR.

    I guess that’s now been rendered academic.

  • avatar
    ajla

    The only brands I actually “care” about are Cadillac and Buick, and all they do any more is kick me in the nuts.

  • avatar
    qfrog

    A while back they found the body of my neighbor decomposing in his dilapidated home, the town had been mowing the lawn. He had been dead for about a year. Mitsubishi is a bit like that guy, he died in his own home and he had been so out of touch with the world that nobody ever noticed that he wasn’t around any longer (no driver’s license) and only had a dead dodge pickup truck rotting in his driveway. The condemned home was knocked down and a new one built in the foundation. And like that Mitsubishi will be gone, somebody will take their mfg operation and build something new hopefully something that is relevant and will sell.

  • avatar
    kobo1d

    “For one, I don’t think a single person who comments or reads TTAC on a regular basis owns a Mitsubishi built after 1993.”

    2003 Eclipse GTS. I’ve had it since 2005. About as long as I’ve been reading TTAC. Not as exciting as an old DSM, but that ancient 3.0L V6 is stupidly reliable, and the ride/handling balance suits my tastes as a daily.

    Ever have an old, terrible-looking car that just flatly refuses to die, so you keep driving it “for free?” This is that car for me. I’ve been prepared to replace it for years but nothing has killed it yet. Basically every cosmetic thing is in bad shape (paint, dash, interior trim), but the bones are all rock solid. I’ll probably be cursed with it for another few years at least.

    • 0 avatar
      Veee8

      “For one, I don’t think a single person who comments or reads TTAC on a regular basis owns a Mitsubishi built after 1993.”

      Yes I sold my DT-35 cassette player long ago…

  • avatar
    tbp0701

    My main impression of Mitsubishis is to be weary of people driving them. It’s not been nearly as bad in the last few years, but back when the company was touting itself as the fasting growing automaker in the US at least partially by giving loans to anyone who walked onto a lot, I began to notice a high percentage of drivers doing incredibly stupid and/or dangerous things were in Mitsubishis. It became so prevalent that my internal defensive driving alerts would go up whenever I’d spot one, especially on a four-lane interstate.

    I don’t know if there’s much or any correlation between Mitsubishi’s finance anyone policy and bad drivers, nor why. I suspect that many of those people had trouble making the payments, couldn’t afford to maintain their cars and maybe grew to hate them. Or maybe it’s just unrelated and people who can’t drive gravitated towards Mitsubishis for a while.

    As an aside, about this time I lived next door to a family whose daughter drove a 3000 GT. We lived on a dirt/gravel road. Somehow, she managed to flip the thing. Then she attempted to sue the township by claiming the road was improperly maintained and caused the accident.

    Other than that, I can’t find myself to care much about Mitsubishi; I even avoid the company’s cars in Gran Turismo and the like. Although I should say that the bad Mitsubishi driver hasn’t been as prevalent in recent years. For whatever reason most of the dunderheaded displays I see of late are by people in compact Chevys and, confusingly, all sizes of Subarus. (On the latter I suspect that nearly all of Northeast Ohio’s Subarus being sold by a chain with questionable business practices may be a factor).

  • avatar
    readallover

    If Mitsubishi does not care, why should I?

  • avatar
    meefer

    I wish I had bought the 92″ instead of just the 82″ TV. Oh wait, for cars? No Evo, meh. Maybe if they brought back the 3000GT Spyder.

  • avatar
    APaGttH

    Mitsu-who?

    No – don’t care – they haven’t made anything I’ve cared about in years.

    I have the same reaction when I see someone driving a new base Charger, a new Mitsubishi, or a new base Spark. Huh – subprime buyer or just really stupid.

  • avatar

    I care in the sense that I think we are always better having more options to choose from than fewer – competition spurs innovation, drives prices down, causes new features to be more widely adapted and priced less.

    That being said, as someone whose next vehicle will probably be either a BOF SUV or a pickup truck, they don’t make anything in any category that interests me.

