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Who Owns Mitsubishi?

For over half a century, Mitsubishi Motors has been a familiar presence on Canadian roads, earning a reputation for producing affordable, fuel-efficient vehicles that cater to the needs of Canadian drivers. From its humble beginnings in Japan to its current position as part of the global Renault-Nissan-Mitsubishi Alliance, Mitsubishi’s journey in the Canadian automotive market has been a winding road filled with both challenges and triumphs.


Throughout its history, Mitsubishi has consistently delivered vehicles that prioritize value, practicality, and reliability – traits that resonate deeply with Canadian consumers. Whether it’s the compact and fuel-sipping Mirage, the rugged and capable Outlander SUV, or the sleek and stylish Eclipse Cross, Mitsubishi’s lineup has something to offer for every lifestyle and budget.


Beyond its diverse range of vehicles, Mitsubishi has also earned a reputation for being at the forefront of advanced safety technologies and industry-leading warranties. This commitment to innovation and customer satisfaction has solidified the brand’s standing in the Canadian market, where drivers demand vehicles that can withstand the country’s diverse and often harsh driving conditions.

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The Birth of Mitsubishi Motors

Mitsubishi Motors traces its roots back to 1970 when it was spun off from the Mitsubishi conglomerate as an independent company focused on automotive manufacturing. From its inception, the Japanese automaker set its sights on producing compact, fuel-efficient vehicles that appealed to the masses.

In an era when larger, gas-guzzling cars dominated the roads, Mitsubishi’s emphasis on small, economical models was a bold move. However, this strategy proved prescient as rising fuel prices and environmental concerns drove consumer demand for more efficient transportation options.

The company’s early lineup featured models like the Mitsubishi Minica kei car and the Lancer compact sedan, both of which prioritized affordability and fuel economy without compromising on quality or reliability. This ethos would become a hallmark of the Mitsubishi brand, laying the foundation for its future success in markets around the world, including Canada.

 

Rising Popularity in the 1990s and 2000s

As Mitsubishi established itself in the Canadian market, its affordable and fuel-efficient vehicles struck a chord with consumers. The 1990s and 2000s saw the Japanese automaker gain significant traction, particularly with models like the Lancer, Outlander, and Eclipse.

The Lancer, a compact sedan, embodied Mitsubishi’s commitment to value and performance. With its sleek styling, peppy engines, and impressive handling, it appealed to young drivers seeking an affordable yet spirited ride. The Lancer’s rally-inspired variants, such as the Evolution, further cemented its reputation as a driver’s car.

Meanwhile, the Outlander SUV capitalized on the growing demand for versatile and capable crossovers. Offering a spacious interior, all-wheel-drive capability, and respectable fuel economy, it became a popular choice for Canadian families seeking adventure without sacrificing practicality.

The Eclipse, a stylish sports coupe, added a dash of excitement to Mitsubishi’s lineup. With its distinctive look and available turbocharged engines, it attracted enthusiasts seeking an exhilarating driving experience at an affordable price point.

As these models gained popularity, Mitsubishi solidified its reputation for offering value-packed vehicles that didn’t compromise on performance or features. The brand’s growing presence on Canadian roads was a testament to its ability to cater to diverse consumer needs, from daily commuters to adventure-seekers.

 

The DaimlerChrysler Era (2000-2007)

In the early 2000s, Mitsubishi Motors found itself in a period of transition and uncertainty. The Japanese automaker, known for its affordable and fuel-efficient vehicles, was struggling to maintain its footing in an increasingly competitive global market. It was during this time that DaimlerChrysler, the German-American automotive giant, saw an opportunity to expand its reach and strengthen its position in Asia.

In 2000, DaimlerChrysler acquired a controlling stake in Mitsubishi Motors, with the goal of leveraging the Japanese company’s expertise and popularity in the Asian market. The move was seen as a strategic alliance that would benefit both automakers, allowing them to share resources, technology, and manufacturing capabilities.

However, the marriage between DaimlerChrysler and Mitsubishi Motors was not without its challenges. Cultural differences, management conflicts, and diverging priorities soon became apparent, leading to a strained relationship between the two companies. Despite initial optimism, the partnership failed to deliver the expected synergies and cost savings.

