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January 7, 2016

Mitsubishi finds no auto buyer for US plant

Mitsubishi Motors has confirmed a report in Japan's Nikkei business newspaper which said the automaker was unable to find a buyer for its US factory in Normal, Illinois, and take on its workers.

Mitsubishi Motors has confirmed a report in Japan's Nikkei business newspaper which said the automaker was unable to find a buyer for its US factory in Normal, Illinois, and take on its workers.

"We have given up looking for an automaker to buy the plant but we are looking for possible buyers from other industries," a Mitsubishi Motors spokesman told Reuters.

The spokesman refused to comment to the news agency on the report's claim MMC expected to book an extraordinary loss of between JPY20bn and JPY30bn (US$169.52m to $254.28m) this fiscal year ending 31 March, 2016 due to costs related to the closure.

Once a production hub for Mitsubishi's Outlander Sport SUV model, the plant ended vehicle production in November, laying off 1,000 workers.

The automaker said the plant would continue to make car parts until the end of May, at which point its remaining 250 workers would no longer be needed, Reuters noted. 

Last year, the automaker said it would base production in Japan, Southeast Asia and Russia, after closing its Nedcar plant in the Netherlands in 2012.

The Dutch plant – now VDL Nedcar – produces Minis under contract.

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