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Happy Holidays and end of the Mitsubishi world?


We seemed to get thru the real Mayan end of the world just fine.  But again many out there tend to think that Mitsubishi may fall on it’s sword in the new year.  Many posted this video link on the internet which caused a bit of stir lately. Is this true?  The short answer is…. No.  While yes Mitsubishi is suffering a huge cash crunch as they restart the franchise, and yes their marketing for the past 4 years has been less than stellar.   Mostly because of 3 big factors,  just bad timing, bad luck, and strategic partners that just wasn’t in it to win it.


The marketing and selection of cars in 2007 required a bit more of a broader line up.  The Mitsubishi Lancer was launched successful but because Mitsubishi cut of the cars that made its self great without offering greener options.  This hurt Mitsubishi big time.  The EVO, Lancer, and Outlander became its only winners.  Most of Mitsubishi sales have been because of these 3 variants.  Eclipse didn’t really go anyway.  The number one thing that Mitsubishi missed out on was the Mitsubishi Colt which met all of the objectives for what Mitsubishi wanted.  I have been told that at the time Mitsubishi felt the success of the colt would be marginal.  To be honest, if it was me, I think it would have been the gamble that could have changed the tide of the war.  The green push in my opinion is a good thing, but it was too radical and too quick of a timetable.   Mitsubishi released some ads that completely offended their customer base vs. converted their customer base to greener pastures.

Bad luck?  Yes the Earthquake really hit Mitsubishi and it’s semi sister company Nissan very hard.  A lot of production was tide together in Japan, and the earthquake caused massive delays.


One of things that really huge Mitsubishi was the world engine alliance.  The birth of the 4B11 engine was both a great thing for the world but a bad bet/ investment for Mitsubishi.  Sharing technology with Hyundai and Dodge was something that definitely benefited the two others.  Hyundai used the technology in their Hyundai Genesis and made a better product as a result.  Albeit an engine with cast internals, they still understood well enough.  Dodge on the other hand. Took the technology and ran.  Buying out Mitsubishi and Hyundai’s share and making a new partnership with Fiat.  In other words, those wonderful people at Dodge ended their alliance with Mitsubishi again…. and bolted.  They executed the plan of smaller cars by themselves leaving Mitsubishi high and dry.

After all these kicks to the nuts.  Mitsubishi keeps on moving.  If Mitsubishi was not balls in to win this, they would not be signing production agreements for North America.  Mitsubishi Japan has an extensive financial arm that keeps pumping money into this fight.  But to be completely open here. Unless Mitsubishi A) brings in sport options to all of its cars.  (cough cough Mitsubishi Colt Ralliart)  B) Reactivates the Ralliart Japan program… I feel Mitsubishi’s days are numbered.

I am still hopeful that new management will see the light and make the franchise successful in 2013/2014 which they release new cars.





Mitsubishi Motors Announces Production, Sales and Export Figures for April 2011

Mitsubishi Motors Announces Production, Sales and Export Figures for April 2011

Tokyo, May 27, 2011 – (JCN Newswire) – Mitsubishi Motors Corporation today announced global production, as well as domestic sales and export figures for April 2011.
Total global production for April 2011 came in at 68,239 units, 14.6 percent down over the same month last year and the first consecutive year-on-year monthly decrease since March 2011. Production volume in Japan at 27,481 units was 31.7 percent down over the same period last year, the first consecutive year-on-year monthly decrease since March 2011. Passenger car output at 23,626 units was 33.9 percent down year-on-year. Commercial vehicle output at 3,855 units was 13.9 percent down over April 2010. As in March, the reduced output in Japan was due to restricted operation of the company’s factories after the Great East Japan Earthquake.

Sales in Japan

Vehicle sales in Japan in April totaled 8,700 units, 18.9 percent down on the same month last year and the eighth consecutive year-on-year monthly decrease since September 2010. Sales of passenger cars at 6,240 units were 19.5 percent down and sales of commercial vehicles at 2,460 units were 17.4 percent down over April 2010. Registered vehicle sales volume at 3,515 units was 20.1 percent down on the same month last year. Minicar sales volume at 5,185 units was 18.1 percent down over April 2010.

Production overseas

Overseas production volume totaled 40,758 units, 2.6 percent up over April last year and the fourth consecutive monthly year-on-year increase since January 2011. By region, output in Asia at 32,613 units was 3.6 percent up year-on-year, boosted chiefly by 6.2 percent and 10.0 percent increases at MMTh in Thailand and KRM in Indonesia respectively. Output in China at 10,264 units was 0.4 percent down over April 2010. In North America, output at 3,019 units was 38.5 percent up over the same period last year, the increase being driven by fleet orders. In Europe, output at 1,824 units was 33.4 percent down year-on-year. In South America output at 2,940 units was 1.0 percent up on April 2010.

