The problems for Mitsubishi and its Dutch factory, NedCar, began with that common bogeyman, the Smart ForFour. At the end of ForFour production, there was no vehicle in the pipeline for Mitsubishi or then-partner DaimlerChrysler that could be built in the Dutch factory and put its 180,000 cars-per-year capacity to use. Now that the European economy is teetering on the edge of implosion, Mitsubishi is pulling its Colt and Outlander models from Born and putting the plant up for sale. The latest pr
Yesterday, we reported that Mitsubishi is bringing its small, B-segment Colt to our shores. And that's true, mostly. What we've learned between now and then is that Mitsu isn't bringing over the current Colt, but rather the replacement for the current Colt, i.e. the next Colt. In fact, Mitsubishi Motors Corp. President Osamu Masuko said as much during last month's Tokyo Motor Show. Here's what he told Automotive News:
I guess that at this point we've pretty much lost track of how many "green labels" automakers have slapped on their cleanest European vehicles (see Econetic, eco2, et al.). These labels are created to highlight the least-polluting member of a car line, usually based on the most basic engine configuration. When it comes to Japanese automakers, green badging was lagging behind the Europeans, but Mitsubishi is trying to catch up with a new name: Cleartec.
While Mitsubishi just claimed its first profitable quarter in four years, its president, Osamu Masuko, says the company will now go after the potentially huge profit in untapped Asian markets with a super-affordable vehicle. If it happens, Mitsubishi would join a score of other companies with the same goal.