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Mitsubishi Outlander Long Term Viability

prndldriverprndldriver Posts: 18
edited April 13 in Mitsubishi
How long do you realistically think that Mitsubishis are going to be sold in this country? This question is my biggest holdback from getting an Outlander. I would like to have this car for 10 years, but am just queasy that Mitsu will pull out. I know about the 10 yr and 5 year warranties. Even with those, Mitsu has a mixed track record on announcing recalls. The difference between the IntelliChoice and JDPowers notes on reliability of an Outlander is confusing.

The Outlander seems like a great SUV and has many features that I like all at a good price. The ride is not as smooth as say, a Highlander, but it's not as bumpy as the CR-V, which also has a smaller engine. I guess that's more due to it being an SUV. I would like to buy this SUV but have these concerns.

Comments

  • 1racefan1racefan Posts: 932
    Well, any answer to your question is merely speculation. However, I bought an '03 Outlander several years ago, and was hearing back then that Mitsubishi would be leaving the US market at any time. Well, that never happened. While owning my Outlander, I established a pretty good relationship with my dealer. I would go there for all my service needs, and they always treated me very well, and behaved very professionally.

    My Outlander was totaled earlier this year, and since I had a good experience with it (very few problems), and had developed that relationship with the service guys, I decided to buy an '08 Lancer.

    My answer to your question is that I don't forsee them leaving anytime soon (and I mean within the next 10 years anyways). The '07 Outlander is head and shoulders above the '03 model I owned, and seems to be getting respect from the automotice publications. The new Lancer looks really good, in my opinion. As soon as the Lancer, Evolution X comes out, that will be another feather in their cap, that will gain some publicity for Mitsubishi.

    If Mitsubishi can redesign the Galant to look as nice as the '07 Outlander, and '08 Lancer look, I think that will really help them. The midsized car segment is huge in this country, and if they could design a car with a little more "attitude" than the Camry and Accord, and a longer warranty to boot, they might snag a few sales from those guys. The Galant is never going to be a serious threat to the Camry and Accord, but I think with a good redesign, they could sell a lot more than they currently do.
  • psychogunpsychogun Posts: 122
    prndldriver - you are an unfortunate victim of our misinformed and narrow-minded media.
    Mitsubishi will never leave the U.S. market.
    Unlike the French and the Italians (which left the U.S. in the 80's and 90's) and have dominant positions in their home markets, Mitsubishi does not enjoy that position in Japan.
    They have to rely on any and all volume that they can get in each market that they are in.
    The U.S. is still the world's largest car market (China closing in quickly) and Mitsubishi needs the 150,000 to 200,000 units it moves here.
    Now, they might close down their manufacturing plant in Illinois, but they will continue to sell their cars here. Plant or no plant.
  • dodo2dodo2 Posts: 496
    I think no one could predict the future, but we are free to speculate. I too believe that Mitsubishi will not pull out of N/A. Instead, step by step, they will try to improve.
    It will take years, but look where Mazda was 7 years ago and where they are today. Over the past 5 years or so, they found an identity (zoom-zoom) and they built a great vehicle lineup (never mind the Tribute) that gave them a big push and great visibility.
    To me, Mitsu is taking a similar approach. They started with two good products in the the hottest segments. Over the next year or two, they will improve these and add the Evo, Ralliart and maybe a production version of the Concept-cX. I do believe in the past year Mitsubishi built a lot of awareness with their new products. I'm a living example; a year ago, I would have not considered Mitsu based on their offering. The Outlander changed that in a heartbeat. The truth is I'm not a brand loyal buyer - I buy whatever I like regardless the badge.
    I guess, seeing what Mitsu is doing with their line-up, I think they will succeed and therefore they will still be here in 10 years and going.
  • qqt414qqt414 Posts: 6
    Fact of the matter is a car company as large as mitsubishi globally would never pull out of a car market like North America if there was option for recovery. This is to large of a market to just run away from. Plus Mitsubishi's new management and new string of cars is starting to look very impressive. I know there is a totally redesigned Mitsubishi Endeavor in the pipe not to far away and the Galant will be key in re-establishing. Like Dodo i would never have thought i would buy a Mitsubishi last year, but now i love my 07 Outlander. When someone asks me what kind of car i bought and i tell them a Mitsubishi Outlander, 80% of people are like what the heck is that, but i kind of like it that way especially here in LA! Don't worry about Mitsubishi's future and good luck on your car buying!
  • psychogunpsychogun Posts: 122
    The following is a bit off-topic, my apologies.