After seven tumultuous years, the alliance between DaimlerChrysler and Mitsubishi Motors came to an end in 2007. The German-American automaker divested its controlling stake, leaving Mitsubishi Motors to chart its own course once again. The dissolution of the partnership was a setback for both companies, but it also presented an opportunity for Mitsubishi Motors to refocus its efforts and regain its independence.

 

Joining the Renault-Nissan Alliance

In 2016, Mitsubishi Motors’ ownership landscape underwent a pivotal shift when Nissan acquired a 34% controlling stake in the company. This move marked the formation of the Renault-Nissan-Mitsubishi Alliance, a strategic partnership among the three automakers aimed at leveraging their collective strengths and resources.

For Mitsubishi, the alliance represented a lifeline, providing much-needed stability and access to cutting-edge technologies. By joining forces with Renault and Nissan, Mitsubishi gained a powerful ally with a global footprint and a shared commitment to innovation and efficiency.

The benefits of this partnership are manifold. Mitsubishi can now tap into the vast engineering expertise and research capabilities of the alliance, enabling the development of more advanced and competitive vehicles. Additionally, the automakers can share platforms, components, and manufacturing facilities, resulting in significant cost savings and economies of scale.

Moreover, the alliance grants Mitsubishi access to Renault and Nissan’s extensive electric vehicle (EV) technologies, positioning the company to capitalize on the growing demand for eco-friendly transportation solutions. With the combined resources and knowledge of the alliance members, Mitsubishi can accelerate its transition towards electrification and introduce cutting-edge EV models tailored to the Canadian market.

 

Mitsubishi’s Current Canadian Lineup

Despite the ownership changes over the years, Mitsubishi has maintained a strong foothold in the Canadian auto market, particularly in the SUV segment. The brand’s current lineup caters to the demands of Canadian drivers, offering a range of affordable, fuel-efficient, and feature-packed vehicles.

Leading the charge is the Outlander, Mitsubishi’s best-selling model in Canada. This mid-size SUV combines spacious interiors, advanced safety features, and impressive fuel economy, making it an attractive choice for families and adventure seekers alike. With its rugged yet stylish design, the Outlander is equally at home navigating city streets or tackling off-road trails.

For those seeking a more compact option, the RVR (known as the Outlander Sport in some markets) delivers a perfect blend of maneuverability and versatility. This crossover SUV boasts a comfortable ride, ample cargo space, and a host of technology features, making it an ideal companion for urban explorers and road trippers.

The Eclipse Cross, Mitsubishi’s latest addition to the Canadian lineup, brings a fresh perspective to the compact SUV segment. With its bold styling, advanced infotainment systems, and available all-wheel-drive capability, the Eclipse Cross appeals to drivers who value both form and function. Its striking design turns heads, while its practical interior and efficient powertrain make it a sensible choice for daily commutes and weekend adventures.

 

Affordable Pricing and Value

One of the key pillars of Mitsubishi’s success in Canada has been its commitment to offering vehicles that deliver exceptional value for money. The automaker has consistently focused on providing affordable pricing across its lineup, making its vehicles accessible to a wide range of Canadian buyers.

From the compact Mirage hatchback to the versatile Outlander SUV, Mitsubishi’s models are designed to provide a compelling blend of features, performance, and practicality at a price point that undercuts many of its competitors. This approach has resonated with cost-conscious Canadian consumers who prioritize getting the most bang for their buck.

Mitsubishi’s value proposition extends beyond just the initial purchase price. The brand’s vehicles are engineered to be economical to operate, with impressive fuel efficiency ratings that translate into real savings at the gas pump. Additionally, Mitsubishi’s vehicles are known for their durability and reliability, minimizing the need for costly repairs and maintenance over the long term.

By consistently delivering affordable pricing and exceptional value, Mitsubishi has carved out a loyal customer base in Canada. For many Canadians, a Mitsubishi vehicle represents the perfect balance between quality, features, and affordability – a combination that has proven to be a winning formula in the competitive Canadian auto market.

