The FINANCIAL — Mitsubishi Motors Corporation (MMC) on January 30 announced that it has maintained the momentum behind its V-shaped recovery, with a 10% increase in retail sales volumes in calendar year 2017.
Mitsubishi Motors sold 1,030,000 vehicles in the calendar year, up from 934,000 in 2016. The final quarter of 2017 was particularly strong with retail volumes of 279,000, a 18% improvement from the 237,000 sold in the same period in the previous year.
The increase in sales volumes was led by China, a key market for Mitsubishi Motors’ that recently announced a three-year strategic plan, DRIVE FOR GROWTH. In calendar 2017, sales in China rose by 56% to 129,000, and it became the group’s largest market thanks to the strong demand for the locally produced Outlander, according to Mitsubishi Motors Corporation.
The company’s business in the United States also turned in a strong performance with sales of 104,000 for the year, an 8% increase on 2016 and the first time the company has surpassed 100,000 units since 2007.
Mitsubishi Motors’ strong ASEAN business also contributed well, supported by the launch of the XPANDER compact multi-purpose vehicle in Indonesia. Annual volumes in Indonesia, where the company opened a new assembly plant last year, grew by 19% to 80,000.
Other strong performances came from Thailand (annual sales up 26% to 70,000), the Philippines (up 20% to 71,000) and Australia (up 10% to 81,000). Mitsubishi Motors has a market share of more than 5% in each of the markets of Indonesia, Thailand, the Philippines and Australia.
Across the ASEAN business as a whole, annual sales grew by 17% to 242,000.
Elsewhere, sales in Germany increased by 16% to 45,000. The company also benefited from the recovery in the Russian economy, where annual volumes increased by 45% to 24,000. In contrast, there was a decline in sales by 18% to 24,000 in the United Arab Emirates partly because of regional tensions.
The company’s Japanese business also made progress, increasing sales by 7% to 92,000 in the calendar year as the marketing of kei-cars resumed after the interruption of 2016.
Trevor Mann, chief operating officer of Mitsubishi Motors, said: “Mitsubishi Motors had a good 2017, with strong performances led by our businesses in China and the ASEAN region. It was also encouraging to see our domestic business in Japan take its first steps on the road to recovery.