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The Pajero is dead, says Mitsubishi CEO

Practical Motoring logo Practical Motoring 04-12-2015 Isaac Bober
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It’s true, Mitsubishi CEO, Osamu Masuko, has said the brand will concentrate on SUVs but that it will kill off the Pajero, the Lancer and the Galant.

Mitsubishi CEO Osamu Masuko has told US automotive trade publication, Automotive News, that the Pajero, as we know it, is a dead duck. There had been rumours the Pajero, known as the Montero in the US and on sale there until 2006, would make a comeback, but no. And Masuko has pointed the finger at fuel consumption as the reason for knocking the full-size fourby on the head.

That said, the Pajero could still return in other markets, right? Wrong. He’s said the Pajero will not be developed for any market. Mitsubishi, Masuko said, will focus on the US market and developing products principally to suit it.

This means, Mitsubishi will establish a team in the US to liaise with US environment officials around emissions testing procedures, to ensure the maker can meet the needs of there strict Californian regulators. It will also look to follow other car makers and establish an R&D centre in Silicon Valley to further develop autonomous driving technology.

"The U.S. is a cutting-edge car market," Masuko said. "There is much we can learn from being there. […] I thought it would be good to send a younger generation of employees to learn from them.”

Mitsubishi, Masuko said, plans to roll out a series of plug-in hybrid SUV, including a new Outlander PHEV and a small, coupe-styled crossover which is likely to replace the Lancer which has also been destined for the dustbin of history. The Galant will also be discontinued.

"We are strong in SUVs and four-wheel drives. And that is what we would like to focus on as core models in the US market. We have changed direction," Masuko said. "We are going to allocate more resources to the areas where we are strong in the US."

We sought a response from Mitsubishi Australia and it confirmed the sad news, saying it didn't have anything else to add.

So, what do you think about the news of no more Pajero? Obviously the Pajero Sport has just arrived and it looks likely that that model is about as big and rugged as Mitsubishi will go from now on. See you in the comments.

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