Mitsubishi is considering assembling all Lancer sedans for the ASEAN market in Thailand where it already produces pickup trucks for domestic and export sales.

The company has apparently decided that it would make better sense to concentrate Lancer production in one factory within the ASEAN area after the Asia Free Trade Agreement (AFTA) is introduced, because import tariffs within the area are expected to decline to 5 percent in 2003.

Mitsubishi currently assembles the Lancer from CKD kits in Thailand, the Philippines and Indonesia but demand for the sedans is low because of their high price compared with the pickups popular in the region. Concentrating production in Thailand would give better economies of scale and is likely to begin with the next model change-over.