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Mitsubishi will not sell any new models across the continent and those on finance deals may be unable to switch to a newer vehicle at the end of their contract. The Colt Car Company who imports Mitsubishi cars into the UK have confirmed they will continue to offer support to existing owners.
This will include the sale of car parts and servicing to customers for the foreseeable future to ensure those who own a car are not caught out.
However, experts have warned it is inevitable that dealerships could leave the Colt Car Company which may leave motorists exposed.
Owners could find themselves based away from garages who are able to fit these upgrades which could lead to devastating consequences for road safety.
The Colt Car Company may be forced to install local garages in some areas to cater for owners who are not located near a participating dealership.
A statement from the group said: “The Colt Car Company has just learned that Mitsubishi Motors Corporation has frozen the development and introduction of new models for Europe, including the UK.
“We will continue to sell the existing range of Mitsubishi vehicles and to provide full customer support in terms of service, repair, warranty, recalls, parts and accessories. We will provide updates when we know more.”
The changes will also mean brand new models such as a plug-in hybrid for the fourth generation Outlander will not come to the UK market.
The Outlander has been one of the most popular hybrid vehicles on UK roads since it was launched in 2012.
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The latest ruling is a major blow for the affordable electric hybrid car market with models available at just over £30,000.
Mitsubishi’s brand new models such as their ASX will remain on sale until stock levels have been used up.
However, despite concerns from road users Mitsubishi will still need to honour all existing and brand new vehicle warranty agreements.
Mitsubishi made the decision to leave the UK and European markets after a decline in sales due to the coronavirus pandemic.
Data from the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders (SMMT) reveals Mitsubishi sales had suffered terrible losses.
Sales were down by 51.9 percent in 2020 with just 4,708 models sold from forecourts throughout the first half of 2020.
The firm is predicting to lose £1.03billion for the year ending March 2021 which could be their biggest loss in 19 years.
In a statement released on Monday, Mitsubishi said: “’The forecast of costs to be incurred due to the freeze on introduction of new vehicle models has already been reflected in the earnings forecast for fiscal year 2020 that we announce today.
“The specific amount is currently being examined. We will make an announcement promptly if further related matters for disclosure arise.”
The Colt Car Company has confirmed none of the 249 staff members jobs will be lost due to the decision with the firm looking to find a new franchise.
Conor Twomey, CCC spokesman, said the firm was already in discussion with a range of electric focused companies.
He added: “It’s not like we had any long-term sight of this coming, we got a tiny bit of notice before [the] announcement was made on Monday.
“It came as a tiny bit of a surprise to us as well. So we’re genuinely trying to wrap our heads around what this means for us as well.”
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