Changes in the Strategy at Mitsubishi
The promise of revamped models from this well-known but little shopped automaker has already begun, but in order to really take a good look at where sales are going and how to actually increase the retail sales of their vehicles, Mitsubishi took a gander at their entire operation. What they found was selling a massive amount of cars to rental car companies, also known as fleet sales, has caused the sale of their cars on the retail side to suffer greatly. At one point Mitsubishi was selling nearly 25 percent of their vehicles to fleet sales, which caused the resale value of their cars to diminish greatly.
Since reviewing and revamping their direction the sales of cars as fleet sales is down to nearly seven percent overall and the company has now seen its 15th consecutive month of increased sales, giving them a lot to be excited about knowing they are taking their business in the right direction. The goal is to now keep fleet sales below ten percent year after year so they don’t experience the problems they had with the Galant in the mid-200s when over half of all Galants went to fleet sales and were then unable to be offered at reasonable lease prices for new ones.
As much as we know the Mirage to be what it is, a bare bones entry level car that comes at a low price and not much equipment, it has experienced some of the most promising increases in sales so far this year. The Mirage sales are up 74 percent over last year and it is now the second best selling product in the US after the Outlander Sport. The sales tactic for the Mirage is an unusual one but one that has become an important part of the car sales success.
Selling the Mirage has not come with showing off great features or a lot of extras; instead dealers are showing a new Mirage with a full warranty and no miles to those shoppers who are considering a used vehicle that is two to three years old and no longer has a warranty. In many instances the new Mirage wins out because of price, warranty and financing options, all of which make a lot of sense for a new car that has not already been down the road with someone else behind the wheel using up the warranty.
The next challenge facing Mitsubishi is getting back on the shopping list of many buyers. There are far fewer advertising dollars after several years of sluggish sales, but in order to become a serious consideration once again Mitsubishi will have to get their name in front of their target customers once again. What comes next is a lineup of revamped models that have a more modern look and design and hopefully a way to get the Mitsubishi name at least in contention for every category they have a vehicle for, giving more competition to the likes of Mazda, Nissan and Toyota.