    I was just gifted my parent’s old ’98 Voyager, which has the Mitsubishi 3.0. That’s probably the closest I’ll come to owning a Mitsubishi unless they bring back the Montero. My dad owned a ’93 Eagle Summit (rebadged Mirage) when I was growing up – it was a stripper, he hated it. It seemed like a decent car, although I remember that the stitches in the seat popped early and the radio never quite worked right.

  • avatar
    Volt 230

    Their automotive division is going the way of the electronics as well< I recall how Mitsu TV's were the best in the market and they lost out to the Koreans almost overnight.

  • avatar
    stars9texashockey

    Mitsubishi is not needed anymore. Dodge has taken it’s place as the low credit/no credit brand.

  • avatar

    I care about Mitsubishi.

    I bought a 97 Talon in 1996. Put over 214,000 miles on it in 14 years. It didn’t require significant repairs or maintenance until north of 60k. When the head gasket began leaking, the $1100 quote from the dealer drove me to the internet, where I met the people who would become family, helping me crack open my first engine.

    Nearly 20 years later, I’ve driven Mitsubishis almost exclusively. (A summer with an 89 Volvo 245 being delightful exception.) Every issue I’ve ever had with a Mitsubishi has been the result of slovenly, reprobate owners – to include myself more than a couple times.

    I cut my teeth on that 97 DSM. Then I moved on to E39A Galant VR4s. Had two of them. Both are now caged and destined for rally stages with new owners, as I’ve taken the path less traveled.

    For three years, I daily drove a 1989 Pajero. 100hp, 2.6L lawn tractor with a windshield. It went everywhere. It was the slowest, least comfortable, least efficient vehicle I’d ever owned, but it was glorious. I sold it only to fund the purchase of a 98 Pajero, which is my current daily driver.

    I would buy a new Mirage if I was worried about fuel prices.
    I am very interested in the new Pajero Sport being officially announced in coming days.
    And I’m excited about Mitsubishi’s electric motorsport efforts.

    Most people decrying the death of the Evo never bought one in the first place and fail to grasp its significance to the brand is akin to that of the Corvette, Mustang, or M5. It’s a halo piece. A technology showcase. And considering how it’s been nearly 10 years since the Evo represented Mitsubishi’s automotive goals, I’m surprised it’s held on this long.

    Mitsubishi is a highly diverse organization with deeply held principles related to business, society, and planet. They still make world class, award winning trucks. We just can’t buy them in the US because repealing the Chicken Tax would subject the Big 3 to real, actual competition and they don’t like that.

    If anything, Mitsubishi’s automotive goals are simply too forward for the largely navel-gazing, North American consumer market. They’re focused on environmentally conscious technologies in an evolving global market wherein the United States happily sells out and relinquishes its hard-earned place at the head of the economic table.

    The majority of OEMs selling in North America are still pursuing hybrids, as oil subsidies keep full-size trucks and SUVs in demand. Mitsubishi, on the other hand, is looking ahead to a fully electric product line.

    Tesla sells a gorgeous EV that is literally “Ludicrous” these days. But it’s $100k. Who else is pushing EV performance on an OEM level? Funny, Mitsubishi has been on the podium quite a bit at Pike’s Peak in recent years.

    20+ years ago, Mitsubishi decided they wanted to go fast in the dirt. What followed was the development of technologies making their way into MMC’s entire product line. Those simple, turbocharged J-tins were the result of Mitsubishi’s focus on their goals.

    I see no reason to think the future will be anything different.

    So yes, there are still those of us who care about Mitsubishi. We’re the DSMers. We’re the rallyists. We’re the people who recognize Mitsubishi did more for us than simply manufacture cars.

    Normal means as much to as Dearborn or Hamtramck or Stuttgart or München means to other gearheads. But Mitsubishi’s decision no longer manufacture in the US in no way means they’re gone, or failed, or getting what they deserve. This is their call. I’m going to subscribe to the idea they know what they’re doing better than any of us do.

    I now return the floor to the sycophants. You may resume your regularly scheduled pithy attempts to out-sarcasm each other with how little you care.

    Ichimai iwa.

    • 0 avatar
      RideHeight

      “Mitsubishi is a highly diverse organization with deeply held principles related to business, society, and planet.”

