Mitsubishi Motors Europe (MME) said it boosted calendar year 2019 sales 4% year on year to 171,906 units.

The European national sales company (NSC) segments its sales two ways – by ACEA markets (EU and EFTA countries, excluding L200/Triton pickup truck volume) and MME (33 countries, including L200/Triton pickup trucks).

Total ACEA market volume last year rose 1.2% to 15,805,752 units and MME sold 138,003 vehicles, up 3.4%.

In the MME markets, Mitsubishi shifted 171,906 units, up 4%.

“In a rather unpredictable European market (implementation of new emission-driven regulations, impact of new taxation schemes and political uncertainties), Mitsubishi Motors continued to plot its way forward in the most demanding of all global automobile markets,” MME said in a statement.

The automaker noted it had “renewed and repositioned” its well established ASX small crossover and L200 pickup trucks in 2019, to be followed by redesigned Space Star and Mirage models “in a few weeks” and said the full impact of the new line “would only be seen during the course of calendar year 2020”.

The Space Star/Mirage line remained MME’s top seller in 2019 with 39,530 sales (up 10%) while, despite the loss of EV subsidies in the strong UK market, Outlander PHEV volume soared 42% to 34,729 units last year.

ASX (31,306 sales; down 3%), Eclipse Cross (27,368; new for 2019) and L200 (23,414; up 12%) completed MME’s top five.

MME said its Outlander PHEV “techno-flagship”, which it calls “the only EV-based plug-in hybrid vehicle available in Europe”, also remained Europe’s best selling plug-in hybrid vehicle in 2019, in spite of a larger number of competitors now offered in Europe (such as Ford’s Kuga and Volvo’s XC40).

Since launch in October 2013, the Outlander PHEV has reached 159,132 sales in Europe, now led by Germany (7,618 units last year) rather than the UK.

Germany was also MME’s top market overall, accounting for 54,033 sales (up 4%) followed by the UK (26,788; down 13%), Spain (14,769; +10%), Italy (9,659; +33%) and France (9,437; +29%).

New MME president & CEO Eric Wepierre said: “In a European market which is being reshaped by new technologies, new customers’ expectations and attitude, as well as a new regulatory environment, Mitsubishi Motors is in a position to capitalise on its electrified market leadership, gained with Outlander PHEV since 2013.

“While electro-mobility turns mainstream, during 2020 we will move on once again from the mainstream, kicking off the next stage of our SUV + EV strategy, at product level and also at eco-system level with the first implementation of our innovative Dendo Drive House concept.

“Both will further nurture our strategy of sustainable growth in Europe where brand image and profitability will take precedence over the race for volume.”

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