Mitsubishi Going on 40 in Europe

40 years of Mitsubishi in Europe 1 photo
Photo: Mitsubishi
October will mark the beginning of the 40th year since Mitsubishi Motors Corporation has been on sale in Europe, since the first car went on display at the London Motor Show in October 1974.
Even before that, the Japanese car company was present in Europe, namely Spain (1956) and Greece (1962).

Mitsubishi European Milestones

1956:  First Mitsubishi vehicles are sold in Europe (Spain) followed by Greece in 1962
1970: Mitsubishi Motors Corporation (MMC) is established further to an agreement between Mitsubishi Heavy Industries Co. and Chrysler Corporation
1974:  MMC is allowed by Chrysler to sell in Europe under its own name:
• August: first Distribution agreement (Belgium & Luxemburg), followed by The Netherlands and The United Kingdom
• October: European public introduction @ Earls Court London Motor Show
1975: Start of sales in those three countries (Lancer and Galant)
1977: First Liaison Office (Rotterdam, The Netherlands):
         First Rally victory in Europe (Lancer - class win @ 1000 Lakes Rally)
1982:   End of distribution agreement with Chrysler International S.A.
1985:  Liaison office moves to Frankfurt (Germany)
1989:  European R&D Centre opens near Frankfurt (Germany)
1991:  Start of operations in Russia
1993: European Sales & Marketing HQ (“MMSE”) opens near Amsterdam (The   Netherlands)
1995: Introduction of Carisma, MMC’s first European specific product (platform shared with Volvo – manufactured at NedCar)
2001:  Mitsubishi Motors acquires 100% of NedCar
2004:  Introduction of Europe-only Colt (platform shared with DaimlerChrysler – manufactured at NedCar)
          Colt is awarded with "Das Goldene Lenkrad" (Golden Steering Wheel) by the German Sunday newspaper "Bild am Sonntag," published by Axel Springer AG
2005:  First collaborative partnership with PSA Peugeot Citroën (2nd generation Outlander-based Peugeot 4007 and Citroën C-Crosser)
2007:  Russia becomes a stand-alone region, split from Mitsubishi Motors Europe
2009:  Mitsubishi Motors Europe’s restructuring
2010: Start of production at Kaluga plant in Russia (“PCMA Rus” a 70% PSA – 30% MMC joint venture) [3]
         European market introduction of i-MiEV, 100% electric urban runabout
2012: NedCar sold to VDL Groep B.V. for symbolic € 1,00 (with guarantee for preservation   of employment)
          MMC takes 9% of its Russian Distributor (later renamed “”MMC Rus” in May 2013)
2013: First European market introduction of Outlander PHEV, plug-in hybrid electric crossover
          Mitsubishi Motors Europe moves to a new HQ building near Maastricht
2014:  Return to profit in Europe forecasted (FY13).
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About the author: Mihnea Radu
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Mihnea's favorite cars have already been built, the so-called modern classics from the '80s and '90s. He also loves local car culture from all over the world, so don't be surprised to see him getting excited about weird Japanese imports, low-rider VWs out of Germany, replicas from Russia or LS swaps down in Florida.
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