      You look good in Japanese boilerplate. Funny, you’d think it’d be kinda tight-fitting.

    • 0 avatar
      wstarvingteacher

      @DR1665: TTAC needs a like button. I liked all of them that I drove and they were tough reliable vehicles. That dropped off a bit in the past few years I suppose, but frankly I still like them about as well as anything else. Perhaps the most relevant thing is that I don’t own one. Don’t think there is a dealer in my town. Coincidence? Doubt it.

    • 0 avatar
      wmba

      @DR1665

      You do know about the MMC scandals in Japan in 2000, where they were convicted of safety recall coverups dating back 20 years? 12 executives arrested, sales dropped off by 50%.

      Much bowing and apologizing, and yet in 2011, caught again not revealing safety problems. You say:

      “Mitsubishi is a highly diverse organization with deeply held principles related to business, society, and planet.”

      And I say – BS from top to bottom. They’re almost criminal. Don’t confuse the Mitsubishi heiretsu with MMC itself, which is what we’re talking about here.

      No, I don’t care about Mitsubishi Motors today, and I had a damn fine Talon TSi AWD Turbo twenty-five years ago. Little did I know then what a poor excuse for a principled company it was, nobody did, or I might not have bought the car.

      • 0 avatar
        notferris

        @wmba

        While you are 100% spot on regarding the 2000 recall scandal, I fear you might be misrepresenting the 2010 through 2012 recalls.

        Mitsubishi did NOT hide or fail to reveal safety recalls. The recall was also not considered a safety issue. The problem was with an oil seal that could leak, leading to a loss of oil pressure. The oil loss would be gradual and would trigger an oil warning light before the worst-case scenario of an engine seize-up.

        Mitsubishi recalled vehicles with the oil seal issue four separate times in piecemeal fashion. The Japanese Ministry of Transport took issue with that and with the fact that Mitsubishi took two years to fully investigate the problem.

        Obviously, given the scandal in 2000, Mitsubishi should have made a greater effort to investigate the issue and recall all 1.76 million vehicles at once. There’s no excuse for that.

        I understand you may not care for Mitsubishi. However, this does not preclude you from being accurate and factual in your comments.

        Sources:
        http://www.reuters.com/article/2013/04/23/mitsubishi-motors-recall-idUSL3N0DA10N20130423

        http://www.bbc.com/news/business-20793829

  • avatar
    Jeff S

    Ambivalent is the word I would describe about whether Mitsubishi survives are not. I had an 85 Mitsubishi Mighty Max single cab 2 wheel drive pickup with a 2.0 4 cylinder 4 on the floor which I had for 14 years. Not a bad truck truck but a pain to get parts for and costly. There is nothing in the current Mitusbishi lineup that I would be inclined to buy but if the price was cheap enough I might consider a Mirage or Outlander Sport but I am satisfied with what I have particularily the 2013 CRV which one commenter describes as cheap and terrible lookking but it is a perfect vehicle with heated leather seats and GPS and like most Hondas keeps runnning and running and can easily get serviced with parts that are more available than Mitsubishi. Beauty must be in the eye of the beholder but I will take reliablity over anything else and I don’t find today’s Mitusubishi products as having any headturning beauty nor any better reliability than a Toyota, Honda, Nissan, Hyundai, or Kia. If they survive great, if they don’t then there is room from a good Chinese vehicle.

  • avatar
    Tifighter

    I could care if they would ever bring the Outlander PHEV to the US. You know, the one that is a strong seller globally. The one that is not a $75K+ Euro CUV, and gets 20-25 miles of EV range. Of course, someone will eventually beat them to the punch to offer a mainstream plug-in CUV in the CUV-crazy US market, and that someone will have success instead of Mitsubishi. Same as it ever was.

  • avatar
    Discoman

    Mits who? Beats me.