    Unfortunately, neither the Galant nor Endeavor are getting a full redesign anytime soon (probably not before the 2011 model year).

    For the 2009 model year both are getting a slight freshening, which is frustrating dealers a bit.

    http://www.autoweek.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20070823/FREE/70822001/1024/F- - - - REE

    I have to say that the Autonews/Autoweek article's choice of models is a bit off.
    Mitsubishi has already indicated that the next generation COLT (due in Japan next year) will come to the U.S., yet it's missing from their list.
    They state that the Pajero Pinin might make it here. That's odd, since the model was discontinued in 2006 (though a version called the TR is still being built in Brazil). I think it is far more likely that the new COLT platform will spawn a crossover similar to the Concept cX.
    I sincerely doubt that the Montero will make a return to the U.S., simply due to the fact that the vehicle never sold at justifiable volumes and was missing a V8 (given the move to more fuel-efficient crossovers, it just doesn't make any sense).
    Finally, at the beginning of the article they state that the Galant and Endeavor will be redesigned at a later date, then further down in the article it says the Endeavor may get axed...??? So which one is it??? I would say that the Endeavor will see a redesign around the same time as the Galant (2011).
  • rcpaxrcpax Posts: 580
    Japan just got the Galant Fortis, which is a renamed Lancer. So if there will be a new mid sized Galant, it won't come from Japan. Illinois might still be the one to make the redesign of the current mid sized Galant. At this point, I doubt there is a very big market for the Colt here in the US. But small volumes with modest target sales will make the Colt a welcome addition. Personally I just want to see Mitsubishi compete in the minivan market. They should bring the Grandis here, or the Delica D5. But at this point, the current lineup is well accepted by the market. I know a lot of enthusiast are waiting for the Evo X this fall, and the Lancer Ralliart early next year. The Lancer Ralliart being a rumored 4WD, turbocharged, de-tuned version of the Evo X. That, coupled will an affordable price, will surely sustain Mitsubishi until the next redesign. Personally I'd like to speculate that the Concept Sportback will be the next Eclipse, and that the Concept cX could be the next Outlander redesign. So at this point, Mitsubishi is on track with its recovery program. That's why they quit the WRC temporarily, to cut expense ang funnel funds where needed. So don't deny yourself of that Outlander. Most owners here are very much satisfied with the vehicle and can vouch that you can't go wrong with your purchase. And its cheaper to buy now with all the perks they offer.
  • dodo2dodo2 Posts: 496
    I think Mitsu would be successful, in Canada at least, if they would bring over the redesigned Colt and Grandis. Recently they showed to the Canadian auto press four vehicles - iCar, Colt, Grandis and the L200. I think the press was excited about the Colt and the iCar. The iCar would be a cheap competition for the Smart. We had these here for few years now and they sell every single one. I would imagine that Toronto would be "flooded" with iCars.