 

Leadership in Fuel Efficiency

In today’s world of fluctuating fuel prices and heightened environmental awareness, fuel efficiency has become a top priority for many Canadian drivers. Mitsubishi Motors has consistently demonstrated its commitment to producing vehicles that offer exceptional fuel economy, making them an attractive choice for cost-conscious and eco-conscious consumers alike.

One of Mitsubishi’s standout models in this regard is the Mirage, a subcompact hatchback that boasts an impressive combined fuel economy rating of just 5.9 L/100 km. This remarkable efficiency is achieved through a combination of lightweight construction, aerodynamic design, and advanced powertrain technologies, allowing drivers to maximize their mileage while minimizing their environmental impact.

Beyond the Mirage, Mitsubishi’s commitment to fuel efficiency permeates its entire lineup. The RVR compact SUV, for instance, delivers a combined fuel economy of 7.3 L/100 km, making it an ideal choice for those seeking the versatility of an SUV without sacrificing efficiency. Similarly, the Outlander PHEV, Mitsubishi’s flagship plug-in hybrid electric vehicle, offers an electric-only range of up to 39 kilometers, enabling Canadian drivers to tackle their daily commutes with zero tailpipe emissions.

Mitsubishi’s focus on fuel efficiency extends beyond just the vehicles themselves. The automaker has invested heavily in advanced powertrain technologies, such as its innovative MIVEC variable valve timing system, which optimizes engine performance and efficiency across a wide range of driving conditions. Additionally, Mitsubishi’s continuously variable transmissions (CVTs) contribute to smoother, more efficient power delivery, further enhancing fuel economy.

As energy costs continue to fluctuate and environmental concerns grow, Mitsubishi’s dedication to producing highly fuel-efficient vehicles positions the automaker as a leader in meeting the evolving needs of Canadian drivers. By prioritizing efficiency without compromising on performance, safety, or comfort, Mitsubishi is paving the way for a more sustainable and cost-effective driving experience in Canada.

 

Advanced Safety Features

When it comes to advanced safety features, Mitsubishi has consistently been at the forefront, equipping its Canadian models with cutting-edge technologies designed to provide peace of mind and protect occupants. The automaker’s commitment to safety has earned it top ratings from leading safety organizations, making Mitsubishi vehicles among the safest choices on Canadian roads.

At the heart of Mitsubishi’s safety philosophy is the “Reinforced Impact Safety Evolution” (RISE) body construction, which utilizes advanced high-tensile strength steel and strategically reinforced crumple zones to absorb and dissipate impact energy in the event of a collision. This innovative design not only enhances occupant protection but also contributes to the overall rigidity and stability of the vehicle.

Complementing the robust body structure is a comprehensive suite of active safety features, collectively known as Mitsubishi’s “Driving Assistance Systems.” These advanced technologies work in tandem to help prevent accidents and mitigate the severity of collisions. Among the standout features are:

 

  • Forward Collision Mitigation (FCM): This system uses radar and camera sensors to detect potential frontal collisions and can automatically apply the brakes to avoid or reduce the severity of an impact.
  • Lane Departure Warning (LDW): Utilizing a camera to monitor lane markings, this feature alerts the driver if the vehicle begins to drift unintentionally from its lane, helping to prevent accidental lane departures.
  • Blind Spot Warning (BSW): Radar sensors detect vehicles in the driver’s blind spot, providing visual and audible warnings to help avoid dangerous lane changes.
  • Rear Cross Traffic Alert (RCTA): When reversing, this system detects approaching vehicles from either side and warns the driver, reducing the risk of collisions in parking lots or driveways.

 

In addition to these advanced driver assistance systems, Mitsubishi’s Canadian models also offer innovative features like the Multi-View Camera System, which provides a 360-degree bird’s-eye view of the vehicle’s surroundings, making it easier to maneuver in tight spaces or challenging environments.

Mitsubishi’s commitment to safety has earned its vehicles top ratings from organizations like the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) and the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA). With a focus on occupant protection and accident prevention, Mitsubishi continues to raise the bar for safety in the Canadian automotive market.

