By on April 25, 2017

Carlos Ghosn

Carlos Ghosn, the CEO for both Nissan and Mitsubishi Motors, says a full merger between the two automakers is out of the question. Instead, he wants Mitsubishi to get its act together and strengthen the greater alliance, which also includes Renault. Nissan purchased a controlling stake in Mitsubishi for $2.3 billion in 2016 after the smaller automaker weathered years of profitability issues and admitted to posting misleading fuel economy estimates.

While Ghosn agrees that Mitsubishi and Nissan should co-develop a select number of vehicles, he wants to help the brand bring itself back from the brink by focusing on its strengths and fixing its weaknesses.

“A full merger is not on the table. We want Mitsubishi to reform itself,” said said at the opening ceremony for a new Mitsubishi factory in Jakarta on Tuesday. 

Talks of a full merger had been rumored for some time, but the CEO’s words have extinguished that speculation for the foreseeable future. Instead, Nissan will likely invest its energy into hoisting Mitsubishi up in North America while taking advantage of its pre-existing production and distribution networks in Asia — especially as it relates to small affordable vehicles.

According to Reuters, Mitsubishi’s chief operating officer Trevor Mann said in March that the two automakers were already studying joint assembly options of pickup trucks in Southeast Asia. Meanwhile, CEO Osamu Masuko stated that he believed Mitsubishi will possess a 10-percent share of Indonesia’s car market within three years. The brand currently holds a 6-percent share. Both companies are also deeply embedded in Thailand, but have shifted focus since Indonesia overtook it as the regions largest market.

[Image: Nissan]

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15 Comments on “Ghosn Wants a Better Mitsubishi, Not a Merger With Nissan...”

  • avatar

    For God’s sake man, take the sad and depleted Mitsu USA dealership network out to the woodshed and put it’s out of it’s misery already! There’s simply nothing left of value there to salvage, and you don’t seem to have any problem servicing their subprime customer base out of the Nissan dealerships anyway.

    • 0 avatar

      Well sales are still on an upswing at Mitsu despite no dealers and little product to sell, so there is something there.

      • 0 avatar

        Mitsus must be the dark matter of the car world, then. All I see are old ones. In fact, just saw a damn handsome 2010-ish sedan today. No idea what it was… Galant?

        • 0 avatar

          They kind of blend in but the outlader sport (the little cuv) is all over the place where I live in central CT. Lancers are common in certain neighborhoods but all the current growth must be from CUV’s. I’m guessing you saw a Gallant or a Diamante. I like the Gallant but most people do not.

  • avatar

    Mitsubishi is well positioned to serve the SUV market in both AWD and FWD.
    2016 was 4th year of sales growth in North America 3rd consecutive profitable year for Mitsu North America.
    With 450 dealerships in USA and Canada they are positioned for growth.

  • avatar
    Jeff S

    I am hoping for the Triton. That could happen if Mitsubishi shares the Nissan plant that makes Frontiers. Years ago I had a Mitsubishi Mighty Max which was a good truck except for the availability and cost of parts but if Mitsubishi shares parts with Nissan then hopefully the parts will be more available and more reasonable.

    • 0 avatar

      Agreed. And a real SUV like the Montero, not another crossover.

    • 0 avatar

      @Jeff S
      Cannot see it happening. He wants to keep both the Navara and the Triton pretty separate, although the they both will
      be coming from the same Thai plant.
      Frontier at this stage is an orphan, what is going to replace it is a good guess.

  • avatar

    I am with Ghosn, I want Mitsubishi cars to keep their identities & character and not simply become rebadged Nissans.

  • avatar

    So, no Nismo Ralliart Skyline Evolution XII GT-R RS?

  • avatar

    A better Mitsubishi? How hard can _that_ be?

  • avatar

    Way off topic, but after seeing that picture of Chief Inspector Dreyfus I had to read the article in Peter Sellers version of Inspector Clouseau.

    • 0 avatar

      Dreyfus: What about the maid?
      Clouseau: The maid?
      Dreyfus: Was he jealous of her too? He strangled her.
      Clouseau: It is possible that his intended victim was a man and that he made a mistake.
      Dreyfus: A mistake?… in a nudist camp?
      Clouseau: Nobody’s perfect.
      Dreyfus: Idiot nincompoop lunatic!

  • avatar

    Renault is onwed by the French state and the Nissan board do not want the French Industry miinister on their board. They recently changed the “partnership” to prevent this, so no merger ever. Mitsu are much smaller and less strategic to the Japanese. The triton, or L200 is popular here. We’re even getting a FIAT version god help us, but as I understand it, what you call midsize pickups aren’t doing so well in the US. Hence you don’t get the Amarok or the Ranger? In the UK as long as they can hold a 1 metric tonne pallet they are classed as commercial vehicles with tax braks. Leather seats, climate control etc. Put a fancy hard top on it and you have an SUV in all but name. You barely see a transit with auto-transmission but double cab L200/Ranger/Navara/Amarok/Hilux turbo diesel autos dressed up to the nines are everywhere. Without that tax break, there would be far fewer.

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