    The Colt would be accepted in Canada without doubt - Yaris, Fit and Versa sell well here.
    I'd like to see the Concept xC as a hot hatch - after all it has the Lancer's front end so it's got to be a car not a CUV. They may call it crossover though. The rear looks very Volvo C30 which is a cool thing. With a diesel, AWD some smart features and versatility, it could be a hit in Canada at least. The Canadians like hatches, and from what I'm reading on the forums, the Americans have started to show some interest too.
    With the subcompact car (Colt), compact car (Lancer), compact minivan (Grandis) and compact SUV (Outlander)and eventually a hot hatch (Concept xC) covered, they still have to work on the midsize car (Galant) and CUV (Endeavor or something). There is still a big market for these cars, especially in the US. No point for trucks or body-on-frame, gas guzzler so no surprise to dump the Raider and Montero.
    One more thing, Mitsu should drop the CVT idea. Leave that for Nissan. I drove a Lancer DE with a CVT and it's HORRIBLE. A 5-speed manumatic should do it. I truly hope that the 2.4L Outlander won't have the CVT - why spoil an otherwise great car?
    Oh... forgot the Eclipse. They should redesign that one too and put it on diet and make it a real sports car. The 3.8L V6 260hp is dated and the 2.4L I4 is underpowered for a heavy sports car.
  • growwisegrowwise Posts: 297
    I checked canadian black book for resale value of my 07 outlander XLS to see how much of a beating it took. It lost 10 grand and needless to say, I am not pleased... All that said, I'd have to say... Mitsu needs to get its act together to boost resale values.
  • dodo2dodo2 Posts: 496
    If you are not planning to sell it anytime soon it shouldn't matter too much. Plus, if Mitsu continues to improve over the next few years, the resale value should get better too.
    For now, it's a well known thing that the Mitsu resale value is low.
  • rcpaxrcpax Posts: 580
    Resale value is a bunch of crap. It basically depends on the demand for your vehicle in the used car market. The more people who want to buy a particular make and model, the higher the resale value. It's really about supply and demand. But I plan on keeping my Outlander. What a beautiful piece of engineering to be devaluated so much by the American market. Only in America. In Europe they pay almost double for the same vehicle. And yet Mitsubishi's market remained strong in Europe. Mitsubishi made some big mistakes in marketing here in the US, the company being run by Americans almost to the point of bankruptcy. It's a good thing the Japanese are doing a good job in cleaning all the mess. That Chrysler merger was a such a big mess.
  • I'm pretty sure that Mitsubishi has decided to stay in the North American market also. I think if they were even considering leaving the U.S. then they would have done so in 2004 - 2005 when everyone in the automotive world said they would leave. The connections with the other Mitsubishi companies, MHI and MBOT in particular, allowed them a little breathing room to bring in the redesigned Outlander and Lancer.

