The Big Story: The Little Brand That Could

The Big Story: The Little Brand That Could

Mitsubishi looked to be a dead brand walking in the U.S. Now it is getting a new lease on life. And dealers couldn’t be happier.

The past 10-15 years haven’t been easy ones for Mitsubishi’s U.S. dealers.

Faced with aging, uncompetitive products, an uncertain brand direction, fallout from a disastrous 0% financing scheme and the double-whammy of the recession and Mitsubishi’s own economic downturn starting in 2005, when Daimler bailed on its joint venture with the Japanese automaker, there wasn’t a lot to be excited or hopeful about.

“You know, we didn’t have any direction for a long time,” says Illinois Mitsubishi dealer Ryan Gremore. “We were all over the place. There was no long-term future. We were told as dealers this product’s coming, or this product’s coming, and it never did… It was like playing defense instead of playing offense while the rest of the world, like Hyundai and Kia and Nissan, took market share. We just got blown away.”

But now, with Mitsubishi joining the deep-pocketed Renault-Nissan Alliance, and a plan to pursue both CUVs and electrification firmly established, things are looking up.

TAGS: Dealers
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