While researching Mitsubishi Motors Corporation, the brand gained column inches with media outlets because of its unveiling of concept cars, and parading of new technology to replace the conventional internal combustion engine.
In October 2013, Mitsubishi revealed a month in advance of the Tokyo motor show that it would unwrap three key concept models, showcasing a new design identity and its next-generation technology – the GC-PHEV, XR-PHEV and and AR concepts (1). This is newsworthy because it is a preview to what the company displayed at the Tokyo motor show the following month, which happened to be a prominent motor show for it being hosted in Mitsubishi’s home country and one of the biggest car shows in the world.
Towards the end of October 2013, the Japanese car manufacturer opened the order books for the Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV in Europe (2). This is newsworthy because the Outlander PHEV is currently Mitsubishi’s most marketable hybrid vehicle for the real world.
MMC were clearly pushing the PR of its Outlander PHEV hard in the run-up to the new year, with its confirmation of economy and emissions figures for the model (3). This is because the car is mooted to go on sale in the UK in March 2014 and clearly the brand aim to reel in potential buyers and their interest as much as possible leading up to the launch date, in an attempt to maximise sales. A no-brainer.
Mitsubishi Motors hit the headlines again in January when it was revealed it plans to raise US$2 billion in a public share offering next year, in a bid to pay back the primary shareholders from a bailout in 2004, that aided its decade-long turnaround (4). Mitsubishi Motors will use most of the US$2 billion it hopes to raise to purchase back the majority of those shares at a discounted price and retire them. This is news because the article highlights MMC’s struggles over the last 12 years and how they have fought their way back to profitability, thanks to new leadership and a clever tie-up from the parent company – Mitsubishi Corporation.
Mitsubishi also ended 2013 on an apparent high, the company boasting a 38 per cent increase on passenger vehicle sales compared to 2012 (5). However, this could be attributed to Mitsubishi having a dire previous year, due to a stagnant economic climate and superior competition in their market. This is newsworthy because on the face of it, a 38 per cent increase on the previous year’s sales is a significant number and shows the Japanese car maker is beginning to find their feet in Europe and emerging markets again.