  • avatar
    LeeK

    Ahem! I’m a regular TTAC reader and poster and I owned a Lancer Evolution VIII for five years, which was concurrent with the time that I started subscribing to this blog. That said, I can’t say I’m surprised at the demise of the brand in the U.S. The writing has been on the wall for years now and Mitsubishi’s disinterest in investing in new vehicles for this market has been blatant and even comtemptible. I loved my Evo, it had flawless reliability in daily driving duties, and my dealer’s sales and service staff were friendly, courteous, and the prices were fair. I sold it to another enthusiast as my driving needs changed. I still think fondly of it: bone-jarring suspension, whining transmission, and rental-spec interior be damned.

    As George Harrison said, all things must pass.

  • avatar
    Jezza819

    Back when they were making the Starion, 3000GT, Eclipse, EVO? Sure. Now? Not so much.

  • avatar
    Jeff S

    Maybe euthanasia is not a bad thing for Mitsubishi in the USA. Most might not love them but then most might not hate them. I feel totally indifferent to Mitsubishi and could care less one way or the other whether they survive or not. Hyundai and Kia to me are more relevant than Mitsubishi in that both have a product that I would consider buying. If there were more more Mitsubishi dealers near me and better service then I might consider their product but there are better products out there and much easier to get parts and service for and that is the key to buying any of a brands products especially if you are buying as an original purchaser. Mitsubishi needs to give me a more compelling reason to spend my hard earned dollars for their products. Mitsubishi has not given me compelling products to change my mind.

  • avatar
    jthorner

    What, Mitsubishi still sells cars in the USA? I thought they must have certainly gone the way of Isuzu, Daihatsu and Suzuki.

    While the cleaning crew is on the job, could they please put down the Scion brand? Toyota’s grand plan for that brand never worked, and the few interesting models could be most easily sold as Toyotas.

  • avatar
    midnite_clyde

    I own a 2003 Sebring coupe 3.0 5 speed manual. Love it. It’s beautiful, 30mpg, plenty of pep and 180k on the odo. Everyone takes pot shots at Mitsu but this car and the ’92 Laser I bought new was what I wanted and what I got. No regrets.

  • avatar
    thomasbeagle

    I own a 2013 Mitsubishi Lancer Sportback GSR – and I quite like it. It was the cheapest/best-specced in its class and it’s generally just pretty competent without excelling at anything. (Well, the 5 year warranty plus 10 year powertrain warranty was pretty excellent.)

    But I don’t really care about Mitsubishi, they’re just a company and it’s just a car. Asking if I care about them is like asking if I care about who made my aircon (oh, Mitsubishi again).

  • avatar
    ydnas7

    With hindsight, it seems the closure of their EU factory helped Mits become relevant again in EU.
    Perhaps the same will happen in USA, wait and see. I predict this time next year, Mitsubishi Motors USA will be far healthier than today.

  • avatar
    EAF

    I’m a DSM’er, on my 7th one! Simply sold them off, I get bored easily, and moved on to different platforms only to return. I’ve had 1 catastrophic failure over the course of 16 or so years; the dreaded 7-bolt crankwalk!

    My current daily driver is a 1995 Eclipse GS-T with 215k on the clock pushing nearly double the boost the factory intended. The 4G63 takes abuse, makes power, and isn’t particularly thirsty. Will not consume a drop of oil (Rotella 15w-40) or coolant. Just recently started feeling a 3rd gear grind at redline, very upset by it! I’m hoping some fresh Penn Synchromesh does the trick.

    I care about Mitsu because I would love to own an Evo 8-10, I just can’t justify the expense! Not to mention, every Evo found locally is far from stock. I want something that has not been tampered with, a clean slate to start from.

  • avatar
    MarionCobretti

    “For one, I don’t think a single person who comments or reads TTAC on a regular basis owns a Mitsubishi built after 1993.”

    Skimming through the comments, it looks like I’m #3. 2006 Eclipse GT 6 speed. Owned it since February. Yeah, that’s right, I bought a Mitsu in 2015. Get the pitchforks. The combination of price, low mileage (19.5K), and cheap available warranty made it a good deal for a commuter car that I wouldn’t hate driving. It has a nice transmission, the seats are comfortable to me, the engine has a delightful sound, torque curve, and throttle response, and it’s been trouble free.