 

Industry-Leading Warranties

One of the key selling points for Mitsubishi vehicles in Canada has been the brand’s impressive warranty coverage. Mitsubishi consistently ranks near the top of the industry when it comes to warranty protection, giving Canadian drivers peace of mind and added value.

The centerpiece is Mitsubishi’s 10-year/160,000 km Powertrain Limited Warranty, which covers the engine, transmission, and other key powertrain components. This warranty is fully transferable and provides exceptional long-term protection. Many competitors only offer 5-year powertrain warranties.

In addition, Mitsubishi provides a 5-year/100,000 km New Vehicle Limited Warranty that covers most vehicle components against defects in materials or workmanship. A 7-year/Unlimited km Anti-Perforation Warranty protects against corrosion perforation, while 24-hour Roadside Assistance is also included for 5 years.

These comprehensive warranties demonstrate Mitsubishi’s confidence in its vehicles’ quality and durability. Canadian drivers can purchase a Mitsubishi knowing they are getting exceptional protection and value over the long haul. The warranties are a major reason why Mitsubishi continues to earn high marks from leading automotive review sources in Canada.

 

Electrifying the Future

As the world shifts towards a more sustainable and eco-friendly future, Mitsubishi Motors is gearing up to embrace the electric revolution. With the backing of the Renault-Nissan Alliance, the Japanese automaker is poised to leverage the group’s cutting-edge electric vehicle (EV) technology and expertise to accelerate its own EV development.

Mitsubishi has already taken significant strides in the electric vehicle space, introducing the innovative Outlander Plug-in Hybrid Electric Vehicle (PHEV) to the Canadian market. This pioneering model combines the benefits of an electric motor and a gasoline engine, offering drivers the best of both worlds – the efficiency and environmental friendliness of an electric vehicle, along with the extended range and convenience of a traditional combustion engine.

Building on the success of the Outlander PHEV, Mitsubishi is now setting its sights on developing a fully electric lineup to cater to the growing demand for zero-emission vehicles in Canada. By tapping into the resources and knowledge of the Renault-Nissan Alliance, which has already produced popular EVs like the Nissan Leaf and the Renault Zoe, Mitsubishi aims to bring affordable and practical electric vehicles to Canadian consumers.

While specific details about upcoming EV models are still under wraps, industry insiders speculate that Mitsubishi could leverage its expertise in compact and mid-size SUVs to introduce an all-electric version of its popular RVR or Eclipse Cross models. These potential offerings would align perfectly with the Canadian market’s preference for versatile, spacious, and capable vehicles that can handle the country’s diverse driving conditions.

Furthermore, Mitsubishi’s commitment to affordability and value could position any future electric vehicles as attractive options for eco-conscious Canadians seeking an accessible entry point into the EV market. By leveraging the Alliance’s economies of scale and shared technology, Mitsubishi could potentially offer competitively priced EVs without compromising on range, performance, or features.

 

Leveraging the Alliance for EV Tech

One of the key advantages for Mitsubishi in joining the Renault-Nissan Alliance is the potential for sharing resources and technology in the rapidly growing electric vehicle (EV) space. Both Renault and Nissan have been at the forefront of EV development, with models like the Nissan Leaf and Renault Zoe paving the way for mainstream adoption.

By pooling their expertise and R&D efforts, the Alliance can accelerate the development of new EV platforms, battery technologies, and charging solutions. This could give Mitsubishi a significant head start in bringing its own line of electric vehicles to market, rather than having to develop everything from scratch.

Nissan’s experience with the Leaf, in particular, could prove invaluable for Mitsubishi. As one of the first mass-produced EVs, the Leaf has provided valuable insights into consumer preferences, range anxiety concerns, and the infrastructure requirements for widespread EV adoption.

Furthermore, the Alliance’s combined scale and purchasing power could help drive down the costs of EV components, making it easier for Mitsubishi to offer affordable electric models that appeal to budget-conscious Canadian buyers.

With the Canadian government’s push for increased EV adoption and the phase-out of internal combustion engines, Mitsubishi’s partnership with Renault and Nissan could position the automaker as a leader in the country’s transition to electrified transportation.