Export shipments from Japan

Total exports from Japan of 19,491 units were 30.1 percent down on April 2010, the first consecutive year-on-year monthly decrease since March 2011 as shipments of built-up cars to certain regions were affected by the earthquake. Exports to Asia at 2,298 units were 28.0 percent down year-on-year. Exports to North America at 1,920 units were 40.3 percent down over the same period last year as shipments to Canada were impacted by the earthquake. Exports to Europe at 9,933 units were 13.0 percent down on April 2010, as shipments to the region were impacted by the earthquake.
About Mitsubishi Motors

Mitsubishi Motors Corporation (TSE: 7211) was established in 1970 and is one of the few automobile companies in the world that produces a full line of automotive products ranging from 660-cc mini cars and passenger cars to commercial vehicles and heavy-duty trucks and buses. The company also operates consumer financing services and provides this to its customer base. For more information, please visit .

Global automakers may lose production of 600,000 vehicles by the end of the month

Global automakers may lose production of 600,000 vehicles by the end of the month

Bloomberg reported that global automakers may lose production of 600,000 vehicles by the end of the month as the earthquake in Japan halts assembly lines and work at suppliers including the maker of a paint pigment.

Photo credit: AFP/Getty Images

Photo credit: AFP/Getty Images

Photo credit: AFP/Getty Images

Mr Michael Robinet VP of IHS Automotive said that “About 320,000 vehicles may have been lost worldwide as of March 24th 2011 and manufacturing at plants in North America may be affected when parts supplies start running out as soon as early April 2011. The next surge of shutdowns comes when the pipeline of parts that were already built dries up. The rate of lost production will accelerate once North American plants join in.”

Toyota Motor Corporation said that it has lost output of 140,000 vehicles and Honda Motor Co has lost 46,600 cars and trucks and 5,000 motorcycles. Mitsubishi Motors Corporation’s was lowered by 15,000. Ford Motor Co hasn’t lost any output.

Ms Natsuno Asanuma, a spokeswoman for Honda, said that its production in North America may be disrupted after April 1st 2011 because quake damage is restricting parts supplies. Plants in Ohio, Alabama, Indiana, Canada and Mexico may be affected.

Mazda Motor Corporation, which had said its production was reduced by 31,000 cars, suspended US dealer orders for vehicles built at its two Japanese car factories because of supply disruptions caused by this month’s earthquake and tsunami.

Mazda plants in Hiroshima and Hofu have stopped production of new models. Mazda makes the Mazda2, Mazda3, RX-8, MX-5, CX-7 and CX-9 in Japan. While neither plant was damaged, access to parts and supplies has been crimped in the aftermath of the disaster, Nissan Motor Co, General Motors Co and other companies haven’t provided details on their possible losses.

Merck KGaA has lost production of a metallic automotive paint pigment called Xirallic because its factory is 28 miles from the Fukushima Dai Ichi plant that was damaged by the earthquake and tsunami, Gangolf Schrimpf.

Sources : Bloomberg & Steel Guru

Shipping Mitsubishi Production Vehicles - Not going as planned.

Shipping Mitsubishi Production Vehicles – Not going as planned.

Mitsubishi has had it rough with factory production halts and logistical headaches of getting cars and parts to the port.  Unfortunately, not many people are understanding whats going on with the shipping industry that makes all this happen.  Here is a good article that talks about the impact on Mitsubishi shipping vehicles on the high seas.

In quake’s wake shippers expect disruption, opportunity

Japan quake likely to affect operations

By Stephanie Hoops

Sunday, March 20, 2011

After Japan’s 9.0-magnitude earthquake, shipping companies that transport vehicles through the Port of Hueneme are preparing for business disruptions, but also foresee opportunities from possible demand for goods to rebuild.

Japan’s auto industry was idled after the massive quake triggered a tsunami, with most production plants closing for different periods of time while the situation was assessed. Power supply shortages and planned outages also are a concern that could slow productivity.

Three Mitsubishi Motors Corp. plants were shut down for several days, throwing off the shipping schedules for “K” Line America Inc., which imports Mitsubishi vehicles through the port.

Ray Leonard, vice president of “K” Line’s Pacific Region Car Carrier Division, said the company will be working closely with Mitsubishi to adjust schedules for cargo still in production.

“Mitsubishi is the single largest account that we handle with import vehicles into Port of Hueneme, and I would expect that there would be some delay to manufacturing and shipping,” he said.

