MMC to boost Thai output capacity for Mirage vehicles

Kyodo

Mitsubishi Motors Corp. will ramp up its output capacity in Thailand during fiscal 2013 to build a sedan version of the Mirage for global export.

“As we are planning to start manufacturing sedans in Thailand from the next fiscal year . . . we would like to increase the total production capacity of our Thai plants to 500,000 units,” up from 460,000 at present, MMC President Osamu Masuko said Wednesday as he unveiled the new Mirage hatchback.

The automaker plans to manufacture some 120,000 units of the hatchback, which is expected to hit the domestic market at the end of the month, in Thailand during the current fiscal year for export to Japan. MMC said it also plans to sell the vehicle in about 150 nations worldwide, including in Europe and Australia.

The company will become the second Japanese carmaker to import Thai-made vehicles for domestic sale. Nissan Motor Co. is already selling March subcompacts assembled in Thailand.

The new 1-liter Mirage boasts fuel economy of 27.2 km per liter, the best mileage among gasoline vehicles in Japan, excluding minivehicles. The retail price ranges from ¥998,000 to ¥1.29 million.