Mitsubishi makes the brilliantly fast, wonderfully fun Lancer Evolution. Outside of that road-going rally car, the rest of the range is pretty poor - the new Outlander isn't bad, but the subcompact Mirage looks like might've been competitive five years ago, while the Galant and Lancer have suffered from serial neglect.

This hasn't just lead to rumors of Mitsu's death in America; the subsidiary of the massive Mitsubishi Group has been in trouble at home, too. It was bailed out by three other Mitsubishi Group companies - Mitsubishi UFJ Financial, Mitsubishi Heavy Industries and Mitsubishi Corporation - between 2004 and 2005, according to Bloomberg. Now, it's attempting to extricate itself from "emergency mode," as analyst Koichi Sugimoto told the financial site, adding that "they're still in the very early stages of recovery."

As part of the bailout, Mitsubishi issued its three saviors billions of dollars of preferred shares, which don't have voting rights. The problem is, Mitsubishi hasn't issued dividend payments since 1998, and these stocks aren't exactly competing with Apple or Google, in terms of value. In other words, they're mostly worthless. With a public offering, Mitsubishi is expecting to raise 200 billion yen, or about $2 billion, in order to reduce the number of preferred shares. If all goes according to plan, it will wipe out preferred shares by March of 2014, or the end of fiscal year 2013.

Much like the American companies that were bailed out, Mitsubishi is seeing a resurgence (just not in the US market). Bloomberg reports that the company's net income will go up 32 percent this year and rise to 50 billion yen, or $5.03 billion, thanks to high demand in southeast Asia. A weakened yen and a partnership with Nissan in China is helping forecasts as well. Mitsubishi should announce the offering near the end of October, with the sale itself happening in the fourth quarter of the 2013 fiscal year.


