Mitsubishi stops Pajero production after a 39-year run with more than 3.3 million sales globally. Pajero will hit the end of the road of the production line in 2021, the Japanese automaker has confirmed.
The news comes as Mitsubishi declared its highest financial loss in 18 years and hinted it would slowly retreat from the European market and focus more on Asia, where their market is more profitable.
A statement from Mitsubishi Japan said, “Mitsubishi Motors Corporation, at its July 27, 2020 board of directors meeting, resolved to stop production in first half of 2021 and close the factory of its domestic production subsidiary Pajero manufacturing.”
The statement further continued: “To establish appropriate production capacity based on the new mid-term plan, we have decided to stop production and close the factory of Pajero Manufacturing. Vehicle manufacturing of Pajero manufacturing will be transferred to Mitsubishi Motors Corporation’s Okazaki factory.
Its being understood that transferring the ageing tool to manufacture the Pajero is not a wise choice for the company. The company doesn’t want any further investment given the market shift towards “crossover” recreational vehicles over highly capable off-roaders.
The Pajero Legacy
In Australia more than 150,000 units of Mitsubishi Pajero have been sold since the first model was introduced in 1983 as a two-door, followed by a four-door in 1984.
Four generations of the Pajero have been made by Mitsubishi since 1982. The last batch is due to roll off by the middle of 2021 from the production house of the Japanese auto giant.
The latest model of the Mitsubishi Pajero went on sale in 2006 and is now 14 years old. The initial blueprints of this model dates back to the model introduced in 1999.
In Australia, sales have been downhill since 2010, as buyers switched preferences to car derived “soft-roaders” over SUVs. In the face of strong competition. Mitsubishi’s reports say 2847 units of Pajero were sold in 2019 whereas, 8490 units were sold in 2002.
The current model of Mitsubishi Pajero will be 15 years old when it retires next year. This model cycle is twice more than that of previous generations, which were revamped every 7 years.
The Japanese company’s biggest export was in year 2000 when 129,198 units were shipped overseas. However, the global sales of Pajero started falling steadily from 2008.
This was a report of the full-size Mitsubishi Pajero, but this name will be carried on by the smaller and cheaper Mitsubishi Pajero Sport. It’s a heavy duty four-wheel-drive.