 

Adapting to Canadian Driving Needs

Mitsubishi’s success in Canada can be attributed to its ability to tailor its vehicles to meet the unique driving requirements of Canadians. With vast landscapes, harsh winters, and diverse terrain, Canadian drivers demand vehicles that can handle challenging conditions while offering ample space and versatility.

One key area where Mitsubishi has excelled is in the SUV and crossover segments. Models like the Outlander and RVR have been designed with Canadian drivers in mind, featuring robust all-wheel-drive systems, increased ground clearance, and rugged construction to tackle snowy roads and rough terrain with ease. These vehicles also offer spacious interiors and flexible cargo configurations, making them ideal for road trips, outdoor adventures, and accommodating larger families.

Mitsubishi’s engineers have also focused on improving fuel efficiency across their Canadian lineup, recognizing the importance of reducing operating costs and environmental impact. Advanced technologies like continuously variable transmissions (CVTs) and lightweight materials help maximize fuel economy without compromising performance or capability.

Furthermore, Mitsubishi’s commitment to safety is particularly relevant in Canada, where inclement weather and remote driving conditions can pose additional risks. Features like advanced driver assistance systems, reinforced body structures, and cutting-edge safety technologies are designed to protect occupants and provide peace of mind, no matter where the journey takes them.

By closely monitoring the needs and preferences of Canadian drivers, Mitsubishi has been able to craft vehicles that strike the perfect balance between capability, efficiency, and practicality. This customer-centric approach has solidified the brand’s reputation as a trusted choice for Canadians seeking reliable, versatile, and affordable transportation options.

 

The Road Ahead for Mitsubishi Canada

As Mitsubishi Motors looks to the future in Canada, the automaker is well-positioned for continued growth and success. With the backing of the Renault-Nissan-Mitsubishi Alliance, Mitsubishi has access to substantial resources and cutting-edge technologies to help it adapt to the evolving needs of Canadian drivers.

One of the key focus areas for Mitsubishi in Canada is the development of electrified vehicles. The company recognizes the increasing demand for eco-friendly transportation options and is leveraging the expertise of its Alliance partners to accelerate its electric vehicle (EV) offerings. By tapping into Nissan’s acclaimed EV technology, including the popular Leaf, Mitsubishi aims to introduce a range of affordable and efficient electric models tailored to the Canadian market.

Additionally, Mitsubishi is committed to enhancing its existing lineup to better cater to the unique driving conditions and preferences of Canadians. This includes fortifying its SUV and crossover models with advanced all-wheel-drive systems, increased ground clearance, and robust heating and insulation capabilities to tackle harsh Canadian winters with ease.

Mitsubishi also recognizes the importance of staying ahead of the curve in terms of safety and connectivity features. The automaker is investing in cutting-edge driver-assistance technologies, such as adaptive cruise control, lane departure warning systems, and automatic emergency braking, to provide Canadian drivers with an added layer of protection and peace of mind on the road.

Furthermore, Mitsubishi is exploring opportunities to expand its presence in Canada by strengthening its dealer network and increasing its manufacturing footprint within the country. By bringing production closer to its customer base, Mitsubishi aims to streamline its supply chain, reduce costs, and offer even more competitive pricing to Canadian consumers.

Overall, Mitsubishi’s road ahead in Canada is paved with ambitious plans for sustainable growth, innovation, and customer satisfaction. With a strong commitment to adapting to local needs and leveraging the resources of the Renault-Nissan-Mitsubishi Alliance, Mitsubishi is well-positioned to solidify its position as a leading automotive brand in the Canadian market.

 

Conclusion: A Bright Future

Mitsubishi Motors has navigated a winding road of ownership changes, but its commitment to the Canadian market remains steadfast. From its humble beginnings in 1970 to its current status as part of the formidable Renault-Nissan-Mitsubishi Alliance, the automaker has consistently adapted to meet the evolving needs of Canadian drivers.

Today, Mitsubishi’s Canadian lineup, led by the popular Outlander SUV, offers a compelling blend of affordability, fuel efficiency, and advanced safety features. The brand’s industry-leading warranties further underscore its commitment to providing exceptional value to Canadian consumers.