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  • 28 Comments
      Jeff Lagasca
      • 1 Year Ago
      I'm surprised that Mitsubishi still maintains market presence in the U.S.. I miss the Eclipses of the late 90s, Diamantes and even the Galants of the late 90s. Seemed like they were headed in a promising direction back then. $2-bil may help them out, but what they really need is for a more confident and adventurous auto company to take the reigns and redesign, re-engineer, and re-strategize their entire lineup. Peugeot maybe?
      Bryan Lund
      • 1 Year Ago
      Don't forget that Mitubishi gives you a 10-year 100,000 mile Warranty. Haven't needed it with my '08 Lancer GTS and I'm at 111,588 miles. Americans are goofing by buying Focus over Lancer. I'm sticking with Mitsubishi and I like Nissan next. Actually researching the Nissan cube right now and I love it.
        dreadcthulhu01
        • 1 Year Ago
        @Bryan Lund
        It isn't just American's buying the Focus over the Lancer; the Focus is arguably the best selling car in the world (depending on how certain Corolla-derived models are counted.). Why? Well, the Focus gets better fuel economy out of a more powerful engine, has a more nicely put together interior, and every large scale reliability study I have seen rates Ford's more recent vehicles as more reliable than Mitsubishi's.
          strykerzzzz
          • 1 Year Ago
          @dreadcthulhu01
          I really don't think people should bash each other's car choices - I hate seeing pickup trucks with the Ford boy peeing on the Chevy boy (and others like it). I know Mitsubishi as a very reliable brand that packs their cars with features at a low price and these days they are also becoming known as a safety brand with their high crash test scores. Most of them aren't going to win races - except for the Evolution. I know Ford as very reliable too, but with generally more powerful cars. To get the features that Mitsubishi offers, you will have to add on many thousands of dollars to their price though. Just about any car you buy these days is going to be very reliable, so it's all up to the consumer - buy a car with more power but fewer features or one with less power but more features. It depends on how much money you have to spend. I'm just glad that Mitsubishi is around to help offer the choice to the consumer. Fewer car companies and choices are bad for the car shopper!!!
      mr ortiz
      • 1 Year Ago
      why is hyundai doing better than mitsubishi? that was unthinkcable 20 years ago.
        Tourian
        • 1 Year Ago
        @mr ortiz
        Liar. Hyundai was building bad copies of old Mitsubishi tech. It doesn\'t matter if they were given Toyota tech or BMW tech or whoeever you think is the world\'s best, if you have bad practices you will make bad cars. Hyundai got better and they still have engineering and collaboration tie ups with Mitsubishi.
      strykerzzzz
      • 1 Year Ago
      I'd like to see more vehicles here in the U.S. like the Montero. I went on their Corporate website and in other countries they sell a couple of different pretty good looking versions of it along with a nice pick up. There are positives here for Mitsubishi. Their Lancer is a Top Safety Pick and their Outlander and Outlander Sport are 2 of the only 3 small SUVs (Subaru Forester being the other) that have earned the Top Safety Pick + designation. I think the best thing for Mitsubishi is that they are free on Chrysler and Daimler-Mercedes. Whether they decide to bring more vehicles, besides the Mirage to the U.S. remains a mystery to me. The new Mirage is simple, but it's got a lot of tech that people like and it will be inexpensive.
      Bryan Lund
      • 1 Year Ago
      I opted for a 2008 Mitsubishi Lancer GTS and it's a good car...love it's looks but mechanically it's as sound as a pound. Pulling for Mitsubishi to stay in the U.S.
        Awhattup
        • 1 Year Ago
        @Bryan Lund
        They aren't bad cars. Just not as good as any other competitions.
          strykerzzzz
          • 1 Year Ago
          @Awhattup
          They are actually loaded with a lot of technology that other automakers charge a lot more for. It's a price balance - Mitsubishi gives you enough engine power to get you by and puts the other money in tech, features. Other automakers put in stronger engines. It's a price balance act for the consumer of how they want to spend their money - less power and more features or more power and less features. Consumers should cheer for Mitsubishi to survive, because fewer automotive choices means less competition for your dollar - and higher overall car prices!
      RedEmblem
      • 1 Year Ago
      Mitsubishi is struggling in Japan as well. The Mirage is a sales flop. Also, many of their cars are rebadged Nissans and Suzukis because they don't have enough money to develop new cars. It reminds me of Rover before they went bankrupt. It's sad how the Mitsubishi Group is providing life support to their dying car company. Without them, Mitsubishi Motors would have died earlier.
        Tourian
        • 1 Year Ago
        @RedEmblem
        More lies. The plant that builds the Mirage is running above 100% capacity. They have a few rebadged cars and those other brands sell rebadged Mitsus.
      Cruising
      • 1 Year Ago
      The Galant sums up many issues with the company, old car debuted in 2003 same car sold till production ended late in 2012, who does that and expects people to flock to showrooms? What brand equity does Mitsubishi have in the US anymore? This is not the 90s and early 2000s anymore. They don't even have any marketing on TV much except for the occasional local dealer infomercial or flyers you get in the mail. You know things are bad when the Mitsubishi dealer flyer is full of used car inventory and the only home product is a Outlander pushed in the back corner of the flyer.
        Tourian
        • 1 Year Ago
        @Cruising
        You must not get cable because they are hammering the new outlander and sales incentives on 13s.
      bootsnchaps60
      • 1 Year Ago
      The Mirage doesn't look like a race car or rolling sculpture with miniscule windows- works for me! I'm looking for reliable transportation.
      Rick
      • 1 Year Ago
      My view is that we here in the US are a finicky lot. Then too, Mitsubishi hasn't helped things by becoming stagnant. For customers to be interested you have to be out in front of their noses and in their face. I see Mitsubishi's problem being much like Suzuki here. Time marches on and you have to stay up with the Jones's. Then you have to make sure it's out there and being noticed and talked about. That's not easy. Some brands go racing to give themselves street cred. Take the Suzuki Kizashi for example, a very well done automobile but all but invisible in the minds of the buying public. Not a recipe for success!
      Houmpheng Phonsavath
      I would love to see Mazda and Mitsubishi merge.
      Lastchance
      • 1 Year Ago
      I can see why they are in such poor shape in North America. My friend has a 08 eclipse convertible. While it is fun to drive with the top down on warm summer days, otherwise is not that great of a car. The interior is beyond cheap flimsy plastic. The auto transmission is horribly slow to shift. Lastly it is difficult to back up do to the poor rear view visibility with the top up. Even with the 4cyl its still does not get good gas mileage, maybe mid 20s at best. I hate driving it. There is nothing great about it, so I can see why they don't sell them here any longer. Even though it was one of there more popular models. I see them pulling out of the North American market to focus on less developed but growing markets in the near future. ,
      Awhattup
      • 1 Year Ago
      A commentator below mentioned Hyundai's past. Damn right. Hyundai was laughable and questionable why they are still staying in the market... but then the 21st century came(along with new CEO new slogan new teams.) Mitsubishi, you need to take action now or you really might take accumulated damage.
        NightFlight
        • 1 Year Ago
        @Awhattup
        You realize that when Hyundai was at their worst, they were using mostly Mitsubishi components and powertrains, right?
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