Mitsubishi Mirage US Launch in Question

Mitsubishi Mirage US Launch in Question

It’ll be sold in Canada, confirmed Mitsubishi spokesman Roger Yasukawa, however, regarding plans to launch it’s new Mirage minicar in the US, the firm currently remains on the fence.

At 146.1 inches long, the Mirage is roughly a foot shorter than current small cars sold in the US, including the Ford Fiesta and Kia Rio. More akin to the Chevy Spark than anything else, the Mirage, which is powered by 1.0 or 1.2 liter three-cylinder engine, teamed with a CVT transmission, has been primarily conceived for low-budget motoring in developing countries, part of the reason why it’s being assembled in Thailand (at least for now).

However, with Mitsubishi’s US dealer network currently starved for new product, the introduction of a low priced sub-sub compact car would likely make a good deal of sense, at least for potentially attracting younger and new customers to the brand.

That said, given that low price is still a huge factor when it comes to purchasing small, entry-level cars in this country, plus the fact that cars in the Mirage’s category are a relatively new phenomena, there’s still a great deal of uncertainty about how such vehicles will fare in the long run.

In addition, given Mitsubishi’s tight corporate marketing budgets these days, with a new Outlander SUV in the wings, resources are probably simply not available for introducing two new vehicles at a similar time.

There’s also the question of profitability. Traditionally, small cars have been low profit centres for many dealers, thus establishing an MSRP for the Mirage that not only attracts customers, but also enables concessionaires to actually make money on units sold is of paramount importance.

Nevertheless, given that some automakers have introduced smaller vehicles to Canada, which have then later found their way to the US (BMW X1, Smart Four-Two), there’s a distinct possibility the same thing could happen with the Mirage.

[Source: Automotive News]