Mirage zooms off with 49% market share
The Mitsubishi Mirage has become the most popular hatchback eco-car in the market, driving away with a 49-per-cent market share as of January.
Since being launched in the first quarter last year, 49,296 Mirages have been sold - almost 50 per cent of Mitsubishi's sales volume in Thailand, said Mitsubishi Motors (Thailand) president Nobuyuki Murahashi.
The Mirage is a "global compact car" produced at a new third factory at MMTh's Laem Chabang Plant, the largest Mitsubishi plant and export hub outside Japan. As of last month, at least 109,300 vehicles were produced, with 54 per cent (almost 58,800) being for the domestic market and 46 per cent (50,500) for export.
"For the Thai market, we still have about 10,000 back orders and customers have to wait for approximately two months," he said.
As for export markets, Murahashi said the Mirage was introduced in Brunei in June, Japan in August, Indonesia in September, the Philippines and Malaysia in November, Bangladesh and Australia in January and New Zealand in February, followed by European markets. Up to date, Mitsubishi has exported 21,500 Mirages to Japan.
"We got a very warm welcome from export markets, especially Japan. The Mirage has been given good reviews by Japanese auto magazines," he pointed out.
The Automotive Researchers' & Journalists' Conference of Japan, which is the Japan Car of the Year selection committee, named the Mirage one of the "6 Best Cars" in 2012, and commended its "high fuel efficiency", "affordable price", and "easy to drive" characteristics.
"They said the Mirage made in Thailand satisfies everyone and meets requirements of a global compact car with conventional and traditional technologies from Mitsubishi Motors. With its extensive weight reduction and other refinements, the Mirage achieved the best-in-class fuel efficiency in registered gasoline vehicles in Japan, and showed pleasant and comfortable driving performance," Murahashi added.