AT THE end of a milestone year in Europe – 40 years in business and return to profit for FY 2013 – Mitsubishi Motors Corporation continued to strengthen its position in the region with a sales increase of 28 per cent to 136,928 units, versus 106,712 units for CY13, for the MME34 area (i.e. excluding Russia and Ukraine / including L200), it was announced today.

Fast(er) growth

These results first echoed the overall economic situation in Europe, whether recovery (in Spain, where the brand grew by 51 per cent, jumping from # 9 to # 6 in the MME34 Top Ten), strengthening (in the United Kingdom with + 52 per cent) or the continuous growth of Central Europe’s largest economy – Poland – now joining the Top Five (with + 77 per cent).

The MME34 performance was consistent with the good results recorded by Mitsubishi Motors in other mature markets during CY14 such as the United States (+ 24.8 per cent) and Canada (+ 7.6 per cent).

Therefore, for CY2014, the MME34 Top Ten reads as follows:

1 – Germany: 24,974 units (+ 14 per cent)
2 – The UK: 22,793 units (+ 52 per cent)
3 – Israel: 13,154 units (+ 108 per cent)
4 – The Netherlands: 12,074 units (- 2 per cent)
5 – Poland: 6,632 units (+ 77 per cent)
6 – Spain 6,147 units (+ 51 per cent)
7 – Norway: 5,843 units (- 7 per cent)
8 – Sweden: 5,778 units (+ 77 per cent)
9 – Turkey: 5,428 units (+ 6 per cent)
10 – France: 5,106 units (- 3 per cent)

A relevant value proposition

Mitsubishi Motors’ growth also reflected the relevant value proposition offered to MME34 customers by its various models, from core ASX (+ 33 per cent) to the evergreen Pajero/Montero/Shogun (+ 26 per cent) or current L200, segment leader in Turkey, # 2 MME34 market for L200, with a 33 per cent local segment share (4,205 units).

The same applied to the rewarding performance of the “Global Small” range in the model’s key markets of Germany (9,350 Space Stars) or Denmark (1,732 Space Stars): in this country, it even allowed a real comeback for the brand (2,624 Mitsubishi sales in total or + > 200 per cent). In Israel – where Mitsubishi Motors was the biggest-growing brand in the local Top 25 for the second year in a row – “Global Small” was also a strong contributor with 3,762 Space Stars and 4,117 Attrages sold during CY14.

Another indication of Mitsubishi Motors’ success can be found in the United Kingdom where the dealer network generated a higher financial return on sales than at any time in the history of the brand in the country.

All in all, Mitsubishi Motors’ Top Five for CY2014 in its MME34 commercial territory was:

1 – Outlander: 38,617 units (of which 19,980 were PHEVs)
2 – ASX (pictured above): 36,702 units (+ 33 per cent)
3 – Global Small*: 30,982 units (+ 66 per cent for Space Star/Mirage)
4 – L200: 18,371 units (+11 per cent)
5 – Pajero/Montero/Shogun: 6,491 units (+ 26 per cent)
*Space Star/Mirage and Attrage

Plugged-in

Obviously, the relevance of the Mitsubishi Motors value proposition in the MME34 area can also be appreciated through the success of Outlander PHEV (19,980 units):

1 – The Netherlands: 7,666 units
2 – The UK: 5,370 units
3 – Sweden: 2,289 units
4 – Norway: 1,485 units
5 – Germany: 1,060 units

Made gradually available throughout the MME34 area, the Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV topped charts as the best-selling plug-in hybrid electric vehicle in Europe by quite a significant margin versus competition. One of the best examples was Sweden where 2,289 units have been sold during CY2014, translating into a market share of nearly 50 per cent within the “Super Eco Car” class, far ahead of the Number Two and its 745 units.

This feat was entirely down to Outlander PHEV’s next-frontier engineering and real-life USPs (Twin Motor self-charging 4WD SUV, multiple automatic electric drive modes, full five-seater with 463 l cargo volume, etc) rather than to the sole advantage of somehow elusive tax benefits, equally accessible to all other but less successful plug-in hybrids.

To be continued…

This positive trend should continue for Mitsubishi Motors in Europe during CY2015 with significant product launches, including the all-new L200 pickup, as well as noteworthy brand initiatives.