Mitsubishi Motors Corporation global production fell 65% to 45,048 units, the 12th consecutive monthly decrease since March 2008.

Production in Japan was down 76.8% to 20,138 units as a 79.9% decrease in passenger car (15,664 units) and a 49.4% decline in commercial vehicle (4,474 units) output saw year-on-year output fall for the fourth consecutive month.

The fall in production volume in Japan was, as in the previous three months, due mainly to the impact of the global financial crisis on sales volume in the company’s world markets.

Vehicle sales in Japan in February declined 33.6% to 13,623 units, the 18th consecutive monthly decline since September 2007. Registered vehicle sales volume at 3,880 units was 50.5% down on the same month last year. Minicar sales volume at 9,743 units was 23.2% down.

Overseas production fell 40.3% to 24,910 units, the 12th consecutive monthly decline. Output in North America was 74.6% down as production levels were adjusted for slow sales in the US. In Europe, output was 44.3% down.

Exports from Japan of 13,250 units were off 75%. Exports to Asia fell 75.5% to 1,367 units due mainly to a major drop in shipments of built-up models to China. Exports to Europe at 3,401 units were 81.2% down due mainly to a major drop in sales in Russia and Ukraine.

Exports to North America as a whole at 2,859 units were 64.8% down, though shipments to Canada and to Mexico were 57% and 27% up respectively over February last year.

Mitsubishi has just announced a major retrenchment in Europe, closing its Dutch head office, relocating sales and marketing functions to Japan and consolidating remaining mainly logistics and support services in the same location as its assembly plant and parts centre.