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Is Mitsubishi evaluating options to bring Mirage to India?

Modified On Mar 13, 2012 05:45 PM By Vidyadhar for Mitsubishi Mirage

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Mitsubishi is eyeing to increase its share in the Indian car market. For this purpose, Mitsubishi is planning to launch a new small car in India, but the car would not be manufactured in partnership with Hindustan Motors which at present is a bit financially constricted. Hindustan Motors is a C K Birla-group company and has been in technical collaboration with Mitsubishi since 1998. The corporate GM for Asia and Asean of Mitsubishi, Masahiko Ueki mentioned that the company is studying several opportunities for its entry in the small car segment of the domestic market. The company is ready to go solo with the launch of the small car in the Indian car market but nothing is finalized yet, he mentioned during the launch of Pajero Sport which is priced at Rs. 23.53 lakh (ex-showroom Delhi).

Mitsubishi Mirage

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Regarding the current business state of the company in the Indian market, he mentioned that sales volume in India is very low and also the Indian operations are still not prepared to handle small car which is a large volume product. He added that the company needs good sales and service network and the company would first like to increase its market share through the existing products. Mr. Ueki also mentioned that, the Mirage, a Thai eco car can be brought to India in the next two to three years. This concept car is driven by a 1.2-liter engine; the hatchback will make its debut in Thailand by the end of this month. Former MD of Hindustan Motors, A Sankara Narayanan who is currently a director stated that the company is open to the idea of the small car project. The company will not be insisting Mitsubishi to include them since the whole thing depends on the investments and the volumes of the small car Mitsubishi is targeting, he added.

Mitsubishi Mirage

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According to another senior official from Hindustan Motors, Mitsubishi has been present in India for over a decade but has always been way behind other Japanese auto giants like Suzuki, Toyota and Honda. At present Mitsubishi retails its products through only 39 outlets across the country. The range of products from Mitsubishi includes Lancer and Cedia in the sedan segment, Outlander and Pajero in the SUV segment. All these products are manufactured at Hindustan Motors’ factory in Chennai and are also marketed by Hindustan Motors. Mitsubishi despite its decade long presence in the Indian Market has failed to make its mark and had sold only around 3000 units in the year 2011. As per Mr. Ueki, in order to boost volumes, the company is planning to bring to Indian roads a new version of Outlander which was revealed at the 2012 Geneva Motor Show.

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