Mitsubishi will remain in some European markets after all, a surprise announcement from the company and its alliance partners Renault and Nissan confirmed early Wednesday. This is a reversal of what was expected after several rounds of restructuring were announced in 2020 as the company looked ahead to a $3.4 billion loss.
From the announcement, we can gather that Mitsubishi’s survival on the continent comes care of its partners, who will supply vehicles that have already been approved for sale in Europe to be offered alongside the Mitsubishi Eclipse Cross plug-in hybrid. The announcement refers to them as “sister models […] with differentiations,” which could mean anything from typical platform-sharing to some old-fashioned badge engineering. Given the company-wide cost-saving efforts, we’re inclined to believe it’s more along the lines of the latter.
“Mitsubishi Motors has decided to procure OEM-model vehicles from Renault, best-sellers on the European market which already meet regulatory requirements, for selected major markets in Europe,” the announcement said. “Starting 2023, Mitsubishi Motors will thus sell two ‘sister models’ produced in Groupe Renault plants, which are based on the same platforms but with differentiations, reflecting the Mitsubishi brand’s DNA.”
The Alliance has also not yet confirmed which markets will remain open to Mitsubishi, however Automotive News has confirmed that the UK will not be one of them. Mitsubishi has already launched its updated Eclipse Cross lineup, but the forthcoming PHEV has yet to be fully detailed. The company said it has no plans to bring it to the United States, where the Outlander PHEV has moved in only limited volume.