    Do I care about Mitsubishi, though? Not really. I hope they survive, find a niche, and continue selling cars here, but only in the sense that I like oddball lower volume manufacturers. Unless an all-original Starion shows up on Bring a Trailer, I’ve probably bought my last ever car to wear the three diamonds.

    What niche, though? They’re out of the midsize sedan game, the Lancer (while nowhere near as bad as people make it out to be) isn’t competitive and isn’t selling, and there’s no compelling reason to buy their generic CUV’s over any other other manufacturer’s generic CUV’s (which is why people largely don’t).

    I think the I-MiEV (while laughable) essentially points toward the road they have to go to survive in the U.S. Mitsu has to hit ’em where they ain’t. They could pour tons of development dollars into a Lancer successor, a new midsize, new CUV’s, and for what? They may carve out a bit more market share, but even if they return to the volumes they sold in their heyday, will they be able to keep abreast of the larger manufacturers development cycles and stay competitive?

    But if (a big if, admittedly) they can bring a credible, Lancer-sized (i.e. slightly large compact) fully-electric car to market and give it acceptable range, then they could make things interesting. It doesn’t have to be amazing, it just has to be decent, with usable range and space, and affordable by normal people. They need to become the working man’s Tesla, essentially. It’s a small, primarily urban niche, yes, but one that will grow, and it’s a space that no other manufacturers seem to be leaping towards. I think they either go there, or they are D-O-N-E. The war they’re in is not one that they’ll win with conventional weapons.

    They’re almost certainly done either way, but I’d rather see them take a moonshot at making an affordable electric car and fall on their faces than continue to die on the vine (or worse, enter into a partnership with another manufacturer and become the Japanese version of SEAT or Dacia, selling cheapo versions of another manufacturer’s last-gen cars).

  • avatar
    05lgt

    I do not give a fig for Mitsubishi.

  • avatar

    I care. I think Mitsubishi has made some very interesting cars and I think they can do it again. I’m not sure the best way forward thou
    The next Hyundai? Sell low with lots of standard features and a good warranty this seems to be their plan with the mirage.
    Electric car builder? They seem to be trying this but they need the plug in outlander here quick to get that market.
    Performance? Maybe but I doubt it.
    I wish them well hopefully they figure something out.

  • avatar
    Oberkanone

    Yes I do care about Mitsubishi.

    Lancer SE in Mercury Gray with premium package is one Mitsu I appreciate. AWC, great warranty, decent driver, good value (over $6k off MSRP in my area) and it’s throwback qualities appeal to me.

    Mirage is honestly the best execution of modern basic transportation point A to point B car that’s currently out there IMHO. Durability to withstand the conditions of emerging markets and safety equipment that meets both USA and Euro standards.

    Triton is a modern interpretation of Japanese compact trucks available in 80’s and 90’s. I’d love to see it offered in USA and please just federalize it and don’t make major changes to “Americanize” it. There is a market for a basic compact/midsize truck.

    Having a small slice of Mitsubishi in North American market is welcome as they truly offer a different experience than Honda, Nissan, Toyota, Hyundai etc.

  • avatar
    chamar

    I care for mitsubishi … raised outside of North America … i will always have a soft spot for them.

    That said … i love the overall package (including price) for my Outlander GT. 20,000 Km and got nothing but good things to say about it.

  • avatar
    Cani Lupine

    2014 Mirage owner here. 0.27 drag coefficient, 1973 lbs (yes, that is correct, UNDER 1 TON), 5 speed, lowered on H&R springs, Ultra Racing front strut brace, lightweight Civic VX wheels. Handles well and gets 50+ MPG. You’ll be hating on Mitsu while I’m passing you at the gas station and leaving you behind in the curves.

  • avatar
    grsupercity

    Negativity hides bad journalism. Bad review of a good car. They seriously just rag on Mitsubishi because its easier then writing real articles.

    My family owned a dealership. We had horrible luck with subies and them burning oil and piston rings. We had bad luck with gm and intakes and head gaskets and computers and wheel bearing and trannys. We have had bad luck with every brand we sold used. Except Mitsubishi. We always had good luck with them. I have been in everything and I have drove everything. The only company I will ever own and drive will be a Mitsubishi!

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