    As far as the Illinois manufacturing plants future...I would say that they are going to try damned hard to keep it going. There are a few reasons why I think that way. #1 - There isn't much doubt that the least profitable overseas Mitsubishi manufacturing plant is in Australia, they are churning out about 50 cars a day, one model only (rh drive Galant) and still they have not shut down. The U.S. plant is on only one shift right now but they make 4 models, the Galant, Endeavor, Eclipse and Spyder. The plant is very flexible in its manufacturing capability. #2 Just because the tariffs on imports now are lenient that could change very quickly. If the Democratic party were to control the White House and congress in the next few years there is a good chance they could try to help the UAW - a major source of income for them - by penalizing imports. I have no doubt that if Kerry had won election in 04 he would have tried to help Ford, GM and Chrysler (their UAW workers anyway) by increasing taxes on imports or in other ways. If Mitsubishi has their own plant in the U.S. they can avoid many of these punitive expenses. If they were to close the plant...It's gone forever. Is it possible that VW, at this point in time, wishes they still had a toehold in Pennslyvania? It just seems that Japanese management seems to take a longer "down the road" view of these economic decisions than the Americans or Europeans.

    Now, if you want to leave out the profit factor and talk about the "face" factor - we are constantly told how important this is to the Japanese - Mitsubishi has left no doubt about how committed they are to the North American market. The next 2 launches here are the Evo X and the Lancer Ralliart. These are the Halo cars for Mitsubishi Motors. Unless they were totally confident in their market decisions I don't think they would risk selling these cars here first.
  • rcpaxrcpax Posts: 580
    Even the 08 Lancer. Launched way back in early spring, it's just now that the Japanese are able to buy the same car built in their own backyard. Goes to show Mitsubishi recognizes the importance of letting the US get a hold of their latest offering before anyone else in the world. This is THE big market.
  • There was a very nice article about Mitsu in Wall Street Journal about 4 weeks ago. To my surprise, Mitsubishi has captured only 0.8% of the US market by 2007. They have a new CEO in the North American Market now, and he said they'd like to concentrate on making the new and existing customers very happy about owning a Mitsu, rather than on capturing 1.2% of the US Market.

    I have gotten an '05 Mitsu Outlander about a half a year ago, and I am hoping to keep the Mitsu until at least 100K miles. Sure, the resale value was very low, but it's good for me!!!! I got it cheap! And I get the rest of the transferrable warranty. Heck, you don't get that with Subaru...
  • I really appreciate everyone's response to my question about Mitsubishi's long-term viability. It seems they're here for awhile, but probably not going to be huge and are satisfied to stay that way.

    So I went to the dealer to see about an Outlander XLS with sun and sound and the other package that's required for s&s. The price, supposedly an 'employee' deal as we know a mechanic who works there, was 9% off MSRP. Some in our household are still not sold on the Outlander and its rough handling over bumpy pavement. I guess that's what 'sport' handling is. The price didn't excite us, so we're waiting for a low mileage used one or who knows. Does that price seem good?
  • piastpiast Posts: 269
    At this time of the year, you should be able to grab 07 XLS in the low $25K range (MSRP 28.8) in AWD form, with Sun/Sound and Luxury Pkgs. and low financing.
  • weimweim Posts: 10
    I'm a huge Mitsubishi car fan. I'm on numbers 2 and 3 now and thinking of getting a new Outlander. In the Portland, Oregon/Vancouver, Washington area we now have 3 Mitsubishi dealers. Every dealership I have bought a vehicle from has went out of business. My first Mitsubishi was a 1997 Mirage LS Coupe, Bangkok blue. What a great car. I drove it 9 years with no problems at all. That dealer Gatewy Mitsubihi in Portland went under 2 months after I bought the Mirage. In 2004 I buy an Outlander XLS from Dick Hannah Mitsubishi in Vancouver, Washington where I live. The next year I bought my wife a black 2005 Eclipse GTS from the same dealer. February of 2006 Dick Hannah switches from Mitsubishi to Kia. More volume they said. Now, living in Vancouver, my closest dealer is now Rey Reece Volkswagen/Mitsubishi in Portland. They were OK, but just last month they dumped Mitsubishi for Hyundai. We do have a new Mitsubishi dealer in Vancouver now Pete Cann. I think I'm going to trade my 04 Outlander XLS on a new 2008 there. I just hope they can stay in business. It's getting hard to be a Mitsubishi loyalist here.
  • I was just about to buy an Outlander and now find that there is only one dealership in the whole of the Portland area. This has made me have serious second thoughts with regards to keeping the warranty up. I think Mitsu's are great cars, but car owners need a support network. Vancouver, Salem and Beaverton have all closed their dealerships. I called Mitsubishi and they said they have lots of calls regarding the distance to their local dealers. Are people having problems getting servicing ect?
  • I have no problem. We've got about 6 Mitsu dealerships, and keep getting service reminders mailing from my dealership.
  • Where about are you? Anywhere near portland, OR area?
  • chisfu1chisfu1 Posts: 25
    Actually, Mitsubishi is more like a multi-industries corporation in the world, they build planes, trains, cars, home appliances, ships and ocean liners, bank and financial institution. I believe they will be around and will not go away. Their cars are very reliable but I am not sure if the paint of their cars seem like fading so bad after 5 years... it happened to my Tredia, Mirage, Colt, Expo and Diamante in the past 20 years. I am planning to buy the Outlander and hopefully the paint on it will be better!
This discussion has been closed.