Looking ahead, Mitsubishi is poised to capitalize on the growing demand for electrified vehicles in Canada. With access to the cutting-edge EV technologies of its Alliance partners, Renault and Nissan, the automaker is well-positioned to introduce compelling electric and hybrid models tailored to the unique driving conditions of the Great White North.

As Mitsubishi continues to embrace innovation and leverage the resources of the Renault-Nissan Alliance, its future in the Canadian market looks brighter than ever. With a strong focus on delivering vehicles that meet the diverse needs of Canadian drivers, Mitsubishi is poised to build upon its legacy of success and further solidify its position as a trusted and respected automotive brand in the country.

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Questions About Mitsubishi Ownership

Mitsubishi Motor Sales of Canada Inc. (MMSCAN) is the Canadian subsidiary of Mitsubishi Motors Corporation, headquartered in Japan. MMSCAN is a wholly owned subsidiary responsible for the distribution and sale of Mitsubishi vehicles in Canada.

Mitsubishi currently sells the Outlander, Outlander PHEV, Eclipse Cross, and RVR models in Canada. The Outlander and RVR are Mitsubishi’s most popular models in Canada, making up the majority of sales.

The majority of Mitsubishi vehicles sold in Canada are made in Japan at Mitsubishi’s manufacturing facilities. Some models also have production facilities in Thailand, China, Russia, and Indonesia which may supply vehicles to Canada.

Yes, Mitsubishi offers the Outlander PHEV plug-in hybrid electric vehicle in Canada. The Outlander PHEV allows over 50km of electric-only range before switching to hybrid operation.

In 2022, Mitsubishi had a 1.7% market share of total vehicle sales in Canada. This is up from a low of 0.9% in 2020 during the pandemic. Mitsubishi sold over 25,000 vehicles in Canada in 2022.

The current President and CEO of Mitsubishi Motor Sales of Canada is Kenji Harada, who took over the role in July 2021. Harada has worked for Mitsubishi for over 30 years in various leadership roles.

As of 2023, there are 69 authorized Mitsubishi dealers across Canada. The majority of dealerships are located in Ontario, Quebec and British Columbia.

New Mitsubishi vehicles sold in Canada come with a 5-year/100,000 km powertrain warranty and a 5-year/unlimited km roadside assistance program. This covers the engine, transmission and drivetrain components.

Yes, Mitsubishi Motor Finance offers competitive financing rates, leasing options, and purchase financing on new Mitsubishi models sold at Canadian dealerships. Extended warranty options are also available.

Mitsubishi recommends having your vehicle serviced every 12 months or 16,000 km, whichever comes first. This includes oil changes, inspections, fluid top ups, tire rotations and software updates.

Yes, most model year 2022 and newer Mitsubishi vehicles sold in Canada come equipped with the Mitsubishi connected app. This allows owners to remotely monitor the vehicle status, find parking locations, set boundary alerts and more.

The Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV won the 2022 Canadian Green Car Award and 2022 Canadian Car of the Year Best Large Utility Vehicle Award. The Eclipse Cross also won the 2021 ALG Residual Value Award.

Mitsubishi has not officially confirmed plans to launch any new models in Canada in the near future. However, the next-generation Outlander and Outlander PHEV are expected globally in the next couple years which may make their way to Canada.

All Mitsubishi vehicles sold in Canada come standard with forward collision mitigation, lane departure warning, auto high beams and more. Higher trims add features like blind spot warning, rear cross traffic alert, adaptive cruise control and more.

Mitsubishi vehicles generally score above-average in reliability according to Consumer Reports and J.D. Power ratings. The Outlander SUV in particular has better than average reliability ratings for the compact SUV segment.

Yes, many Mitsubishi vehicles are equipped with continuously variable transmissions (CVTs). Mitsubishi utilizes CVT technology to optimize efficiency and performance for models like the Outlander, Eclipse Cross and RVR.

Yes, the Mitsubishi Motors Club of Canada (MMCC) has an active online community forum for Mitsubishi owners at http://www.mmcc.ca/. Canadian owners can join to get insights from other local members.

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