Jerry Mahoney, director of business development for Wallenius Wilhelmsen Logistics — a Scandinavian line that ships and processes construction machinery and new and used vehicles through the Port of Hueneme — said one of his largest auto exporters to China is concerned about potential parts shortages.

“From what I’m hearing from all manufacturers is that communication with all major parts suppliers is still down in Japan,” he said last week.

Anthony Taormina, executive director of the Oxnard Harbor District, which oversees the port, confirmed that concern. “From the automotive side, the biggest disruption has been in the areas of auto parts,” he said. “If anybody’s relying on Toyota auto parts, they’re slowing down production.”

Toyota idled all of its facilities from March 14-Thursday, stalling the production of 40,000 units, according to IHS Global Insight.

While Toyotas aren’t shipped through the Port of Hueneme, at least one local dealership, Thousand Oaks Toyota, reports no impact from the halt in production.

“A lot of Toyota’s cars are built in North America, so as of now the North American plants are still operating on normal shifts,” said Andy Robles, the dealer’s general manager. “So we’re in good shape. There’s plenty of parts in parts depots across the country. Right now we don’t see a problem.”

Parts shortages will disrupt American manufacturers that rely on components from Japan, according to IHS Chief Economist Nariman Behravesh.

“The U.S. operations of Japanese automakers are the most obvious example,” Behravesh wrote in an analysis last week. “Ideally, they would like to gear up U.S. operations to replace imported vehicles that will not be arriving, but if crucial parts made in Japan are unavailable, they will have to cut production instead.”

The United States imported $124 billion in merchandise from Japan in 2010 and the biggest share was motor vehicles and parts ($46 billion), according to IHS.

The Los Angeles County Economic Development Corp. is still working to quantify the impact the devastation will have on the Southern California economy but they are beginning to hear about supply chain issues with regard to the auto industry, computer parts and electronics in the U.S. and elsewhere.

LAEDC economist Ferdinando Guerra said the Port of Hueneme will certainly be impacted because the majority of what is coming into the port from Japan are vehicles and auto parts.

Mitsubishi and Suzuki vehicles are regularly come through the port, but shipping routes might also be affected because other Asian brands, such as South Korea’s Hyundai and Kia, also come into the Port of Hueneme.

Economists say there may be opportunities for American auto companies if demand shifts because of short supplies of Japanese-brands.

Shipping companies may also benefit if called upon to transport manufactured homes like they did after the Kobe earthquake in 1995, said Mahoney of Wallenius.

“There were a lot of homes destroyed in that quake and we shipped a lot of manufactured homes through Hueneme,” he said. “I would think as housing for all the homes swept away there’d be a big export of manufactured homes.”

Leonard also expects that “K” Line may see an uptick in Japanese demand for foreign goods.

“It’s possible that there’ll be an increase in shipments of different commodities to Japan related to rebuilding and recovery of the disaster,” he said.

As for radiation, there’s concern Japan may put a hold on its shipping ports due to high levels of radiation from nuclear reactors, according to General Motors’ North American President Mark Reuss, who was quoted last week in the Detroit Free Press.

But Taormina is not worried about radiation getting in through the Port of Hueneme because all cargo gets screened.

Info source:

Mitsubishi JDM update

Mitsubishi Motors has resumed partial (JDM) production on Wednesday and plan to resume operations at 3 of its plants on Thursday.  Mitsubishi will monitor the situation with its 3rd party suppliers to see if it can resume full scale production beyond Friday.

Official Mitsubishi comment on production March 14, 15, 16, and 17 Planning

Official Mitsubishi comment on production March 14, 15, 16, and 17 Planning

Factory Operation After March 16(Wed)

Our production hubs are located in:

1.      Aichi Prefecture (Nagoya Plant)
2.      Gifu Prefecture (Pajero Manufacturing Co., Ltd.)
3.      Okayama Prefecture (Mizushima Plant)

Therefore, none of the above has been affected by the Tohoku earthquake, but some of MMC’s suppliers have reported damages. MMC is suspending plant operations on March 14th (Mon) and 15th (Tue), to prioritize safety verifications at our suppliers. Currently as of today at 4:00 pm, procurement of necessary parts has been confirmed to resume operation in all those plants for the 16th. Status of 17th (Thu) will be confirmed tomorrow on the 15th(Tue).

Mitsubishi to halt operations

Mitsubishi to halt operations

Multiple news reports that Mitsubishi will be halting production at multiple facilities until a full assessment of damage is complete and when they can get accurate projections of delays from 3rd party OE part makers.  All Japanese manufacturers are in a holding pattern until they have a firm grasp of logistics and OE parts.   Some manufacturers are also facing additional difficult with the risk of rolling blackouts as the power grid is stretched closer to its limits across Japan.

Stay tuned tuned.